“There is no perfect time to write. There is only now.” – Barbara Kingsolver
This year I officially registered to write a novel in the month of November. Several of my critique group members are also attempting to do this, so I’m motivated first of all by the fact that I’ll have to tell them how far along my book has come. We meet again next week.
Also I’m inspired to work by the fact that this book idea has been on my mind for several years, and it’s going to be such a relief to actually have a first draft down on paper. Staying in the chair for long periods of time with my fingers on the keyboard is the hardest thing for me. Maybe NaNoWriMo will be the motivation I need.
The progress graph on the NaNoWriMo website is fantastic. It’s encouraging to be able to update my word count, see the progress, but it’s self-defeating at the same time. Saturday, the day we were supposed to double-up on word count, was a total bust for me. I had three places to be, errands to run, plus two teenagers texting me, which resulted in zero words. There are those days when life takes over and nobody cares about your novel in progress.
TRICKS AND TOOLS
Here we are seven days into writing a 50,000 word novel in a month and I am definitely not where I had planned to be. The good news is that I’ve discovered some pleasant surprises in this experience. The story really flows when you FORCE yourself to focus. It has been a struggle to block out the real word and stay at it until I have my 1500 words or more a day. If I stay at it during lunch, I can crank out 1000 words. I’ve been able to type the rest during shorter sessions here and there, whenever I could manage.
To speed things up for me, I cleaned off the white board next to my desk and wrote character names and setting details. This is book two of a series set in the Texas frontier and it totally stops my forward momentum when I have to look up the name of the trading post on main. Having those details that will be carried throughout the series at hand really saves time.
Is there anything you have done to help with the flow of words for NaNoWriMo? Please share.
I’m thankful for a new week. Carry on writers!
I enjoyed your post, Natalie. I think the #1 challenge for writers is finding the time. But if you wait until you do, you’re going to be left in the dust. There will NEVER be the right time for writing. We just have to accept that. We MAKE the time. Sure, a lot of people will get mad when you tell them no, but they’ll get over it. It’s up to us to make them respect our job. But, I’m so proud of you for doing this! I love your historical stories. They’re filled with great characters and emotion. You can do this! You just have to block out the world and focus. Set aside two hours a day and make it clear to everyone that you’re not to be disturbed. Say no a lot. You have the perfect quiet place to go where you can immerse yourself in your story. Go to the ranch by yourself and just write, write, write. Maybe just the weekends or one day a week. YOU CAN DO THIS!
Thank you, Linda! You are such a great champion of writers and a super motivator!