Saturday, November 16, 2013

Nano at the Midpoint

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Heidy-ho, all!

So yesterday was the halfway point of this year’s Nano, and uh… well…

The kid ain’t lookin so good.

I started off strong, clocking 6,859 words the first weekend. Motivated, excited, and well-paced to follow the Reverse Nano word count guide and have but one word to write on November 30th.

Over the next week, I added another 13k to that total, though in less spectacular fashion.

Then life caught up with me.

My four-year-old caught a random flu-like virus complete with fever, listlessness, congestion… really fun stuff. Then in her innocent generosity, she shared her bounty with me, and I was felled four days.

Then after recovering from that bout of illness, I proceeded to make myself sick not once but twice, doing two things on separate occasions known to give me debilitating migraines:

Reading while riding in a car or on a bus.

Eating chocolate.

On the first offense, I blame the fabulous Twilight fanfiction writers I know and follow, with an honorable mention to the many poignant and hilarious articles, images, and other goodies my friends constantly post on Facebook.

With all this writing, a girl’s gotta refuel, right?

Image Courtesy of savit keawtavee /

And on the second offense, they were pumpkin chocolate chip muffins. Yes, chocolate, like anything containing caffeine, usually gives me some form of migraine. And yes, I’d been flirting with danger with my chocolate chip granola bars and occasional cookie.

But again I say… pumpkin chocolate chip muffins.

I managed to avoid the vanilla-frosted chocolate cupcakes, but I'm only human.

Those were Monday and Wednesday’s offenses. Somehow I did eke out a little more than 1,000 words before the first infraction, bringing my grand total to 21,629 with exactly two weeks to go.

I know successful writers write in all seasons, in spite of all reasons to otherwise. And I can write through certain issues--clingy kids, crankiness, eye-crossing sleepiness. But flu and migraine draw the line for me. Even now, my head poundeth, inciting me to vow never to so much as use cocoa butter ever again.

But Nano must go on. And will.

So despite being behind in the count, I am not discouraged, believing I can somehow summon the additional 30,000 words needed to win this contest, most of which I’ll likely keep.

(And that little truth is the greatest difference between this Nano and the first, making the writing more satisfying yet difficult. But I’ll save the comparisons for my Nano wrap-up December 1st.)

To finish on time, I’ll need a daily word count of about 2,150, manageable even on a work-week day. But with a quiet Saturday stretching out in front of me, I aim to double that and pass the 25k-mark by day’s end.

Lingering headache permitting.

Any other Nanoers out there? How are you holding up at the midpoint? Any tips or tricks to share? I’d love to hear from you!   

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