Monday, November 23, 2015

NaNoWriMo Week Three Wrap Up

The dreaded Week Three: in which you feel drained and broken and exhausted and a little less than human and little bit like you're getting sick...

nanowrimo week three wrap up, update

My NaNo week in numbers:

Sunday, November 15 - 1,758 words
Monday, November 16 - 1,703 words
Tuesday, November 17 - 2,092 words
Wednesday, November 18 - 1,119 words
Thursday, November 19 - 994 words
Friday, November 20 - 1,035 words
Saturday, November 21 - 791 words

Total words - 9,492
Average daily words - 1,356
Time it took each day - 1-2 hours

Coffee Shop Write-Ins - 1
Secret Ninja Writing Sessions* - 2
Times I hated my story - 3
Days I wrote something other than Black Bird - 5
Days I wished I was working on something other than Black Bird - 7
New songs written - 1
Lost hours of sleep - SO MANY!!

My NaNo week in relationships:

We really don't get that much time together. He's away at work every other week. We are full-time married but part-time roommates. I'm not looking for anyone to feel sorry for us - we're used to the rhythm of our lives and it actually works quite well for us {absence makes the heart grow stronger and all that jazz} HOWEVER, when either one of us has anything extra going on it eats into what precious time we do have together and that's HARD.

Week three was a work week for him which meant I got in my writing time without the guilt of leaving him sitting alone in the living room.

"It's too much," he said on Thursday night - the one evening he was able to sleep at home during the week - as I tucked myself against him and held on for a long moment, thinking it had been five days since I'd hugged anyone who actually hugged me back**. "Two months is too much."

He was talking about the October blog challenge I did that ran right into this month's NaNo.

"Evenings are the hardest. It's good that you're writing. I love that you're writing. It's just hard sometimes."

And isn't that a punch to the gut!!?!

"But I've always got basketball to watch!"

He is crazy supportive and I'm so lucky but I'm what cost?

Does NaNoWriMo make me a bad wife?

Does writing?

Ultimately the answer is NO! And I know he would say the same thing. 

Nothing has been more important to my personal growth than accepting my own passions and chasing after them with my whole being. I am better for it. I am happier. This makes me a better human and, in turn, a better wife. You know the age-old adage: happy wife, happy life. TRUTH!

Understanding my passions helps me accept his and support him in them.

Daily writing feeds a powerful need within me. The only question now is, what can I change to stop stealing time from our relationship?

Perhaps I need to reconsider morning writing? {groan}

Perhaps I can write during my lunch break at work?

I'm sure there's a solution if I'm willing to dig for it.

NaNoWriMo doesn't make me a bad wife. And NaNoWriMo makes him a great husband. Being supported is one of the greatest loves and that's a beautiful, beautiful thing. 

My NaNoWriMo week four projections:

I'm writing this post on Monday. There is exactly one week left to reach the 50,000 word goal. As of this very moment I have less than 4,000 words to write. LESS THAN 4,000!!! If I'm really focused I should be able to shave a good chunk of that off at tonight's Writer's Jam and hopefully cross the finish line before the weekend {or Wednesday night if I really get my butt in gear} after which I will take a well-deserved break, eat some Chinese food to celebrate, set up my Christmas tree, keep on fantasizing about quitting my job, and pretend to enjoy the snow that has so graciously dumped itself into my world.

*those times in which I took advantage of 'down time' at work to scribble some words {like while I was waiting for a video to render...}

**there were a lot of kid hugs but they were more about me grabbing them and squeezing while they struggled...sometimes you just need a man's arms around you, you know?!?!

Thursday, November 19, 2015

Brewing Inspiration

 I spent Monday morning staring at my computer screen, willing words to come and they

It wasn't writer's block - it was more like writer's exhaustion.

As great as a novel writing challenge is, it can also beat you into the ground and make you want to crawl back into bed while precious little writer elves come and do it all for you.


~that never happens, by the way~

After driving my husband to work, I took the round-about way home and slipped into a cool little coffee shop in a town I rarely stop in because there's really nothing darling about it...except this cafe...which is in a newly renovated old fire hall...which isn't darling, per say, but it is kind of funky and welcoming and it smells positively delicious!.

There's something about pulling out of your normal spaces and plopping yourself right in the middle of the unfamiliar that plucks creative strings, brews inspiration and coaxes out your muse

I ordered a latte and tipped the barista. I sat at a small metal table with my back to a rowdy group having a work-lunch and the moment I opened my computer the words just poured out of me

brewing inspiration - alanna rusnak quote

As I worked, a small disabled man shuffled in from the street and stopped at my table. "Can I sit with you?" he asked.

"I won't be very good company," I told him. "I'm working."

"I like you," he said. "You're nice." And he shuffled over to the counter to order something for himself.

He came back as he waited for his order, pulled out a chair that squealed against the cement floor, and sat down across from me. "I like coffee," he said.

I smiled and offered him a "me too" but I kept working. 

The owner ventured out. Knelt down in front of him. Called him by name. He was obviously a regular visitor to the establishment. He spoke softly, not wanting to disturb me and not wanting to embarrass the man. Things like "she's working" and "she's a stranger" and "there's a spot right there by the fire for you".

"I'm sorry," the man said to me, scraping his chair back as he stood and shuffled to my side.

"You don't have to be sorry," I said.

"I like you," he said. "You're real nice."

And then he was gone, finding his spot by the fire while I finished up my last few sentences.

I met my word-count goal before I even finished the last swallow of my drink {which was so strong it made my head zing}! 

I packed up my bag, stuffing in my computer and my notebooks before I pulled on my coat. I took my empty latte glass to the counter and headed for the door.

"Bye!" he called from that chair beside the fire. "I like you!"

I smiled and waved and left the shop, climbing into my car and getting home just in time to welcome the children off the bus.

Had I just stayed home I may still have found my words...I mean, they were in me all along...BUT it would not have been the same, it would not have felt like quite the accomplishment AND, to be perfectly honest, it's rather lovely to have a strange little man tell you how nice you are {all I get at home on a Monday is a selfish cat and a laundry pile that glares at me}.

So, here's to chasing the muse...wherever she may lead...


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