Even in my dreams, I’m typing.
I never participated in the actual NaNoWriMo event, usually being in the midst of some other writing project and also far too shy to bray to others about this mighty goal I’ve set in place. Admitting what I’m doing will make it embarrassing if I fail, even if in the end, it doesn’t really matter. But in May I wondered if I could tweak one month of NaNoWriMo into a summer-long experiment with a horror trilogy, and thus embarked on June 1st at page one.
June 30th was the due date for Volume One, and I steered that book to shore a few days early and docked it at the Almost 66K Pier. Triumphant, I slacked off for the rest of the month and merely put in some note taking on Volume Two. Guessing from my outline that volume would be roughly the same size, there was no need to hurry. I had this sucker down.
When it became apparent two-thirds of the way through July that I was not going to be anywhere close to finishing at a rate of 2,000 words a day, I bumped it up to 5,000 for every day that I had the time. Life got in the way, as it does, since the house needed maintenance and people like me better when I shower, and my stomach kept complaining that I hadn’t fed it. No, I did not lose weight. My body refuses to surrender the extra pounds it keeps captive despite any and all provocation to release them. It is very aggravating.
Despite tapping my fingers until they were numb, I did not reach the finish line on July 31st. But I crossed it four days later, today typing THE END with the word count a hop, skip, and burp shy of 103K. Oh well. It was not for lack of effort. Sometimes my body just threw a tantrum and shut down to sleep, or refused to let me function until I grocery shopped and ate something. Twice Lady Friend shouted, “YOU HAVE TO SEE REAL HUMAN BEINGS NOW AND THEN!” and forced me away from the laptop. I tried to explain that I do see real human beings once a week or so at Whole Foods. Seeing real human beings is precisely why I avoid them most of the time and write about imaginary ones instead.
So perhaps I am acquitted for being tardy with Volume Two, since the blame clearly lies at the feet of Lady Friend. It is Lady Friend’s fault I did not finish, and it is Lady Friend’s fault I am starting Volume Three tomorrow five days late. It is Lady Friend’s fault I lost a good writing afternoon to the evil machinations of the dentist. But vindication was mine: my teeth were in better condition than hers. Take that, Lady Friend. I told you flossing is a scam.
It has been a lovely writing slaughterhouse of a summer, and I am raising the white flag in defeat right now. Volume Three will likely be as long as Volume Two, and I do not have the stamina to continue 5K a day. I’m famished and I need to shower and deal with real human beings at Whole Foods this evening, and tomorrow I will be back to the grindstone at a more reasonable 2-3K.
If you are doing your own August NaNoWriMo or some variation thereof, I wish you well. Charge!!!