November is National Novel Writing Month (“NaNoWriMo“).
Participants sign up with the goal of writing 50,000 words between November 1 and November 30, 2011.
Well, not just words.
Ideally one should be writing some kind of story that makes sense to, ummm, other people.
But mostly it is about just getting up every day and writing like a motherfucker.(If you really want to learn about NaNoWriMo, check out their “About” page here.)
My point is, I signed up to do it about a month ago.
And then everything changed.
And I basically quit writing. Because UGH.
And now I have all sorts of stuff going on. Or not-going-on, as is more descriptive in my case.
Not writing. Not packing up my entire house and garage. Not taking care of things — banking, mail, taxes, attorney-stuff. Not exercising. Not interacting with life.
I’m pretty busy not-doing a lot of things.
Which makes me wonder how realistic it is to think that, at midnight on October 31st, something is going to flip and all of the sudden I’m going to be able to write at least 1,666 words every day for 30 days.
Not realistic at all, obviously.
I still want to try.
Mostly because kind of the whole premise of NaNoWriMo is that if you want to be a writer, you’ve just got to write.
And a LOT of what you write is guaranteed to suck.
And some of it is probably going to be amazing.
And you’re probably not even going to get to the amazing shit if you don’t just sit your butt down and write, write, write.
This is a good premise for someone like me.
Basically, NaNoWriMo gives me permission to suck at writing, while encouraging me to write as fast and as much as I can for thirty days.
So, I’m going to
try do it.
Plus, my Mom has been after me to write a book forever.
(Oh, Hello mother/daughter issues….)
And if I want to write something for her to read, I don’t have the luxury of lots of time.
So NaNoWriMo is really kind of perfect for me right now.
I may not be able to whip out a great American novel in 30 days (although “Water for Elephants” was drafted while the author was doing NaNoWriMo, so it can be done….), but I can probably come up with enough good dialogue, gentle action/horror and great sex scenes to keep Mom entertained for a bit.
I’m not sure exactly how I’m going to do this yet. Lots of writers post what they are writing day-to-day publicly, like on a blog, so their peeps can follow along. I’m not sure I’m brave enough to do that. We will see. I am, however, going to be doing some NaNoWriMo prep — character studies, plotting, research — before November 1, that I might want to share.*
Oh, and I’m going to be doing all that (character studies, plotting, research) while I’m also trying to pack up our entire house (and garage…) so that I can store all of our stuff by October 31st and join my Mom on her World Domination Tour in early November. First stop Tampa, and then (fingers crossed) on to her home in Puerto Morelos, Mexico.
No big deal.
*Note – NaNoWriMo says you’re not allowed to start writing your novel before November 1, but you can do as much prep work as you want. So I’m not cheating.
p.s. My silent retreat last week was glorrrrrious! So peaceful, so nice to be away from my home full of stuff that needs to be packed, so nice to be “out of touch” for a few days. Well, only really one day. But still! It was nice.
p.s.s. And while I was on silent retreat, the idea for my NaNoWriMo novel just crept into my head, totally uninvited!
p.s.s.s. And I started reading a book my awesome therapist/counsellor/Carolyn recommended, The Untethered Soul, and WOW. Really amazing stuff. Life changing, actually. I had to stop reading and just let some of the concepts soak in. I’m going back to it tonight (instead of, ummm, packing, of course) and then I get to see Carolyn again tomorrow. Thank God for Carolyn, yo.
p.s.s.s.s. This post is like 700 words. It took me over 2 hours to draft. More like over three hours, if I’m being really honest. This is not a good sign.