For writers everywhere that means National Novel Writing Month. People are sitting their butts in their favorite chairs with cups of their favorite beverage in hopes of having 50,000 new words staring from computer screens at the end of these thirty days.
Sound like a lot? Cause it is.
For the last month, I have been reading tweets as those participating prepare. Some create extensive outlines. Others have general plans. A few are just going to wing it. Word counts run rampant on Twitter. Daily goals have been set.
And the fun began last Sunday. I am not a part of the craziness. I do not NaNo.
Why? Too much pressure. With daily goals and the looming deadline of 50K words… I would panic and fail. I know me. This would happen. At the end, I would be a quivering mass of blah with a bunch of words that make no sense. I choose not to be that. My writing process does not allow for this challenge. I’m okay with that.
For everyone who takes on this crazy challenge, I applaud you.
Whether you get to that magic number or not, BRAVO for giving it a go!
It’s been a few days and tweets are positive. Goals are being met. Stories are progressing. The general feeling is upbeat and numbers are high.
This trend probably won’t continue. In a week or so, tweets will begin to show panic. Goals slip away. Doubt nibbles at the positivity. Life throws strangeness into the mix. Exhaustion creeps in. Maybe the story gets out of hand. Suddenly everything that has been written screams that it doesn’t work. Maybe the ms would be better in a different POV or tense.
The questions multiply. The doubt grows. Will what exists at the end of the month be worth having?
YES! IT WILL!
AND I WILL BE HERE TO CHEER YOU ON!
I WILL BE HERE REMINDING YOU THAT YOU ARE…
To get through NaNo, there must be writing. Let the words flow. Maybe you can stick to the plan, maybe not, it won’t matter. Just keep writing. 50K in a month is not achieved through questioning.
You didn’t reach your goal one day? Relax, don’t sweat it.
Put it behind you and keep moving forward. This is not the month to focus on what might have been, what you should have done. This is the time to take what you have and build on it.
No showers for a month? No problem.
Kids are in charge of making their own dinner? They are learning to be independent.
The house becomes covered in a layer of dust? Adds cushion…comfort.
Your family forgets what you look like? They’ll remember eventually.
Because the month will end.
Will you hit that magic 50K number? Maybe. Maybe not.
But you will have words, new words. Words that will always be there for you to mold into whatever they decide they want to be, next week or next year. Whenever.
Hold onto that thought as you type away, reaching for the stars. You are creating possibilities, mixing the clay that will someday be brilliance.
Whether writing goes like this…
or more like this…
Whether you end the day in a state of…
I will be here to tell you to KEEP GOING! I might not be joining you in achieving 50K, but I will be striving to add as many words as I can to my WIP.
So, go forth my NaNo-ers as you NaNo and don’t look back.