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its only day 11 and I am avoiding my main character

I have been reluctant to write today and it is not flagging energy or interest for this year’s Nanowrimo challenge. The truth of the matter is that my main character is starting to FREAK me out.

OK she’s been nattering away at me for the last couple of days – which has been great. I managed to get up to speed with my word count goals and get back on track. The problem is she is taking me to places where I don’t want to go. The potential risk I face with my story this year is that it turns from fiction to autobiographical.

I am sure that every writer faces that dilemma from time to time – a spark in the story and suddenly the characters turn on you and it is all about you! I have been a little surprised that I am latching on to some emotional bank accounts that I really thought had been spent. But there they lie deep in my psyche and are threatening “the novel”.

nanowrimo, day 11 goal

This leads me to my visual image for the day. Longs showers are known to cure the following: “lack of ideas”, “emotional distress”, and “aching muscles” but are also known to cause “water shortages” and “wrinkly skin”. The word count goal for today is 18,700 and I am at the time of writing about 1,000 words of the pace. Perhaps under the cover of darkness I will be brave enough to face my emotions and just get on with the story!

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remember to do the shopping

nanowrimo - goal day 10
Last year I became so wrapped up in Nanowrimo, the rest of the world did not exist for those 30 days of pure writing pleasure – I was seduced by the first time experience, the comaraderie between fellow writers, the ambition of writing a novel!
This year I promised my family that I would approach Nano with “more balance”, that I would remember to do the shopping for groceries, that I would not spend my entire time slaving over the keyboard.
I’m not sure if the approach has dampened my spirits a little or not, but I am certainly calmer about Nano this year. The writing may not be as emotionally pumped or caffeine injected. I am less careful about my spelling and grammar, and less inclined to slave over the “right phrasing”.
Jordie – my main character – is still talking to me – which I take as a good sign as I cross over the 17K mark – but she did get the shock of her life today.
I hit the target today – so I am going to simply walk away …. that’s it get up … walk away …. you can stop typing now …. OK … see you tomorrow ….

back on track – day 9

nanowrimo, day 9 It may not be quality writing, but I feel good today after catching up and getting back on track – hence the visual for today.

I exceeded the word count goal of 15,300 – the place I wanted to be this far into the nanowrimo challenge.

My main character is turning into a bit of a psychological mess – not sure how much of the story she is telling me is true (!) but at least she is now clear in my mind and she is drawing in the other characters to tell her story.

searching for a plot – day 6

nanowrimo, day 6 OK … I am 7272 word in – and behind schedule from a word count perspective but it is only now in signing off today that I finally start to feel a germ of a plot developing along the sidelines, and I think it is going to turn what I have written so far completely upside down – but not out the window – 7272 words is 7272 words after all.

Maybe I have taken the phrase “literary abandon” a little too seriously … some common sense should apply – like think about a plot, think about a plot … my Flickr photo for the day sums it up –

getting reacquainted

It is so long since I have walked these corridors. The door hinges were rusty and I forgotten the key to gain entry to the main foyer. However, once recovered from the mossy recesses of my mind, I was greeted by the hollow sound of my footsteps trolling through the hallways. Dust floating on the shafts of light that filter through the grimy window panes. I take a moment to get reacquainted, and now that I am here it is all comes rushing back to me. The late nights I would pour over the keyboard to write some words to share with a passing world, hoping that some accidental tourist may take a moment’s respite to share my story.

I often have dreams about a house – it is a familiar house this dream house, and I am usually wandering through its empty rooms – not necessarily searching for something but more trying to evoke a lost memory, a transient idea, to capture some moment of … comfort. To return to this site is reminiscent of those dreams. Nothing here has changed, but I feel fundamentally changed, and so I have.

My absence here has shadowed a transformation taking place in another world. There has been disintegration and my parting words in Sacrifice was perhaps a premonition of that dark but thankfully temporary journey. I originally wrote that poem – at another time of significant change accompanied with a sense of personal sacrifice.

There has been a conscientious shedding of old habits and from the layers of decay- the timid emergence of a new sense of self discovery. I have shaved off all my hair – and although in doing so raised money for a worthwhile charity, it was a personally symbolic gesture, a mark of transition. I have started drawing and painting again and have attempted subject matters that I would have never contemplated before. I have discovered I can be creative without “my old crutches”. I have finally acknowledged the self abuse I have subjected my body to and now listen to its pleas for healthy food and exercise.

So as much as it is great to be back, I might do some redecorating.

The next challenge – NaBloPoMo

Call it mad – maybe it’s post writing blues, but I signed up to NaBloPoMo today – the goal is to post daily.  At least there is no word target like NaNoWriMo.

Resetting Goals – Day 15

Word Count: 34672

Ok.  I am ahead of my original game plan and it is halfway through the month.  Yesterday I felt fatigue and gave the typing a rest for a good 24 hours.  Actually, for most of the day I found it really hard to get into it.  However I started NaNoWriMo to challenge myself and push a lot of internal boundaries.  So, instead of going hey – I’m ahead you can slow the pace a little, what do I decide to do?

Yep – you’ve got it – I have reset my goals and I want to hit the 50K mark by 21 November.  I realised that the reason why my motivation was flagging was because, I could see that it was very possible to achieve this thing by the end of the month.  My motivation is at its best when I do put internal pressure on myself to go that little bit further than I planned.  It does mean, that I have to step up my average word count – but it’s not that much – an extra 300 words a day more than the current run rate.  That’s only about twice as long as this post – can’t be that hard? or can it?

I’ll keep you posted.  To those who are still in the race – I hope to see you there at the finish line.