According to the word count chart for Nanowrimo I should be well into double digits by now. I, however, like everyone else have a real life outside of writing. In the last week I had a book release for my charity book which has been an incredibly important endeavor for me. It went well but understandably it took up the day and therefore I was unable to get anything accomplished on day one.
Day two I did write and made progress hitting just over the target word count for the first day. At least I had a start. Then on days three, four, and five I worked back to back double shifts. Between waking up at 1:30am in order to drive to my first job and not returning home from the second until nearly 9:00 pm I was completely exhausted. I also had to get a few hours of sleep when I could so writing any additional words at that point was simply out of the question.
Along came Thursday the sixth and low and behold a beautiful day off. My boyfriend was also off that day but had made plans with friends in order to give me time for some much needed rest and then some writing time. Yet as we all know best laid plans and all, so as it happens I slept as much as my body would allow and awoke to a screaming migraine that managed to hold on until well into the early evening. I got zero words written that day as well.
Friday came and went with a shift at one of my jobs and a quick stop to a Marine club to celebrate the kick off of Veteran's day weekend, my boyfriend is a veteran. Saturday was our annual bike ride in honor of wounded veterans. We rode forty six miles and I managed to dislocate my knee having to reset mid ride. After that was the visit to the air show at our local Air Force base before retiring for the night in an effort to regain some strength. Again no progress made.
Finally came Sunday and another full day off. I sat down in my chair readied my hands above the keys and watched an episode of Numbers on television. Home simply wouldn't work so I packed up my computer and files and headed to a coffee shop a few miles away. I took up residence in one of the chairs and managed to get my word count up to a respectable eighty one hundred words. Today I made the same trek but with little results. I have struggled desperately adding a mere thousand words.
This is where things could get dicey. I could give up because I am only about halfway to where I should be and quickly closing in on the halfway point of the month. I could get discouraged by all the people I see saying they want to change their goals and not go for the full fifty thousand. I could make excuses about working too much and having no time to keep up. These are all things I could do.
Instead I am writing. I plan all the times I can write and I make a promise to myself to get it done. I need a jolt I grab the coffee, a little concentration I get a writing buddy if I need an escape from distraction I plug in my headphones and hit the library. This is a marathon and I am in it for the long haul. I may struggle, I may slip but I look at my goals of publishing and telling the stories that are important to me and the one thing I don't see written on that list is giving up.
Writing might be a solitary activity. My characters live in my head and tell their stories to me but at no point do I ever think that I am alone. I have a network of support between my writing buddies, my family and friends and with great appreciation, my readers. I have laughed and cried with them. I have asked advice and given sneak peeks. I have listened to critiques and shared secrets my characters whisper in my head.
Whenever you feel like giving up, and now going through the middle of the month it can be truly tempting, I ask you to give the respect that your characters deserve and make the valiant effort to push on. Use the support laid out. Read the pep talks and post to the group. Attend the write ins if you are able or organize a sprint or two online. Share your successes and slip ups with us we have all been there and will high five or comfort you in your times as we travel the literary path together.