Interestingly this year I’m more behind on my NaNoWriMo word count than I have ever been. As far as I remember, at least. As every year I had wanted to do something about 2,500 words a day for the first week because it was fall break, and I thought I might be able to. True to me, though, what I did was barely meet the official 1,667 words a day goal for three days in a row, and then (bad move) skip a day because I was so tired, and there was so much going on. During a day where I didn’t have to teach, mind you. But then that was the day we took pictures for my husband’s new band, and we have been continuing the cleaning frenzy. At least my husband has, and I have helped him. On the bright side my son’s room is now both tidy and clean, all his stuffed animals have been washed, and the floor is completely empty. As in “just go in there and vacuum”-empty. We’re very pleased.
On Friday I got some news about a person I like very much that left me not much in the mood for anything. Since brooding doesn’t really help with anything, and there’s nothing I can do, I went out and met a few friends in the evening as planned but I only wrote 545 words. Saturday was about the same amount as crazy for the same reason but I did some writing. On Sunday I did meet my quota, well, daily quota despite spending the afternoon going to the pool with my son. So that was quite alright.
But then I found that going to the pool had been a very bad idea, especially with the sore throat I already had Sunday morning because then I got sick, and since yesterday I’ve been having a nasty cold. Nasty enough that I would stay home sick if I weren’t self-employed. My life being what it is I shuffle through the day barely able to think through all the snot. At least today is a light teaching day, and I intend to spend as much of it in bed as I can.
So, instead of having written 15,003 words so far as I should, or even more as I usually do, I have a meager 10,515 words so far. I’m also – nothing unusual about that – not happy with my story at all. I know from experience that only time can tell if it’s really that awful or not. I can worry about that later, once I have written it.
Since I’m feeling really bad, and am falling almost 5,000 words short, of course I thought about quitting. Nothing unusual about that as well, usually it happens somewhere in week two or three, and most often repeatedly thinking about giving up leads me to throw in a few monster writing sessions and finish early. But this year, of course again, I am so far behind, surely there will be no way to finish this without superhuman powers. Right?
Well, I just put my current number of words into my NaNoWriMo profile, and there’s a stats page telling me that if I manage to write 1,818 words a day until the end of November I will be able to finish anyway. 1,818! I know that’s a lot of words but that’s only about 150 more words per day than I would have to write if I weren’t behind.
You know what that means? That means, the thing that seems so overwhelming right now, that feels like I could never do it because I fell behind, that thing is no way near as big as I thought. Silly me.
And what do we learn from all this?
Do the math before succumbing to drama. Also, don’t throw the towel when you still have two thirds of the time before you.
Now I’m back to the keyboard for real writing. The day isn’t over yet.