So…what did I do this weekend? One soccer practice and two kiddie birthday parties, a rare dinner out for two, leaves raked, dangling tree limb removed (and wrist tweaked in the process), pork roast made, kitchen cleaned. Today I went to work, then came home and did some pre-Thanksgiving cooking (turkey brine, homemade herb butter, pecan pie). I’m wiped.
You may notice one missing item here — writing.
I’d like to blame a confluence of events, including some unexpected revisions on another project, for keeping my NaNoWriMo dreams unfulfilled to date. But after writing a guest post on keeping a feeling of immediacy going, well, it smacks of excuses. Fact is, I have a case of NaNoWriMo FAIL.
Well…perhaps not entirely fail. By attempting NaNoWriMo, I’ve learned some things about myself as a writer. I always knew I could write fast. When I’m really inspired, I can easily crank out 2,500 words a day, if not more. What’s harder is toggling between writing projects, which is odd for me. I write for a living in the corporate world, and I generally have no problem taking on several projects at once. But when I had revisions to do on another fiction project, it was as if all my imagination bandwidth was subsumed by the revisions. Granted, they’re two VERY different stories, but I couldn’t easily move between the two.
Thus, I lost about two weeks of NaNo time. And by then? Well, you’re on a glide path to Thanksgiving. Seriously…November might not be the most logical month to have this thing. I recommend March.
I also wish I had chosen to write a sequel to Spacebuckler, rather than a completely new project. I know Spacebuckler really well — the characters, the settings, plots and motivations, a wealth of minutiae. While I did a ton of research on my NaNo project, it was very new, both stylistically and in terms of all that other writerly stuff. Yes, I profiled the characters, I outlined the plot in Excel, I did my research, but the NaNo crunch didn’t give me the time to really tweak that stuff, and I felt less sure of myself than I normally do when writing. Granted, I started my prep work in early October….maybe I’ll be ready to write in March.
Regardless, I’m going to keep plugging away on my NaNo project, but I’m not going to worry about word count. Both my wife and my agent are excited about the new project, which definitely means I’m onto something. So to all those who succeed in pumping out 50,000 words this month, I salute your industry! I’ll catch up sooner or later.
By the way, my contest is still going, even if my NaNo project isn’t! I’m offering either a writing critique (NaNo or otherwise) or a sneak peek at Spacebuckler to one lucky Twitter follower at the end of the month. So if you’re not following me there, what’s keeping you?