(More from me later, with any luck, but I wanted to be sure to post this now, since the New Year and the new River of Stones are almost upon us!)
Last year, Lis and I decided (totally on the spur of the moment, as is our half-assed wont) to participate in the River of Stones project. All during the month of January, we each wrote a stone a day (more or less--we did pretty well, actually). A "stone" is nothing more than a moment you've taken the time to really notice and record, in the simplest, most straightforward way.
Technically, a stone is not meant to be long--in fact, by definition, the more carefully and specifically one's words are chosen and the more directly to the point one's stones are, the better. But honestly, Lis and I tend to bend the rules a bit, because really, for us the point is the noticing, the being present, the taking the time each day to write something. Some days I was really inspired by the challenge of whittling my stone as closely and sharply as possible. Other days, I found I had something I really needed to get out on the page just as it hit me, extra details and all.
If you want to see our stones from last year (both from January and some we wrote in July and other times through the year), you can sort on the "aros" label in our tag cloud down the left-hand side of the Half-Assed bloggle here. (Or, you know, I could do it for you.) And if you want to participate this year, consider this: You do not need to think of yourself as a writer. You do not need to have a blog. You just need a desire to spend at least one moment each day grounding yourself in the present, finding your center, and really using your whole self to notice something fully--and then to write down that moment of noticing.
I always risk sounding like an overenthusiastic loon when I describe the effect that ongoing creative commitments like this have on me, so let me just leave you with the assurance that this one tiny act each day can create all kinds of magic in your life. The more you do it, the more magical it becomes. Want to join us in the River? Get more information here or here.
And if you're a reader here (regular, new, whatever! be our friend!) and you plan to participate in this, leave us a comment here to let us know, would you? For one thing, we want to go and read your stones! For another, I may actually get my act together to create a blogroll of our own little community of small stone writers (the larger project won't have a blogroll this year, since this has gotten way bigger than makes sense for a blogroll).
One of the nicest things about last year was finding other stone writers and communicating with them. And even though life got kind of overwhelming and hard for much of this year, and I've been very bad at keeping up regular contact with the lovely people we met last January, that doesn't mean I don't still have all your blogs bookmarked for reading when I can get myself back to regular blog reading. And for sure, this project inspires me to check in with people each day to find out what their own small stone moments were all about.