Sunday, November 18, 2012

NaNoWriMo Update: Weekend #3

Here we are at the end of the third weekend of NaNoWriMo. Like last week, I barely stayed ahead of my goals from Monday through Saturday, and then I did another marathon session at the library this afternoon. I must say, when the Bears play prime time games -- like they did last week, like they're doing tomorrow night -- it really frees up my Sundays. And having half of the Sundays in November free to spend at the library has been great.

So, thanks to a productive afternoon, I am currently sitting at 49,640 words. As long as I can manage 360 words in the next three days, my "50K by Thanksgiving" goal is taken care of. In order to beat last year's word count, I need to write at least 1347 words a day (1470 if I take Thanksgiving off; 2020 if I take that whole weekend off).

A month ago I would have called those numbers easy peasy, but this year I know it's only my stubbornness that will see me through. Because, to be honest, I'm ready to be done with this story. It's very tempting to say "screw it" to my bigger goal, throw a quick ending together tomorrow, and put this thing to rest. But, whether or not I want to, I know that I CAN write those extra words. I just have to make myself do it.

It's weird to me, how much of a struggle I've had this year. I know it probably sounds strange to think of being about to hit 50K on Day 19 as struggling, it's just that this month has felt VERY different than in past years. I was never all that worried about not hitting 50K, but there have been plenty of times, as recently as this past week, when I wasn't sure if I would make it by Thanksgiving. That's something I've always done without too much effort. I kept telling myself it's because Thanksgiving is so early this year -- the 22nd is the earliest Thanksgiving can ever be, unless they change the fourth Thursday rule -- but then I looked back over my stats from past years, and it turns out that the latest I've ever hit 50K has been the 20th (and that's including my first year, when I didn't even start until the 6th). So that's obviously not it. Whether it's this story, or just my current frame of mind, it's been hard to get the words flowing.

It's weird because writing has never been hard for me. (Keeping in mind, of course, that writing and writing well are two VERY different things.) Especially during NaNo, when I give myself permission to write basically anything that comes to mind, I never have an issue with getting the words to come. This year, though, it's like I'm dragging every single word out of my brain kicking and screaming. Well, not every word. Maybe every other word.

It's weird that my most productive days this month have been the less-than-four-hour time spans I've spent at the library, compared to the 8+ hours I spend alone at home every weekday, where I have complete control over my environment. Yes, writing at home comes with its own set of distractions, but I've always been better at managing those distractions, as opposed to the less predictable distractions you get when writing in public.

So, to sum up . . . this NaNo has been weird. In case that wasn't clear.

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