Friday, November 1, 2019

Friday Rambles-No Slam Dunk

So here it is November 1. NaNoWriMo time again. National Novel Writing Month. Six or seven years ago I began this crazy thing I'd read about. Write a book in thirty days? Oh? It didn't have to be print ready? Just get 50000 words written down? If you succeeded, you'd be designated a winner. The 'book' could be revised, polished afterward. With my obsessive, compulsive, perfectionist writing nature, could I do that? But I gave it a whirl. The column below was written about my 2nd or 3rd NaNo year. And I did it. And have kept doing it ever since. Only one of those years I didn't get the number of words done. Can't remember the circumstances that interfered. Never mind, the others are either in print or awaiting their turn at revision, polishing. Some longer than others. Maybe this year won't be a slam dunk either, but I'll give it the ol' college try.
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   Readers not interested in the writing process might wish to tune out for the next couple of weeks. Not that I want to lose readers, of course! But that's where my head is right now. I'm trying to fit another major writing project into my schedule.
   November has been designated as National Novel Writing Month for several years, as I think I've mentioned here once or twice. I'd never participated though until last year. Since I enjoyed it and was able to reach my goal I figured I'd try again. This year is a totally different experience. For various reasons I haven't been able to just shove everything aside and concentrate on THE NOVEL.
   I have the general outline of it. But actually getting the words written is turning into a struggle. Uninterrupted time to pull them out of my brain and onto the page has been hard to come by. Writing all night might be an option. But the other inhabitants of my home are worse night owls than me. And I do get too tired to imagine the next big trouble to throw at my protagonist.
   During the daytime there's the dog to walk, eating, minimal personal hygiene, laundry and housework. More regularly scheduled meetings have seemed to fall into this month, too, and extra workshops and groups that I had committed to attend.
   All this does not even take into account the urge to procrastinate that is common to all writers. Any normally disliked task sings a siren song that we can’t resist.
   I hate to rake leaves. My neighbors' yards are mostly free of the crisp evidence of fall's arrival. The two trees in my yard are finally bereft of leaves. But a combination of guilt if wind sent my leaves to neighboring lawns, brain weariness and procrastination sent me to the shed for my rake and a couple of hours outside. Leaving aside the fact that exercise is good for me, I know that procrastination was the main motivator for my burst of activity.
   So here I am, fingers on keyboard again. After I send this piece to the editor, I'll be back wrestling with THE NOVEL. Since more hindrances lie in wait for me before month's end, this NaNoWriMo is obviously not going to be a slam dunk.

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