Saturday, December 18, 2021

In the Month After NaNoWriMo

It's Time by Dot. 2004

NaNoWriMo came and went. It is an annual November event, for anyone who stops by here and doesn't know what that is. It is a write 50,000 words in 30 days challenge, just for the fun of writing. 

For me, NaNoWriMo is also my annual recommitment to my creativity, of which my writing is a key part. I sometimes generate the skeleton of a new novel, or seeds for short stories. One year I wrote parts of my Work In Progress. Some years it is simply write whatever comes out and keep up. "Keeping up" means writing an average of 1667 words per day. 

I don't really struggle to write 1667 words in a day - when I write - so one of my added personal goals the past few years has been to actually write Every Day. In these years, when "write every day" is a goal, I operate under the belief that "all words are good words." Which they are.

One unique thing this year is that I didn't post an update or an excerpt every day here. I didn't even post anything here in November. Which is sad. Which is partly due to the death of my aunt in October 2020. She was one person I knew was reading everything I posted here. Every time. We didn't see each other very often since I've been an adult (a long time now), but we emailed following a long silence for some years following some family drama. 

This was my fourteenth consecutive year of participating in NaNoWriMo and my fourteenth time a NaNoWriMo Winner (meaning: I crossed the 50k finish line). Last year I posted very little in November, but I still thought of my aunt every time I did, even though she was gone by the time November came around.

This year - no aunt.

And I wrote. But not here.

One thing I have been doing a lot of during the pandemic is writing. New stories and essays and creative non-fiction. Worked on that WIP and I even finished a draft, which I shared with someone who is no longer an active part of my life, though she is often in my thoughts and her influence and words are an integral part of who I am now (my personal therapist closed her practice). So I have a completed manuscript of that WIP now! It needs more editing but I discovered it is in better shape than I thought it was. It is more complete than I thought. And parts of it are really good, I don't mind admitting.

So here I am. The middle of December. Tomorrow is a full moon. The holiday season surrounds me everywhere I go - even if "going somewhere" is online. Because the COVID-19 pandemic is still here and still raging; or raging again. We are actively heading into another surge or "wave" as some call it. There is a new variant (omicron) which spreads faster than the original or the recent horrific variant (delta). We don't quite have enough data yet to know how severe the omicron cases will be; there are conflicting studies - except that it spreads more quickly and gets patients hospitalized more quickly and it is evasive, with the vaccines less effective and prior infection minor protections less effective. 

So we're waiting as omicron hits more and more states here in the US and we watch the surges in other countries, knowing it is going to hit here, as well. And we still have hotspots and outbreaks of delta here, already. So we are potentially facing a grim and disease laden winter.

And I write. 

As a matter of fact, the reason I came to the computer tonight is to set up my profile on an online writing workshop which starts tomorrow (or today, depending on your perspective; as I've said numerous times - if I haven't gone to bed yet, it's still "today" - tomorrow comes after I've had some sleep).

Watch and wait and write. And wonder.

It's winter. It's the edge of a full moon. It's a shift of season (soon). 

Where do I go from here this time?