The Daily NaNo (WriMo) – week 1

NaNoWriMo, for the uninitiated, is this crazy global writing project where you finish (or at least make one hell of a dent in) a book draft. 50,000 words within the month of November. And I’m one of the crazies. (I actually already blogged about this here) As part of the “fun”, I thought it would be neat to document the experience. So instead of making a bunch of different posts, I think I’ll just keep adding to this one as I go along. So, here we go:

  • Day 1: I set up Scrivener the day before. Correction: I installed Scrivener and looked at the guided tutorial thingie. Seemed pretty simple. Today, I set up my new book project but hit a little bit of a delay because there was this scene thing and I wasn’t sure if I was supposed to start typing in there or create a new blank page. Plus it said not to bother with numbering the chapters. Okay. Whatever. I didn’t feel like dicking around too much with the software to get my daily quota of writing done so I went with ‘blank page’ and dove in. I decided to begin a new ritual of putting the scarf I bought for my belly dancing class – the red one with the silver coins on it around my shoulders. It’s my “writing cape”. The writing: It was hard. Mostly because of the “voices”. The ones that said everything I was writing was drivel. I have no idea what I’m doing. Blah, blah, blah. I missed the double rainbow because I needed to keep my ass glued to the chair. Fortunately, lots of friends took pictures and posted them on FB. Nice! Word count: 1705
  • Day 2: It’s Saturday so I spent a good part of my day avoiding my computer. I sat down at about 5:30 and got to work. At 1100 words, I found myself wanting to nod off. Not out of boredom but because apparently, being creative on demand makes one tired. There was a part of me that wanted to give up but I didn’t. Told myself a firm no and got back to it. And then, a new character showed up. I think this is not new to veteran writers – this twist that shows up as a surprise. But I’m a green-green newbie so it delighted the hell out of me. I’m realizing a couple of things. I do have discipline but sometimes it wants to run off. And I need to take care of myself or this will not work. Left over Halloween candy, popcorn and red wine are not adequate food stuffs. I did have an excellent breakfast but I need more greens, veggies. Or how about real food? I had about two seconds of feeling sorry for myself that there wasn’t a guy here, cooking up fabulously nutritious meals and generally taking care of me while I embark on this NaNo thing. Then I realized I am more than capable of taking care of myself and feeling passed. I work on adding Prince C to the castle later. Word count: 2084
  • Day 3: Sunday. My absolute favorite day! I usually get donuts on Sundays but, in keeping with my own suggestion yesterday that I eat more healthfully, I cut up an apple and added it to some apple/cinnamon oatmeal for breakfast. It was a lot more satisfying than carbs and sugar. I knew I had my writing goal in front of me. Sometimes it felt big and like something I might want to avoid. But the story also kept percolating in my head. So a little dread but no real risk of choosing not doing the work. I’m still thrilled about the character that showed up yesterday. It was like a person popping up in front of me which makes me want to ask “who the fuck are you?!” He showed up on his own; He’ll reveal himself in due time. The writing today was hard work but fun most of the time. I added music which proved to be a good thing and not distracting. Word count: 1996
  • Day 4: Not a good writing day. Which is not to say I had a bad day in general. I sat down to write at my usual time, 4:30, 5ish but I had a headache. The kind that wanted to turn into a really bad headache of perhaps the migraine variety. I tried to write through it but when I began to feel nauseous, I realized there was a line between discipline and stupidity that I was about to cross. When your head feels like a gong reverberating from the inside out the only appropriate response is to shut off the lights and lay yourself down. I’m bothered that my word quota is down but not terribly. There is the question in my head of whether or not I was a weinnie. I have a trash can next to me if the nausea got that bad. Does the fact that I chose not to make myself miserable a sign that I don’t have what it takes? See how the thought demons can start wreaking havoc with your psyche? I’m just not “a-type” enough to lean over, toss my cookies and keep on putting words to page. Nor do I want to be. I know I say that writing is hard work and no doubt, it is! But it’s not miserable work and I don’t want to turn it into that. I guess I am a little “a-type” though. When I got up, I cleaned the cat box and put the garbage on the curb for the morning pick up. Ha! It’s the little gestures that keep one from feeling like a total bum. Word count: 393
  • Day 5: Back on track today. It took a little while to get the flow going but it got going. A new twist showed up. I followed it and might have written myself into a shit pickle but maybe not. If I can pull it off, it will be pretty cool. And if I don’t? I’ll back up and have another go at it. Part of this NaNo thing for me is the exercise of writing for the sake of writing. I haven’t been doing any fiction anything for years – actually, aside from a story attempt or two, I don’t think fiction has ever gotten this much of my attention. Big learning as I go along here. Word count: 1911
  • Day 6: I was a little concerned about how I was going to make my quota today. Not because I had such a packed day but because it’s Yoga Wednesday. Which means I wouldn’t have a completely free night to spend on writing. Turns out, I got all but 235 words in before it was time to get ready to go. I came home, relaxed a little with some dinner and an episode of Castle (love that show!) and got the rest of my words in. I have been thinking that I would need to forgo most socializing during NaNo month but maybe I’m not giving myself enough credit? I don’t know. It’s still very early so there will be no getting cocky here. Word count: 1709
  • Day 7: Today, the why got nailed down. Important – SO important. Word count: 1754

One thought on “The Daily NaNo (WriMo) – week 1

  1. When your great ideas are stuck, it can help to have a deadline. If you sign up for a wrtiing class or critique you get the gift of an outside person expecting you to write and giving you a deadline. Or start a wrtiing group those deadlines work well, too. Best of luck!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>