Two years ago yesterday I stopped writing on 1000 Days. During most of those twenty-four months I didn’t miss the effort, but I did frequently miss the output. I’m back to writing here and will be posting daily. Or I might be writing daily and posting regularly–no reason to expose you to everything this time.

I didn’t have a plan when I started 1000 Days–at least not a plan more sophisticated than writing for 1000 days. I don’t even have that much of a plan this time around. I think I’ll stretch my fingers on the keyboard a bit and see where I can take that.

Two interruptions later…

Jamie Shaver sat crossways on the passenger’s side of an old Peugot 205 with one foot in the empty driver’s seat, another on the gearbox, and her elbow hooked over her headrest. She watched feathers of snow melt on the back window. The heater kept ahead…for now. How much longer did Wendell expect her to wait?

She tucked her attention down into a tablet and swiped through the circle of pages. The home page went by three times. Should she clean up the photo and camera app page or go find her girlfriend?


A buffet of wind rocked the plain white car with a spatter of ice-grit.

Trying to Figure


I’m writing today. I’ll be writing tomorrow.

I’ve missed it and have been trying to figure out the best way to get back in it. I haven’t come up with a plan for writing at this stage. I’m just doing it.

In the past years of writing, I’ve gathered inspirational blurbs I’ve found on the Internet. Sometimes these were pictures, sometimes illustrations, sometimes definitions, and sometimes quotes. I didn’t stop collecting these blurbs during the time I took off from writing, so I’ve amassed a bit of a backlog of them. Well, I was always backlogged but now I’ve got an unaddressed surfeit. I don’t want to become like the kid at Halloween who hoards his stash for another day only to discover the allure of a Heath bar has staled from the wait.

However, I want to have purpose here. I want to adhere to as many of the suggestions I gave myself in my penultimate 1000 Days post. I don’t want to slip into the lazy habit of ‘just writing’. I’ve already developed that skill. I need to develop new ones, because what I’m doing now in the hour before work is more a disgrace to that hour than my worst writing ever was.

My purpose will be cumulative. Each month I’ll add a new wrinkle to the existing ones. Since I need time to figure out what those wrinkles will be I’m not going to outline anything here. What I will say is the first thing I need to do is to warm to this hour again. Right now, the best way for me to do that is to start privately journalling my family’s life. That started and stopped several years ago much like a beater with water in the gas line. Time for me to purge that line and get things rolling.

Picture courtesy of Creative Ignition.

997 Gates


“Why not 1000?” That’s the title of the plaque here at gate twenty-seven.

Below the question, a paragraph explains why there are three less than a thousand gates. Apparently prime numbers were important—and known—to the pre-historic people who constructed these unusual rock towers. Below that, a second paragraph outlines a handful of other arguments: poor counting on the part of the builders, untimely conflict with neighboring peoples, lack of both human and material resources, or the ultimate decay of time. Maybe there were once a thousand. Maybe there never were. Or maybe there were never meant to be.

Along the bottom, a line of dots maps out the location of each gate across their two hundred kilometer route. In a wavering course running southwest to northeast with a single bend to the north, the dots trail across the plains over two rivers, a lake and into the mountains. An unknown number of finger touches has ghosted a spot near the beginning of that course.

“You are here,” John says.

He hefts a red Osprey Manta daypack from the ground and over his shoulders. Inside, he has three liters of water, a cheap REI rain jacket, a handful of Hammer gels, a Clif bar, a peanut butter and jelly sandwich, and one hundred thousand dollars neatly divided into five Zip-loc bags.

John twists his wrist to check the time. He has less than eight hours to get to gate three-hundred seven or they kill Laurie.

243 words on day 1000