I’ve completely pooped out on NaNoWriMo this year. I participated a couple of years ago for a serious writing push for The Byways (previously named Through the Holes), and it worked! I mean, I didn’t make 50,000 words but I was writing every day and I completed about 20,000 words, then, two months later I finished my first draft. (Four drafts to follow but worth it!) So I absolutely believe in and love the incentive NaNoWriMo can give you. I figured this year I’d use it again to jumpstart my second novel.
The problem was I wasn’t sure what my second novel was. Or rather, WHICH novel was my second. I have two tussling it out in my brain: one, funny and outrageous and short-ish (perfect for a month jumpstart), and the other, longer and compelling and niggling at me but without the details worked out yet. I started the funny one and then lost my funny. I switched to the other and wrote in drips and drabs. I toyed with switching back. I googled stuff about llamas. I stared at the keyboard. It was basically the writer’s version of doodling during a test.
But! I did finish writing my query letter, synopsis, and author bio for The Byways this month so… YAY!!! ‘Cause that shit was tough, yo. And I was a fricking marketing writer.
So yeah, poop out. It’s funny, though, I don’t feel the least bit bad about it. In fact, I’m pretty happy with the way the month turned out. In esoteric circles they say that winter is the time for dreaming. It’s a time for going inward and preparing for the growth and action of spring, just like nature does. Now, knowing me, I can’t guarantee that I’ll stop working the entire winter, but sometimes it’s fine to step back and plan, rather than do.
Especially when you’re just farting around anyway.