Yesterday was the kickoff of NaNoWriMo 2017, and true to form, I did my level best for the majority of the day to pretend it didn’t exist. That familiar paralyzing fear crept up my spine at the thought of opening Novlr to start writing, but I finally forced myself on my lunch break at work, and found that it wasn’t nearly as hard to get started as I was psyching it up to be. I resumed writing when I got home from work, with a nature documentary on for background noise. Nothing’s more inspirational than watching two polar bears battle to the death over who gets to mate that year.
In total, I ended up writing just shy of 1,400 words for my first day. A little below the projected 1,600 that that NaNo site says I need to hit 50k by Nov. 30, but I am confident there’ll be days when I write 3x the amount needed. My mini-goal yesterday was to finish Chapter 1 and not get caught up in the desire to constantly edit as I worked. I reminded myself that I can come back and edit later, that the focus for this month is getting words on the page. And it worked! I enjoy the feature on Novlr that allows you to highlight sections of text and add a comment. I used it to input reminders to research something more, add extra details later, or simply to indicate what is background information that may get scrapped entirely down the road.
I know from my professional work that when it comes to hitting deadlines, it’s a matter of pushing through — through the fear, through the distractions, through the parts that don’t quite make sense. I have to keep reminding myself that this is what I do, and I am good at it. I regularly produce 5,000-10,000 words a week between work and journaling. There’s no reason why I can’t put the same amount of effort and purpose into fiction.
Hopefully everyone else had a lovely kickoff for their NaNo. It’s only Day 2, so if you haven’t quite gotten started, you still have buttloads of time. I’ll be posting these updates at least once a week, probably on Thursdays, to keep track of where I’m at and pep talk myself and anyone who’s reading.