November is NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month), something I’ve always wanted to do. The idea is to get a 50,000-word first draft of a novel down on paper within a fixed timeframe (the 30 days of November). It doesn’t even have to be a good one.
I’ve participated before, but have never finished – and if I’m being honest with myself, never even got close enough to the finish line to even see it at a distance.
I’ve got the same excuses for failing that everyone does:
It’s too much work. Getting to 50,000 words in a month requires averaging a staggering 1,667 words per day, and especially after getting home tired after work, that’s a lot.
Poor discipline. On previous tries I’d skip a day or two, figuring “I’ll make it up later”. Well, 1,667 words is already a lot, 1,667 x2 or x3 is really a lot. A daily habit is absolutely key.
FOMO. There’s always something else you could be doing, and staying home for hours every night in front of your computer to write a novel that (with 99.99% probability) no more than a handful of other people are ever going to read isn’t an airtight value proposition.
I’ve also got one unique (or at least rare) excuse:
- All my stories eventually devolve into some transformation girl-crap. I can’t help it. My best hope is isolating it to a side character so it doesn’t derail the entire story.
I try to focus on the positive qualities of this year, and if there’s even one, it’s that those of us lucky enough to still have jobs have more flexibility in our schedules than we ever did before. I now choose when I get up, when I go to bed, the exact cut off of my working hours, and explicitly not to burn time on previously-necessary time sinks like commuting, ever.
If there’s one year in my entire life that I can fit NaNoWriMo into, it’s this one. I also have a surprisingly good recent track record for writing – having published 15 full articles in girlmode alone in the last two months.
To solve my “unique” problem, I’m kind of thinking about just embracing it. Realistically, no one’s ever going to read my crappy writing anyway, so if I want a main character who’s a boy that wears tartan skirts and eyeliner, I might just do it, popular appeal be damned.
The only thing is that with November 1st just over a week away, I should be well into pre-novel preparation by now. And while I have a few pages worth of story notes, sufficed to say, I’m not.
Anyway, all of this to say I’m trying to bully myself into writing for NaNoWriMo 2020. It probably won’t work, but I’m trying.
October 24, 2020 (3 years ago) by