Ah- November. National Novel Writing Month. 30 days. 50,000 words.
Bring on the plotters and the pantsers, the stream-of-thoughters, the carefully crafted outliners, the scribblers and typers. NaNoWriMo – sheer and utter brilliant written madness.
And this year I plan to cheat. Yes, you heard me right. I plan to cheat.
All previous years that I have attempted to do NaNo I have ended up stressing myself out because it became another task I had to do and it would eventually get shoved off into the should-do-but-don’t-really-need-to-do box. Not the best way to try to write a novel.
And while yes, I will agree that the only way to truly complete anything is to make it a habit. The notion of crafting a cohesive and polished novel in 4 weeks just was a bit more than I was able to handle.
Yeah,yeah I know. You eat an elephant a bite at a time and you write it 1670 words a day. Or so the story goes.
I have never been able to force myself to sit and write every day. For a long time writing has been my creative outlet from my very very non-creative job. It was always meant to be just for fun and I am loath to turn it into a daily chore. Yes, chore. Squeezed in between washing the dishes and brushing my teeth before I go to bed.
But while I was on the bus today, packed in like a sardine but yet somehow still able to read WordPress on my iPhone, I came across a blog about NaNoWriMo that reminded me of something that I have clearly forgotten. The whole point of this crazy month-long event is to just mind dump into a messy messy first draft and TO HAVE FUN! And while yes, there are plenty of successful writers who have had their NaNo projects published it is pretty ludicrous to believe that they didn’t have to rewrite and edit for months after.
Which begs the question why in the blue blazes have I spent the last few Novembers beating myself up when the stupid little NaNoWriMo widget didn’t hit 1670 on a daily basis?
Hence I am cheating this year. I am not going to commit to writing 50,000 words this November because NaNoWriMo just does not work for me.
In the spirit of NaNoWriMo, I am going to take my WIP and finish the lovely messy first draft. I am going to remind myself to write every day (yep, I set it up as a reminder on my iPhone). Tentative daily word count as usual 1250 (this blog not included). And if December 1st rolls around and it isn’t finished, I will take a deep breath and move right along. No biggie.
Do not take this as me aimlessly writing without an end in sight, because it isn’t. It is more like NaNoWriMo and I well, we work in theory but the reality is we get on each other’s last nerve. And if it ain’t fun and they ain’t paying you then why the heck are you doing it?
So for those of you that plan on embarking on your NaNoWriMo quest in eight days. Good luck.
And to the rest of you just keep writing and doing what you love to do for fun.