Friday, November 13, 2009

NaNoWriMo status report, Friday the 13th edition

In the Acknowledgments to her debut novel The Time Traveler’s Wife, Audrey Niffenegger describes writing as a solitary thing: it’s only exciting for the person who is doing the actual work of putting the words down. Anyone who happens to be watching will only see a hand with a pen, moving across a sheet of paper; or fingers dancing over a keyboard.

It’s true for me at least and for those of my friends who profess to the same craft. There is nothing exciting in watching my hands stop and start as they type. I might have a nice pen and a moleskine-type notebook, but that’s still only window dressing to the actual task of recording the words. And for me, writing is, like, the farthest thing on the planet from a spectacle. The act of writing becomes, literally, nothing to write home about, at least not for anyone watching.

Sure, I might have the resources of the whole damn world (a/k/a Google, Wikipedia, and sometimes The New York Times) at my fingertips, but they’re just sources of information; they’re impersonal, they’re out there in the vast stretches of cyberspace; they’re the farthest thing in the world from an audience.

Sure, I might blog about the work or post about it on Facebook or on some forums, and then people comment and strike up a conversation about the work or about my writing, but if any of those people actually went and saw me doing the actual writing work they’d quickly drift away with boredom.

So things can get wildly, wildly different when instead of writing in purely solitary fashion, you wake up one day and there is an entire community of people worldwide who are frantically writing along with you. I’m not talking purely about being in a writing class, although the experiences of this entire NaNoWriMo thing are starting to turn out to be just that – a lesson in writing, spread out over 50k words or more and precisely 30 days.

And how have I been doing so far? Daily breakdown, by date and total word count reached:

Nov 6 - 13667
Nov 7 - 16361
Nov 8 - 18759
Nov 9 - 21196
Nov 10 - 23422
Nov 11 - 26211
Nov 12 - 27712

Have I mentioned yet that it's been a HELL of a rush every day? Even when yesterday I failed to make 1667? The adrenaline, it is terribly addictive. :)

TECH NOTE: If all goes well, I shall have another post up over the weekend. Wish me luck - I might finally be able to buy an Asus Eee 1005HA Seashell later today!!!

(I shall love it and squeeze it and take care of it and call it HAMSTER! :D)

(Yes, I shall name my netbook Hamster because of THIS Hamster:


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