Pro: I would be likely to get something written; I would have a last gasp chance at not failing GYWO; and if I actually do some prep work in October I might manage to even get a novel out.
Con: I don't need more pressure on myself; November is always busy; doing NaNo would reduce my crochet output (which is already abysmal); I can't really type and don't have a good dictation setup yet so I'd be doing it entirely by ipad, which always makes writing slow.
I want to be a writer; I miss writing. But it's just way too awkward, and I don't know if it's how I want to spend my spoons right now.
(But otoh, if I get plot and characters set up, and break it down into 30 chapters, that's only one chapter per day; easy, right?)
/falls the fuck over/
(And yes, I know I had tomorrow too, but I was SO CLOSE so I just sort of pushed a bit more.)
Dear brain: I don't give a fuck that I cheated. Cheating is normal (see also uncontractions). And I wrote every damn word in that file. Even if it was just whining about my life.
...for some reason all I want to do right now is cry. Also sleep for twelve hours (I had pain issues that kept me up until 3 again last night and I am exhausted as fuck).
Words Written Today: 3,789 (!), mostly blog
Total Words Written: 28,987
WPD to hit 50k by the end of the month: 1911
Words on Project A, aka autobiographical blog: 13,712
Words on Project B, aka Yuletide: 7,874 (includes three completed stories, most of a 4th that is at 3619 words, and parts of three others)
Words of fiction written in all of 2012 to present (excluding this): 8970, over 9 stories
You guys. I have written almost as much pure fiction in the last 19 days as in the previous 3 years combined. And one of the stories I have done for Project B is literally the longest I have ever written for Yuletide (second longest being 2959 words in 2005) and the longest thing of fiction I have written since Jul 2011.
Project C, which makes up the other 7kish of the wordcount, is a little cheatingier since it's not True Writing -- Project A is my own memories but in narrative form, Project B is definitely fic, but C is a catchall category, mostly used for days when I've made insufficient progress (or none at all) on the other two, and it's still Things What I Have Written. (And not even just lyrics to les mis typed out over and over again, which I have considered sometimes.)
It's not a novel. But considering that I've basically been in a writing drought for several years, this is pretty damn impressive output.
I am not displeased.
(Except for the perfectionist part of me that will only be satisfied if I hit 50k, and is grumbling about how it's not actually a novel and so doesn't really count. But that part of me can stfu.)
Let me re-emphasize this: I have *written and finished* two stories in the last three days.
I don't want to jinx anything, but starting with the poem I wrote a week or so ago? Not only has my creativity come back, but I even like what I'm producing. (Which is big, because the last few years, writing anything has been like pulling teeth, squeaked out reluctantly as close to deadline as possible and I've hated the end result.).
I very strongly suspect that this resurgence of creativity is not coincidental to the drug that I'm going off of (with psychdoc approval, don't worry). And if I can get my writing back -- if I can write, and have fun with it, and get stories out in a way that flows and feels good -- it is hella worth the fact that going off said drug is also giving me rebound insomnia.
Which is why I'm posting at 1:30am. Because hi, I'm pretty awake.
I am also having seriously ping-pongy mood swings in the last few days. Bouncing from "yay everything is awesome" to "I am a horrible person and woe and gloom" is ... quite frankly, exhausting. But I guess it's progress over constant copelessness.
It does, though, feel astonishingly vulnerable. Like the miasma of constant depression was somehow an armor or shell or something, and opening up more exposes my squishy innards.
Things I have thought of so far:
a) Just writing words, even if it's the equivalent of morning pages (i.e. whatever, coherent or not)
b) Writing words about a pre-selected prompt (e.g. make a table of words to prompt on, or make an alphabet list of prompts plus four more, or a list of random stuff that I use a random number generator on, or prompts from various *_bingo things, or something), but not necessarily a story
c) Write thirty separate story snippets about pre-selected or randomised prompts
d) Write thirty connected story snippets (which is sort of like a very disorganized novel?) about etc.
e) Write about myself, my life, my medical adventures, etc. I don't know whether I can remember enough to make 50k words but whatever.
f) Try for actual authentic NaNo experience, i.e. writing a novel, which is likely to fail so hard but would be legit
I also can't decide whether, for options other than e, to do fanfic or origfic or some mixture of both.
Between birthdayings and cattings, I am only at 2k words, but still chugging along. The birthday stuff always throws a dent in my early momentum (the cat stuff was NOT expected and didn't help at all) so it's not unusual for me to be behind at this point.
(writing goals are really hard for me to set. If I do a "must write every day", then I beat myself up for days that I am not able to write at all, which always happens, especially since I have to go to bed when my aide person gets here at night so can't just decide to stay up for long enough to do a sentence. If I do a "must average out to a ridiculously high number of words per day", which is sort of what NaNo is, then I beat myself up if I get significantly behind. If I do a "must average out to a ridiculously small number of words per day", then it doesn't feel like achieving anything because one day of writing gets me that goal. bah. brains are annoying sometimes :) )
I have run out of story for my nano thing. I just feel utterly drained, like I've gone dry. I know creativity isn't supposed to work that way, it's something that you get more of the more you use it, but -- not right now. I am out of spoons and out of words and out of ideas and I just ... I can't go farther. I *can't*.
