Yes, I am participating in this year’s NaNoWriMo. I heard about the crazy feat of word spilling in the Autumn of 2007. I debated getting involved in something that the Queen of Brevity could actually fail to accomplish. If I failed to reach 50,000 words by 30 November 2007, I would be a hideous looser, a laughing stock, a goof.
I jumped in with all the fear in the world on 1 November 2007. I think I wrapped things up four days early. The trick it turned out was a combination of using a Write or Die website that flashes and buzzes at you when you slow down at the keyboard or otherwise get behind on a goal you set for yourself. Some of the choices of punishment are harsh. The highest level of pain, the word processor begins deleting words right before your fingertips if you pause too long.
Another tip I used to my advantage was to send my internal editor, the shoulder vulture, off to the NaNoWriMo kennel where it was fed, walked, set free to degrade and slash at other like minded shoulder vultures. I got her back all round and jolly on the first of December. In case you don’t understand, a NaNo event is supposed to be 30 days of literary abandon, no editing allowed, it is a free flowing junk fest of misspelled, jumbled grammar and passive verbs. The fixing comes later.
If you are participating in NaNo and bogged down, distracted by the episode of Bones waiting on the DVR, the cat who is sitting funny on the rug, the rooster flinging himself at the front window trying to get you to let him into the house, the strange smell that seems to be coming from your belly button…
First, finish up the blog!
Now, after you hit send or publish, go back to your NaNo project, do a back-up. Now, when you use the delete key, think about turning the text to match the back drop of your word processing program. You will have given into a that bit of editing but the words are still there, hidden, but they count. You might also consider putting your deleted words at the end of the document using copy paste and then you aren’t looking at pages with big white gaps. The best thing is simply to avoid deleting altogether because your shoulder vulture over at the NaNoWriMo kennel knows everything you do. She is like a psychic twin and will escape the bonds that hold it and she’ll let the crazy rooster in when she comes.
Don’t answer the phone, even when it is perched atop a pile of Jinga blocks and has startled the heck out of you. Whoever it is will call you back. Hark! They didn’t call me back, they rang across the room on my DH’s phone.
The phone call that just came through was so distracting, I think I forgot how I intended to end this blog post. So, shut off the phone while you work and shut off everyone else’s phone.
NaNo is the time to be wordy. It isn’t just a plant. It is a spider plant with light stipes running long ways down it’s blades. It has one, two, three, at least fourteen baby spiders coming off of it and the very tips are dark brown and curling back. There is a new white flower on it today.
I’m going to wrap this up and follow my own advice. Turn off the phones, make a blog post and continue to write in the worst possible way.
I’ll see you all back here on Wednesday for Writerly Wednesday.
By the way, that 2007 NaNo project was published in November of 2010 as If I Should Die.
Be well, stay warm and don’t touch anything sharp.