It’s November, the National Novel Writing Month, also known as The NaNo, is upon us.
It’s an exciting time for me.
Across the vast internet, social networking sites, and personal blogs, you will find encouragement, advice, and inspiration. You can almost hear the screams of frustration, see the overflowing ashtrays, empty coffee cups, snack wrappers, and feel the ripping sensation of authors round the world staring at an empty page and tearing at the hair.
I have a great imagination:)
Oh yeah, I’m also an Empath.
For me, The NanoWriMo is so much more than a contest, or gimmick, or mere momentary connection.
I enjoy the pull of anticipation of people coming together, plugging in, to accomplish a common goal: Write a 50,000 word novel in 30 days.
The first time I joined in on the challenge, I hadn’t been published yet – it was just a faraway dream for “someday.” But my muse woke up, plugged herself into the manic energy, and brought me hope. Could this event be the motivation for that elusive day?
My first year, I wrote a story about six women stranded on an island. Each of them had a detailed background, and a point-of-view which I expertly wove throughout the entire story.
I sat on the back screened porch and wrote furiously on yellow tablets throughout the day, and entered them into a document faithfully the next morning. Some nights I would have twenty two pages to put in.
I was proud of myself, and updating that word count was instant gratification for me. Here was something that I could point to and say “See? I can do this!” Maybe, writing a book is not such an unattainable goal.
I liked being accountable – to myself. Here was something I was good at – and at that point in my life, I needed to know I was good at something. I needed some new goals and achievements I could be proud of. The NaNo gave me permission to unleash the stuff going on in my head – to give a voice to the characters I’d created through the years, and then chained the dungeon of “someday.”
See? This is how the Universe works for me. I talked last week about how circumstances and fate kept putting me in the same places as Sandy. If we missed one opportunity, looking back – I can see where another one was offered in its place.
So, the NaNo gave me a short term goal, with quick results – not something for next year, or maybe five years from now. It allowed me to create something out of the chaos.
I reached for and exceeded, the 50,000 word challenge that year. It gave me a profound feeling of accomplishment, one I hadn’t experienced since I was a young girl. One I truly and desperately needed in order to come out of the dark.
I guess my point in this: I couldn’t see the forest through the trees most times. I was taught to look at life through a negative lens – look at the obstacles and the crisis – rather than the progress and solutions. List the reason why you can’t – rather than list the reasons you can. Life is a struggle rather than a journey. Find your flaws, rather than your creativity.
You get the point.
So, in a way – The NaNo has taught me how to look at things differently. Hundreds of people writing in around the world tell me – and hundreds of thousands of additional writers:
There are hundreds of blogs, emails, and prompts to help keep you going. The forums are full of suggestions and advice to help you achieve the goal – with good and stellar intentions.
Now, think of this multitude of positive reinforcement going out as energy high into into the world’s magnetic atmosphere. It’s awesomely tangible for me; I can literally feel it – even as I sit alone at my desk in my corner of the world.
So, if you find my posts a little manic and disjointed this month (well, more than usual) – it’s because I’m high on the energy 🙂