The One Year Rule

Word CountAnything worthwhile takes a year.

Last month, I finished my novel. It took me a year and a half. That’s pretty quick for a novel, but it still felt like a long time. It got me thinking about time frames, and I realized that anything worthwhile takes a year. At least for me. Maybe for you, too.

You can’t write a novel without learning a thing or two about patience and self-discipline. A novel’s a big project to tackle; not something you can just throw together in the course of an afternoon. The same goes for other creative endeavors. Take blogging. This single blog post didn’t take me very long, but one blog post doesn’t make for an interesting site. If you want to have a blog worth visiting, you need at least a year’s worth of posts. You need enough to get people hooked, enough to show them that it’s worth their time and effort to come back for more.

The same goes for other endeavors. If you need to lose weight or get into shape, if you want to get good at your job, if you want to build a relationship (whether romantic or platonic), you have to commit. Love at first sight, without the commitment and dedication to back it up, is merely lust.

As with so many axioms, I’m sure there are many exceptions to the rule. Perhaps I should just say that anything worthwhile takes dedication. But “dedication” is  vague concept, and I think that we need a more concrete goal to keep us on track. So if you want to tackle a big project, commit to a year. After that you’ll know if it’s truly worthwhile.

Steve Lovelace

Steve Lovelace is a writer and graphic artist. After graduating Michigan State University in 2004, he taught Spanish in Samoa before moving to Dallas, Texas. He blogs regularly at

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4 Responses

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