A few weeks ago, I approached my Twitter friends Dan and Phil with an idea. It was incredibly simple– dudes, let’s challenge each other to write a post at least once a week for 52 weeks– but I was nervous that they wouldn’t be receptive to it. I knew that without them, and the system of commenting, cross linking, and participation that I had imagined, I would fail. I’ve tried on my own to write more, and for a million reasons it has always failed.
Long before this year even started, I knew that it had to be different. Because I lost my love for and my confidence in my ability to write– and I want it back. Because I’ve consumed so much from the web, but I haven’t fully experienced its read-write spirit. Because I’ve learned so much from the communities of which I’ve been a part, but I don’t feel that I’ve truly given back to them in a meaningful enough way.
I want to give back, and I can’t do that if I don’t believe in my own abilities. So think of this, I suppose, as an exercise in gaining procedural fluency. Once I’ve mastered the process of writing and quelled the inner demons that so often tell me, “No one cares about what you have to say,” and “No one cares what you think, either,” my mind and my heart will have a greater capacity to take on more higher order tasks and to undertake increasingly complex critical thinking.
There’s something to be said about the act of content creation on the web, and for its implications on web and media literacy. I hope that, in some way, our shared mission to contribute more to a place from which we have consumed so much catches on, but even if it doesn’t, all is not lost. We’ll be using the hashtag #52weeks across the rest of the web, where we hope to run into others with similar missions to make more out of their year, and we very, very much hope to see you there. If you want to join us, please get in touch on Twitter or by commenting on our endeavors throughout the year.