I am not going to “win” Nanowrimo this year. I didn’t think that I would when I started the month, and now, with 7 short days left and not having met even the halfway point, I can say with certainty that I will not reach 50 thousand words this year. And you know what? I’m okay with that.
This year has been an interesting one. I have 2 books out in ebook and paperback and I am working hard on marketing them. I am querying my first Nanowrimo novel and I am trying to write content for two websites (though honestly, that hasn’t been going as well as I had hoped lately and I will have to work harder on that going forward).
And that is just the writing aspect of my life.
Then, of course, are the daily challenges and responsibilities that we all have and love so much. A daily commute, a 9 to 5 job and eating, sleeping and spending time with family and friends. Basically the balance between work and life.
I was skeptical going into this year’s Nanowrimo challenge and for good reason. I was tired and I was out of idea juice when it came to this particular tale.
I examined why I felt I was running on empty with this story and it occurred to me that this story has a particular feel to it and one that I wasn’t allowing myself to sink into for any real length of time. I didn’t have a playlist sorted out and I just couldn’t wrap the right mood around me for significant enough periods of time to delve into the characters.
One day I found the playlist, and it was by sheer fluke. I happened to be listening to some music on my phone and a song came on by the group 3 Doors Down and I was drawn in. While there – in this ‘drawn in’ state – all of these ideas started to pour into my brain. It was quite remarkable.
So, okay, playlist discovered. Now I had to dedicate the time to write.
Lo and behold, November was fast approaching and I had conversations with friends about Nanowrimo. Next thing I know, I am making the decision to commit the time to finish my WIP during November.
So, here we are, on November 23rd with less than 25 thousand words written and honestly, I feel pretty okay about it. Though… if I took the rest of the month off to write, I might be able to make the 50 thousand word goal. (hmmm, I wonder…just kidding)
The truth of the matter is, this novel does not require an additional 50 thousand words. The story is almost told. There are some scenes missing and I am working on writing them, but I know at this point the goal for me is not a word count goal, it is to complete the thing and that will take as many words as it takes. And as this novel is showing me, it will reveal itself in its own time and trying to force it is just a recipe for frustration.
I am writing this blog post instead of writing my novel because, as I tried to explain to a friend earlier today, I am trying to write a particular scene and I cannot seem to drape myself in the emotions required to write that scene. I could get close, but I could not submerge myself in the feeling long enough to get anything done.
So what did I do instead? Well, I listened to some show tunes and all manner of music on Spotify and felt myself being pulled further and further away from the emotion. And now, I’m writing this, which has cemented my path away from the feeling.
Part of me feels like I should buckle down and get some work done. The other, much louder part of me feels like and quite frankly is shouting – “You’re tired. Go watch Netflix and drink a glass of wine. But first, listen to this song .”
And on that note, I’m outta here. I have some music to listen to and some TV to watch.
I will get back to the writing thing tomorrow.
See you at the finish line. I will be the one with the participant ribbon.