If you can't say something nice, at least make it funny!

Thanks for visiting Tinfoil Magnolia, a blog about my life, times, marriage, friendships and all the strange things that happen to me and with me. I hope you find something here that will encourage you, inspire you or at the least entertain you. And if it doesn't today, check back tomorrow because, my life? honestly...

Friday, October 29

Where Does My November Go? NaNoWriMo

This spring I went through a little bit of a jump start, creativity wise. I got energized, excited about writing and actually committing to writing, not just talking about it like I have done for the last so many years. Starting this blog was one of the commitments I made to provide myself with a creative outlet. I committed to spend a minimum of 2 hours each day writing. I began a novel. It now sits, printed, over 80,000 words yet still unfinished, in the corner of my office.

Over the summer, a lot of my attention has been diverted to other things. Diet and exercise, starting a new business, securing freelance design work, and working on a lot of not-for-pay jobs. I have spent time doing things that needed to be done, thinking about things and how to do them and yet not getting them done, or just doing things I enjoy simply to enjoy them and forgetting about everything else. In May, during a particularly ambitious burst, I signed up to participate in National Novel Writing Month, affectionately known as NaNoWriMo or just NaNo, which is held annually in November. I was giddy.

And now it's November. In two days. I have had trouble being stressed and mentally I am just not at my best, or at least not the best I have been this year. Personally it has been both a wonderful and rewarding year and also an incredibly stressful one, for many different reasons. I am having trouble focusing my energy and getting a grip on all the things I have to get done in a day. As I tend to do when I am overwhelmed, I end up spending hours every day drifting aimlessly, hovering on the Internet, participating in Tweet Chats and many other pointless activities that, truthfully, should be at the bottom of my list. (or not on the list at all)

Because of this lack of focus, an enormous to-do list, and hours that I owe to my new business now that it is finally getting a good start, I had made a decision not to do NaNo after all. No one else knew of my commitment. I could quit and who would know anyway? Who would even care? I could write a novel at any time, couldn't I? And besides, I couldn't imagine for the life of me what I would write about. I didn't want to rehash what I already started, and continuing on that seemed like a cheat. I was barren of ideas. The harder I tried to think of something the worse it got.

Enter: some of my online writing buddies over at the 100 Word Challenge. Velvet Verbosity posted about her intention to participate this year (with the most serendipitous timing) right after I posted a comment about committing and then not wanting to do it. I had several comments and messages telling me that, yes, I needed to go on and do it. Yes, I can do it. And yes, I should do it. People (you know who you are) cajoled, encouraged, guilted, and otherwise assured me that the sky wouldn't fall if I didn't complete my 50,000 words by November 30.

So, I am doing NaNo. My writer friends (real and virtual) will realize the commitment required. My non-writer friends should just trust me and be willing to encourage me if at all possible.  Once I committed mentally (and via Twitter) the basic line of my story came flying into my head within a day or so. Which only goes to show the power of thought and putting your desires out into the universe. This is kind of a big deal. It is a huge commitment of time and energy and I don't take it lightly. All I have to do to "win" is finish the 50,000 words. But the joy of reaching that goal will be all the reward I need.