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Nanowrimo - And The Race Is On...Will I Make It?

Like a lot of writers worldwide I started a new story for Nanowrimo Sunday November 1st. I also attended a kickoff party/motivation lecture at my alma mater, Nova University.

I was excited to start a new project. It felt good to be back on my old campus and see how much it's evolved, indeed to be in a classroom again. My dad used to think I'd be a forever student. He once accused me of that when I was working on my MBA at Nova. He's right. I might not be enrolled in an official class at the moment, but I'm constantly reading articles about writing, self-educating myself.

Sunday I wrote 3,296 words, double what I needed to be on schedule for Nano. If you're not familiar with Nanowrimo it's a challenge to write at least 50,000 words of a novel in one month - specifically November. You can get more information at It's not too late to join. My first year I joined a week or two late and still won. "Winning" is writing at least 50,000 words in November.

After Sunday, I felt like this:

Monday I wrote about 1,900 words. Not as good as Sunday but enough to stay on track. I considered it good for a day I worked full time and also attended my daughter's softball game. To be honest, I took my laptop to the field and ignored everybody else while I wrote. I only looked up to watch my daughter bat and when the crowd went wild.

Monday, I still felt like this:

Yesterday, I blew it. Only three days in and I didn't write one single word. I have a lot of excuses. I worked all day at the day job. From there I ran to my first night of physical therapy (I have a recent knee injury) and was pretty tired when I got home. Then the premiere of "V" (The Visitors) came on. I had to see "V" as I love the original series almost as much as I love Star Trek. If you know me you know I adore Star Trek.

Today (Wednesday ), I haven't written a word for my Nano project for two days in a row and I'm getting nervous. Life is getting in the way. It's hard to ignore everything to write, no matter the challenge: Nanowrimo, edits, deadlines...

So I felt like this:

My day job boss doesn't want to hear that I have to "write for Nanowrimo" instead of doing the work he's paying me for. My physical therapist would tattle to my doctor if I didn't show up for therapy. I don't think I'd be very popular around here either if I didn't blog today. :) So far, I've not even checked my email and it's late. (I posted this in advance.)

I'm not the only writer facing challenges - for Nanowrimo or for TEB deadlines and edits.

Some days really are too busy to fit everything in. Usually, I write and let other things slide. Some things can't slide.

But some can.

Perhaps some of you reading this want to be writers but don't think you have the time. If you really want to write, do yourself a favor and evaluate where you are spending your time.

One of my best friends often laments that she wants to write a cookbook but she's too busy. She works a day job. She goes home and prepares dinner for herself and her husband. Then she watches soap operas and home shopping channels the rest of the night - almost every night. It's a shame as she's a wonderful and unique cook. The world would greatly benefit from her book. Hopefully, she will pick up a pen and paper and start writing it.

Just because I've blown my schedule for a day (or two) doesn't mean I should give up. It doesn't mean I've failed. I shall start writing anew tomorrow when there's no therapy after the day job. And I will write extra words on the weekend to catch up.

As God is my witness, this will be me! (writing like a maniac this weekend.)

If you're in Nanowrimo or if you're writing on your own schedule, good luck! There will be challenges. There will be bad days for writing. But pick yourself up and start over. Don't give up.



Jenna Byrnes said...

Good luck Ashley. I have my own deadlines, I don't need to make myself crazy with Nanowrimo. But I'll watch the rest of you get a little crazy.

Loved the cartoons, too!

Lisabet Sarai said...

Hello, Ashley,

If I tried Nanowrimo, I'd kill myself with the pressure. I really applaud those of you who give it a go, though.

And I second Jenna's comment about the cartoons, though for some reason your last image comes up as blank for me...

Good luck and keep writing!


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