Writing can be a lonely endeavor, which is why I love it when November rolls around. There’s just something magical about thousands of writers coming together in crazy drafting bliss. It’s a roller coaster ride of emotions, but when I’m on that track next to those who get it, the dips don’t seem so scary.
My main advice is to forget all the advice and do what works for you. If that means writing forward and not looking back, do it. If that means bouncing around from scene to scene or editing what you wrote the day before, do it. Ignore the “experts” and just write—it’s as simple as that.
Each night in November my CPs and I email each other our word count for the day and a short snippet of our writing. With only positive cheerleading allowed, we pull each other through those crappy days and encourage to the finish line. Here’s a sampling of what can be found in those daily emails:
So I started out with a dream that is also a flashback within a prologue. Um…
I’m already veering from the plan. *clings possessively to 30 page outline*
For someone who doesn’t really grasp the rules of using the em dash, I sure use it a lot.
I’m just going to ignore the CP who already hit 50K. She does not exist. Poof. Go away.
Blogs. Twitter. Facebook. Other Shiny Things. How do I turn off the internet, again?
I am drowning in dirty dishes. This is why paper plates were invented, people.
My writing SUCKS. Why the crap did I ever get into this business in the first place?
Blinking cursor. Blinking cursor.
Stayed up til the wee hours to write new scene, then woke up three more times during the night because the muse wouldn’t shut up.
I wrote, like, 200 words today. Aack! Muse…where did you go?
My bar graph is still above that diagonal line…that’s all that matters.
The honeymoon is over! I hate Nano. This is stupid. :P
I made a playlist for my book. Then googled actors to play my characters. Then designed a book cover.
Got 5K in today. 5K!!!! I’m amazing. I rock. I can’t believe those around me aren’t constantly blown away by my awesomeness.
Why, hello shower. Nice to meet you.
I wrote THE BEST kissing scene today, then jumped ahead and wrote the next one, just for good measure.
Time to stalk my Nano buddy list and evil laugh at everyone I’m beating. Just kidding. Kind of.
Is there a genre called YA erotica? Because I think I just invented it.
I’m setting fire to my 30 page outline.
Dear Stomach Flu, it’s NOVEMBER. You are not allowed to visit. Be gone with thee!
Wait, MC. Where are you going? Come back. COME BACK.
I’m just going to ignore that other CP who is going out on submission before me. *deep breaths*
I cried four times today—whimpering out loud and everything. I don’t know if I can do this.
We ran out of Diet Coke. And milk. But…DIET COKE!
Nope. I did NOT go back and make all the changes needed to accommodate new idea, erasing several hundred words that no longer work. I would NEVER.
Used the F-bomb in my novel. Twice. Then the word “balls” in reference to male genitalia. I am going to hell.
I’m sure a lot of this sounds familiar. And crazy. But we writers are artists, and the best artists are a little off their rocker, don’t you think? So cheers to all you Nano-ers out there…you are crazy, and you can do it. I believe in you!
* This post originally appeared on Cupid's Literary Connection
My heart is calling, it's calling.