Friday, November 13, 2009

NaNo Expectations

I believe my posted word count at the moment is around 3300. Keeping in mind that Sunday is the halfway point and therefor I should be closer to 25000. That is a large gap for me to cover over the weekend. But considering it is snowing out and I get paid this weekend, my girlfriend will probably want to go somewhere to play in it. I tend to drive as it is my vehicle. I cannot write and drive.

There are a few things to account for such a low number that I feel the need to make clear. I write in a notebook. I even bought a new one just for the occasion. We actually got a Week Two Pep Talk encouraging NaNo-ers to break away from the keyboard and really experience their writing. There are perks as well, computers make it too easy (and hard to resist the urge) of looking it back over and trying to "fix" stuff. Partly why I write in a notebook is because when I transfer it from print to type it is just my first step of editing. I find it works wonders. But as I type up what I've written so far, I've been very good at not subtracting anything.

Where was I going with this?

Right, so this whole NaNo experience... I'll be truthful. I am not expecting to make it to 50K. If I do, great, but I'm trying to be realistic. I'm in it more for the experience (at least this first time around) than I am "in it to win it". But I thought I would provide you all with very important lessons I've learned so far.

It is called a rough draft for a reason
Seriously don't worry about every little green or red squiggle (actually I type mine up in Google Docs so I don't get squiggles). Don't get stuck if you don't even like what you've written so far. Get over it. Release that anxiety. Just write, you can fix it later, write it better or whatever. Just save it for later...

You don't have to write the story in order
I bought that stupid notebook and now I find myself scribbling on other pieces of paper because it is a later scene that was more prominent in my head and I wanted to get it down. At least I realized that I could do this instead of being stuck on a scene that I don't much care for but wouldn't have gotten anywhere else until I finished it (I speak from experience). Also next time I'll get a 3-ring notebook and some old fashioned college ruled. That way I can move pages around...

But most importantly... I should have tried NaNo earlier when I was single
Girlfriends and Puppy Dogs require a lot of attention. As I sit down to write, I'm needed for something. I get up and do it. I often don't get back to my notebook. This is partly why I'm having realistic expectations. I don't have a whole lot of time to myself and sometimes when I do, I don't want to do anything.

So it isn't that I'm not trying. I'm greatful for this experience and it will help me to become a better writer. Isn't that the point? 'Nuff said.

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