1000 Words + a Photo

Jan 3, 2015 | Art

A brand new year! What are you going to do with it? Are you going to keep it all shiny and pristine, or use it up – wring every last drop of goodness from it before that ball drops on Times Square in 2016? I vote we do that. It’s not as if 2015 can be recycled and reused or re-sold as “gently used” if we keep it in a box on the shelf. No one’s going to want the darned thing, come 2016. Brand spankin’ new years are free – every year to everybody! As I said yesterday, use it or lose it!

2015 gives me a whole ‘nother chance to fail at the Project 365 thing, too. I don’t think I do so well at those “Do this every day” type challenges. They seem to trip some perversely rebellious switch in my brain, and after that, one of several things happens – but it’s rarely to do the thing every day without fail. I may skip three days and then do the thing six times in a single day. I may do absolutely nothing. I may do something else every day, instead. But clearly, “Do [fill-in-the-blank] every day” doesn’t work for me. Maybe because I’ve never been able to come up with a good answer to the whiny little voice in my head wailing, “Why would you want to do that?”

Um, to develop the discipline?

Develop discipline? Why? Is someone going to die if you don’t post a picture every damned day?”

Well, no…

“Do you really think anyone wants to read your blathering drivel every damned day?”

Now you’re just being nasty. Probably not–

“I was kidding. But you know that your creativity – the interestingness of your posts – is inversely proportional to your sense of obligation to write something, right? You’ve figured that out by now, I hope.”

You might have a point there. Want to work on crochet for a while?

“Sure. Then we can take a picture of your work in progress and bore everyone to tears with what you’re going to do next.”

Oh, shut up – I know now who you are! You’re Edna, the Inner Critic. I thought I chucked you out the plane, riding a block of blue ice, during NaNoWriMo several years ago!

“Inner Critics never die, and that block of blue ice finally melted. Right over your house. Wasn’t that convenient?”

This is why we write, you know – inner critics hate it when we do. Their job is the opposite of the vaunted Muse; the inner critic lives solely to convince us that we missed our callings – we should have been septic tank cleaners or grave diggers. I wonder if those folks have inner critics telling them they should give up the day job and become writers?

1000 Words + a Photo

This month’s words: COMMITMENT, DETERMINATION, STRENGTH (Choose one or all three.)

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See that blue Add link button? Click it. Add a link to your post containing your original photo and 1000 words on the topic. (I’ve set this to require a link back here, to mine, as well, so be sweet and include that somewhere in your post and we’ll both benefit – maybe some of our readers will discover some new blogs to enjoy!)

Holly Jahangiri

Holly Jahangiri is the author of Trockle, illustrated by Jordan Vinyard; A Puppy, Not a Guppy, illustrated by Ryan Shaw; and the newest release: A New Leaf for Lyle, illustrated by Carrie Salazar. She draws inspiration from her family, from her own childhood adventures (some of which only happened in her overactive imagination), and from readers both young and young-at-heart. She lives in Houston, Texas, with her husband, J.J., whose love and encouragement make writing books twice the fun.


  1. Katrina

    The inner voice that kept me from blogging for over 2 weeks.

    Honestly since I started doing the Ultimate Blog Challenge I have found it therapeutic to write my blog post.

    It allows me to voice my thought and help others avoid the pitfalls of building a business online.

    I really enjoyed your writing style and look forward to visiting your blog again during the Ultimate Blog Challenge. 🙂

    Happy New Year!

    • HollyJahangiri

      Happy New Year, Katrina! I should dig up that year’s NaNoWriMo attempt – I spent it smacking the Inner Critic around in hilarious and sometimes inappropriate ways. And man, was she snarky – that made it a guiltless pleasure.

      I think it’s excellent that you’re sharing and trying to help others AVOID the pitfalls of building a business online. Your writing style is engaging and straightforward, and I believe you’re sharing real lessons learned. There are so many dreams out there and so many pitfalls for the unwary. You could probably get wildly rich just by being honest and telling people what NOT to do. And as I said on your blog, MLM is not my cup of tea, but neither is neurosurgery or welding – the world needs us all. (Well, maybe not the spammers and scammers. They kind of rank up there with fire ants. I honestly haven’t found a real useful point to there being either, but that’s not neither here nor there. I suppose something eats fire ants, and good people can earn an income writing anti-spam and anti-virus and anti-malware apps – it’s all part of the ecosystem, isn’t it?)

      The UBC is awesome. I don’t think I’ve faithfully blogged for 30 straight days in a row, maybe EVER, but I keep coming back to it because no one throws rotten tomatoes at me or calls me a failure when I don’t. And it does remind and inspire me when I see the notifications and other people’s posts. So I sign up and allow myself to do it my way (which is to say, “fail,” but it’s not really failing if I’m writing more than I would, otherwise!)

  2. Michelle

    Thanks for sharing! This is very much how I feel right now. 🙂

    I saw the link to this post in the Facebook Ultimate Blog Challenge group. 🙂

    • HollyJahangiri

      We all have our inner critics, don’t we, Michelle? I highly recommend having a written conversation with them – and feeling free to dish out a little abuse right back at them. I tied mine up and duct taped her mouth during NaNoWriMo. My Muse was hardly the gentle inspiration one imagines of a Muse, either, but she cut through lame excuses like they were butter and she was wielding a laser. Glad you stopped by – hope you will again!

  3. Mitch Mitchell

    I’m the confused one. Are you adding a photo and writing 1,000 words every day for the month, for the year, or for a contest? Is it your own photo or a photo someone else puts up that you’re supposed to be writing on? Is this at a special place (since I looked ahead & haven’t seen it on any of your posts after this one lol)? Can I just say “No, I don’t think so” without looking like a wuss (not that I’d care lol)?


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