Growing up, I have always re-written stories. Long before I knew what fan fiction was, I would close the book on the last page of a story, and imagine myself into that world. I was a princess, befriending the dragon everyone feared and ultimately saving the kingdom. I was the young girl crossing the American west into a brave new world full of hardship and discovery. I was the space pilot, stranded on the enemy ship and trying to find a way back to the rebellion. Those stories shaped me more than anything else in my life. Through books I have lived thousands of lives. I have saved planets, vanquished villains, found my true love, and found my purpose.
There is nothing I like more than a good book.
I’m one of those people who walks into a used bookstore and feels better just breathing in the smell. I can spend hours and hours just drifting along the stacks. I love to touch them. I love the feel of them in my hands.
If I was ever the last surviving human on earth, I would be happy as long as I had books.
As a child, I was shy, painfully so. It was almost debilitating. Books were my refuge to another world where I was brave and beautiful and had a ton of friends. Where I had a sharp and witty comeback to every taunt, and were bullies always lost. My sister, the gregarious one, was my buffer. I always had a book on me, and social discomfort usually found me retreating to a quiet corner and escaping into another world.
I am so grateful for books, in all their forms and genres. Maybe that is why I have long wished to write my own. I am working on that now. I started my first attempt with winning NaNoWriMo last Year. Now I’m looking ahead to Camp NaNoWriMo in July.
Maybe one day my own story will be among the others on the selves.
My update is there is nothing to update.
I, unfortunately, still have a sprained wrist. Typing is getting easier, but it still has not healed enough to allow me to write 2,000 words a day. I think about writing it out long-hand, but every time I go to do so my mind races far too fast to capture it all on the page.
I loved the flow I experienced during NaNo. I got lost in the world I was creating. To me, it was real.
Right now, the best I can do is sketch out bits of locations or characters.
I want that flow to happen when I go back to my story.
So, one of the souvenirs I brought back from the cruise is a sprained wrist. I’ve had sprains before, but this one has proven to be painful in more than one way.
It is a bad sprain. Probably aggravated from what it was originally by the fact that I did not get it in a brace until I got off the cruise ship.
But what is really hurting is the way this sprain has thrown a wrench into my writing. It hurts to type. These blog posts are just about the limit of what I can do with it, and I am scared to push it much more because I want it to heal fast.
The novel I started in November is still waiting for me to finish it. My plan had been to come back from my vacation and use January to complete the first draft. Just do a single-participant NaNo.
You know what they say about the best laid plans.
I know I can still write it out longhand, but the times I have tried have felt…awkward.
The flow just isn’t there.
I started the draft in Scrivener, and I enjoyed the software enough to buy the full version (with my NaNo winner discount!) I am hoping to be able to get back into it in February. I am not really able to dictate my writing. My hands are my best tools for storytelling.
My plan had been to do 1,500 words daily for January, but now I’m thinking I may need to throttle it back to 750 words in the first week of February and see how that goes.
Since the current theme for this blog seems to revolve around writing, let’s talk a little about fears.
Every writer (and plenty I don’t) have fears about writing: failing, starting, succeeding, repeating, sharing. You name it and I bet we have all felt it.
My personal demon comes in the form of starting the actual writing. I make notes. I outline. I world build. I create teams of characters sketches. When it finally comes time to write, I sit and stare at the page. Sometimes I’ll even make it a few thousands words into the first draft before the Imp starts up.
“This is dumb. No one’s going to want to read this.”
“Who do you think you are? Your not (funny, clever, good enough) to write.”
“Just quit now”
Yeah, all the good stuff. He’s so not cool.
One of the biggest tasks I have ahead of me for NaNoWriMo come November 1st is to tell the Imp to take a hike.
I am equal parts excited and terrified at what’s to come.
Yes, I am doing NaNoWriMo this year.
There, I put it out there in the world.
I can’t take it back
I won’t let myself take it back.
I’m in a serious debate with myself as to whether or not to sign up. I attempted to do it once before, but we unexpectedly had to move, so I only got about a week into it before bailing. I still feel bad about that, though it was not through any fault of my own. Life just happens sometimes.
As always, I am doing a bunch of research. Checking out the website, looking at blogs about people’s experiences, checking out YouTube videos and podcasts. The one thing I can say is it will be a challenge. I am used to getting things accomplished, but seldom for myself. Does this fall under the selfish category?
My worry stems for my not knowing what writing a novel will look like for me. Not everyone does well, or puts out their best work, when facing down word counts. I don’t want to just vomit a bunch of words onto the page and end up with a pointless pseudo book. That feels like a waste of time.
I don’t expect to be published. I do expect a worthwhile learning experience. Too many of the NaNoWriMo reviews are littered with stories of one month of intense writing, followed by eleven months of no writing. I do not want that to be me.
I definitely do not think all NaNoWriMo writers produce junk. There are enough books out there, for that not to be the case. Not having a perfect book after thirty days of writing is by no means an excuse for not doing it. I just don’t want to put forth this massive effort and then be too burned out to continue. I suffer from perfectionism, so it may actually be the best reason to do it.
Just like my current commitment to posting on this blog, the strongest reason may be for me to make myself write, everyday, consistently.