Introducing the 180k Word Challenge!

180,000 words.

Holy shit, that seems like a lot but it’s actually pretty easy once you break it down. If I average 500 written words a day for a year, I would have written precisely 182,500 words.

So why this challenge? Why write all these words?

Well, why not? I want to get paid to write so I might as well write, right? (See what I did there?)

Chris Guillebeau tries to write at least 500 words a day so why not try something that a great blogger and writer does?

I hope to accomplish many things with this crazy goal.

I want to improve my writing, I want to take writing seriously, I want to continue to blog without falling off track, and I want something that I can show when vying for potential job openings. I have no formal education or degrees that have to do with writing so all I have that can separate me from others is my work.

What do you do if you’re a soccer player and you want to get better? You play soccer. What do you do if you’re a student and you want to get better grades? You study. I want to be a writer and I want to become a better writer so what should I do? Write of course.

This challenge will force me to take writing seriously. It’s really easy to come home after a shitty day at work and just sit on the couch and watch Hulu. But that won’t help me become a better writer; it’ll just waste my time. This challenge will make me commit to being a writer and it will hold me accountable for my actions. It’ll force me to write even when I don’t feel like it at all and that will only help me in the long run.

Remember what my perfect day entailed? Basically a shit ton of writing. What would I do day in and day out as a paid writer? I can pretty much guarantee that it’ll consist of writing; lots and lots of writing. This rigorous schedule will train me for the schedule I’ll be going into once I eventually make the leap from my shit job to freelance/full-time writing. This will give me a leg up on the competition. I’ll take all the help I can get!

“Life” always has a way of sneaking up on you so writing at least 500 words a day (which is basically a blog post a day) will enable me to build up a back log of articles that I can publish when things get a little crazy (like the other night when I spent 7 hours in the Emergency Room with my wife. She’s relatively okay.) I doubt all the articles I write will be blog-worthy but the math makes sense; if I post 2 days a week and create 7 articles a week, then I should never run out of articles to post which is good for everyone; especially you, my readers. (Thanks for reading this, by the way!)

All these words combined should give me a pretty snazzy portfolio of work which I could show potential clients and recruiters. It’ll give everyone; including you, an insight of my thoughts and views. My body of work should be able to give someone a pretty good idea if we’d be a good match to work together. I don’t expect to have everyone want to work with me because I don’t want to work with everyone; I just want to work with people who I click with. Instead of just saying “hey, you should hire me!” I have something to show for.

That pretty much wraps things up and just like that, I have 639 words total.

One day down, only 364 days to go!

What are you doing to challenge yourself to do whatever your self-employed goal is?