NaNoWriMo: Day 22

I find myself in an impossible situation. The word count deficit is so high I’m afraid it will tip over and swallow me in an avalanche of imaginary adjectives and commas. Everyone knows imaginary words hurt more than those written and I have little tolerance for pain. And I can’t numb myself with alcohol because I’ve given up hangovers for Thanksgiving.

Most importantly, I’m pretty certain that the 50,000 word novel I’m supposed to  I will have finished on December 1 at midnight will not make any sense to human beings. Zombies on the other hand are going to identify with the completely vacant plot and dead characters.

At least I found my niche.

To celebrate, I’ve created a fantastic playlist to torture myself to as NaNoWriMo winds down. It’s likely to be the most interesting project I produced all month.

  1. “Mundo Bizarro,” by Electro Dub Tango
  2. “Dance Me to the End of Love,” by Madeleine Peyroux
  3. “Always Like This,” by Bombay Bicycle Club
  4. “Sloop John B,” by The Beach Boys
  5. “Time of the Season,” by The Zombies
  6. “Hide and Seek,” By Imogen Heap
  7. “Lost In My Mind,” The Head and the Heart
  8. “Walk on the Wild Side,” Lou Reed
  9. “BomBom,” by Macklemore & Ryan Lewis
  10. “American Nomad,” by The Apache Relay
  11. “Asleep,” by The Smiths
  12. “Time of No Reply,” by Nick Drake
  13. “The Fall,” by Rhye
  14. “Bones,” by MS MR
  15. “Vapour Trail,” by Ride
  16. “Slow and Steady,” by Of Monsters and Men
  17. “Blackbird,” by Paul McCartney
  18. “Biting Down,” by Lorde
  19. “Sparkly,” by Young Magic
  20. “Nothing Matters,” by Tricky

You can find the playlist on Spotify under the name “Twilighting.” Not because I have an affinity for Mormon vampires, but as a result of the time of night/morning it gets played to keep me company as I write.

NaNoWriMo: Day 15

Today is the fifteenth day of the torture that is NaNoWriMo. According to my calendar, I should’ve been 22,000 words into my novel. According to NaNo’s schedule, I should have been 25,000 words deep. According to reality, I’m just over 7,000 words – exactly where I needed to be on day four. Gag.

It’s hard to believe, from a mathematical point of view, that I have written every day. But it’s true. It’s just that some days only 200 words drip out of me, while other days 2,000 words pour onto the screen like green puke from Linda Blair’s mouth. And that’s precisely the problem. The 2,000-word-barfathon is something I can’t help but clean up the next day, which dramatically cuts down my word count after I mop everything up.

For those unfamiliar with the philosophy of NaNo, you’re supposed to avoid editing until December. Until then, you’re supposed to get it all out of your system as quickly as possible, à la “Bridesmaids.”

This is the part that I find most daunting. It’s not so much about the word count, but the fact that I can’t clean up the words, which are undoubtedly all wrong.

This problem of not being able to go back and edit also defies logic, as I’m really good at ignoring other messes, like dirty dishes, the laundry pile, blog posts, and the dust bunnies under the couch. But not editing what I wrote. Nope. Can’t ignore that.

Twice before, at this exact point of the marathon, I suffered a faux breakdown after reading what I wrote and declared that only 75 words were useful. I then convinced myself that what I needed was a break. And that this miraculous mental regrouping would inspire me to suddenly sit down and produce 50,000 words in one seating. But, from two previous failed attempts, I know that I never really recover from the respite.

This time I’m determined to finish. I don’t know if it’s because I’m older or I’m stubborn or I’m secretly liking my silly novel. What I do know is that I have to hurl 20,000 words this weekend, without looking back once to check on syntax, spelling or Oxford Commas. It’s going to be a Vampire Weekend in more ways the one:

NaNoWriMo: Day One

Today is the first day of my third attempt to write, draft, compose, spew, and crank out a 50,000-word novel in 30 days. The total word count for the day is 1,549 – that means I just have 48,451 words to go.

It’s not too late for you to join in on the madness. Visit NaNoWriMo.org for more on National Novel Writing Month. If you are already writing, add me as your writing buddy so you can feel good about yourself when I poop out half way through.

By my next NaNoWriMo update (Day Seven) I plan to have surpassed the 10,000 word mark. But in case I give up before the goal, I’ll leave you with this: