A head start is important during the month of November when it comes to National Novel Writing Month. Getting as much written in the first few days is vital. For most people, there will come a time during the challenge where you will slow down. You’ll hit a dead zone where nothing comes to you. It will feel like you have forgotten how to write or think. You’ll feel like your brains have turned into mush and you might as well be a freaking zombie for all the creative thoughts happening in your head.
Or maybe not. Not everybody who participates in NaNoWriMo, or any writing project for that matter, experiences such hardships. Lucky you. (I hate you!-Just teasing. Or am I?)
For the rest of us, that strong start is all about quantity. Yeah, it’s always good to have quality in your work in progress but it’s terribly important that you remember to get the words down. You can work with crap. You can’t do anything with no crap. Does that make sense? Put your inner editor to the side. Don’t worry about getting everything absolutely perfect. The whole point of this challenge is to let your creative side work without all the pit stops that come with the editing process. You AREN”T SUPPOSED TO EDIT RIGHT NOW. The only job you have is to craft that super-awesome-spectacular FIRST DRAFT from start to finish.
Whether you are doing the NaNoWriMo challenge or writing on your own timetable, that is the most important thing. Get it out of your head and onto the paper/screen. Okay? You are totally allowed to suck right now. Nobody should be reading your work in progress right now anyway. DON”T LET ANYONE READ YOUR WIP WHILE YOU ARE WRITING IT. You hear me? DON”T. And I am totally yelling that at you.
Letting people into the secret world of first draft writing before it’s completed allows bad things into your life. The second someone you care about reads anything and makes one single remark can and will prop doubt into your head and from there you will be totally screwed. I’m only warning you of this once. Of course, you’ll go and ignore my warning, do the exact opposite and then BAM…there’s the lesson. You learned it.
Anyway, getting back to the true topic: Head starts. Get as many words as you can right now. It will most likely be your saving grace when your boss tells you to pick up double shifts, when your family tells you they are coming three days early for the holidays, or whatever else life brings to your plate. We are writers, yes, but we are people first. And with that role comes busyness. All the hustle and bustle of life, Murphy’s Law, and all that good stuff. (good?)
So, that’s all I have to say today. It’s day two of the challenge and I’m blown away by how awesome the creativity is flowing through me. I truly should apply myself like this more often. I hope you are having a great first couple days. If you aren’t, that’s completely okay. Stick with it. Write wordmonkeys. Write on!