I started another #100happydays set! Here are the first 50 days!
I’m only a day behind on writing but it feels like some sort of NaNoWriMo tragedy. I usually get ahead before I take days off, but this year has been harder. It’s not actually bad though! Still absolutely doable. I usually finish a few days early, anyway, so I know I have these 4-6k days in me if I need them. I’m hoping to write over 3k today so I can get back on track!
I did hit 25k yesterday and I try to take comfort in the fact that the second 25k is always easier for me.
I passed over some kind of boring hump a few days ago, anyway. My character has been stuck in the house, mostly alone, for weeks and it was intensely boring, so I made it be Christmas and had someone invite her over to their place for a couple of days and let her get her car fixed finally so she can go wherever she wants and these things have helped a lot.
Finding balance between life and NaNoWriMo is still a struggle. I get behind on one to work on the other. I did write a schedule for my day and it has helped a lot. I block out an hour for most tasks, even the ones that take 15 minutes (like making and eating breakfast), and then I spend the rest of that hour either writing, working on something else that I have neglected, or taking a break if I’m feeling drained. Today while I ate my brekkie sandwich, I worked on photo editing and writing this blog post, at lunch time I’ll probably get started on my writing for the day, which is my first post-lunch task. It helps me a lot to just look at the clock and my schedule and then do the things. I don’t have time to hem and haw over decisions. It’s all laid out for me.
25055 / 50000 words. 50% done!
I am SO firmly stuck in the painful week 2s right now. And I’m behind on other things that I keep putting off until after I finish my writing for the day. And then I don’t finish my writing for the day so I don’t finish anything. I have been keeping on top of dishes and cooking dinner every day, though. The dryer is full of clean laundry to sort, I owe emails to two friends, I only wrote about 600 words yesterday, no one is running sprints on the @NaNoWordSprints and I am floundering and lonely. It’s a pain that writing super early is best for me. I think maybe I should try a different schedule today. So maybe I will do some to do list items and then come back to it, but when I think about doing this I get a sick feeling in my gut.
The most annoying thing is that I know, I KNOW, if I just started writing that every tight feeling in my chest and stomach would ease up. It happened yesterday when I managed that 600 words, but it didn’t last the full half hour session. I need to get comfortable with skipping scenes, perhaps, for letting the story just jump over these day to day trivialities. I hate how I feel like I have to chronicle every second of my characters days… but… I feel like I don’t know how to transition from scene to scene. I know that it’s okay. Because this is NaNoWriMo. I can write these boring moments and then cut them out, later. It’s fine. One interesting thing about this feeling is that when I read back on my NaNoWriMos, all of which I have felt this way about, I actually feel like I did a fine job skipping the mundane things and my transitions seem pretty logical. They often read enough like real books that it startles me. I find they need way less editing than I had imagined they would when I was writing them.
I guess I forgot how much hashing out my feelings on this blog is key, as well. I just feel like this month is busier than ever. In years past I have made an update here almost every day that I wrote. That’s incredible to me. Where did I find the time?
Today, my procrastination has been spent watching music videos on youtube and dancing around the living room. At least it was somewhat aerobic.
I feel less fatalistic about my novel at this moment than I did a half hour ago, or yesterday, or the day before that. I’ll get through this. I always do.
So I’m going to go an write myself a schedule for today that puts my writing in the afternoon instead of the morning and see how I do with it.
I just packed up the last of the Halloween stuff and remembered I didn’t share these photos here!
On Friday I made Pumpkin Chocolate Chip cupcakes from Vegan Cupcakes Take Over the World. They’re my favorite!
That evening Shaun and I carved Pumpkins.
On Halloween we put the final touches on our porch decor.
My mom came over to sit on the porch with us while we handed out candy to 160 trick or treaters!
Normally I have written an update on my NaNoWriMo progress before now. It’s part of my routine that works so well for me. Last year, I had pretty free mornings, because I was doing the bulk of my writing in the afternoons, word warring, with Shaun tapping away at his novel across the room. The next day I would pop something in the slow cooker, do some yoga and write something here and it helped me organize my NaNoWriMo feelings.
Shaun is taking this year off. He does sometimes. When he comes home from work, I want to hang out with him, not plug along on my novel alone, so I’m writing in the mornings. This has generally worked out for me in the past, before I got a slow cooker, whether Shaun and I were both working on NaNoWriMo or not, I would write in the morning and he would write while I was cooking dinner. It’s not that it feels wrong to do it like this.
I have just had such a weird head, so far, this month. November 1st is the hardest for me, writing alone, if it’s a weekend, because it’s the day after Halloween, which I worked very hard on (this year we had 160 trick or treaters!) and I just want to spend the day with Shaun, relaxing and recovering.
So this year, for the first time ever, I didn’t write a single word on November 1st. It’s not really a problem. I usually finish NaNoWriMo on the 25th. I also usually have some inkling of what I’m going to write about.
This year I had absolutely nothing.
On November 1st I decided to do some prep work. I made a couple of lists while we sat on the couch watching Kill Bill #1. I’ve made these lists before, they’re recommended in No Plot? No Problem! by Chris Baty, which I reread every year. List 1 is the things that you like to read in a novel and list 2 is the things you hate to read about. I actually made a third list of general favorite things, thinking if I get stuck maybe something will pop out at me. Here’s that list, for fun!
- spooky art
- dark hair
- green eyes
- cold weather
- theme parks
- tarot cards
- gothic novels
Then I went to Behind the Name and skimmed through most of the English names. I wrote down a list of female names, male names, and surnames so I would never find myself writing “Blanky McBlankerson” in the heat of @NaNoWordSprints
It was not a complete waste of my first day of NaNoWriMo, even though it was spent doing things I was allowed to do in October.
On Monday, November 2 I got a decent start, somehow, and I didn’t even start writing until the afternoon. I felt inexplicably awful, just sad for no reason, but I churned out 2,455 words and some kind of story started to present itself.
Tuesday and Wednesday were less productive, and I’m still behind on the recommended word count, though on Wednesday my general mental health seemed to improve and I wrote cheerfully in the morning.
My biggest problem today, day five, is that I have sat here writing almost 600 words for this post instead of my novel.
But I’m hoping to get some word warring in with a friend this afternoon, or soon, anyway, so that will help!
I did 3 Halloween costume looks this year!
#HalloweenPhotoWeek on instagram. (Currently all by me! but I recognize that could change someday.)
Here are 13 more weeks of this project!
Here are 13 more weeks of this project! We’re eating pizza in 3 of them, haha!