Compete.

So waaayyy back at the beginning of the month, I said I was writing to write. To get it out. And it was only a coincidence that NaNoWriMo was this month too, because I wasn’t participating in that.

Well, last night I got to 45,000 words and I was like, “Shit. It’s 11:00 at night the day before NaNoWriMo ends, yet you can still enter, so why not? I’m only 5,000 words away.”

So I hopped on board last night. I figure, I started it more or less on Nov. 1st, so it counts, and the good people of NaNoWriMo apparently don’t care, because they’re letting me sign on November 29th.

Tonight when I got home from work, the first thing I did was plop down with my laptop and pounded out 5,000 words in a hour and a half. I really did think throughout the day of what I wanted to write though, because I knew I wanted to take the last 5,000 words and craft the story down into an ending. I understand for NaNoWriMo you don’t have to end at 50,000, but that was good for me anyway, because for this particular story, going any longer than that would just be rambles. Anyway, I did it. The most I’ve ever written is around 20,000, so this is the new record.

50,152 words.

It’s a thing of beauty.

I was debating whether or not to say anything about it on Facebook, you know, because this is a big deal. But I also know myself, and I am so super private about my writing. I am very self conscious about my work, as I think everyone is about their writing, and I think people will laugh if they read what I write. I don’t like to explain what I’m writing, or where I’m going with it. So husband and I celebrate. That’s enough for me. 🙂

I am proud of myself!

Taking the weekend off and then starting Monday all over again (hopefully pushing past 50,000) with the next idea crawling around in my mind.

Quote.

“And – here’s a critical part – when you finally start to write something, do not let yourself stop…even when you are convinced it’s the worst garbage ever.”

This particular quote is from Jodi Picoult, but in their own words, I have heard millions of authors say the same thing.

Keep calm and carry on.

89% done!

StuCk iN muD.

75% done!

I was out and away from my laptop for seven and a half hours yesterday. I get home and it’s just … bleh. Cannot get the creativity flowing. Really starting to have the critic creep up on me, and it’s hard to persevere.

Mostly because last night was, the husband and I agreed, one of those nights where someone has done something amAzinG and sPectaCular. One of those nights where everyone glosses over you and spends the next seven hours on said someone. It’s not exactly good for the soul. I mean, I was extremely proud and got all my questions answered from said someone, but when that kind of turns into the entire night’s focus, and all me and the husband get are nods of just being, it lowers self esteem.

Makes you feel bad about a job you know you rock at.

Makes you feel bad about not jetting off to places, even though you could never afford to do that.

Makes you feel bad about picking a honeymoon destination that no one else really liked, even though it wasn’t their vacation to pick.

Makes you want to blurt things out about writing when you know it’s not worth it to say anything.

Nights like last night are few and far between, but they happen to all of us. You feel deeply inadequate and you want to shout out that I AM ACHIEVING SOMETHING BESIDES THIS HAIRCUT, I SWEAR!

Speaking of which someone, not any someone last night, but someone had such a positive and uplifting response to my haircut that I had an incredible dream about them and now have an idea for next writing adventure.

Just as soon as I finish this paIn in the asS.

Concentrate.

Almost 20 days ago I started my new goal, and here, I have finally finished it and quickly moved on to the next one (45,000 words), as reflected in the meter count below. Today I got myself to writing by setting goals: in 1,000 words I will eat lunch … when I get to 27,500 I will buy niece’s present … a new Code Red at 29,000 … and after that, just wrote. Got that idea from authors, although I think everyone uses it in general, and I like it for when I really just want to veg but have to sit and write.

Getting back into the groove of my story and narrowing my shutters onto quantity, not quality. It is, after all, a first draft. I think I have inadvertently not only renamed a teacher, but also an entire table of kids. Ha ha! Oh well. That’s because I also read that when you are writing a first draft, it is not going back and figuring and keeping track. A lot of it, especially when it is your first first draft, is just getting the words out.

69% done!

Turkey.

Went to two different houses today, and yet only ate enough at both to constitute one plate of food.

Spent a lot of time talking to a certain person while mentally turning him into a character.

Because this is what I do.

Gobble gobble.

Feedback.

In July, I read a book called Fury. It was a memoir, and the second book that this author wrote. The book was about the author keeping her anger inside and how, after a terrible break-up, she seemed unable to keep it in any longer. I am completely simplifying this book, but that is the gist. One word.

Anger.

I had a deep, profound reaction to this book. When she talked of her family, it was very similar to my family — how they dealt with conflict, how they reacted to her newly discovered anger, etc. When she talked of her anger, and how she emotionally handled things as a child … very much like me as well. As I read the book, I felt light, empowered, and full of understanding that the way my family handled things was not the right way.

So five minutes after I read the book, I procured her email address, and I jotted down a letter. I thanked her for writing the book. I explained my own struggles with my family, much like her struggles, and detailed a specific example. I explained how I too seemed stalled when it came to dealing with emotions properly. Except, of course, with my new husband. I expressed sympathy for the tragedy she detailed in the memoir, and thanked her again.

Then I sent it, and after a week of checking my inbox, promptly forgot about it.

 

I love those moments in life when you are having a perfectly ordinary day, with nothing nothing nothing, and then … something.

The author wrote me back. She was lovely, and her email was lovely, and my entire life has been made. Here is the ending:

Thank you again for writing.  I’m so touched by your note and grateful that you felt some connection to Fury.  It was very tough to write, and not a great success in the eyes of my publisher.

All my love and best wishes to you and your new hubby.
Enjoy each other and go easy on yourself,
K x