(if I had another week, I could take a day or two off as creative break and then work on some other story. but I don't.)
So. Final word count for this year's nano is 40k. (well, 40,305, technically.)
And I know I could artificially inflate the word count so I could get a shiny winner's badge because 40k is a hell of a lot more than I thought I would get, but I am cheating enough as it is (a lot of the words in the file are not really story) and I don't want to cheat more.
And I can't write.
So 40k it is.
And WoW was very very tempting.
And I have books to read.
And so I was waffling. Waffle waffle waffle. Wiffle whuffle.
...and then chat was talking about temperatures, so I went to my iGoogle page to see what temp it was here. (it is 12C warmer here than some of the there places.) And my iGoogle page happens to include a horoscope widget. And today's horoscope says, and I quote:
Your energy is intense today, prompting you to concentrate on basic survival issues. But simultaneously, a wave of hope is washing onto your shore, making your goals appear closer than before. Don't quit now, for hitching yourself to your dreams can make a huge difference in the days ahead.
Okay then. XD
the rest of me is too busy being happy to pay the paranoid side any mind. *grins*
ETA: So it turns out that if a) it is late enough that I am a bit sleepy, or b) I have a bit of something in the way of alcohol, or c) both, I am able to write at approximately 1k words per half hour.
Or, as I typed into my nano novel (yes it does have little discourses like this; you don't think I wrote 35k words in a month just writing story, did you?) --
On the bright side, I was right about my writing speed. (1041 in half an hour, with an hour left until midnight.)
On the less bright side, I am running out of things to say and also I am running out of brain because I maybe had a bit of wine and it is maybe making me sleepy. So I don't know how long I can last.
Woe is me, etc.
Right, back to the dragon.
Things I am not allowed to do to boost NaNo wordcount:
1) Rename my protagonist to give him a full name that has about twenty words in it. And use that name any time I refer to him.
2) Ditto any of the other characters.
3) Changing the name of the country back to "totally not Valdemar", and of the main city back to "the capitol of totally not Valdemar".
4) copying and pasting. Or quoting other things. Like the lyrics to the Beauty and the Beast soundtrack that is running through my head argh.
Current word count is a bit under 35k. With five days left in the month, that's doable, right? I mean, all I have to do is write 3k words a day.
...yeah, guess how many I've written so far today.
It's a nice round number. That's about all it has going for it.
I meant to write! I really did. But it hasn't happened. (Yet. I won't let myself go to bed without getting *something*. It just won't be the 3k that I need.)
And yes, I know that what I have now is 35k words than I had at the beginning of the month, and I should be able to see this as a good thing, but ... I can only think, I could have done better. I should have done better. It's partly "do or do not, there is no try" nonlogic and partly "what matters is that you try your best" nonlogic and partly me having ridiculous expectations for myself. I didn't give it my best effort (obviously; I would have succeeded otherwise) and therefore I am cranky with myself for half-assed-effort-ness. Crankier than I would have been if I hadn't tried at all.
(I can't differentiate, it seems, between ridiculous expectations and any expectations at all. It's like there is a binary of "do impossible things // fail utterly" with no middle ground. This only applies to myself, of course, not other people. Double standards are fun.)
I have, as of last night, hit 30k words.
This is a good thing. I am willing to admit that. However, a) I hate the story like burning, b) I have run out of plot and words, and c) there is no way I can write 20k in the next week anyway.
So I am trying to figure out what to do.
What should I do with nano?
Declare 30k a victory and stop
Push on for 50k (and probably fail)
Start some other writing project and hope for 20k words, even though that is against the purpose of nano
something else is:
needs more sugar
needs more rum
needs November to have 40 days
does not like itself very much
I feel like I ought to be able to do another writing session, but I also feel writinged out for today. Which is ... very pathetic given what little I accomplished and how much time I actually spent putting down words (probably two hours, all put together). If I'd written 10k, yeah, I could see being worded out.
Then again, if I'd written 10k I would be caught up :P
(Total word count as of now: 26,222, or 52% of the way there. Sigh. What I did today is only *slightly* above the average I need to get for the rest of the month.)
I am amused at the story. As I said in #yuletide: the fact that my novel has gone from "unicorns that are totally not Companions" to "unicorns vs zombies" to "unicorns vs zombies and also unicorns vs evil murlocs" to "also a dragon" to "unicorns vs zombies plus unicorns vs evil murlocs plus zombies vs evil murlocs plus evil murlocs using plants as defense (hence plants vs zombies) plus unicorns vs dragons plus unicorns and dragons vs zombies omgwtfflail" is ... interesting.
