Subject: Mid NaNo

Sunday, November 18, 2007

This is my first year as a participant in what we call NaNo. November is National Novel Writing Month, and people all over the world take up the challenge of NaNo. The challenge is simply to write at least a 50,000 word novel by the 30th of November. It isn’t complicated.

So, in October, I was still arguing with my inner editor about my ability to pull off a project that demanded 1,667 words a day, just to keep up. I think I can, I think I can, was my mantra coming up on the end of October.

My family can be very demanding. I have a brand new baby grandson for distraction. The phone rings too often. To make time for writing I had to draw a line, put up boundaries. Risk people being put out by my need to have time away from them while I wrote my 50K.

I started out by making a cap that has the words “Not Now I Am Nanoing” across the front. I rehearsed it with my family. If I wear the NaNo hat, unless their heads catch fire, I am going to have to get back to them. My frequent phoners were made well aware before the event that I was going to be incredibly busy and would be turning off my phones during the time I needed to devote to the ‘project.’

The first half of NaNo has passed and my family has been pretty good about letting me NaNo. However, when the stove caught fire a few days ago, I abandoned my ‘project’ and opted to help save the house. The fire was put out, but the stove was a total loss.

I have been able to keep my inner editor away. I try to bang out 2,000 words every day. I haven’t skipped any days and, as I write this, I have 33,622 words. When I feel a hard session coming, I simply change characters and pick up the story from another point of view. Three major characters are taking up the slack. I gave up on correcting spelling for fear of giving the inner editor a toe in the door.

During the next two weeks, less than two weeks, now, I plan to continue to set daily word goals. I keep the NaNo hat near and know where the off buttons are on my phones. Yes, I do forget to turn them back on, but the voice mail tells the opening scene, so callers are entertained. I am well into the last days of NaNo and when I reach the 35K mark I’ll start tying up loose ends.

To those who are NaNoing and feel wretchedly behind, you can pump up that word count. It isn’t too late to carve out more time, turn off those phones, stay away from that email and make a NaNo hat.

Be Well and Write Well.

Sally Franklin Christie


Sue said...

This is definitely motivational for me. I won't embark on this journey this year, but I will next November. You make this challenge sound doable, even in the face of everyday tasks and familial obligations.

Thanks for the inspiration, Sally!

Annette said...

Too funny! Sue, you and I are on the same page with sooo many things! That was exactly what I was thinking when I read Sally's post.

Sally, thanks for a peek into your "Mid-NANO" life--it's inspiring to hear you are making your word count. Kudos to you for your hard work and dedication!

I very much wanted to NANO this year, but with prepping for my book launch, working on WOW, and giving my family something to look at (instead of the back of my head), my personal To-Do's have taken a back seat. Between my hairdresser's exclamation of "Holy roots, Batman!" and no one at the gym reception desk recognizing me anymore--NANOing was put off with the rest.

I know for Sue and Angela it has been the same-and even more so. We should start an "Uncolored Roots Club for Women." Ok members, raise your hand if you've taken extra time to shower this week. LOL ;-)

For Christmas this year, I think I'll ask Santa for a NANO hat, so I'm prepared for next year!

And that way, the hat will cover the roots!

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the comments.

I actually had my hair done on the 2nd of Nano. Nano is how I refer to November these days. I had the white parts of my hair turned prematurely blond.

The hat I wear connected to the Agent in the Middle Article was covering roots.

The nano hat appears on my nano profile page. If you can figure out how to find profiles I am listed there as K. C. Morlock. Don't forget the periods.

Be well everyone. Oh how I wish the words I put into email and posts counted towards my nano project.

Don't touch anything sharp.

Susan said...

I have similar feelings. Next November I have a date with NaNo, but this year I found out (or remembered it) on the 4th and I already felt a bit too much anxiety to start at a deficit. It really is a challenge but very doable and I like that!

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