It is now the month of April, and therefore it is now National Poetry Month.
For the most part this just means all of us poets and poetry loving people are gonna be talking about poetry extra loud for the next few weeks, but what it also means is that we are now in the month of the 30-for-30 challenge.
Anthony, what’s the 30-for-30 challenge?
I’m glad you asked! The 30-for-30 challenge is a challenge in which people try and write a poem every day for the month of April (30 days, 30 poems, 30-for-30; because if you can make it catchy, you make it catchy). There isn’t a prize, it isn’t like National Novel Writing Month where if you hit a certain number of words or days writing you can get author’s copies of your books made. It’s largely personal, the writer forces themselves to be active in looking for inspiration and following through on their art.
Anyone who pays attention to this blog or the content that comes out of it knows that last year I decided to try and undertake the 30-for-30 challenge. For accountability’s sake, and to practice sharing my work with others, I also posted the resulting poems to my blog. I even saw it as an opportunity to jointly keep myself active in my photography and decided to carry my camera with me everyday. I’d then choose one of the images I took over the course of the day to be posted with the poem, sometimes the picture would inform or inspire the poem, sometimes vice versa, and sometimes they’d be completely unrelated. It was a really good period for me because I gave myself permission to prioritize my art, another reason I’ve become such a big advocate of the challenge.
That all being said, this month I will not be doing the 30-for-30 challenge.
Before you get upset, let me first say I’m shocked and flattered you would be so effected by the idea of not being able to consume my work this month. Next, let me assure you, you would have been completely okay without it.
Now let me explain what I mean when I say I won’t be doing the 30-for-30 challenge.
I wont be doing the 30-for-30 challenge because I have instead created my own version of it, something I am calling the –
30 – 4-5-6 – 30
For the sake of time, and everyone’s sanity, let’s just call it The April Project. What I’d like to do next is break down what exactly it is, what the numbers represent, and where you’ll be able to find the various pieces of content I’ll be putting out over the next few weeks. And in case you feel like skimming, main points are bolded in green and important links are bolded in blue.
I’ll start on the outside and work my way in.
30 Poems – … – 30 Pictures
The 30’s represent the 30 poems and 30 pictures I’ll be producing over the course of the next thirty days. This part of the project is effectively the usual 30-for-30 challenge. On any given day I’ll write a poem, take some pictures, and then you’ll be able to find them on this blog the following day. (For example: it’s April 1st, so the poem I write and picture I take today will be posted sometime tomorrow, April 2nd). This gives me time to edit either piece of content and at least make it presentable, although the poems especially will be rough/first drafts for all intensive purposes. I’ve even added a page on my blog where you’ll be able to find all National Poetry Month & 30-for-30 posts, so if you want to scroll through a couple of poems, or even see the ones from last year, it is all located in one convenient place. I’ve also added a link to said page in the banner menu so you can easily get to it from anywhere on my blog.
Now is where things get a little more complicated, and a little more “extra”…
4 : New Videos
The 4 represents four videos I will be releasing over the next four weeks on my YouTube Channel. This portion in particular will bring in an element of collaboration as the direction and shooting will be up to some very talented friends of mine. They’ll be going up each Saturday of the month (starting next week, April 8th) so if you aren’t already hip to my YouTube Channel, get wise, subscribe, and be on the look out for those as well as…
5: Old Performances
The 5 represents the five videos I will be (re)releasing on my YouTube Channel. As opposed to the aforementioned 4 New Videos, these will be 5 videos of live performances from various points in my poetry career. This portion of the project is two fold: to consolidate the scattered body of work I have posted on YouTube from over the years, and to revisit old material and performances, which I think is very important for artists and people to do. These will be posted every Sunday, with the first of them going up tomorrow April 2nd, so like I said get wise to the YouTube Channel.
6: The April Tape
The 6 represents six recorded tracks that will form a poetry EP I’ve labeled The April Tape Vol. 1, it’ll be comprised of poems written during last year’s 30-for-30 and you’ll be able to find them posted to my (newly created) Soundcloud. The track’s will be released on whatever day the given poem was originally posted to my blog in April of 2016, which is fun for me since only I know what poems are part of the tape and therefore only I know all of the release dates. So now that you’ve hopefully gotten wise to my YouTube, get wise to my Soundcloud as well. There’s a treat already waiting for you, the original version of my poem Hands which I professionally recorded during my senior year of high school and I’ve never released (or even shared with many people). Hands isn’t included in the 6 poems that’ll make up the tape, but it’s a little taste of what to expect and also something I’ve always wanted to share so please enjoy as my treat to you on the first day of National Poetry Month.
So there it is, the April 30 – 4-5-6 – 30 Project: 30 poems, 30 photos, 4 new videos, 5 old performances, and 6 recorded tracks, all in one month. At least, that’s all of the scheduled content as I’ve planned out to make this whole (possibly over ambitious) thing work. There’ll probably be some other content relating to the project, the process, etc. I’ll be putting out but that’ll just come as feels natural.
In the mean time, get wise to the platforms which I’ll throw some final links to down below including my social media so you can really keep up with everything. Be on the look out for all of the content thats coming, the first of which will start rolling out tomorrow.
Cheers, to prioritizing the art, the work, and so prioritizing the self.