Inspiration for November

Are you a person of questionable sanity who’s doing the NaNoWriMo challenge this month? If you are, you surely know the writing spree starts today, and maybe you’re seeking some inspiration to get you through to November 30 with your heart and head and fingers intact.

Or maybe you’re a person who has a writing deadline and always has a writing deadline, whether this National Novel Writing Month exists or not, because for you every month is Novel Writing Month, and yet you, too, think maybe you use some inspiration?

Well, hey. This month I’m both, and I could use the inspiration, so I’m transforming my blog into just that.

I guess this is the moment when I publicly shame myself and admit that I’ve signed up for NaNoWriMo this year, though for some more shame I’ll also admit that yes, I am absolutely cheating because no way will I be able to get out 50,000 words of the usable variety by the end of the month and I know that because I’ve tried before and failed. But, still, I’m taking advantage of all the fervor and I’m going to use it for motivation to get some pages down on two new novels. I’m going to shoot for 100 pages (which is a lot for me!).

Here’s another way I’m cheating: I’ve already started one of the novels. I’m so bad!

If you’re not deeply wounded by me making use of NaNoWriMo for my own selfish purposes, you can add me as a writing buddy.

Now, in honor of so many people writing novels this month, I wanted to do something. You see, pretty much every month I’m spending the time working on some draft of a novel, and it can be a terribly isolating experience. I like my alone time—I need it to thrive as a functional person; too much social engagement gives me a splitting headache and makes me want to hide under a blanket—but there have been times these past months when I was struggling through one first draft and then another that I felt so alone in the world. And not in a good way.

It felt like I had this huge, fat monster perched on my chest (hello, meet my new novel) and it was squeezing the breath out of me and no one was around to help me get it off.

That’s why I like the idea of so many people writing novels this month. I don’t care if you’ve never written fiction ever before in your life! I don’t care if you decide to throw out every single word come December (the one time I did NaNoWriMo, I did just that). What’s so fulfilling about this is the writing itself. The process. The pounding of the keys and getting words down on the page. It’s nice to know there are many more people in the world joining me in this painful pursuit this month.

Tell me in the comments if you’re NaNo’ing with me. I’ll cheer you on! Especially if you’re going all-out and writing that 50K. (And if you’re a big cheater like me, now you know you’re not alone.)

And if you, too, could use some inspiration for the month of November, I hope you’ll keep watching this space. I’m hosting a new blog series on the topic of “What Inspires You?” and some inspiring writers I know will be writing guest blogs for me.

I’ll also do my part in trying to inspire. Coming later today as you tackle your opening page: Inspiring Novel Openings.

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