On June 7th, I created my Destructoid account. Over the next 6 weeks, I wrote three posts. Not one of them was good. In fact, they were so far below my expectations that I stopped writing for over a month. And then last Saturday, I wrote my first article that didn't suck.
Objectively, it was nothing special. Five likes (the sixth was my own sleepiness-induced misclick) and thirteen comments is a far cry from setting the community on fire. But last Saturday's piece is the first time I've been proud of an article a week later. It was the first time I'd created something that had resonated with somebody else.
It feels fantastic. And I want more. And I know I can't be the only one on here who thinks this way.
Any of you who run in particularly artsy circles or have a lot of hipster friends are probably familiar with Ira Glass's bit on how he built his creative talent. For those of you who haven't, I've posted a video of it below. Watch it--there are few better ways to spend two minutes.
This concept is the fundamental basis of the group.
I'd like to, with this post, propose the foundation of the Destructoid Writers Group. With the support of the community, I hope it will evolve over time, but right now, I want to keep it simple. Right now, all I'm looking for is a group of people willing to make a single commitment:
Every person in the group pledges to produce one quality article every week.
It's that simple.
Well, not quite. Because sometimes a rule or two can help us keep ourselves honest.
First off, this isn't an average of one article every week…it means that every week, you write at least one article. Even if you're working on a huge expose on Jet Force Gemini to rival The Gameslinger's Bullet Witch piece, you'd better pump out some content on the side. And you don't get weeks off...every week, something has to get produced. If you want to be treated like a professional, and think like a professional, and act like a professional, you need to work like a professional.
Second, each article should be something you're proud of. Optimally, you'd hope that each of these articles would be front-page quality. But at the very least, they'd better be the best you can do. Think of these weekly articles like training sessions for a sport…half-assing them won't get you results. Consistent, focused effort will.
The topic doesn't matter. The kind of post doesn't matter. All that matters is that you're challenged by the writing process, and that you're pushing yourself hard enough that it's helping you learn and grow.
How to Join
Even if I don't get a single reply to this, I'm strapping myself in for the next 52 weeks. And I'm fine with that. But this idea only gets stronger with more people behind it--it's harder to cop out when you know there are others out there holding you to a high standard. If you want in, drop a comment below saying you're down. If you'd like, pick the day you're planning to publish each week, and I'll pester you if you miss a deadline. The only thing I ask if that you truly commit...it's all on an honor system, so dedicated people will push others to be better, but slackers will pull others down to their level.
I'd love for this to eventually grow into something truly collaborative, where we can discuss topics, get feedback, and treat each other like editors. But I also want to let that transition happen organically. For now, I want to take one step at a time.
In just four articles, I've already learned an enormous amount about the writing process. When I think about where I'll be a year from now, with 52 more articles under my belt, I'm almost giddy with excitement.
My goal is to eventually be more than somebody with a space on the web. I want to be an authority, a thinker, a writer that people care about. The only way I'm gonna get there is by building my skills. And the only way that will happen is by forcing myself to produce and grow.