Over the years, I have learned to give myself different rules than I give everyone else. Whenever I have a deadline, I demand that I finish a day or two before the deadline. When I have a word count for a certain day, I try to do more. This process of adding a cushion has actually come in handy over the years. People don’t tend to yell at you for doing more than the minimum. And knowing that I have that cushion has actually lessened the stress level for me.
Objectively speaking, I am doing well on NaNoWriMo. I am very close to 30,000 words, and it is only Day 9. But then Reality sets in. This weekend I will be out of commission as I spend it moving my son in Austin from a very small apartment to a slightly larger one. No writing allowed. And then when I get back, I have several daytime-job deadlines staring me in the face. So that fact that I am ahead–and planned to be ahead–is actually a good thing.
NaNoWriMo was never intended for writers to linger over their prose, savoring every word and dangling over every participle. No, I see it like shoveling snow. You don’t savor the experience when you shovel snow. You get the biggest shovel you can and dig in, trying to get as much done in the shortest time possible.
NaNoWriMo is a lot of fun, but face it, folks, there ARE other things we could be doing. On the other hand, it’s only one month out of the year. And you can commit to that much, can’t you.
In any case, I will be stalled out for a bit. Hopefully I don’t lose my momentum.