Monday, November 11, 2013

NaNo Flip Days 9, 10 & 11 - What Kind of Writer Are You?

Saturday, Sunday and Monday - three days when I should have been posting a blog for two of them and, quite obviously, didn't. That's the kind of thing that can happen to me during November's NaNoWriMo focus and, as guilty as I may feel about not keeping up with my blog, everything is subservient to the All Mighty Word Count.

Don't care about your word count during November? No problem. NaNoWriMo
and the focus on word count number isn't the answer for every author. 

I know that authors seem to divide into two distinct camps with a bit of grey area in the intersection when it comes to NaNoWriMo. (1) There are those writers who are fabulous authors but who look at the necessity of writing "X" number of words every day as churning out 'drek'. That isn't necessarily an inaccurate assessment of what I probably will come out with at the end of the month. But is that all bad?

Sometimes a bit of Yiddish expresses a point so much better
than English, Spanish or even German. 

I am a member of the second main category of authors:  (2) Those who push to meet or exceed the word count, knowing that there will be 'drek' in the words, but also knowing that there will be something that will be well worth saving, something that will make a good story, novella or novel by the end of the editing process. It's writing quantity with the sure knowledge that the quality is there, even though it may be hidden by effluvia at the time of the initial writing. It's jumping onto the bareback horse and clinging on for the ride of your life, trying to not get thrown off, but rather to ride through the bucking and twisting until the horse quiets beneath you and the two of you become one.

Are you sitting on the sidelines or are you cheering others on. There are no
losers in NaNoWriMo, only winners if writers write. One hundred words or
one-hundred-thousand words, writers win in November.

There is a third writer, equally important and worthy of acknowledgment. This writer is (3), the writer who wants to participate in the structure of writing each day, but doesn't want to set a word count goal, or wants to set a goal less than the 50,000 word goal that qualifies as a 'winner' in a NaNoWriMo construct.  These writers deserve as many accolades and as much encouragement as those who are writing their daily 1667 words. They choose to not participate in NaNoWriMo, but they still produce wonderful works of the written word.

A public declaration can sometimes make the difference between
success and failure. 

So why bother with NaNoWriMo if all writers are worthy of respect, accolades, encouragement and honor for writing those words that they tempt us with? I liken it to a public declaration of quitting smoking, losing weight, or other instances wherein a person either establishes a habit or tries to break a bad one. That aspect of a public declaration can make or break a person's resolve, and often the spoken words are the small thing that makes a large difference.

There is no time like the present to sit down and write. 

So as I get ready to pass the half-way point with my word count tomorrow morning, I'm comfortable with my story, my characters, and my theme, although I already see ways that it is changing and mutating, even from the first half of the novel that I wrote last year. How the two pieces will fit together, whether it will actually be a story of two time periods, two characters deeply divided, and the single area of commonality between them, or whether the story will fall apart, splitting down the middle doesn't matter right now. What matters is letting the characters tell their story. Once it is told and written down, then I can revise and revise and revise again.

At the end of it all, I hope I'll have something wonderful sitting in front of me. In the meantime, I'm enjoying the ride, steep, slippery slope and all. I hope that all of you who fit into one of the categories I have described above, (or if you have a category that I haven't detailed), are having an equally fun time. I'm loving this!

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