On Dopamine: #ThousandPoemYear update – Week 11

[Hi, I’m Joshua Judson. I’m writing 1000 Poems this year. To find out how and why, click HERE.]

Poems written this week: 37

Poems written so far this month: 82

Poems written so far this year: 259



It’s good stuff init, that dopamine. Powerful.

This week’s been a very successful one writing wise. There are a couple of reasons why that is. My timetable at Uni has become more forgiving as the term has gone on, and I’m doing really well mental health wise at the minute. But the main reason I think it’s been a good week is that a few milestones have come along at once.

I like rounding up, so hitting ’round’ numbers like 60/70/80 give me a massive kick, and other seemingly arbitrary things like finishing notebooks give me the same shot of dopamine. And this week, I finished a notebook, and hit 250 poems for the year. When I see that I am close to one of these milestones, I write like crazy to reach them. Which explains the slightly sporadic and spiky nature of the week when converted into chart form here:



And the form breakdown looks like this:

image copy

I’m very happy with the number of different forms I’ve been playing with, but there’s always room for improvement. Gram of &s is the form I’m writing on off every day, in place of the Sonnets I was writing everyday last month. I wrote so many Haiku this week because I’m in the midst of a project where I’m going to be using Haiku. After that project, I’m going to give myself a very strict limit as to how many Haiku I’m going to allow myself to write so they don’t become a cop out.


By way of an update on increasing the vulnerability i my work – it’s slow, but progress is being made. It’s been suggested that I should prioritise reading more ‘vulnerable work’, and I’m doing that. I’m still sort of reverting to this very English way of only half saying things, but I’m aware of that at least. Awareness is very important, I think.

I’m sort of becoming more and more okay with the work I’m churning out not being good, but just being work. I’m becoming more at peace with this just being practise and not product, which is a really nice feeling.


Looking ahead, I am on target. If anything, I’m over target. I’ve smashed the 250 barrier, meaning I’m over quarter of the way done with this monumental challenge. In the back of my mind, a voice is saying that I can get to 300 poems before the month is out, but I’m not putting pressure on that (as nice as that would be).


I’m aware that I could be opening up this process more. I’d love to have some comments and questions from people who are following the blog. Maybe I’ll do a Q&A blog soon. If you have a question, comment with it on this post!


Joshua Judson x

One Comment

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  1. Silly Question: Can you explain how to do a gram of &s? You’ve told me before but I listen to nothing innit.

    Sensible Question: Now that you’ve done a graph that looks like the first letter of my name, can you do one that looks like an ‘A’ next time? Then a ‘T’. etc. Thanks 🙂

    Loved this 🙂


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