Writing page one of 2016's blank book, #365StrongStories 1

#365StrongStories-1I’m staring at the empty book that is 2016 and I’m paralyzed by the promise of this new project, #365StrongStories. How can I tell 366 stories (it’s leap year, remember) when I can’t even tell one? The Christmas tree droops, crumbs and toys crunch under foot, and yet another “big game” dominates the family room. Unless your idea of drama is a toddler’s quest to steal your iPhone, I haven’t got a single story to enchant you.

But I’m forgetting everything I know about story because I’m frightened by the blank page.

The strength of a story doesn’t depend on high stakes and shocking plot twists. A story is made strong by the writer’s passion for the scene and the her desire to connect with the reader.

Motherhood is a story - a sprawling epic crowded with characters who transform from sentence to sentence. The narrative structure is messy and some chapters are agonizingly kind while others are painfully short. Much of the writing in the motherhood story is riddled with typos, but that's because the author hasn't had a good night's sleep since 2009.

There are stories to tell here. There are stories I must tell and stories I think you must hear.

#365strongstories, day 1