Embracing your inner Nano(wrimo)

Boy it’s been a while.

It’s not that I haven’t been writing. I’ve been spending a lot of time over at Cool Blue Souls getting that site off the ground (if you haven’t stopped by yet, I encourage you to visit us. Lots of good stuff–all free). My daybook writing continues to chug along at a daily clip, and I’m working on revising on old manuscript and drafting a new one–both fiction. These are good days indeed.

I am also participating in NanoWriMo again this year. It’s a writing challenge that runs from November 1 through 30. To put it simply, you write a 50,000 novella/book in 30 days. That works out to 1,667 words a day.

It sounds intimidating, I know.

This will be the fourth time in six years that I will have participated. The first was my best product by far; the second and third attempts lacked focus and heart–two things I DO have this time around. I am excited.

One of the reasons that I enjoy participating is the immersion in a world of like-minded souls. We are all writers, unrelenting in our pursuit of truth through words. And in that immersion, we do not give lies or rationalizations any room to take over. As long as the pen moves across that page, truth is pursued.

I liken it to walking a good 10 or 15 miles. You reach that third or fourth mile and you just begin to feel your stride, your pace. You walk right through the barricades of guilt, of pressure, of negative thoughts that might have been permeating your mind, your ideas just an hour ago. You begin to think of new things, possibilities, truths, solutions.

That’s what happens when you hit that first 10,000 word mark. Yeah, you’re writing fiction, or an epic poem, or maybe something else just as intense. But what is really happening is that you are churning out words, language, symbols of things deeper in your life. You are cleaning the pipes of your inner thoughts, feelings, concerns, struggles.

In the end, when November 30 comes around and you upload your manuscript to check the word count, something beyond the simple euphoria of finishing overwhelms you. You realize that you have just concluded a life-changing journey that has dropped you on the shores of some new island, where opportunities are fresh, unrealized, waiting.

I encourage you to take this journey with me. Join NanoWriMo and give it a try. I know what you are afraid of. I know what you are concerned about. Trust me. It’s supposed to be hard. The hard is what makes it great. 🙂

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