TL;DR: The 30 Day Writing Challenge is designed to help you build a daily writing habit. Find out more about the challenge or sign up.

Do you have a list of things that you want to write about that never seem to get written? Do you sit down to write and stare blankly at the screen in front of you?

No, I’m not a mind reader. These are problems I face too. All writers do. That’s because writing is hard.

When you sit down to write, your brain will do everything it can to stop you. Writing makes your brain sweat but that’s the last thing your brain wants to do. It wants to look at Twitter or Facebook. It wants to watch Netflix. It wants an easy way out.

To be a writer, you need the ability to focus. Focusing on a cognitively demanding task, without distraction, is difficult. If that doesn’t come naturally to you, don’t worry: it’s a learnable skill.

To be a good writer, you need to be consistent. You just need to train the necessary muscles. Put in the work and you will get better. That’s why you need to write every day. Every. Single. Day. No exceptions. It’s that simple and that hard.

Why write?

In a recent interview, Seth Godin was asked “what’s the secret of your success?” To which he replied, “the secret is there is no secret”.

I disagree.

Seth’s secret is that he writes (and publishes) every single day, without fail. Every single day, he sits down to write. Every single day, he pushes past the voices in his head that want to hold him back. He’s built a habit, a routine, a practice – whatever you want to call it – of writing. And the result? He’s one of the world’s leading authorities on marketing.

Writing, then, can help move your career or your business forward. Writing helps you better understand your craft. Writing connects you with like-minded people. Writing allows you to build a community or an audience. And writing forces a deeper clarity of thinking.

I really believe that daily writing is “the secret”.

Nathan Barry, author of Authority, summed it up perfectly when he said: “If you were to write 1000 words a day and publish even 50% of them for the world to see, I guarantee that your life will be completely different in 1 year.”

Don’t think of yourself as a writer? As Ann Handley says, “If you have a blog, you are a publisher. If you’re on social media, you are in marketing. That means we are all writers.”

No one is born a writer; you have to train to become one. In the words of Richard Bach, “A professional writer is an amateur who didn't quit.” Any good writer is someone who has put in the time. And this is something you can do, too.

So, we know that:

  1. Writing is difficult
  2. To communicate effectively we need the ability to write well
  3. And to write well, we need to practice every day

And that’s where The 30 Day Writing Challenge comes in.

What is the 30 Day Writing Challenge?

The 30 Day Writing Challenge (30DWC) is a writing challenge that is taking place during April 2017 with the aim to inspire you to build a daily writing practice.

Here are the rules for the challenge:

  • Write every day for 30 days - as little or as much as you can manage
  • Set and work towards your own writing goal
  • You can write articles, blog posts, guides, journals, even books (but emails don’t count)
  • The challenge starts on April 1st, 2017

Who is the challenge for?

This is for anyone wants to write more consistently and build a daily writing practice. You don’t need any prior writing experience to take part. This is perfect if:

  • You work in the tech or creative industries
  • You’re an independent worker (freelancer, contractor, business owner) that wants to start building a name for yourself
  • You’re in a full-time position and want to expand your career opportunities, learn more about your craft, and make a contribution to your community

Hugely enjoyable and fulfilling. I've been threatening to start a blog for years but have never got over the starting line. The sense of community around the challenge provided motivation to keep writing and was so helpful to interact with like-minded individuals in the same boat. I'll now keep on writing, as it's been so beneficial to my mindset and how I articulate my thoughts and views. Thank you for your help in starting that journey.

Matthew Passmore
Participated in 30DWC 2016

What do I get when I sign up?

By signing up, you’ll be part of a writing community where you can be held accountable to your writing goals.

There’s a Slack-powered Community where you can chat to others who are taking on the challenge. You’ll be able share what you’ve written and get constructive feedback.

And I'll be sending you emails throughout the challenge with advice and friendly encouragement.

30DWC is the perfect way to start your daily writing habit.

The 30 Day Writing Challenge was great. I got a lot out of it, first and foremost a writing habit - which was what I was aiming for! Secondly I really enjoyed the community element in the Slack rooms.

Andy Henson
Participated in 30DWC 2016

What do I need to take part?

Before joining the challenge, here’s what you need:

  • A commitment to write - you have to really want this
  • (At least) 30 minutes per day of undistracted time to write
  • A computer with an internet connection
  • That’s it: no fancy tools, no required reading; just you, your computer, and a desire to make this happen

But, but…

Do any of these sound familiar?

  • You don’t have time to write
  • When you do find the time, you don’t know what to write about
  • You get stuck staring at a blinking cursor on a blank canvas
  • You’re worried people will judge your writing
  • Or worse, what if no one reads what you’ve written?

These excuses are our brains way of trying to protect us because it’s safer to do nothing.

Steven Pressfield, in his classic book The War of Art, calls this The Resistance.

The Resistance is the voice in our head that wants to stop us from creating.

But the more of these objections we have, the more certain we can be that his is important to us. As Pressfield says, “if it meant nothing to us, they’d be no Resistance.”

30DWC was great. I got better at writing, I made some new online friends and I solidified my own thinking on the sort of content that I want to be producing moving forwards.

Darren Beale
Participated in 30DWC 2016

And who are you?

Hi, I’m Marc Jenkins and I’m a freelance web developer from Birmingham, UK. I write on my blog and to hundreds of freelancers and creative professionals on my mailing list.

I created this writing challenge primarily for myself. I still struggle to write every day. But I know that by inviting others to take the challenge too, I’ll be held accountable. They say your actions are your priorities. Writing is a priority of mine and I need to prove that by writing every single day.

Are you ready to take the challenge? Sign up below.