So here’s the truth: NaNo, Day One was extraordinarily successful in this neck of the proverbial woods. I do not say this to boast; I say this because I am kind of in shock.
I happened to be up at midnight last night, and thought I might as well write a few lines. Getting hyped for the start in the last few days, I’ve had some things in mind that I committed to e-paper in the loosest terms possible, as not to break the rules. In the time I had before summoned by a sleepy, but awake child, I managed 455 words. A nice start, I thought.
I slept some and after taking the car in for service, made it to a library nearby for a regional Kick-Off party. One relatively young guy was doing NaNo for the twelfth time! Another had a typewriter. Another two were writing by hand.
We had a couple of word sprints—fifteen minutes in which everyone writes as much as possible. Any time I’m writing this month, it’s going to be writing as much as possible! After winning the first one (the only sprint I will ever win), I kept my headphones on and continued to pump out stuff that wasn’t total drivel . . . I don’t think.
Contrary to my plan, I ended up starting the novel over at the beginning, and I’m glad I did. I’ve written the start so many times, it was good to have a fresh take at it, without trying to manipulate something I’d written previously. There’s still a huge deal of editing to tackle later, but I’m into the story faster than I have been on previous drafts, and I can see where the next few days of writing, at least, might be going.
I ended up leaving the library because I was feeling more productive than social. I reconvened at a Panera for about an hour, before heading back home. I may try a “Write In” next weekend, which is a quiet work session. It was fun to be with people embarking on the same challenge. I heard both the success stories of years past and, for others, the couple of years it took to finally win.
NaNo is a beautiful thing in this sense. It gets people writing, it builds community, it encourages us to tell our stories, whatever they may be. As long as it doesn’t make me totally nuts over the next four weeks, I’m glad I’m doing it.
Oh, and my word count today? 5,159. Okay, two words were my name. One was “by.” And four were the title. But still, pretty good, I think. We’ll see what the rest of the week brings.