That’s National Novel Writing Month to the uninitiated and, long story short, I’ve been thinking of writing something this year.
I found out about it back in late ’07 and while I thought I wanted to write something, I never got around to taking the project seriously. Last year, NaNoWriMo passed me by, without me remembering that it was going on until it was too late to contribute something. To be honest, I just remembered it a few days ago when a buddy of mine brought it to my attention. Now, I’m frantically trying to come up with something to write about.
See, the object of this month long literary event is to encourage aspiring writers of all ages, backgrounds and skill levels to write a 50,000 word novel in 30 days. The way I have it planned out; I’ll have to write some 2,000 words a day every day (excluding Thanksgiving, I figure I’ll want a break around that time) until the end of the month deadline. Whew. That sounds like a great deal of sitting in the glow of my laptop’s screen with a Microsoft Word document open, typing away whilst trying to resist the temptation to aimlessly browse the web, prowl around internet forums, watch reruns of My Wife and Kids or turn on my Xbox 360 to play another round of the upcoming Forza 3 or GTA IV expansion The Ballad of Gay Tony. This will unquestionably be a true test of my willpower.
As I lay in bed last night trying to get to sleep, a torrent of questions flooded my mind, leaving me restless for a while before I was finally able to drift off to sleep. What will I write about? Can I really write 50,000 words before the November 30th deadline? Can I crank out something that’s actually worth reading in such a short period of time? And, perhaps most importantly, do I have the discipline to stick to my writing schedule for 30 straight days?
One of my biggest flaws is that I am a chronic procrastinator. I’m worried that I’ll end up putting this off over and over again until a few hours before midnight on the 30th when I finally decide that I need to get something done but by then it will be too late and the challenge would have passed me by…again. This isn’t something I want to take lightly but I’ve never been able to discipline myself like this before and perhaps that’s because I’ve never had to. I’ve put off even the largest school projects until the last minute (sometimes, even, the day they were due) and still managed to put out “A” quality work. That fact has made me understandably cocky regarding my ability to do anything at the last minute. I guess the difference here is, if I do procrastinate, it won’t be like I’m failing a major assignment, I’ll just be letting myself down.
I haven’t decided whether or not I want to do this. I recognize this as something that could be hugely beneficial to me but recently, I haven’t been in the mood to write. I guess the best remedy for this is to…write. I’ve been trying to get back into the swing of things by writing a few reviews but so far, nothing has really rekindled that creative spark that has been lying dormant for so long. I will say that the idea of working on something for NaNoWriMo has gotten me a bit more excited as of late so maybe all I need to get back into the mood to write is to start writing in the first place.
Whatever I decide, I’ll keep a steady stream of updates coming. If I do decide that I want to participate in this, I’ll probably create a new blog for chronicling my progress on a daily or weekly basis. If I do, I’ll be sure to spam the links everywhere. Who knows? I might even revive my long dead Twitter account to keep folks updated.