Technically, because my first draft isn’t 50,000 words long, I haven’t “won” Nanowrimo. But who cares? Not me! I wrote a story this month, had fun, and kept chugging along until I hit my personal goal. Looking back, I wish I’d tried half-assing nanowrimo years ago, because without the 50,0000 number hanging over my head it’s been a lot more fun to participate.
Happy Thanksgiving, all! I’ll be off until Monday.
For now she need not think of anybody. She could be herself, by herself. And that was what now she often felt the need of – to think; well not even to think. To be silent; to be alone. All the being and the doing, expansive, glittering, vocal, evaporated; and one shrunk, with a sense of solemnity, to being oneself, a wedge-shaped core of darkness, something invisible to others… and this self having shed its attachments was free for the strangest adventures.“
I’m sitting here contemplating that quote from a quiet spot in the woods with no cell connection. And it occurs to me (not for the first time) that silence is as necessary to the spirit as food and air are to the body.
Hmm… How do I get more of this, I wonder?
I know the answer, maybe? TV off. Candles lit. Shut off the screens and turn off the phones. Let the absence of stimuli become the one thing I’m hungry for.
A cabin in the woods is a crutch, right? Nice, but not essential. Can I carry this feeling home with me?
The sparkling lights of the city are beautiful in their own way. Not green like a forest, but just as breathtaking. Does the setting make the difference?
It’s so quiet here in the woods. So I ask again: Can I bring this feeling home with me?
Wait! Don’t tell me the answer. The answer is somewhere in this room. And if I’m patient enough, it will come over and tap me on the shoulder.
My heroine and her buddies are snapping clues together like pieces of a puzzle and the big picture is slowly coming into focus. This is the part of a story I enjoy best, both as a writer and a reader. It’s the big “puzzling out” before the Aha Moment. So much fun!
Writing a book feels — emotionally at least — like climbing a mountain, but when I hit the final act it’s like sliding down that same mountain on my ass going WHEEE!
I’m very happy that I’ve reached the WHEEE point*, but it’s also true that Nanowrimo comes with ups and downs and not every day has felt so easy. Here’s a quick rundown on my last few weeks:
Nanowrimo: An Emotional Rollercoaster Made of Words
Day 1-3: Enthusiasm! My initial scenes feel tentative but good.
Day 4-6: Chugging along. Pacing myself.
Day 7-10: I HATE EVERYTHING AND EVERYONE. I stop writing and procrastinate by baking cookies, watching the Great British Baking Show, and designing a custom 404 page for my website. When I return to my desk, I write a scene that makes my heart happy and then I LOVE EVERYTHING AND EVERYONE.
Day 11-15: Treading water. Have I lost the thread of my story? I spend 3 days reviewing and strengthening earlier scenes until I catch back up to my furthest point.
Day 16-18: Speed spurt!
Day 19-20: My gosh. Things are happening in the story. They’re awesome things, but I haven’t properly laid the groundwork for these events, and therefore they lack continuity. I list out my missing subplots and shove them in where they belong. My book feels — at least temporarily — like Frankenstein’s monster, kinda stitched together.
Day 21-22: I’m over the hump and WE’RE SOLVING CRIMES, MOTHERF*CKERS! WHEEE! I can see to the end of the story, and I’m blasting out 3000+ words per day in a state of caffeinated bliss.
So far, so good! But I’ve got plenty left to to this week.
To my readers: By the end of this month, I’ll have two cruise ship mysteries ready to edit and publish. Woot!
To my nano buddies: We’ve got eight days left, friends. Pour some coffee, turn up the music, and let’s crank it!
*WHEEE point shouldn’t be confused with poo poo point, an unfortunately named hiking trail in my home state.
*My new heroine doesn’t approve of swearing, but clearly I’m not her. 😉