A friend told me about NaNoWriMo, an online non-profit that helps you set a goal and gives you a deadline, a way to chart your progress, pep talks from other writers and a certificate when you complete your rough draft with a goal of 50,000 words.
So, I tried it. It was a lot of fun to know that you are in the company of a lot of other crazy people all over the country trying to type yourself into oblivion, or get that novel out.
I type tested myself and I could meet the daily goal of 2,000 words per day in less than 2 hours, maybe even 1 if I knew exactly what to say and could continuously just say it.
The first week went okay. The second week I hit several bouts of writer’s block and it seemed like every night I was going to bed with a question I couldn’t answer that would keep the ball from rolling.
Finally I was getting so behind on my count I made myself stay in my chair and type for an entire day. I didn’t catch up, in fact, I made less progress than I hoped, but I was moving forward again.
I learned to keep pushing through writer’s block and not let it stop me.
By the end of the second week I was getting near the midpoint, 25,000 words.
Quite a fun thing to get to half way through the book, but half my story wasn’t out!
I kept going and the next week I could smell the end. When I could smell the end I lost all balance. Who needs to shower, exercise, or cook meals? Well, at least it was only 3 days and I did fit in that shower–finally but the last 3 days that is all I wanted to do every second I had–mostly ’cause I didn’t want to be doing it again next week.
So, here I am in the fourth week–DONE! and a Winner with a certificate from NaNoWriMo to prove it. I know I can write a novel length in 3 weeks–something of a miracle.
And, I have confidence that if you want to and it is the right time for you, you can do it, too.
November turned out to be a good month for me because the calendar actually was calmer than usual.
I think the hardest thing for me was giving myself permission to be that lazy (not so busy helping others) while I accomplished it. I was worried I’d ignore my children (but my youngest is 8, so I figured, I could give it a try).
As it turned out, my family was fairly supportive, I could usually do it when they didn’t notice or care (minus those last 3 days) and maybe because it was fiction, I didn’t take it too seriously and was able to keep balance and perspective most of the time.
So, if you want to write a book, I highly recommend it. Happy Writing…