Sorry, it’s been a while… bit of a busy week.
I will be doubling up my writing time today and tomorrow, because I was unable to complete any chapters over the weekend. The good news is that if I am successful in writing 2 chapters today and another 2 chapters tomorrow… I will be completing my book on Thursday!
I didn’t write over the weekend because I had to work all day Saturday and all dat on Sunday. Usually I have time to write while I am at work, but it just didn’t happen this weekend. I also had to complete my portion of a group project for my college, so that was all of my free time. I have doubled up in the past, and it can be exhausting, but to me, it is well worth it to stay on track.
So, that brings me to today’s topic: Powering Through.
I’ll admit, that I have struggled with the last couple of chapters I have written. When the story was new and exciting, words just seemed to flow through my fingertips… I have finally gotten to that point that I fantasize about this story and its characters, but now I’m having a hard time getting to that finish line. I recently wrote a chapter that took me over 3 hours to write, which is ridiculous when you consider for the purpose of NaNoWriMo, my chapters are only 2500 words. The chapter didn’t take nearly as long, but it certainly felt like work.
When writing begins to feel like work, it is easy to say “just walk away” … “I’ll come back to it”. The truth is, at least for me, when I walk away from my designated writing time…. I am unlikely to go back and finish that later. I write between 9AM and 11AM every day. That is my time. I have had my coffee, eaten my breakfast, and there are no distractions. Once I get past lunch time, the entire atmosphere of the house just seems wrong to write. Suddenly there are things on TV to watch, other things I need to check on, groceries to buy, and list goes on and on. My writing time is my golden time, and I have to use it to its full potential.
I have read many of the Pep Talks for NaNoWriMo and they suggest that when you are stuck, to simply write the scene or chapter that excites you… I do not recommend that, and I’ll tell you why. I used to do that very thing, all the time. I would hear a song on the radio and envision a scene so strong that I could cry… and I would be inspired to write it down immediately. I would re-read it and think “this is perfect! I can’t wait until I get to the point in my story that I can use this scene.” The problem is that when you (.. I..) write a scene that you have not built up to yet, you’re not taking everything into consideration. The characters may go through things that you had not originally intended. I’ll give you en example of my prediction writing for NaNoWriMo:
NaNoWriMo asks for a synopsis of the story and also for an excerpt when you list it on your profile. Looking at my story now, the synopsis is not even entirely accurate. For the excerpt I used immediately, it was obvious that I initially planned to write the story in the 3rd person, but when I began actually writing it, I switched to 1st person. I couldn’t even use most of the excerpt that I used because it didn’t fit my storyline by the time I got to that part. I thought I knew exactly how my story ended, and if I would have spent part of my writing time to write the ending while it was fresh in my mind…. it would have been wasted… ALL OF IT. My ending now, is not even remotely close to the original ending.
I know not everyone’s story goes through so many major changes as my current story has… but I think it is more useful to power through the writing rut and keep the story on track. Yes, you will probably have to go back and edit the scenes that you forced, but at least you have something to work with now. There is no promise that if you skip that scene now…. that you will be any more inspired to write it later. Sometimes scenes that are necessary just aren’t fun to write.
This is just my two cents, and it is what works for me. I can’t believe that I am going to win my first NaNoWriMo this week! I am beyond excited, and I’m looking forward to starting the editing process and having a publish ready story by the end of the month.
Thank you to all of you who read this blog. I feel like you reading this helps me to be accountable to my goals, and if anything that I have written helps you, then that is icing on the cake!
Happy Monday, take care!