When life moves, it moves quickly, leaving little time for the little things like blog posts and hair cuts.
You graduate, finally receive your diplomas in the mail, finally purchase your own game of Trivial Pursuit (thus making you an official adult), and get so wrapped up in your new job that you forget that at one point, you had other goals in life besides making it to your next pay check. You know, like writing a novel and getting published in a literary magazine. Oh yeah, that thing I’m so passionate about…writing, right? And then all of the sudden, it’s October.
And that brings us to now: October 1st. The first day of a month that’s whole purpose is planning costumes and preparing for November, better known as National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo).
Last year I wrote a few posts about NaNoWriMo, mostly discussing the pros and cons, why it works for some and not others, and how to be successful if you choose to take on the task. But despite what I claimed about probably never doing it again, I am having second thoughts. I think it might be just what I need.
So why am I reconsidering NaNoWriMo?
1) Establishing a strong writing routine. There is nothing like a great community and high stakes to finally motivate you to set and stick to a writing routine. Then, after 30 days of showing up and getting work done, I’ll have a better chance of actually sticking to it moving into December. I mean, after a month of religiously observing a daily minimum word count, life will seem incomplete without it.
2) Getting over the inner critic. Grad school and studying the literary industry have made me extremely critical of my own ideas. Each time I think of a new story, I dismiss it, finding it too cliche or juvenile–standards I picked up for fear of being judged by the literary community. But as long as I eventually get to something strong and original, it doesn’t matter what I started with, right?
3) Remembering why writing is fun. After working my butt off on my thesis (which was not fun), all I wanted to do was take a break from writing. But to finally write a story that I can love might actually help me find that passion again. Even if it ends up in the bin, as long as it gets me where I need to be, it will have been a success.
So I guess it’s time to start creating the stakes, pulling together some notes, and really preparing myself mentally, because I remember what it was like last time…and I can only imagine what it will be like going for it again.
Previous NaNoWriMo posts: