Today I reached and surpassed the 50,000 word challenge set and accepted by Nanowrimo enthusiasts worldwide. There’s a day left and more words to be written to finish the novel, but a draft in hand is worth ten on the backburner. As Author Holly Robinson put it:
You have to write a book before you can revise it, and you have to wade through lots of junk to get to the good stuff.
I invite you and your novel to come win with us next year!
We’re heading to a retreat with church this weekend. The plan is to write longhand and dictate to Day One Journal when I have bathroom breaks and a strong enough signal. The last retreat we attended revealed little appreciation on other’s part that writing could be one’s ministry and a form of thanksgiving to God. I think I should at least manage 750 words each day to keep my streak going and then add my daily words on the My Nanowrimo site.
Just checking in to wish all the other Wrimos out there words flowing with purpose and panache! I’ve just tried laying out paperback and eBook versions of what I’ve got so far – to encourage myself that I can reach the 50K words in 30 days goal – on lulu.com & fastpencil.com It makes editing easier, especially on an iPad if you click on the eBook beta format. I also pass along the wise words received in today’s Note From The Universe: Declare and exclaim your intentions and then, git ‘er done!
Kirk Franklin weaves this sentiment throughout his beautiful psalm, Hello, Fear. It’s a great farewell to one’s past. I heard it yesterday after attending a webinar offered by the Conscious Consortium, a community of people committed to changing business as we know it. Giving myself permission to be who I am and was meant to be, in the company of like-minded travelers, changed my perspective at once. For example, the simplest act of making breakfast was turned into a victory.
I was making a frittata. I had chopped the potatoes, onions, red pepper and put the three eggs through the bullet to make them fluffy. Using a new oil-free fry pan, I was browning one side of the omelette before turning it over. I remembered that I had seen chefs in New Orleans flip their omelettes high into the air and catch them in the same pan over a blazing fire. I had done the same in the past, perhaps with a little less showmanship, but I had succeeded. It’d been years since I been in the kitchen though, and I wasn’t certain I still had it. Hearing the self limitation, I decided to go for it. After all, what did I have to lose? I cleared a space on the counter wiped it off in case it fell I decided I didn’t want to clean up the stove if that were to be and I didn’t want to have to get on my knees if it were to fall on the floor so I flipped it over the dishwasher counter. But flip it I did – and caught it – no fuss, no muss.
I’m beginning to believe that much of life can be just this way. We can give ourselves permission to soar. We can give ourselves permission to know that we know what we know. We can dare to shine privately and in public. So, next challenge: I’m writing a novel this month. What miracles are you up to?
This is how No Plot? No Problem! Author Chris Baty describes the point of the first Wrimos’ after-work get-togethers on page 11. This would be entirely zen had the quantifier been absent. Still, it’s an elegant way to trick one’s mind into submission, especially after one has accepted the “sweet limitation” of completing a novel in 30 days.
Today is the day that all gears engage, so sharpen your pencils, stack your paper, fire up the computer, or dust off the upright and get busy!
Of course if anyone can write a novel in 30 days YOU can. All you need is 50,000 words! Any one will do for starters. Call me, Ismael, is already taken however. You don’t have to be original. So there’s no pressure. Just be real.
That I posted on various blogs even 13 times this month (including this post but not including the more than 75 entries on the occasional blog created so I’d have some memory of the NCTE conference) is a miracle. This year’s NaNoWriMo ends officially today. I fell woefully short of the 50K word-goal and was almost entirely incapable of writing in a direct line. But the fact that I did write – every day at that – is cause for celebration. After such single-minded devotion, I neither desire nor expect life to ever go back to ‘normal’ again. It’s official: I am a writer.