It’s November, and I’m just a few steps away from official freak-out mode. You know what November means, don’t you? The holiday countdown is on.
I’m nowhere near being ready. I’m so far behind that I haven’t even bought my pumpkin for Halloween yet, and now October is gone. I guess I’d better start looking now for a turkey. (At my house I won’t have to look far. Ba da boom.)
As if I didn’t have enough stuff going on, I have also signed up for NaNoWriMo. Don’t feel bad if you don’t know what NaNoWriMo is. I’m a novelist newbie myself, and the first time I heard the term, I thought it was alien speak.
NaNoWriMo refers to National Novel Writing Month. The goal is to write 50,000 words, roughly 175 pages—a novel—between the dates of November 1-30.
Okay. I can do that. I guess. But it’s going to be hard.
When I started my first manuscript, I didn’t know anything about writing a novel. I just jumped in. I believed my desire to write came from God. I still do, but back then I didn’t worry about POV and voice and pacing and head-hopping and all the other pointers I’ve picked up in the writing conferences I’ve attended this year.
I just dove in head first and wrote, believing God would take me and the book wherever we were supposed to go.
Now I know too much. I know a dirty dozen different ways I can fail, and I’m afraid of messing up.
But see, that’s where NaNoWriMo comes in. Participants are encouraged to write with abandon, to let the words flow freely and to throw caution to the wind—kind of what I did with my first manuscript.
NaNoWriMo participants get a free ride. They can delve into writing without worrying about failure. They know what they write isn’t going to be perfect. And it’s okay.
The end process will be a novel that can be edited and revised at a slower pace.
I’m thinking I wish I could live my Christian life in NaNoWriMo mode. No, I don’t mean I want to make errors without worrying about consequences.
I mean I wish I could just jump in and do whatever it is God wants me to do without trying to control the variables that could affect my failure.
I wish I could just walk without fear and let God take my writing—and my life and all the worry that goes with it. He’s in charge of my ultimate revision. Why do I think I can do a better job?
And so here we go again, I’m launching another WIP. As of November 1, I’ve logged in 3,541 words. Not too shabby. My goal is to write an average of 2,000 words each day.
Am I crazy or what?
How about you? Are you living the NaNoWriMo life?