Thursday, November 7, 2013

Just Start

Two little words, yet so hard to do sometimes.

Will I regret my decision? Will I succeed? Will I be able to finish what I start?

I have two words in response: Who cares? You will never know what you can do, if it's worth it, and whether or not you will fail if you don't even start. 

I can't count how many crafts I've never finished, or stories that are waiting their turn to be told. Whether or not I'm afraid of failing should be irrelevant. But it's not. It's real. We don't like committing ourselves to things we're not sure we can finish. Why start if we have little chance of finishing? Nanowrimo anyone? 50,000 words in 30 days. Why? Why I ask you?

Because the joy is in the journey, not the end result.

Why do we feel so accomplished when we achieve a goal we've set? Because we finished what we intended, obviously. What if our goal was to simply have joy along the way? It wouldn't matter if or when we finished because our goal wouldn't be determined by an end result, but rather an ongoing love for what we are doing.

This has been a profound concept for me this year and is at the heart of my Nanowrimo story. It was also the means to my taking on a difficult task both physically and emotionally: my boys' Christmas stockings. Each of my children have one, and so will my boys. They take around 70 hours to complete. Each. So you can imagine how daunting it is to start, not to mention the feelings of making something your boys will never actually use. 

But WE will. We have a special plan for them, and it's pretty wonderful. But that's another post for a later time.  Meanwhile...

I started.

Friday, November 1, 2013



Nanowrimo. Say it with me....naaaaa.....noooo wrimo.  It's not hard to do. Well, yeah, kind of.  I mean, 50,000 words in 30 days? Yeah, it's some of the hardest fun you'll ever have.

Here's how it works:

  • Pick a plot (hopefully you've got an idea or rough outline going into it. Unless you're like me. :) I'm a total pantser. Don't worry though, at this stage I'm the only one who gets to see the embarrassing, ugly polka dot underwear. You get to see my daily word count. :)
  • November 1st start typing like mad. You need about 1667 words a day to make it to the 50,000 by the end of the month.
  • Chat on the forums!
  • Read comics on the main page!
  • Shop at the store and buy cool t-shirts and mugs!
  • Waste time playing Candy Crush!
  • Facebook like crazy!
  • Find Writing Buddies and distract them--I mean help them!
  • Try and get back to writing. *sigh*
  • Discover amazing plot twist and fist pump the room. 
  • Eats lots and lots of energy snacks. Is this why it starts right after Halloween?  Hmmmmm
  • Type and type and type some more.
  • Think about Thanksgiving Day looming and type faster. 
  • Finish! Validate! Claim your prizes. Seriously. Since I started in 2005 the folks at Nanowrimo have really pulled in some awesome prizes for us to claim. Soooo cool.
I've been nano-ing since 2005. There was a couple years in there that I was working on my senior Honors Thesis and trying to graduate from college, so word count was wrapped up in term papers and such.

Times and seasons. 

It's a tough month for me to do Nanowrimo. Okay, okay, every month is hard when you're a mom of seven and especially right now as I work to recover from a difficult and painful summer. But being a writer means that NO time will be perfect for writing. You have to carve the time out to do it. Life won't stop for us. And quite frankly, writing is better due to our experiences. It's the stuff that gives us something to write ABOUT.

So what are you waiting for?  Go! Sign up! NANO!!!!  And come be my buddy here. :)

Happy Writing!