Friday, November 11, 2016

NaNovember Without Losing Your Mind.

Just crossed the threshold of Chapter 3. Still all hand-written (anyone else do better that way?). 


I still put a sticker on the calendar for each accomplished writing day.
Yes, they are Lisa Frank stickers. Also, don't put your write-on calendar on a

frequently used door. We've written on it when it swings open several times, and once even wrote on someone opening the door...hindsight 20/20. 
Still giving up sleep and down-time, still back on board the addictive coffee wagon (despite the sinus tacchy, but I'd found that drinking it early enough in the day doesn't affect me as much, and I can't go over one serving). And with all that, I'm moving so much slower than I thought I would.

But-

I'm working everyday. Every single day. And it's become a habit at this point, to curl up with my multi-colored pens and be allowed to create in the quiet hours of the dark. When you keep up the pace, I have noticed that coming back into the world to write more is far easier than picking it up even every other day. You don't have to think about what's happening, where you are right now in the plot-you know. An outline helps with that, but it's not the same as just knowing the moment you are in. So, it's slow. But, this has had such a positive impact on my work that I'm excited. 

And it is even more exciting that this year we have a group of writers working to finish their books, and I get to kind of lean on them for inspiration and watch how they are doing things (because, face it, like all artists, each writer is different). It also keeps you more accountable, so if you have a chance to go to a writing group either though NaNoWriMo or can assemble one from your circle of friends, don't pass that up. It's wonderful. 

November is a month of beauty, and finally not being so hot you have to pack like you're a desert-trekker, but it's a month of losing your damn mind, too. The holidays are hanging their heads and price tags around the corner. We don't even do a huge Thanksgiving event. We do Friendsgiving, and then some local events like pow-wows and harvest festivities. That's it. And I still find it stressful. 

Some of it is holiday guilt. I feel like, and have always felt like, we can't do enough for the kids. That's hard. Every year. So it's a big deal to search for just the RIGHT gift for each person we love and within our budget, and I often find myself chittering around holiday sales like Black Friday (which SUUUUUUUUUUUUUUCCCKS) and Cyber Monday. And both older children have birthdays packed on either side of the holidays, so we can get triple the dose of "I wish we had more resources to do more for everyone". 

During all of this, self-care sort of goes to the corner with a coned hat to sit and think about the things it can't do. 

One thing I'm trying to keep up with while writing and November-ing is my hair. It's really thick, it's kind of long now, it's hard to deal with brushing your hair out for an hour everyday. I have a survival kit at this point-a specialty brush for my hair type, leave-in spray conditioner, and oil (sometimes coconut, sometimes argan). It still takes a damn hour. Or more, if I've ignored the hell out of it, which I often do. 

Exercise has taken even more of a back-burner position. The weather is finally okay, I'm finally on a working medication for my heart, and still I haven't made room in my head or life for it. Somehow, I need to figure out working, not ignoring myself, and taking care of everything/one. 

But I realize that if writing doesn't stay high on the list, I won't get finished. I won't. I've tried it and I know that I won't. And, if I'm going to continue on this road, that's unacceptable.


I hope to finish NaNo with a lot done, still. Chapter Three makes me feel like I can get where I need to be for that. Everyone participating: remember why you're doing this. Remember why each word you get down is a small victory, 
and most of all don't give up



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