Guys, I have neglected my blog, Twitter, Facebook and almost everything else for the last few weeks. Thanks for hanging around :)
November was a tough month this year. First ever migraine, some panic issues, four days off from my day job due to another illness. Overall, I lost about nine or ten days of writing time to various illnesses and ailments.
Last night, while in Writer Friend's living room, I crossed the 50k finishing line. There are rumours that I may have done a happy dance in the kitchen while Writer Friend continued to type frantically in the other room, but so far these remain unconfirmed.
I learned a lot this month. I learned that, when you fall behind with a goal, there's no sense in deciding all is lost and abandoning it. I wanted to do that very badly when I found myself almost 6k behind target. But I figured I would feel worse if I gave up (I'm an ML, and Nano HQ ask us to try very hard to win to keep our region's Wrimos motivated).
Every time I thought about that almost-6k deficit, it felt insurmountable. There was no way I could make that up. Instead, I focused on making up as much as I could. Some days I just wrote my bare minimum target (1667 per day) and made sure I didn't increase the deficit. Other days, I managed to bash out an additional thousand words. Other days it was an additional 500 words. Slowly, the deficit got smaller.
I'm reminded of W. C. Fields's wonderful line - 'If it first you don't succeed, try, try and try again. Then quit. There's no point being a damned fool about it.'
Sometimes you do just have to give up, when something is genuinely impossible. Sometimes, it's worth hanging on and chipping away.
I'm not finished writing this book yet - I think there is about a month of work left in it, so I'm hoping, with luck, to finish the first draft by Christmas. We all know that writing a book is a long journey. Taking the first steps this November was tough, but ultimately it's been very rewarding.
Also, I had celebratory chocolate. And tonight there will be celebratory dinner. Any excuse :p
So how have you guys been while I've been flicking between Nanowrimo.org, WriteOrDie.com and OpenOffice? Any news? What did I miss? :)