Thursday, November 09, 2006

No Mo NaNo?

Y'all may be sick of NaNoWriMo. I know I am. I'm interested in my writing process but not my novel. I'm suddenly feeling an urge to clean my house. I seriously considered signing up for this. (<--How cool is that? Thanks St. Ann!) I've been tempted to Christmas shop. And decorate. Which should convince you to search behind my house for the pod because I hate Christmas decorations - even at Christmas. So. What to do? I was pretty sure I was going to give up on NaNo. Let the real writers continue on without me. And then this email (or part of it anyway) from the head dude at NaNo:

But this email is not for those doing exceptionally well. It's for the rest of us---authors with underdeveloped word counts, overdeveloped novel-guilt complexes, and sensational procrastinating abilities. Because we are the ones who are going to begin having serious misgivings about this whole escapade in the next seven days.


Because it turns out we are too busy to do this.

Or because a crisis has brought some novel-eating turmoil into our lives.

Or because our stories are really, really bad, and we're wondering why we're sacrificing so much of our time to produce a consistently crappy book.

It all adds up to the fabled Week Two Wall---a low-point of energy, enthusiasm, and joie de novel that strikes most NaNoWriMo participants between days 7 and 14. This is when our inner editors, who largely turned a blind eye to our novel flailings in Week One, return to see how things are going. And their assessments are never kind.

The plot is draggy. The characters are boring. The dialogue is pointless, and the prose has all the panache of something dashed off by a distracted kindergartner.

If you're feeling any of these things---or find yourself starting to feel them this week---know that nothing is wrong. In fact, you're likely on track for a great NaNoWriMo. Just lower your head, pick up your pace, and write straight into the maw of your misgivings. If you are thinking about quitting, DO NOT DO IT IN WEEK TWO.

If you have to quit, do it in Week Three.

I'm serious.

Gah. Now I CAN'T quit! It's just a wall. If I stick in there I'll get something amazing out of this process!, well the Municipal Liason promised me a temporary tattoo. I don't know. I'll have to see when I get past this wall. So. Even though I thought seriously about killing my main character yesterday, I will give her a one week reprieve. She sure better do something interesting this week. If not, then it won't matter how on target Mr. Head of NaNo's letter is next week, she'll get the axe.

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