Bow down at my feet, oh mere mortals who think that procrastination involves just sitting around not doing stuff.
Oh no, this takes years of hard work and practice.
This involves signing up to NaNoWriMo for a second year despite all that I went through last year and then deciding that EVERYTHING is more appealing than actually sitting down and writing a novel. And I mean EVERYTHING.
Nanowrimo is the National Novel Writing Month (except it's very much International now). The aim is to write a 50,000 word (roughly 175 page) novel in 30 days...November to be exact. You can find out lots more about it at www.nanowrimo.org
And procrastinating about doing this is crazy (hmmm see here for why it being crazy isn't actually so crazy) because I actually seem to be enjoying writing this year's novel far more than I enjoyed doing it last year (well, so far). I decided I would start out with no plot, just start free writing and seeing where my story led me (hopefully not into a whole baring open of my soul like last year). I also decided that I would hold in reserve, in case of emergency a giraffe who wanted to be an astronaut. As you do.
And I actually enjoy writing fiction, when I ACTUALLY get down to it. It's an indulgence. I make it fun. I go to places I wouldn't normally go. I make efforts to find nice places I can go and sit and write. Coffee shops (with the added bonus of coffee and cake), libraries (and my local ones are designated 'Come and Write Your NaNoWriMo Here' spaces), ball parks, by lakes with ducks, play parks, shopping mall food courts etc. It's fun. It gets me out of the house which is something very important for me to do (see posts about cyclothymia and social anxiety on here) AND living in Phoenix I've spent the summer hibernating inside our house trying to keep out of the 109-115F (43-46C) temperatures, so now I need to make the most of more decent temperatures (mid 70s). And I reward myself with little treats when I hit my required word targets (or before I hit them, see below....).
So NaNoWriMo started Tuesday 1st November and I excitedly started writing decided I'd go and buy myself a notebook so that I could write wherever and whenever I wanted without having to arguments with the kids about getting off the computer or being antisocial in the evenings. But of course, it had to be the RIGHT notebook. So I had to go to several different shops before I found it. And then I eagerly started writing. Aaaaaand I had to look out for half-price Halloween decorations in the sales because they might all get sold out before I had a chance to look again. Aaaaand I had to do a weekly food shop to make sure we had stuff to eat and especially lots of treats that I could reward myself with when I hit my NaNoWriMo targets.
Then I started writing. No, actually then I DID start writing. Well, at about 2pm I did. Then I had to break off for the school run, and play with Melchett, and nag Goth Child about her homeworks, and then nag Melchett who'd said she didn't have any but did. And then obviously I had to cook tea, put kids to bed etc.
So Day 1 target = 1,667 words. Day 1 actual = 851 words. Not a total fail but not a great start.
And the week has carried on that way really. Including these classics first seen on my Absobloominglutely tumblr blog & Twitter:
"Oops, plan failed…. #nanowrimo #carrotapproachworksbetterifyoubuyitAFTERyouhavedonework (3rd Nov 1.42pm)
"Just found myself pen cap on lip seeing if I could get other end up a nostril whilst smiling at leaves floating on breeze. I'm 14 again." (3rd Nov 1.57pm)
Luckily at this point lots of people 'kindly' shouted at me to get off the internet and get writing.
So here we are nearing the end of Day 4. In theory I should have about 6,667 words written by now if I'm to finish my 50,000 in time by the end of November.
Instead I have:
- an exceptionally tidy kitchen;
- repaired a teddy for Melchett she's been asking me do for about a month;
- all the washing and ironing up to date;
- some initial research on two new costumes I'm going to make for future burlesque acts;
- half of our household filing pile that's been sitting staring at me for months actually filed;
- signed up, installed and configured Pandora internet radio, TuneIn internet radio and Spotify on computer and cell/mobile to help research music for future acts;
- surveyed friends/followers on Twitter about their favourite happy songs to start off serendipitous song discovery on Pandora;
- started pimping my ride (Bessie my trike who I've started riding to school with Melchett 2-3 mornings a week);
- caught up on the backlog of Pan-Am, EastEnders, Fry's Planet Word, 2 Broke Girls, Good Wife and The Mentalist episodes that 'needed' watching;
- taken down, packed away and bought a few new extra Halloween decorations;
- slept a bit more;
- and many, many more things that weren't writing a novel.
Luckily I also have 4,569 words written as well. Not as many as the 6,667 I should have by this point but it's not a total disaster. The helpful statistics on the NaNoWriMo site tell me I'm on course to finish on December 13th at this rate....hmmm, not good. That's not a win.
Soooooo if blog posts are a little erratic over the next few weeks you'll understand won't you?
Unless I decide that blogging is a 'useful' procrastination from writing my novel too. Thinking of which I might tell you a bit about the plot..........noooooo, stop, don't do it, get back to writing NOW! OK inner voice of reason (mortal enemy of procrastination).
You just know I'll be back soon to tell you, don't you ;)