Writer in the Storm

The Big Blizzard is pretty much done. I’ve been cooped up inside too long and I think that if things were a little different, I would go walking outside. Like if I had someone to walk with me, or if I were making an artistic video of walking in the snow. If I were better at filming, that is something I might do. As it is now, I can predict that my efforts would look like a bad school project. A B at best. More likely a C.

This would have been a good opportunity to hunker down (I’m wondering where that phrase comes from. I have never in my life performed an action that I would think of as “hunkering,” nor have I witnessed it from anyone else as far as I can remember) and spend the day reading and writing. Big storms are excellent excuses to be lost in literature. …But I didn’t. I’ve read a little bit, and I’ve written only the smallest amount today. Not creative work, either, just journaling, thought-dumping, if you will. It’s not even the sort of journal-writing people will want to read if I ever get famous. It is, to be blunt, crap.

I’ve fallen behind a bit in the 365 day challenge. At this point I am several thousand words behind, and I have not been meeting the 1,000 word per day goal regularly. I feel very bad about this–most of all when I didn’t write anything, despite having plenty of time. I look back at the end of the day and I feel that I’ve accomplished nothing, and I wonder how I have managed to waste so much time.

What is the solution? Is there a solution, other than “Just do it, stop whining”? Is there something people do to convince themselves that they can do it, whatever it may be that they’re trying to do?

I had more to say, but I’ve been momentarily distracted and lost it, so I should just stop here and say that if you want to find out what happens, come back in a few weeks or months to see if I ever manage to meet my writing goals! Who knows, maybe I’ll even post my word count next time.

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Here Comes 2015, the Year of Writing

I stumbled across this post on the Writing Realm tumblr recently and decided, without hesitation, that I’m going to try to do it.

A year-long writing challenge: 365 days, 365,000 words. One thousand words a day.

I’m sure it will be hard, and there will be probably too many days when I don’t write anything at all. Maybe some days I’ll be totally in the zone, and I’ll write thousands of words at a time. Maybe I’ll fall utterly short, but even if that happens, it’s a way to motivate myself to get back to writing. Blog posts count, and so does journaling, although I would have to count the words manually, so I’m not likely to put that toward my word count.

I can’t predict how this will go. Maybe I’ll start off well and then lose steam before too long, and the whole thing will fall apart, or it will take some time to get going but once I’m more used to writing every day, I’ll be unstoppable. Or, maybe things will just go smoothly overall, with some days worse than others, but most in a pretty good state. No, I can’t predict it, as is our general state in life–I can only try, without knowing what will happen.

I realize that some people do write this much or more regularly, and have for years, and since I haven’t been doing that how can I call myself a writer? Well. I used to write more often, but that was before the internet became as big as it is these days, with as many different options for passive entertainment. The point of the challenge, therefore, is to have a good reason to ignore all these other things I could do in order to do the thing that is one of my greatest passions. Or, used to be, and could be again if I make the effort to make it a part of my daily life.

No-nowrimo Recap and Review

Here we are, at last. November both dragged and flew by. My non-nanowrimo deadline has passed. How did I do? Well…

With a goal of 30,000 for the month, it was much more likely than the goal of 50k for the month, and would hardly have been less complete of a work (as discussed before, 50,000 words is not ever long enough to be a novel. Maybe once… a novella at best).

I started off pretty good, the first few days, and then, as always, I got caught up in work. I was too stressed about getting things done to channel any of my energy to writing. That’s my go-to excuse lately, but it’s true. I might have been able to do more over Thanksgiving, but it turns out being on vacation and doing a bunch of family stuff is not always the most conducive frame for writing productively. I finally managed to do a little bit of work on the novel I switched to last night.

My total was about 8500 words. True, it’s not really anywhere near my goal. Still it’s something. Last year I had a goal of just writing any amount every day (hint: specific goals are a lot more motivating), and I doubt I even made 1000 words, which means I did at least ten times better, in terms of words written, this time. That’s a pretty good improvement: if I do only five to six times more next time I attempt such a goal, I’ll be rolling in pages.

Not to mention that getting into the story last night makes it feel more likely that I’ll carry some writing motivation into December.

Thanksgiving itself was great, and maybe I’ll write about making cranberry sauce on the other blog. The pumpkin pie was excellent as well, and completely doused with whipped cream. Heh…

What to do now? Back to work tomorrow. Need to work hard, because December is at least as busy, with Christmas, as November is. I’ll try not to overspend on groceries so that I can reasonably afford gifts. Most of my food money goes toward coffee, and coffee-related items. As for now, I think I’m going to use this 50% off Starbucks coupon (today only), work out a little, and try to get through more of Just Kids–a very good and interesting book so far.

The Latter Update

I just saw that I have 250 posts, making this 251. I suppose that’s good? I don’t know, I’m finding it hard to have opinions about many things these days. Too tired.

My plans for “NaNoNoWriMo” ¬†over the weekend–that is, writing at all–did not go well. I didn’t even really have a good reason, unless you count watching four episodes of Dracula (which were quite fabulous. I think I’m just liking the whole Victorian England aesthetic right now, which is making me fall in love with this show). I did some work as well, but overall the whole weekend consisted of me watching hulu and sort of failing at food.

All this means that I am still sitting on only 7000 words for the entire month, probably almost none of which are really any good. I still have a chance to catch up a little over Thanksgiving, but I definitely will not be reaching my goal of 30,000 words. Oh well.

I keep trying to think of ways to fix my stupid brain so that I will write. I know I want to do it, I know I feel better when I’m writing regularly, and yet I never do. Doesn’t that sound stupid? Isn’t it nonsense?

I will post again in early December about the total NaNoNo experience, but I have a feeling I won’t have much else to share. I probably won’t post again before Friday, so Happy Thanksgiving!

NaNoNo Update

Twelve days into the month, I have decided it’s time for an update. There isn’t much to tell. Here’s the main points:

 

-I did pretty well with staying on track the first few days.

-After that, I didn’t write for a few days.

-Lost momentum, and I’ve barely written anything since the very beginning of the month.

I probably should have just kept on with a story I was already into, rather than starting on short stories that had barely managed to form in my mind. I don’t have a clear picture yet, of any aspect of the stories–just bits and pieces. How was I expecting to make that into something so quickly? I feel like I’m getting nowhere.

Here’s the bright side: I’m learning from NaNoWriMo experiences. First, it seems that at least to some degree, I am more productive when I have specific goals, rather than just “Yeah, go do some writing.” Second, NaNoWriMo, being intended for churning out stories as quickly as you can, is a good way to get a story down that has already gestated for a good while in your mind (that is, for me). … Damn it. I don’t think I’m saying this right. The thought was clear in my head, but when I tried to type it out, I lost the words, and now I can’t figure out how to articulate this thought that really seems significant at the moment. I ask you, if this is still going to happen, what the hell is the point of being a writer?

Well, I’ve bashed my hopes enough for one evening, I think. Time to go curl up into fetal position until tomorrow.