So, on a whim, with nary a story idea, I’ve decided to participate in National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo)*.
This is due to several reasons:
1. I’ve been more uninspired and unmotivated than usual lately. I think this is because I’m not in school this year absorbing my usual English literature and creative writing lectures. Instead, I’m forced to be objective, logical, and left-brained at work in the “real world.” Which is good, because one can’t live in the clouds all the time. But practicality really kills your writing mojo.
2. Writing is a skill that involves consistent practice, and you can’t get more consistent than one month of pure writing. I basically didn’t write at all (except for a little scribbling here and there) all summer. I think my writing has degraded slightly, which is really disturbing… In my first 1000 words of NaNoWriMo, I basically had no style whatsoever, no voice, and only cookie cutter characters. I also had what I like to call “plot procrastination.” That’s spending a precious amount of text meandering and preparing for something to happen when you honestly don’t know what the hell is going to happen in the next paragraph.
3. I’ve been hard on my self-esteem lately. It’s a thing us writers constantly struggle with because we’re artists and we’re perfectionists. I also tend to compare myself to others. I’m constantly under the pressure that everything I make has to be amazing. Or at least legit. I major in this creative shit now, after all; I have to have standards. But that’s the beauty of NaNoWriMo – you’re forced to put away your standards and just write dat shit. You stop second-guessing yourself and actually produce something you can at least stand back and examine. NaNoWriMo trains you to shut your inner naggy editor up.
4. For the first and last time in my life (probably), I have no homework! So I can actually get off (or on?) my ass and write!
I hope you – yes, you – reading this would consider doing NaNoWriMo too! It’s an awesome community chock full of resources to inspire you, with local meet-ups in your town. If you do decide to join (because you are cool, duh) my handle is “tawney.k” – go ahead and add me.
*In case you’re not in the know, NaNoWriMo is an annual event in which writers all over the world commit to writing a 50,000-word novel within the month of November. Why the dreary, rainy, foggy, muggy, dark month of November was chosen, I have no idea.