Okay, I did it, after much back and forth I signed up for NaNoWriMo. I first heard about it a few years ago, though I can't for the life of me remember who was trying it out. I thought at first it was my friend Shay but she said no, and then when I thought about it I realized no way would she do it, she would have to slow down her production too much. Last year I forgot about it until halfway through November and so that wasn't going to work. This year another friend was peer pressured in to signing up and posted about it so I thought...well...hmmm....maybe?
For those of you who don't have any clue what I'm talking about; NaNoWriMo is a little contest of sorts that happens every November. The challenge? Write a novel of 50,000 words in a month. You sign up, you submit your completed work at the end of the month and you win a...umm...a certificate I think? For me it's all about the "can I do it?" this is the biggest writing challenge I've ever given myself. You all know I do mini challenges on here from time to time, blog every day, write a certain number of fiction pieces, submit something to a publisher. But this will be the first time I commit to anything of that length.
And it terrifies me.
Because I have just about reconciled myself to the fact that short stories, micro stories practically, are really my sweet spot. That's how they come to me. That's how I write them down, one quick blergh all over the page and then move on. But yet...
There is still a part of me that wonders if the one or two longer story possibilities I have bouncing in my brain could come to fruition as a full length novel? Granted one of those ideas is really a series of short stories all tied together by the characters in them, but still, it's a long term concept. And maybe it's time to give it one last push.
November as a month to do this sucks. Thanksgiving, the boy is home for a week, but I have no other real time commitments so there is nothing to stop me from writing extra during the first three weeks and just finishing up that last week right? Fifty thousand words in a month breaks down to 1,666 a day if I wrote every day, 2,173 if I don't write for the 7 days C is home, 2,500 if I write 20 days out of the month (weekends off) and so on and so on... I've thought a lot about it. And about all the ways to talk myself out of it.
But a few things made me decide to give it a try. One when I first posted about it I drug my brilliant friend Dana in to the mix. And she's going to try. And she has two kids, a job outside the home AND still will find time to write so I can't really beg off on time. Second when I posted and drug Dana in I had other friends who decided to give it a try as well and seeing them give it a go makes me think I can. Third my friend Nadine put it very well when she saw me post about it and said, "Do it. It's time to stretch yourself and your abilities, woman." And then the last piece came when I started debating whether or not to try my friend and happiness guru Dr. Brian King posted the following as his status: "The only obstacle between you and change is the fact that it's hard. Are you that eager to admit defeat?" I always say when the universe starts talking to you, you should probably listen so...
Oh fine! Fine!! I will try it...
So what does this mean? Well it means that for the next few weeks I will be planning my November writing. I KNOW! So odd for me, I never outline and plan and shit, but if I am going to do this I feel like I really need to. I also will be shuffling through my schedule and doing some trial runs on how long it takes me to write a good chunk and still get things done I need to and want to. Schedules and planning and me. What could go wrong? But it's supposed to be a challenge right? And challenges are fun. Especially at the end when you get your gold star. I do love a gold star.
But still...right now 50,000 words is a bit daunting. Wish me luck!