Battling the Daily NaNo Word Count

So I wrote this post last year, during NaNo, in hopes of inspiring myself and others that it really can be done. I’m posting it this year if any NaNo-ers need a little support.

I’ve gotten to Day 10 of NaNoWriMo, and so far I’ve made my word count every day. But right now, my small lead has leached away to tiredness. I’m sitting at my computer with my eyes blinking shut, and all I can think about is how much I just want to go to sleep. I’ve done the majority of my writing every night before hopping into bed, though most weekdays I build a small lead during my lunch break so I don’t have a full complement of words to write at night.

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Of course, I didn’t do that today. I’ve slowed down, and now I’m just sleepy. It doesn’t look like I’ll make my words today, and I fear greatly that if I fail to do all my words today, I’m doomed to failure for the rest of the month. Am I to be content with the 16,000+ words I’ve written to date? Did I really think I’d be able to win at this bizarre goal of writing a full 1667 words every day for a month? Me, who has never written consistently daily in her life, who has never had a word count anywhere approaching 1667 every day. Should I be proud of my 10-day achievement and just try again next year? Or should I attempt to soldier on and see what happens the rest of this week?

I doubt that I’ll make up words as the month progresses: I’m already starting to burn out on ideas despite putting words to three different projects as the mood strikes me. Maybe I’ll make a good start on words tomorrow and not feel this despair, because tonight, my pillow beckons, and I have yet to brush my teeth and don my pajamas. It’s not midnight yet, but it’s quite late and the baby will be waking up long before I’m ready for him. So adieu for today. We’ll see how I feel tomorrow about continuing this crazy adventure.

Of course, I just checked my word count for today and it’s actually better than I thought. Maybe I really can do this!

Floods, Coping, and Hope

My heart is heavy as I’ve been watching the news coverage in Baton Rouge—the flooding, the destruction, the loss. In many ways, these events remind me of Katrina (11 years ago today), and less so of Gustav, the two storms that bookended my time in Baton Rouge. My FaceBook feed has blown up with images of the damage, but also with stories of hope, of people working together to help one another, of friends banding together to salvage what they can of what remains and make another start.

It is reflective of the way my year has proceeded, too, with hope mingled with painful tragedies. Sometime I think that I have fueled my entire year on anger, using it to propel me forward each day, but that’s no way to live. I see my precious munchkins growing so fast, and I don’t want them to only remember that Mommy coped by yelling, but rather that she channeled her worries and her fears into creative outlets whenever and however she could.

So I try again another day, trying to get through it a little happier and a little more hopeful, even though there remain grim realities that I can’t escape the passage of time, that loved ones will pass, and that we will have to find a way to go on.

I’ve been hard at work at a number of small projects, including a trilogy of short stories that are half-done, the start of a mailing list, and the development of the Teacup Publishing site.

If you’d like to join my mailing list and possibly opt in to be a beta reader, you can do so here.

Meanwhile, I’ve been learning to draw, listening to writing and publishing podcasts, and expanding my horizons to different types of markets, including children’s books. There have been supportive author FaceBook groups and blogs, where I’ve made new friends and honed my craft. It’s one of these new friends that is promoting her new book. And she has a character named Preeti in her other book, so both are now on my e-reader bookshelf awaiting my finishing the (amazing) series I can’t yet put down. While I haven’t read her work, it’s a mere matter of time. Another new author friend just got picked up by a publisher, and I’m going to work through his books next in hopes of leaving some good reviews to spread the word. Stay tuned to hear more about them.