NaNoWriMo 2016: Half time!
… or: Right on track – just about
The NaNoWriMo statistics are delightfully cruel and insightful. They are my prime motivation to keep going, and most writers are pushed to new heights with that constantly (hopefully) rising bar…
So far, I’m right on track. This story flows easily. It’s a contemporary romance novel with online twists, and a spill-over into real life. It’s such fun to shape that I’ve not had a day without looking forward to adding more words. But as I also edit last year’s NaNoWriMo novel, Birth of a Shield Maiden, in the mornings, I try to take breaks, too, to not overwhelm myself. Self-care is another skill every artist (especially writers during November!) have to learn and stick to. So when I hit word count, I allow myself a break in the knowledge that I’ll manage word count without too much torture.
So the NaNoWriMo stats say that at half time one should have at least 25,000 words. I’m at 23,585 and still have a day left. I’m confident, as long as no catastrophe hits here. What is also great about the statistics is that they tell me the day I will finish if I keep up my pace. If that day is in December, I lost. So one can check the daily achievement as well as prospects, averages, etc. And that cruel bar is the best visual reminder of where I stand. When there are obstacles on the horizon, like too busy days, I can write ahead and build a little lead. I love doing that – it makes writing life more relaxed. So far: didn’t happen. But I’m okay with that.
Novembers are the months of focus and productivity
In that way, Novembers, my Schreibmonate as I call them for family and friends (who after four years got used to the schedule), are always the ones where I’m most focussed. Because of that constant rise and fall of the bar at the line there, and where therefore I’m also most productive. When everything goes smoothly, as it does so far, I feel totally accomplished: there is a visual reward to TELL ME that I’ve achieved! That is a rare thing for a writer! So in a way, Novembers should be every month. But then: Nobody has the energy to keep up that pace … not with a normal family life running in the background (and sometimes foreground).
So on that note: Here’s to a great November motivation so far, and let’s hope we all achieve what we wanted, or at least can look back and be proud – wherever our word count stands on December 1st! 🙂
Do you use NaNoWriMo to kick off a novel? And what is your November struggle like? This year and the ones before? Tell us in the comments, I’m so curious to see how you do it!