This is my first NaNoWriMo and it has been pretty brutal so far. I do love how much of my story I have down so far, but I keep getting behind on word counts. I did not plan very well and am doing most of my writing by the seat of my pants. It’s going to be a long month of struggling to 50,000 words. Day 6 and I’m sitting at almost 7,000 words. I need to seriously pick up the pace! Wish me luck.
And here’s my region’s work. Houston is rocking the NaNoWriMo.
A Writer Must Write
Back years ago, I took a class called ‘Composition 1’ at my little junior college. The professor was the one that relit my fire for writing many years after being frustrated into a writing desert. I received A’s on every paper I turned in while my classmates struggled. I tried to grow, but felt myself drowning in a lack of creativity. My papers were technically correct, but my professor looked at me somewhat flabbergasted when I hounded him during his office hours. I would present my A papers and asked him what I could do to make it better. His reply, “It’s fine the way it is”. I must say I continued to turn in A papers, but writing lost some of its fun. I felt that this couldn’t be all there is to it. I thought, “That’s all there is to it?” I was disappointed.
As I have begun writing my most recent attempt at a novel, I have discovered that my professor was wrong. Perhaps, that’s unfair. Maybe he assumed I’d be moving onto something unrelated to writing and didn’t want to waste his time dickering with my fragile ego. I’m not certain of his reasons, but at one moment he was what reignited my writing spark and also the one that snuffed it. I knew my writing could be better. It had to be something I could learn.
So, I took a few frustrated years and did anything but write. But the bug to write stayed there, gnawing on all the pleasure centers of my brain, reminding me how rewarding it was. How I loved conveying ideas through writing. I’ve had a few false starts on writing over the intervening years that amounted to little more than outlines and a lot of scribbled out notes and deleted word files.
Now I feel I have finally got my feet under me a bit, and have been learning what was missing from those papers. I knew there had to be ways to make it better, and now I’m learning them, slowly. Local critique groups are excellent for helping me get an edge on what people are looking for. Between reading other peoples’ work and getting to have my work torn apart by them I have already added to my missing skills. I have also found some great material to help me add more showing and less telling to my writing.
Moral of the story? Meh, who knows. I guess the one thing I learned is no one else can make you a writer. To be a writer, you must write. That’s it. For better or worse, that’s where it all starts.
That’s how you’re supposed to start an introduction to a good story right? Well, mine may not be good yet, but it will be eventually. And here is where I will try to chronicle parts of the journey to that end and whatever else entertains me.