This year will be my second year of doing NaNoWriMo. I live on the East Coast and last year at the start of NaNoWriMo I had Hurricane Sandy to thank for a tumultuous start to this annual writing event. The fear that the electricity would give out, that we would be flooded out, or a host of other concerns plagued me but I forged on. I was able to complete the challenge and put 51,107 words down in the 30 days.
However, this year I am wondering if I can repeat the success. Why? Because I have been blessed and have a beautiful 3-month old daughter in my life this November. With work (out of the home), late night feedings, my daughter confusing night for day and day for night, grogginess from sleep deprivation and a pervasive feeling of being overwhelmed I am a bit apprehensive about committing to NaNo 2013.
By saying ‘no’ to taking up this challenge, I am saying ‘no’ to that thing that feels like oxygen to my lungs. I’d prefer not to asphyxiate before Thanksgiving. I may give myself a break and not dive into book 2 of the work I just finished editing and perfecting. That would be suicide trying to put down1600 words on that since I am ‘coming down’ from the high of writing/revising/editing that work. I also want to allow myself to appreciate that work fully before delving into its sequel. I may work on a totally different project this year one that does not have a tight deadline so I am not required to finish it within a certain time frame.
As a new mother, I have to be kind to myself while still being true to myself. I think I will focus on laying down the foundation for a book of short stories which is a project that I’ve wanted to do forever! I love the short story form. Hemingway’s Hills Like White Elephants (1927) is my all-time favorite short story. I read it originally in HS and the story has stayed with me all these years. The story is driven by dialog with very little prose. The subject matter is not clearly stated and must be inferred – delicious!
Writing short stories for NaNoWriMo will be refreshing, engaging and challenging. Writing short is tough. Writing well and short is an art. That is how I will challenge myself during NaNo this year. The goal will be to write 10 short stories of 5,000 words each. I will decide on a theme in the next few days. Since the goal of NaNo is to write the 1st word on November 1st none of the short stories I have currently in progress can be used. (DARN!@@!) More challenge! LOL.
For those of you who are doing the true to the letter NaNo, here are some great articles about getting ready for this awesome writing challenge.
Here’s to wishing you success in being one of 14% that successfully finish NaNoWriMo this year!