Seven Days

So, the first week of NaNoWriMo has come and gone. I started on the 4th of November and have decided that next year I’m definitively NOT kicking off late again. I feel as if I’m in this constant race behind the others. None the less, I’ve clocked about 7000 words in four days which isn’t bad. If I had started on time, I might actually be on target.

But, I didn’t and I somehow, someway need to survive it.
I’ve discovered on this journey a few invaluable things that gets me through this period and I thought that I’d share a few:

  1. The Forums – I love reading about people’s progress and again, I’ve discovered that knowing that there are people in my town doing the same thing as I do, really helps take away that edge of loneliness that I sometimes feel whilst writing. Or, loneliness isn’t the right word exactly. Rather, the sense of isolation that carrying my own world inside my head brings. Make no mistake, I love it. But, I also love knowing that there are a few people out there who also likes it.
  2. Ricoffi and Rusks – For those of you who don’t know – Ricoffi is a brand of Coffee we have here in South Africa and Rusks is a truly South African… dish? Delicacy? Way of life? Here’s a link to explain what it is. That would be better than explaining: Ouma Rusks – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

    I honestly don’t know how the rest of the world can survive this monsterous task without it. Ricoffi is the best brand of coffee (according to me…) in the world and rusks are just invaluable to fill up that empty hole of something that you crave when you’re typing. And, if they are my recipe, they aren’t even that fattening…
  3. Comfortable room – Chaos. Pens lying around everywhere. Clothes from work. Unmade bed and shoes cluttering up everywhere. My definition of paradise. At the end of the day. I love my room and it’s ambience makes it easy for me to write in.
  4. My Roof Fan – Summer. South Africa. Heat. The fan helps.
  5. My Horse – a good distraction to take my mind off of the rising or rather falling word count vs. target scedual that I have.
  6. My Partner – Who deserves a lot more than I can give for understanding that sometimes, I need to be on my own to do something that seems entirely pointless to the rest of the world. I can’t describe my love and respect for this person.
  7. Procrastination – yes, it deserves a mention. I mean, here I am – blogging when I should be writing.

Bad Alyss, bad…

5 thoughts on “Seven Days

  1. cherylangst November 7, 2009 / 10:36 pm

    Hi Alyss,

    I too am crazy enough to sign up for NaNoWriMo. I have been writing every night, and while I have the advantage of having registered on time, I suffered from a painful inability to separate myself from my inner editor.

    The first night I wrote, I managed 187 words. The next night was marginally better at 423 words, but I knew at that rate I’d still be writing in February. Since then I have done a half decent job of silencing her (I stuffed her in a closet with Hallowe’en candy and a movie), but she still threatens to pop back in and pull my writing off track.

    I wish you the best of luck on the NaNoWriMo journey, and if you ever need to commiserate, feel free to pop by my blog!


    PS Procrastination is a healthy part of the writing process… really. That’s my story and I’m sticking to it. 😉

    • Alyssa November 8, 2009 / 12:12 am

      Hey there Cheryl!
      So, where are you now? Word wise?
      I think I’m lucky in that sense because i’m use to working with a Beta Reader, I don’t have such a big need to edit. Things will be edited… Later and not by me. It helps getting the words out.
      lol, yes. I think you’re right about Procrastination!
      Have a great day!

  2. blackmax1 November 7, 2009 / 11:27 pm

    My writing world revolves around pretzels and port in a second floor room in the rather cooler climes of Mississauga, but I can relate. As to your 7th point, I’d like to comment by way of an excerpt from Betsy Warland’s new book, SUSTAINING YOURSELF AS A WRITER, (due out in early 2010):

    “…During these not-writing phases, I jot down notes, do additional research, pay attention to my dreams and reoccurring images, words and surprising synchronicities. I eavesdrop, read, watch, attend whatever feeds my relationship to the narrative and consider structural alternatives while standing in a line-up.

    “When we are approaching the threshold back into our narrative, various kinds of meditative movements and simple repetitive activities — like sweeping or taking a walk — assist us to cross over the threshold with more ease. Not infrequently, this approaching the threshold time can appear to be procrastination. Undoubtedly, sometimes it is! But more often, I believe it is not. Yes, it may appear to be avoidance or aimlessness, but always assess if this is, in fact, the case, for crucial preparatory time may be undermined by your harsh, misguided self-criticism. It is as important for us to protect this kind of time as it is to protect our writing time.”

    • Alyssa November 8, 2009 / 12:10 am

      Hi! 🙂 Thank you for commenting!
      I envy the cooler climates. I’m not fond of the heat, but alas, nothing much that I can do about it.
      Good luck with your writing!!

  3. Amanda November 8, 2009 / 8:58 am

    Lol, I thought I wasn’t fond of the heat, but then I spent a year in Canada and realized that its goodness loads better than a minus 30 windchill and you gotta walk to work. 😛

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