Writing about writing

Archive for October, 2014

Excitement has Petered Out

Just a few short days ago, I was so excited about NaNoWriMo I could hardly stand to be around myself.  All I wanted to do was think about my story.  All I wanted to do was talk about my story.  I wanted–constantly–to find time to be able to do the necessary research for my story.  November 1 just couldn’t get here fast enough!

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Now that we’re approximately 10 (or is it 11?) days from November 1, I just feel BLAH about the whole thing.  I still think my story has credibility and will hold up–and be worth writing–but as of right this moment, I just don’t care about writing it during the month of November.  My excitement has waned and now I wonder if I’ll even bother to participate beyond the scheduled write-ins I’m in charge of.

I don’t know what has brought me to this place of complacency–of just not caring about something that excited me so recently.  Nothing has happened.  No one has said anything negative.  Everyone has been very encouraging and excited.  For once, I won’t be writing and participating in NaNo alone.  I’ll have a whole community of writers basking in the glow of the challenge to write 50,000 words in 30 days right along with me.

I’m tired.  I have sooo much to do and right at this moment, the thought of the energy and time it’s going to take–that is going to consume my life–in the month of November is more discouraging than exciting.  How am I ever going to find the time, let alone the energy, to write a story in 30 days when I can’t even find time to grade the essays that MUST be graded?

How am I ever going to find the time–and energy–to write a story in 30 days when I struggle to find time to spend with my family?

And what about those extra three hours we have to add to our work week for Retention and Recruitment purposes?  And what about Thanksgiving?!

When I think about writing–again–during my favorite holiday, any excitement I had for NaNo has petered out to NOTHING.  Nil.  Zip.  Nada.

I sure hope the excitement comes back by November 1.  Regardless of whether it does or not, I plan on giving NaNo the old college try again this year.  I have a good story that deserves to be written.  They say that all it takes to write is BUTT IN CHAIR.  So I’ll put my butt in the chair and hope for the best!!!!

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Speaking of loving to Write…..

I keep a journal that I attempt to write in every day.  I don’t make it every single day, but this is the first year where I have written in my journal almost every day compared to previous years.  Look!!!

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Several years ago, I first picked up Julia Cameron’s book, The Writing Diet.  I ate that book up!  (See what I did there?!)  Anyway, in that book, Julia speaks of her daily writing activity she calls “Morning Pages.”  She discusses Morning Pages in greater detail in her other book, The Artist’s Way, but I first read about them in The writing Diet.  Morning Pages are nothing more than writing three full pages every single morning–freewriting.  I loved the idea, so I gave Morning Pages a shot.  More often than not, I ended up doing my “Morning” Pages in the evening rather than the morning.

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I felt guilty that I couldn’t get my writing done in the mornings.  I wanted so much to do Morning Pages just as Julia Cameron suggested.  I loved every single part of the whole idea and I wanted to be successful with it.  But I could not get up early enough to do my Morning Pages in the mornings.

Then I read Mari McCarthy’s Dark Chocolate for the Journaler’s Soul wherein one of the writers shared that she, too, struggled with writing in the mornings, so she simply starting doing “Night Notes” instead.

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Huh.  So I didn’t HAVE to do my writing in the mornings!!!  And I didn’t have to feel guilty for it!  So now I write in the evenings.  I prefer to type.  I did a few practice entries by hand so I could give myself an estimate of the total number of words I wrote in three pages (Julia’s guidelines for Morning Pages).  I found that I could write approximately 750 words in three pages, so I try to write 750 words every day in my online journal.  I don’t beat myself up if I don’t make it to 750 words, mainly because there are some days when I simply do not have a lot to say, but there are other days when I write way beyond 750 words!  I wish my chain would show the days I have written more than once because I have several days when I wrote two or three entries and each entry was more than 750 words.

Currently, I have written approximately 170,000 words just in my online journal this year!!!!!  I will easily hit 200,000 words before the year is out!  Penzu (the online journal I use) sent me a message a few months ago when I first hit 100,000 words so I can have a free year of Penzu Pro next year!  So cool!  (Penzu basic is free, but if you go Pro, of course, there are many options, one of which is the ability to create several journals rather than just have one.  I have divided my by year as well as by other categories as I choose!)

If I am able to win NaNoWriMo, I will easily have at least 250,000 words for the year!  That’s a LOT of writing!!!!!  And I LOVE every last bit of it!!!!  None of the numbers I’ve shared includes any of the writing I do daily for work; I teach English at a community college!  And now I also have this blog as well as two other main ones that I keep!  (See the link at the top of the page, “Joy Regardless.”)

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I just wanna Write!

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Hi, my name is Polly and I am addict.  I am addicted to Writing.  (And reading, but this post is about writing, so we’ll get to the Reading addiction at a different time.)  I LOVE to write.  I love writing about myself.  I love writing just for the sake of writing.  I love words.  I love running words together and seeing what results from the words I put together.  I love the act of typing words on my computer.  I still love writing by hand because there is just something about the appearance of my handwriting that says more than the words on the page are able to say about my emotional state at the moment of my writing.  I don’t write by hand so much anymore, but every so often, I will still pick up a notebook and pen (usually pink) and write my little heart out.

I am in the mood to write just about ALL the time.  I would rather write than do so many other things.  I think that everything I write should be read by EVERYONE.  That is not to say that I think my writing is better (or worse) than anyone else’s; it’s simply that I love to write so very much that I want to share that love with others.  I want others to feel it as they read what I have written and get excited about their own hobby–whatever it is that they feel passionate about–and DO IT!!!  I want to share the joy I have in the simple act of writing.

I know not everyone loves to write as I do.  That’s okay.  That is as it should be.  We should all have something that we do, though, that we LOVE to do–and we should DO IT.  There is no greater drug in the world than doing what you LOVE to do, what you are passionate about.

It is not about writing THE “Great American Novel” for me.  (Don’t get me wrong, though.  If that were to happen, it would thrill my soul!)  It is not about BEING a great writer or even being recognized as a [great] writer.  Sure it would be nice if my name was as popular on the lips of readers as that of Stephen King, J. K. Rowling, Jodi Picoult’s, or even John Greene’s.  But more than being recognized as a writer, I simply LOVE TO WRITE.

Writing, for me, is the same as breathing.  I HAVE TO DO IT or die.  I love to do it.  I want to write.  I can’t wait until I come to a place in my day when/where I can sit down and just write.  It doesn’t matter what I write.  It doesn’t matter if what I write has any substance or will be read by anyone but me.  I simply want to WRITE.

I find that everything else in my life (except reading) tends to get pushed to the side and much lower on my list of priorities because Writing is THE priority for me.  I love it!  If you read what I write, thank you.  I hope something about it is enjoyable for you because I sure had fun writing it!!!

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