I’m off to a boomer of a start with NaNoWriMo, and I’ve totally surprised myself. Day three and I’ve already written 9277 words! How on earth did that happen???
Well, one reason for my unusually speedy output is the sheer fun and excitement of being part of this mass, seat-of-the-pants, outpouring of words. Knowing that everywhere around the world there are writers, just like me, tapping and scribbling like lunatics, is actually quite inspiring.
Another reason is that I decided to go at NaNo hard and fast and get as many words in the bank, as quickly as I could, to compensate for the four, maybe five, days I won’t have a chance to write a word. And yet another reason is that like Claire, I used the week before NaNo to plan and outline the scenes I want to write (actually, scratch that comparison, my planning looks quite pathetic compared to the uber-organised Miss Claire G!) This has really worked for me – I like to see where I’m going before I start the actual writing.
But I’ve realised my output is also down to me not doing certain things, in order to gain more writing time. I made a list of these things today, these “sacrifices” ... some of them are good, and make sense; some of them are nuts; and I wonder … what is everyone else not doing for Nano?
Here’s my list:-
I’m loving this particular “sacrifice”. I usually hit the gym five days a week. Not because I’m some kind of health freak, but because it’s what I need to do to keep my nasty, evil, painful back problem under control. But I figure that for one month I can drop those five visits a week down to three, giving me an extra two hours a week … that’s an extra eight hours for NaNo writing!
I’m not a big TV watcher at the best of times, so this really isn’t such a sacrifice, either. But I occasionally do find myself channel surfing of a night time, watching complete drivel because I can’t bring myself to do anything more productive. But no longer. In November, if I find myself slack-jawed and drooling in front of the TV after 10pm, I am going to write … or at least drag my butt off to bed so I wake up fresh and ready to write the next morning. Which leads to my next sacrifice …
No 7am Wakeup
This sacrifice actually does suck. If I get up at 7am during the week I can – usually - manage to get me and the tribe out of the door by the deadline of 7.45am. But these last few days of NaNo I’ve been getting up at 6am. Ouch. But getting those first words of the day on the page bright and early has proven to be a great kick-start for me, each day. When I return home to write later in the morning I sit down to words already on the page, a scene already evolving, and it’s much easier to slip into (and I procrastinate much less) than if I have to start cold.
And on to the slightly nuts …
Ah, if only female baldness was fashionable, I would be in like Flynn because I LOATHE hair maintenance and how long it takes. Now, washing I’m good with (hygiene and not smelling like a bag lady are important) but the product application and the blow drying and the hairspraying I could well live without (hey, my hair is long and thick and it takes AGES to blow dry … well, OK, ten minutes, but still.) So for November, I’m on a hair-strike; I'm not doing my do. Wet hair, slicked back in a ponytail, will be my look for NaNo. You may laugh (and I can hear you already) but ten minutes saved every day of November equates to five hours for the month! Five extra hours to write and no hair hassles = big win!
So tell me, what are you not doing for NaNo? I feel I could not be doing so much more; I need ideas, people!