Friday, October 17, 2008

Reaching the Goalpost

50,000 words - that's FIFTY THOUSAND WORDS. Ok is it just me or is anyone else freaking out (just a teeny bit) about that number? I know Nat won't be, because just to rub it in she mentioned on her post how she managed to knock that over in 9 days. Just trying to make me look bad hey Nat lol. So am I on my own here?

As a newbie (just thought I should get that on the record early on) I haven't written a full ms yet. I have completed short stories, children's stories (all much much shorter), but not the longed for ms yet. I worked out some statistics:

50,000 words in 30 days = 12,500 per week = 1,667 per day = 556 words an hour for 3 hours per day

556 an hour for 3 hours per day doesn't sound that bad, I can do that right! Hmmm but then life doesn't stop for NaNoWriMo. Take into account life and suddenly finding that 3 hours I desperately want to put aside to do this seems tough. It means I have to find 3 hours - 3 hours with no disruptions, 3 hours with no procrastination, 3 hours writing NEW words.

So for any chance of success I need two things. 1. Be confident 2. Be prepared

It is really hard to have confidence in yourself when you are untested. I have never ever written that many words... at least not ones that are meant to link together, I don't think the grocery, housework and renovation lists count. In the back of my mind that horrid little devil voice has whispered to me so many times in the last few weeks "What if you can't do it? What if you can think of a plot, go through all the right motions preparing, but when it comes to the crunch you CAN'T do it?" Now don't get me wrong, the nice little angel voice that floats around my mind has countered with thoughts like "What if this manuscript is brilliant and in no time at all you are published?" - it's just that the little red guys arguments are a bit more plausible.

So to convince myself that I CAN do this, I have put together some positive thoughts which I'd like to share with you.

Those who win are those who think they can.

A positive attitude causes a chain reaction of positive thoughts, events and outcomes.

It's hard to fail, but it is worse never to have tried to succeed.

Success is the sum of small efforts, repeated day in and day out.

An obstacle is often a stepping stone.

Finally, in the immortal words of Rudyard Kipling:
Words are, of course, the most powerful drug used by mankind.



Diane said...

I have 2 words for you, Ellanora.


and then you won't need 3 hours a day.

I will blog about our secret weapon - Word Sprints sometimes called Word Wars if you're feeling competitive - tomorrow when I get home from work. Yes, I'm working on a Saturday.

Sandie Hudson said...

Hey Anita/Ellanora,

I hadn't writing a full MS before last years NaNo, nor had I written 50,ooo word in one MS. So don't stress. All will be well. As Diane said she has a secret weapon. You will be surprised just how much you can write in a short period of time. Besides we're all here with you.


Monique Wood said...


It was like reading what the voices in my head are saying!! Lol. Our lives have this weird parallel at the moment, don't they?!

Well, I'm with you all the way. Maybe during the month of NaNo I can get to meet you in sunny QLD and we can give each other a bit of motivation in person, no online!

Good luck :-)