(I have long since given up thinking this will eventually turn into a saleable novel. which is for the good because I have enough writing blockages as it is; adding "but this will not appeal to agents or editors or the buying public D:" does not help.)
(2223 words for today. whee.)
Of course, it also leads to predictably unpredictable wackiness in typing:
[23:13] * isa|nano is now known as nanio
[23:13] <@nanio> nts: another is not spelt "anothir"
[23:14] <@spoke> it's nano, who cares about spelling? ;)
[23:14] <@nanio> given that I let "naother" pass, not me >_>
[23:15] * @spoke huggles
[23:15] <@spoke> it'll be okay, you can fix after nano!
[23:15] <@nanio> so much to be fixed after nano omg
[23:15] <@nanio> I sort of gave up on linear storytelling a long time ago
[23:16] <@nanio> also, ...............
[23:16] <@nanio> dude.
[23:16] <@nanio> nanio?
[23:16] <@nanio> wtf?
[23:16] * nanio is now known as isa|nano
[23:16] <@spoke> i wondered about that
[23:16] <@spoke> but put it down to nano-induced crazies
[23:18] <@isa|nano> nano-induced crazies is a good excuse]
[23:18] <@ryuutchi> True.
[23:18] <@isa|nano> rum is also a good excuse
[23:18] <@ryuutchi> Mmm, alcohol.
[23:20] <@isa|nano> alcohol is a good nano ... thingum
[23:20] <@isa|nano> uh
[23:20] <@isa|nano> survival
[23:20] <@isa|nano> strategy
[23:20] <@isa|nano> thingum
I have two days in which to write 3800 words. Yay? I mean, if I'd been sensible and harnessed the power of coffee earlier today, I possibly could have churned out that much today. (Maybe. If my body cooperated. Shoulder is cranky, probably from typing too much.) But no, I had to be a good daughter and give my mom some time (er, and get pumpkin pancakes -- I'm not THAT altruistic ;D ) and put off the nanoings until the coffee wore off.
The iPad is sitting next to me taunting me with its shiny newness. Also its Plants vs Zombies ness (it's research? between that and robot umnicorn attack) and the books oh dear the books. So many yummy things to read! I should not read anything during NaNo because it will make me sadface at my own stuff, but it is hard to resist. I have promised myself a night of yummy reading in bed once I hit twenty thousand words. You'd think that would be an incentive to write ... but it's not. Because I am INSANE.
(also because apparently my brain thinks that if it sulks long enough and refuses to cooperate, I will turn to the iPad out of sheer desperation for something to do. Just one more level / just one more chapter ... and then it will be time for bed and I will have accomplished pretty much nothing.)
This is really more of a blog post. Why am I counting it as NaNo words? Mrrr.
...yeah. No comment.
ETA: The 3800 in two days thing is to get me hitting 20k by the middle of the month. it is unlikely, but 8800 for 25k is even farther.
And for those who are bored of nano talk, WoW update: have Kalimdor loremaster, got Nagrand finished up, and am 11 quests away from BEM (fucking ogres and their fucking *shards* omgwtf), and then I shall have only Netherstorm to deal with.
And for those who are bored of nano and wow talk? I am officially signed up for Yuletide \o/
And for those who are bored of nano, wow, and yuletide? ...er, I got nothing, sorry. *is pathetic*
Most of the rest of the time, I am flailing because of one or more of the following: a) I am behind on overall wordcount; b) I am behind on that day's wordcount (I have not gotten anything decent in terms of daily count since the 3k+ on the 6th, generally not getting to even 1k); c) I don't know where the story's going; d) I am not trying hard enough; e) I keep getting distracted with other things, like iPads and WoWs and ebzs and yulechats and ravelrys and staring at ceilings and talking with roommates and ... lots of stuff.
d and e are the worst, I think. It doesn't help that I was brought up with the mantra of The Most Important Thing Is That You Try Your Hardest (which is, as it turns out, a really bad thing to instill in a perfectionist, especially a lazy perfectionist); the rational part of me knows that it is impossible to put 110% of effort into everything all the time, but rational has nothing to do with it. I was also raised with the mantra of Work Now, Play After (applicable to both homework/room-cleaning before playing/reading/etc and to proper food before dessert), which makes it really hard for me to justify to myself things like taking funbreaks before I have my wordcount for the day. I also have a trained instinct to shift goalposts ("you can have a reward at 15k total words. *hits 15k* but 1k for today isn't that much farther, you can push a little more can't you?"), which is bad form.
(of course, the sanest choice for nano is not even trying to do it, but never mind that.)
The good news is that I'm likely to hit 15k soon.
On the bright side, judging by the latest pep talk, a week two slump is sort of normal. So maybe it will get better? Or maybe I will end up only getting 30k words instead of 50, idk.