Thursday, November 3, 2011

Greetings from NaNoWriMo - Surviving the first week successfully

Well, here we all are, for better or for worse, attempting to complete Day 3 of National Novel Writing Month.  If you are on schedule, you've got no less than 5,001 words completed, and you've even dug into tomorrow's word count quota. Or more.

It you aren't on schedule, no doubt you are gnashing your teeth, pulling your hair, and have even thrown in the towel already. (Or at least threatened to.)

Here's a thought:

Don't. Quit.

Don't. Give. Up.

Wanna know a secret?  I didn't write a single word for my NaNoWriMo project on November 1st.  That's right.  I didn't.  I meant to, but life got in the way.  I had to work.  I had to drive the two hours home from my mother's house.  I had school work to do.

Wanna know another secret? I still didn't have any idea what I was going to write for NaNoWriMo this year, even when I sat down to write my two day quota yesterday.

As a matter of fact, I didn't actually sign up for NaNoWriMo until November 5th the first year I signed up for it.

My point is, it's okay if you aren't keeping pace with the majority.  It's okay to do NaNoWriMo your own way.  If you want to skip a few days, it's perfectly alright to do so.  If you want to sit down and write ten thousand words at a stretch and then take a few days off, that's okay too.

What isn't okay is being paralyzed by fear and not attempting to make a start to begin with. 

"But Mynx, I don't have an outline yet!" 

"But Mynx, I don't have a clue what I want to write about!"

"But Mynx, my computer crashed and I broke my writing hand in a freak rollerblading accident yesterday!"

Bitch, please!  I'm going to give you all some tough love right about now.

Build a bridge and get over it.

You don't have an outline?  Good.  Here's an idea: try being a pantser this year.

You have no idea what you want to write about?  Good.  Here's another idea: try being a pantser this year.

Your computer crashed and you broke your writing hand in a freak rollerblading accident?  Here's an idea: invest in Dragon software and beat everyone to the NaNoWriMo finish line.

Now, wanna know how I'm getting my novel to write itself for me, despite having skipped the opening day of National Novel Writing Month?

Too bad.  I'm going to tell you anyway, because it's all about the tough love tonight.

I sat down in front of the computer and went to this website.  I generated a character name.  I generated a couple of plot scenarios.  I messed around with just about every generator I could find on this website.  I embraced the ridiculous.  I copy/pasted and rearranged the different stuff that it spit out at me.  And then, with little more than a character name and a time frame, I started writing.

I wrote for three hours straight and let my main character just tell her story.  I put my inner editor away, and I listened to her talk.  And she had a LOT to say.  For having not existed when I sat down at the computer around 7:30, by the time I closed my laptop up at 11:30, my character had given me 3,704 solid words, including an action scene.  She had revealed back story, and she had revealed supporting characters.  She had even revealed some motivations, and more importantly, she had shown me things that I needed to ask questions about and digger deeper for later on.

Most of all?

I had fun writing my quota.  The only reason that I stopped writing was because I was so tired I couldn't keep my eyes open. 

So, enough with the excuses already.

Get writing.

Are you on my NaNoWriMo buddies list?  Add me: EvilMynx