Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Closer ... closer ... closer ...

Nanowrimo is almost here.  It's definitely not too late to sign up and give it a try.  People from all walks of life and capabilities do this.  There's a whole bunch of stuff dedicated just to young writers.  People who are disabled, who are in chronic pain, who are elderly, who have two jobs and are struggling to get by, people like me who have a lot of flexibility and control over their schedules, people who have written for years, people who have never written anything longer than a grocery list since they'd left school do this.  So can you.  

One year (I didn't make my goal that year) my office flooded and I worked on my novel laying on my belly with my keyboard in front of me and the monitor just behind it, on carpet, amid a horrendous mess of wet and damp stuff that I had to spend a lot of time sorting through between writing bouts.  That year my hurdles got the better of me, but I don't regret trying.  In fact, if I'd done just a wee more writing more consistently earlier in the month, I may have made it despite the impromptu arrival of a shallow pond in my workspace.  I don't beat myself up about it, or consider myself a failure as a writer.  Nor should anyone who can devote full time to writing in November and doesn't get past five thousand words.  Nanowrimo isn't about failing.  It's about stretching, achieving, reaching.  You know, exercise.  Keeping the body and mind healthy, whether it's by learning something new, or for established writers, playing with the writing/production rhythm and benefitting from the unique social energy that comes with Nanowrimo.

It's not about whether or not you may be able to succeed, or how much is working against you, or how little time you have, or technological issues.  It's discovering what you can do, not what you can't do.  It's how far you can get, not how far you couldn't get.  It's testing your limits, surprising yourself, exercising your brain and your creativity, and connecting with people who share the same fascination you do with the process of writing.  Two more days plus 45 minutes, I'll be there.  I hope to see you there too.

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