Make this Leap Day count


February is the perfect month. A nice, round, easily-divisible 28 days. It’s like you took a regular month and stripped it down to the basics; exactly four blissfully-complete weeks.

Except for this February. This February, we get an extra day. Think about that for a minute. It’s a whole extra day! We celebrate boring old regularly-scheduled days all year round, but no one really knows what to do with this bonus day, this created-out-of-thin-air day, that only comes around every four years, no strings of tradition attached. What if someone came up to you on the street and was like, Hey, buddy, I’ve got this free, extra day here, and you can use it to do whatever you want. I mean, you’d take it, right?

Yet we don’t even celebrate Leap Day. I say, this day is too special to not commemorate. This month is special. This whole year is special. So I propose doing something special on February 29: Taking a creative leap.

February—beautiful, symmetrical February—has it all set up for you. Right there in the middle of the month is a day dedicated to love. So by February 14, all you have to do is figure out what you love. By February 29, figure out what you’re going to do. And on Leap Day, take your creative leap. The good news is, you only have to do it every four years!

Four years ago in February, completely by coincidence, I decided to take a trip that forever changed my life. Here I am four years later, it’s that time of year, and again, just by coincidence, it’s time for a big, life-rattling change. A huge leap for a Leap Year. I’ll be back here on Leap Day, ready to share my creative leap with the world. I hope you’ll do the same.

Update: To see what creative leap I took back in 2008, read this post.

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  • debbie

    congratulations, alissa. your site looks gorgeous. xxx’s

  • cchs

    so long. and thanks for all the fish.

  • Christopher Fahey

    Exciting news! I look forward to hanging out here more. Best of luck!

  • R. Walker

    Are you ready to be linked, or still in “beta,” as they say?

  • mick

    you are the best. i will miss staying so well informed by your unbeige persona, but selfishly know that I can always ask you when I need to find out the latest. xx

  • Alissa

    Thank you everyone for the oh so kind words! R., about still being in beta…I think this website will be in a state of permanent beta since I plan to constantly fiddle with it. Link away!

  • BrynM

    Cheers, Alissa!

  • Jenny T

    Congrats! Thanks for the fun get together and in person explanation of the Creative Leap Year. I’m on it!!

  • Scott

    Nice. You’ll be missed at that old place, but I look forward to spending time in this new place. Keep up the good work!

  • Stefan G. Bucher

    Mazel Tov! The new site looks beautiful, Alissa! UnBeige won’t be the same without you, but I’m excited that I can now finally leave comments on your posts! Here’s to Permanent Beta (also my new favorite band). Launch and Learn!

  • Natalie – The Liquid Muse

    Love the new / old blog. Welcome home!

    And, I am using this leap day as a major bonus… the manuscript for my book is due at the end of Feb. Leap Day gives me a whole extra day before my deadline!!! As much as I’d like to say I’ll be done ahead of time, I have a feeling I just may need that extra 24-hours. Woo-hoo!

  • Sam

    I’ve told you this before, Alissa, but because it’s a new day and a new blog, I’ll say it again.

    When you were in my writing classes at PC, I always saved your papers for last when reviewing student work so I would have something to look forward to while working my way through mundane.

    You never disappointed me back then. And you’ve never disappointed me since then.

    You’re the best — as anybody who is familiar with you and/or your writing already knows. So your new blog will be the best and you’ll go on being the best. And so on.

  • Marc

    Alissa, watching you live-blogging at Compostmodern was a real voyeuristic pleasure. I have to admit I tuned out the presentation for a few minutes (sorry Scott) and just watched you working on your laptop, processing the content, spirit and energy of the event in real-time, weaving it together into some of the most heartfelt, witty, and spot-on commentary I’ve ever read. You kicked some serious ass.

  • Khoi Vinh

    I’m so happy you accept comments here. And you have a full-text RSS feed. It’s like freedom. Sweet freedom.

  • Banan Yaquby

    Congrats..will miss you on i always scroll down looking for what you have written..but im so happy to see that you have your own blog now ..Im sure ill be here a lot :)

  • Alissa

    Wow, this must be what it’s like to attend your own funeral. Thank you, thank you. Where are all the nasty commenters I was promised? Anyway, to all of you who said nice things, your checks are in the mail.

  • Dad

    Your site is really fun to read. It gives me a chance to use the upper half of my IQ (the numbers over 30).

    You make me proud that you have taken the chance to do things ‘your’ way. Keep up the good work and call often.

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  • Nicole Monastirsky

    Hey Alissa–

    i took ur mediabistro blogging class a couple of months ago and have periodically checked ur blog. so… just wanted to say congrats on the chronicle gig! that’s freakin fantastic! Chronicle is one of the best publishers out there and this is such a rockin thing for u!!

    btw: i’m the sassy vegan girl, and i’m still taking my nutrition classes and waiting until i’m a little more knowledgeable to set up shop and start my blog, but it’s a comin…

    Walk on Walker!

  • Kevin M. Scarbrough


    Your seminar at Portfolio Center a few quarters ago inspired me to push myself further and faster. For my Leap Year’s Resolution this past year (sorry I’m a few months late in telling you about it, just ran across this post) I coughed up some cash, called a friend and went to Chicago for 3 days (during the week before studio week!)

    Hopefully you will get this message soon. I graduate in about a month, and I’d love to show you the project that resulted from this last-minute trip.

    Wishing you all the best!

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  • K. Nicole

    Quite a few years late but still inspired – I linked to this post in my leap year post this year – just wanted to say thanks for the motivating words! 

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  • Liezel Ilano

    Interesting article , I learned a lot from the insight – Does someone know if my company might be able to get a sample FL DH 527 form to fill out ?