Process and Words

nano word count
I stockpiled words for days like this

I’m two days into Nano and already dipping into my stockpile of pre-written words.

I could be way off base, but I feel more strongly about the work I’m creating than I ever have. I’m doing Nano on my terms, and my terms mean I’m doing revision on memoir, neither of which Nano purports to be about. I made some breakthroughs today, but they weren’t in word counts. They were in uncovering motivations and storylines, and not freaking out over my chaotic way of creating.

I also helped plant trees and hauled wood and went to an hour long Yoga class. All those activities took me away from writing, but you can’t write all day; it’s just too inactive, except intellectually. Physical movement is good for the mind as well as the body.

And I took a nap. Confession: I love a twenty minute nap midday. It’s like getting two days for the price of one, an excuse to drink coffee or tea again, reawaken, and start over. It doesn’t work for everyone, but having raised 6 toddlers, I know the value of a good nap, and claim it for myself. Why should toddlers get all the good stuff?

I also wrote into a scene I’ve been avoiding. There’s got to be a creative way to write this scene, I told myself–self-coaching for the writer, another detour I took today, but it led me into a scene I’ve been avoiding; IN writing this scene, I discovered a place at the core of my being and existence, a binding force. That’s what writing is about, at least for me–being human and finding out how to tell the story that connects and frees us.

What’s it about for you? Is Nano helping you get there, or just helping you pile up words you aren’t sure what you’ll do with later? Either way, it’ll be okay. It’s all part of the process, and the process itself is worth honoring. It’s part of who you are and who you are becoming. Write on.

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