November 1st...that means it's the start of National Novel Writing Month--NaNoWriMo--during which writers around the world will make the attempt to cough up a novel in the span of 30 days.
Some will make it; some will give up; some will keep trying right until the bitter end. It sounds easy enough--just sit down every day and write 1700 words, and by the end of the month you'll have over 50,000 words written down, good or bad.
It's not as easy as it sounds, though, because your inner editor tends to kick in and you start over thinking things, worrying about the quality of your story and whether or not it will be worth the effort at the end of the month, much less whether anyone will ever want to read it.
Take my advice: tell your inner editor to shut the frak up. Quiet that annoying voice with chocolate or cookies, popcorn or rice krispy treats, whatever it takes. Just sit down and write, and come December you can take put your editor hat back on and get to work of fixing the massive volume of mistakes.
Oh yeah, there will be a metric ton of oopsies, but that's all right. Just get the story out on to virtual paper; it doesn't matter if it's wonderful or the biggest pile of suck ever created. All that matters is that you write.
You're creating a habit; that's a good thing.
Just as important as sitting down and getting the writing done is insisting that the people around you respect the time you need in order to get it done; you really only need a couple of hours a day, make sure you take it and that everyone knows that they have to leave you alone during that time. Make sure they grasp that this isn't just a "thing" you're doing, but that you're actively engaged in actual work. Work that may later become income-producing.
Your work deserves respect.
Keep the NaNo flowing…in 30 days you’ll have the bones of your book done, and then can flesh it out, fix it up, make it longer, and make it awesome.
I’m not doing it this year—again—because I already have two projects going on and I started working on one long before November. Technically I could turn the other one into a NaNo project—all I’ve done on it is some character outlining and bare bones plot descriptions—but I’m deep enough into the first one that I need to focus in it.
It’s Max’s book. If I work on anything else…poop on my pillow, toothy death to things I love. You know the drill.
So I’m not doing NaNoWriMo, but I am working along with you guys, and I’m paying attention to my daily word count as if I were doing it.
Write on, peoples. Just 48,000 more words to go, right?