Sunday, December 1, 2013

Is it safe to come out yet?



November is over (if you're reading this, you already knew that) and I managed to survive the last few days without pushing myself off the edge of the mountain (again, obvious to anyone reading this).

It took a little creative juggling (meaning a lot) to increase the word count well above the 50,000 mark. After failing NaNoWriMo five years in a row and determined not to make it six, I can honestly say that joining the secret society known as the NaNo Winner's Circle is over-rated and makes absolutely no difference.

Really, anyone with an hour or two per day can easily punch out 50,000 random words on the keyboard over the course of thirty days. So what? Over the course of a twelve month period, I probably average at least that on a monthly basis (I'm not a mathematician, so don't quote me on that).

Sure, it's what I do for a living and it's not necessarily what I want to write, nor does it require a lot of creativity or originality on my part. But that's not my point. Now, before anyone gets the idea that I'm putting down those who made great accomplishments during NaNoWriMo, I'm not.

The idea behind NaNoWriMo ~ to get as many words as possible out onto paper without worrying about corrections ~ is a nice motivational challenge for those who need a jump start or have difficulty getting started (or finished).

The challenge, for me, isn't to spew out as much incoherent gibberish as possible in a short time. I already know I can do that. And my last thirty-or-so thousand words of shazbot proves it. Those last words may as well have been written in Orkan.

'Now that it's out of your head, you have material to go back and revise' ~ or so the theory goes. Not for me. I don't speak Orkan and won't be revisiting, rereading or revising anything from the last few days.

Should I be proud that 'at least I did it'? No.not really. I didn't set out to accomplish the real challenge I set for myself ~ to write fifteen to twenty completed stories ready to compile or send out.

Will I take the NaNo challenge again next year? Maybe. Maybe not. Maybe I won't wait until next year. Maybe I'll pick one week out of every month and come up with a new challenge each month. Or maybe I'll challenge myself as a writer daily.

The point to all this rambling is that I need to challenge myself in order to grow. And one month word count challenge per year isn't going to do that. However, some of the perks offered by the event's sponsors might be useful.

Take this poorly designed banner with horrible graphics for example:


It all boils down to this ~ If you want to be a writer, take it seriously and challenge yourself. It doesn't matter if you succeed or fail at NaNoWriMo. Find what motivates you and sit down and do it.

I'm not Mork from Ork, but I leave you with this ~

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