Tuesday, November 3, 2009

NaNoWriMo, Day 3

I'm doing it!

With my shiny new AlphaSmart Neo in hand, and my cozy new NaNoWriMo hoodie on my person, I showed up at American Pizza in Sandy Springs promptly at 11:30 PM on Saturday night for the NaNoLanta midnight write-in, where I was warmly greeted by municipal liaison Shawn and a handful of other people as crazy as myself. At precisely 12:01, we all started typing. It was almost spiritual. We drank coffee, we ate chocolate desserts (thanks, Alondo, for sharing your tiramisu!), we commiserated. Mostly, we worked. By the time I left for home, about 2:30 AM, I had completed 2095 words. I was on my way!

Since then, life has slowed me down. I have a feeling that's going to be a persistent issue as the month wears on. But I am determined. By the end of Day 1, I had completed 3314 words; at the end of Day 2, I was up to 4622. As of this moment in time, my word count is 5039. I just visited the NaNoWriMo website, and was grateful to be reminded that this is not the time to edit--or delete. The instruction is to italicize--or change the font color to white--any paragraph or chapter you decide you don't like, and to decide what to do with it in DECEMBER. The perfectionist in me has a hard time with that. But it is becoming increasingly apparent that if I am actually going to complete this task, the perfectionist in me is going to have to take a nap in the back seat of this careening automobile.

Writing 1667 words a day will get me to my goal of 50,000 words by the end of the month. I am trying to stay at least one day ahead, in anticipation of Thanksgiving Day, which I plan to take off so that I can bake a turkey for tradition's sake and a chocolate pecan pie for my brother. Maybe a couple of side dishes, too. That means I need a total of 6,668 words by today's end. I am planning to attend another write-in tonight at the local Taco Mac. Hopefully, that will help.

One unfortunate side effect of this fiction writing is that I am finding it more difficult than ever to find time to blog--and my narrow focus right now seems to be limiting my choice of topic. However, I might have one or two interesting stories to share that have absolutely nothing to do with writing, and I will try to squeeze them in during the days ahead.

In the meantime, I have 1629 words to write and a cap to finish knitting. TODAY.

Look for an update sometime during the wee hours of tomorrow morning.


eric said...

I'm glad to see that you are keeping your priorities straight (re: chocolate pecan pie) :D

I too am struggling with my inner editor. When I started up last night I read through my first chapter just to get myself back into the flow of the story (such as it is) and I couldn't resist editing a little bit. But then I remembered that's a no-no, so I didn't do too much.

I'm also finding it difficult to keep from researching certain scenes to make them more realistic. I've decided to go with just making it up for now, whether its technically accurate or not, and italicizing so if I ever actually go back and edit this I can worry about the details then. :) Its hard to do because Scrivener provides such a nice facility for attaching research to your manuscript :)

Keep it up sis, I know you can do it!

Carley said...

I am just hoping you don't wear yourself too thin by not getting enough rest and make yourself sick. Other than that I know you have the persistence to do what it takes to get the job finished. My hat's off to you as I don't have that kind of energy anymore, unfortunately so I would just get frustrated as I have to fight that perfectionist issue, too. Take care and wishing you the best as always. Have fun!

Pam said...

Hey Eric,

Thanks for your encouragement!

So far, I did my most prolific writing at the write-in Saturday night. I used my Neo, so I couldn't access the internet, making research impossible, and although I COULD edit, it is a lot tougher using the Neo. So I just wrote and wrote and wrote. It was great. Cuz all I have done since then is edit and flesh out what I started at the write-in. So tonight, after I sift through my emails and facebook updates, I am going back to the Neo, and starting fresh where I left off in the story on Sunday morning. I am hoping that will get my creative juices flowing again. Ironically, I decided to skip the write-in at Taco Mac and stay home; I had students until 7, and I hadn't eaten anything since breakfast, and I just felt like I needed a break before I started working. But I honestly don't think it was the venue that made the difference; I think it was my approach. Although there was a wonderful energy about the group!


Good luck tonight!


Pam said...

Hey Mom,

I won't get sick! DON'T WORRY!! :)


eric said...

I've found editing on the laptop a lot less distracting than I feared. Getting started is the hard part, but once I get started, I'm able to write distraction-free. I really like the full screen mode in Scrivener.

Plus, I am uber paranoid, and I feel better knowing that my stuff is getting constantly backed up as I write it :)

I've been able to resist the editing impulse for the most part. I've kind of gotten in the routine of reading through the previous chapter just to get back in the flow, and its hard for me to resist editing the most egregious problems (like in Chapter 1 where one of my main character's name kept mutating LOL).

It's only been 4 days but I almost feel like I can actually call myself a "writer" now. :)

Pam said...

Hey Eric,

I guess every writer develops his own system for keeping on track. And, yes, you ARE a writer! :)

Did you get your pep talk from Matt today? That REALLY helped me get moving this morning. In just a little over an hour and a half, I have written 1200 words!

For me, this is the biggest distraction writing on my laptop--the internet! Now, it's back to work for me!


eric said...

I did get the pep talk, but not until I was at work. So, I didn't really feel like I could launch into a writing session. :(

So, I guess you could say work is my biggest distraction.

Pam said...

I hear that! My piano students are slowing me down, too! ;)