Trying To Get Back To Where I Felt At Home: NaNoWriMo

youcannotgohomeYou can never go home again.

I’ve been thinking a lot about that statement today. It always seems to be true. Something that I enjoyed or cherished just can’t seem to be repeated. Nothing can ever be as it was. Not exactly.

This holds true for holidays spent with family, summer days spent at camp, evenings with friends and even NaNoWriMo.

Last year was my first attempt at winning the National Novel Writing Month competition. I got up at 4:30 every single morning and wrote for a solid two hours before climbing back into my warm bed. Day after day I wrote a minimum of 2,000 words until my first draft was complete at seventy thousand (I crossed the 50K word mark on day 23).

There was a drive deep in my belly to get it done. Part of the reason for this was because people in the real world told me that I wouldn’t be able to keep up that pace while working a full time job. My loved ones doubted my commitment (or my ability to get out of bed). That just set a fire under me.

I also felt embraced by the NaNoWriMo community. Every writing buddy I found and person I spoke to in the forums encouraged me. I, in turn, encouraged them. When you are pulling people along with you, it is hard to fall behind.

This blog also kept me going. I updated my progress daily. Sometimes I shared a word count. Sometimes I talked about how cold my house was while I typed. It was a way to stay accountable and a lot of you guys started following me during that time.

Now cut to 2014.

NaNoWriMo just doesn’t have the same feel to it that it did last year. Maybe it’s because I started late. If you follow my blog, you know the reason (if you don’t it is because October tried to kill me). My first word count entry on the official website came in at exactly 2,000 words and that was on November 6. I have tried to maintain that average (which will/would have me reaching the 50K mark on the last day of November), but the past couple of days I have plodded along to way under the number of words I need.

Also, I haven’t told anyone in my real world that I am doing this. They would just assume that I could since, well, I already did. I am only holding myself accountable…which means there have been fewer “4:30 mornings” and more “oh it’s already 7:15 days.”

I should have known it was going to happen. My high expectations for an event always fall short of what I anticipate. Of course, I only have myself to blame. I should be mixing it up with the other participants and sharing my progress here. It just feels like my NaNoWriMo home has been redecorated or even demolished.

Or perhaps I am just looking back at last year’s experience with those cliche “rose colored glasses.” Maybe last year wasn’t a piece of cake either (hey, if I’m going to start using cliches I might as well go for it). In fact, I know it was hard. But it was worth it.

So I DO plan to finish the first draft of the novel I am working on by November 30th. I will find new writing buddies (add me at Read Faced) and I am going to update my progress for the rest of the month here (notice my 2014 word count widget on the right).

I don’t have to go home again. I can go somewhere else. And who knows? It just might be better.

See you tomorrow with my NaNoWriMo Update,


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Categories: Writing | Tags: , , , , | 2 Comments

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2 thoughts on “Trying To Get Back To Where I Felt At Home: NaNoWriMo

  1. I think my second year was much more scary. The question of whether I would succeed was answered and now it was can I do it again? I found the pressure intense and not in a good way. My adrenaline and enthusiasm was gone, or at a low. Plodding was exactly how I did it. One word at a time. I kept pushing. It was my worst year ever.

    But I did make it and you will too. (We are already buddied up on my side :-)) Go, Go, Go “\o/”

    Anna from Shout with Emaginette

    • Thank you Anna! It is so nice to hear that I am not the only one who feels the pressure of my sophomore year more than I did as a freshman. My engines are revved an I am going!

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