You know I’m NaNo’ing, at least in theory. It’s been a sticky November, I must say.
National Novel Writing Month (NaNo, for shorter vernacular) started beautifully, with my absurd diligence to stay in the game, keep up the word count, egg others on, encourage them to do the same. NaNo More, every day, let’s do this thing!
Then Day Two came and due to attrition, my group of NaNo-ers dwindled to … me, that I knew of; others were still writing, still attempting the race, and that was great, and I don’t push. This writing thing is a fickle mistress — sometimes she coos and plays nicely and other times, well, she’d best left alone, so I just admire anyone that attempts to play along.
We had a Skype session with a published author; we had weekly write-ins, a place made available for anyone to come in and tap out a few thousand words — but no one took advantage, including myself, I’ll admit.
Still, somehow I kept up with the requested word count, daily meeting the goal, eking out the required verbiage long enough to get sleep and let the guilt build for the night until the pressure was too great and I was forced to write more. more.more.
Then Wednesday of this last week came along and I was in a groove, in a zone, pecking at keys until I’d reached nearly 35,000 words — different words! not the same word over and over thirty-five thousand times, in case you were questioning my output — and one simple keystroke later, a key I don’t recall pushing, a key I couldn’t point to in a lineup, wiped out all of my November efforts in a blinding second.
I nearly vomited.
But I panicked early, I told myself, choking on the memory of all the words I’d cobbled together that rushed into my brain to be recalled and written before they were forgotten from my memory forever, and went through all the techno/computer savvy channels at my disposal.
The blinking cursor that had once read “34,729 words” now said “1 word”. The word “for”, its butt end blinking innocuously at me, stared up me as if to ask, “And?”
Fortunately hubris and a need for support had caused me to email bits and pieces to a few select people who graciously copies what I’d sent them and emailed it back to me. Some of the words were in a different file folder, thank heavens. Some were in texts and some I’d printed onto actual hard copy paper. All of this I congratulated myself for, and over the course of three hours I pieced it together again, minus everything I’d worked up on Monday and Tuesday. Those five thousand or so words are gone forever.
But rage can make a better writer. Out of a giant need to say Screw You to the keystroke that tried to eliminate me from the race, I wrote. And wrote. And now I’m sitting pretty, at par for the month, around 38,000 words.
I’m still on the road, though the universe tried to shake me, and I’m stronger for it. Road rash heals, tire marks can be erased; don’t quit, that’s the motto of the day.
Though I wish it was a longer motto — more words in a longer motto, you know…
This night of November has been declared by NaNo’ers to be the Night of Writing Dangerously, the aim of which is to stay the course, drink coffee, while away the night time hours, greet the daylight having written for the duration of the night and walk away with the requisite number of daily words or perhaps finish the 50K goal.
I love the thought.
And I’ve taken advantage of the night until now: I’m caught up. Yay, me.
But I’m also done for the day, so at 1:21am, I am calling my dangerous night of writing to be a fait accompli and head to the boudoir.
I guess I get French when I’m tired.
NaNo, I shall conquer thee! You shall not beat me, no matter what Deletion Dwarves you send my way!
In seven more days.