Writing > Nanowrimo a duex

Nanowrimo a duex

Published: December 1, 2010

I just finished Nanowrimo again; this is the second year I signed up for the National Novel Writing Month challenge. It’s where you should be committed for committing to write a fiction novel between November 1st and November 30th. It is the preverbal John Henry story, man against the machine. Here it is pearhater against the clock, same difference. Last year I managed to write a little over 51k words in 27 days and won. Being the competitive girl I am, this year I wanted to beat those stats. I am hugely competitive but rarely with others, mostly it is with myself. Other people’s accomplishments inspire me and sometimes push me to try harder to achieve my goal. The thing about me is that it’s all about me. How can I push, prod, entice or crawl my way to dong better, being clearer and finding beauty?

This year I finished writing, what is to date, my third book. I did it in 25 days and hit the 52,077 word mark. Oh yea I also managed to toss in three articles or blogs on flickspin too. I beat last year’s record by two days and over 1k more on the word count. I was slapping paint at the very end of the book but it ended how and where it should have and it’s a finished first draft of a novel. During the writing I complained to my best friend, gifted editor and artist extraordinary Ms. M that I thought this year’s book sucked. I said it was soft on story, didn’t go anywhere and would not hold together in the end. She reminded me that I said something very similar about last year’s book (which she is currently editing) and that was far from true about that one. That conversation and reminder gave me hope and the freedom not to try too hard on this year’s book and just let it be what it was going to be out of the gate.

Trying too hard will kill me every time. I become hyper focused, tense, ridged and invested in a certain outcome. None of these things give way to creativity, learning or fun. Allowing happy accident’s, bad art whether writing, painting, encaustic or jack-o-lantern carvings gives way to new territory, unique and beautiful landscapes within us. I don’t know if I hit any of those places in this year’s book but I learned a thing or two in the process, this time about myself and about creativity.

Last year when I signed up for the writing challenge I was more or less on my own. I was estranged from my on again off again longtime boyfriend who was my one and only real playmate since moving to San Diego. I knew a few other people at the time but I was not close with them. So last year I had lots of time on my hands, it was writing, yoga, writing, walk on the beach and more writing. There were little to no distractions from the page apart from the occasional client and a few friends cheering me on from afar.

This year, like last year I still had the occasional client, yoga, beach walking and not full time employment but those are the only things that were the same. I am taking two night classes a week this year and trying to do diligence with what I am learning there. This year I have been lucky enough to meet some new people and have a lovely circle of friends in San Diego. These folks seek me out to go eat, drink, walk on the beach and get into mischief. This year I had to negotiate time at the keyboard with myself. Out of the 25 days I wrote I probably took 3, maybe 4 days totally off where I did not write at all. The days I chose to write I did it. I fit it in between Weight Watcher Meetings, birthday lunches, helping friends clothes shop for a new job, class, play dates… essentially my life. I fit it in because I am accountable not only to others which can be difficult at times but to myself which is of utmost importance. I need to be accountable to myself in order to take my desires for my life, my design for my future and accomplish the tasks that will lead me down that road. Life is nothing if not one choice after another; if I screw up one there is another coming around the bend.

This year’s Nanowrimo was a wonderful success. Not only because I have completed my third book, which is freaking amazing to me. I was the girl who could not wrap her head around completing one book much less three. And I have a somewhat piece-meal fourth one in progress. When I was working on my first book a good writing day consisted of the stars being aligned for me to get 500 words down on a page. Now with what I have learned about myself and creativity I can, on a regular writing day, squeeze in an easy 1,700 to 2,000 words between running around. I can knock out an article in about an hour and a half. To date on this year’s book my best writing day was a little over 5,000 words. I am sure I could do more, but that doesn’t matter anymore, that is no longer a marker for success to me. What that goal gave me was a certain ease with writing that allows me to write about anything, anywhere, anytime – it seems it’s not only what I want to do but truly who I am.

By no means does that ease mean it is always comfortable or easy, it is not. Some days, hours or minutes flow effortlessly but more often than not it is frustrating. The words come in fits and starts- not unlike a 50-something guy peeing in the middle of the night. Bottom line we both have to stand still and deal with what is to finish what we started.

I am a lucky girl, my dad always said I could fall in a pile of shit and come up with a rose in my teeth. Maybe I am lucky because I believed what he said, and look for the best in any situation. It is my nature to look for opportunities, work arounds and fun even in the face of darkness and fear. What can I say; it is in my DNA to move toward the light. That makes for a wonderful life and I have built one that suites me. I am not saying there are not huge gaps where things I want or need are not present. Things like a full time income, or job, a partner, peer and playmate in the love department. I understand those things will come in their own perfect time and have faith while doing diligence.

For now I have near perfect days all the time. I wake up when my body wants, I start the day with a yoga class, I write, meet clients for Walk N Talks, catch up with extraordinary friends who love and see me for who I am, they hold me up allowing me to do the same for myself and to write.

Thank you all, I love you.


1. Beavis on December 2, 2010

You said dong.

2. T on December 3, 2010

This piece is a deep breath on the way to my vortex/center/ground. I love this one! I'm sure the novel is fantastic and perhaps I'll read it when released - for now, this short piece was a perfect reminder of the perspective I want everyday.


3. Carol Anne Freeling on December 6, 2010

Did you go into the light? It is a perfect day.

4. Happy Wench on December 6, 2010

One of the many things I love about you my friend. Your beautiful optimism and ability to look at life and see it's beauty and lessons....even amongst the crap, and to be able to put it all into words to help the rest of us out here perhaps begin to look at our own lives with reverence.

Any Comments?


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