By C. E. Poley
One of the things you discover during National Novel Writing Month (which I have sometimes participated in since 2008) is what kind of a writer you are. What I mean by that is, you discover all kinds of things about the ways that you like to write. For example, what your methods are, what your personal physical writing zones are, what your favorite writing spot is, what your favorite genre to write in is, how you write ideas down, whether it be digitally or by hand, etc. Everyone learns something new about themselves as a writer. Because truly, anyone has the potential to be a writer. It is just about what kind of writer you are. (And in some ways, everyone is their own kind of writer.)
To be honest with myself, and with you, I am a lazy writer. That is to say, I do most of my writing in my head and in tiny spurts in my Notes app on my iPhone. I will go for a day or two without writing a word for the intended piece, and then BOOM (like right now) it is time to gather all those tiny notes (mental or digital) and get started. This year, I have had to admit to myself that I must be a more disciplined writer. NaNoWriMo has all kinds of fun lessons.
I wrote nothing Day 1, but on Day 2 got in ~7300 words, a decent accomplishment. It was word vomit, but it was something. Nothing on Days 3 and 4. This morning, I got up and pounded out another ~1200 words, leaving me barely shy of the goal I should be at this morning when I sit down to write. I am the writer who waits in the shadows of my story before I flesh out the details and definitions. I must court and tease characters and plots in my mind, and then sit down and paint the real picture on the page. I must admit to myself that I shall sit down to write when I am good and ready. I am disciplining myself to follow through on that promise during NaNoWriMo.
No writer should beat themselves up because they cannot write 1,667 fresh words every single day. If you can’t write that day because you had to be at work early, go to exercise class, vote at the polls, and then pick up your guy from work, don’t guilt trip yourself. It won’t help your creative process. Let your brain relax. Just meditate on your story and your characters to keep yourself motivated and creating, keeping all of the story rolling around in your brain cavity. It has not yet been one week. We are all a mass of writers together, creating something each on our own but also creating an atmosphere around the globe.
I do not know what I write this month, because it seems to be a jumble of a lot of stories rolled into one, stories that I believed I never wanted to tell anyone that may be one great fiction for everyone. Who knows what will come of November 2k14? It could be the healthiest NaNoWriMo I’ve ever done. It has the most potential. What about you? Tell me about the potential for your NaNoWriMo 2k14, and connect with me on the NaNo site.