This is why November is the best month of the year.
Fall is by far my favorite season. No other season even comes close. If I could move to an area of the world that was eternally fall, I would. I’m fairly certain heaven is covered in changing leaves, and they hand you a pumpkin spice latte that never goes cold or empty. Call me a basic white girl, if you will, but these things seriously bring my heart joy!
Another thing I love about fall is the comradery that envelops the writing community as we forsake social lives to furiously harass our keyboards in attempts to make the deadline for national novel writing month!
At this point, we’re about a week in. Maybe some of us are already hitting walls, or getting writers block. We turn to coffee and twitter in search of inspiration and support from others who “just get it“. It is a time where creative energy is coursing through our veins, giving us goosebumps, headaches, and maybe insomnia.
I love this time of year because what little time we do take away from staring at our manuscripts, and waiting next to the coffee pot, we fill with conversations with friends about their projects. I have friends who write horror, though I can’t stomach it, I’m always intrigued how their brains work. They shape these tales that make me sick and give me nightmares. I envy their ability to have that sort of impact by painting a mental image with words, even if it is sometimes vomit inducing.
I have friends who write romance, which is also not my forte. They come up with these perfectly-imperfect characters and quirky situations and make you root for them! They can yank your heart out with a single scene, and have you busting out laughing with relief on the next page. They have a talent for getting you invested.
Whatever genre we each write, there is a respect in the writing community for those who sculpt with words and are able to create images that are imprinted forever in your mind.
There is a dedication in siting down everyday. A harmony in the quiet ticking away at the keyboard. An exhilaration in the mounting word count. A breathlessness in that final punctuation.
Our paintbrush is the typewriter, the keyboard, the pen. Our paint is the experiences, the words and the ink. Our canvas is the tablet, the screen and the page.
This year I am in the middle of a time crunch to get my book polished and ready to be published in the spring, so I can’t take the month to work on another project from scratch. But November is the perfect excuse to hold up with my apple cider and a snack in my office and finish editing my manuscript.
I am about half way through my manuscript and will be mostly rewriting the last half of the book. So it will still feel like nanowrimo for me! I am hoping to at least get the last half of the book rewritten, so that in December I can finish up with edits, and in January I can send the manuscript off for the proof copy! The book is longer than anticipated, so this is still a pretty ambitious undertaking.
If you’re struggling with trying to figure out how to write a novel in a month while working and juggling everyday life, you can check out my post on how to create a schedule that works!
If you are participating in NANOWRIMO, I’d love to hear about what you’re working on! I love to help out other writers, so if you need a set of eyes and would like some feed back, feel free to reach out to me! You can message me on the contact page, and I will usually respond within a day or two. Sometimes you just need someone with a fresh set of eyes to let you know how it’s coming! Sometimes I need to stop going cross eyed staring at the same sentence for half an hour! So it works for both of us!
I won’t have time to look over complete manuscripts, as I am on a deadline myself, but I will certainly take a look at a few pages if you have a section or chapter that is giving you some trouble!
I’ve received, and given, a lot of support on social media. If you’re not currently engaging with other writers I highly suggest you start! You can follow me on twitter, and instagram, and if you look through a lot of the people I follow and interact with, you’ll find a pretty awesome community of creative people.
If you’re just getting started, it helps if you use the right hashtags. I’ve met a lot of people through #amwriting and #amediting. but you can narrow it down even more if you want, for instance #amwritingfantasy if you’re looking for more specific genre writers to interact with.
Surround yourself with people who understand what its like to have a writer’s brain, a writer’s struggle, who get the lifestyle. If you’re not in a face to face writing group that meets at a coffee shop every Tuesday, this is probably the next best thing!
Godspeed ambitious people! Next year, I will hopefully be able to rejoin the ranks!