Thursday, November 1, 2012
The Secret To Finishing NaNoWriMo
My two oldest children knew in August exactly what they wanted to be for Halloween. Their ideas seemed easy enough, especially with so much notice. My daughter decided a peacock might be original, and I found some beautiful, sparkly green tool and a bouquet of peacock feathers on sale in early September. All that was left was to fashion a simple wrap-around skirt, attach the feathers, and pull out the turquoise shirt in her draw. My son wanted to be an Egyptian Mummy (I had to add the Egyptian reference, because here in Canada we pronounce 'mommy' as 'mummy', which lead to some confusion on other people's part when he announced his intentions for Halloween). I loved the idea, and all I need was some sweat pants, an undershirt, and strips of white cloth.
Halloween would be ready. Before September was over. At least that's how it played out in my mind.
Sometimes, preparation does not favor the procrastinator.
Because one moment it was Canadian Thanksgiving (at the beginning of October), and the next it was October 30th. Which meant I pulled a very late-nighter, sewing and stitching and hot gluing costumes, for school parties and trick-or-treating the next day.
It used to be that I could stay up as late as I wanted one night, as long as I made up for it the next. I woke up this morning with a bigger sleep hangover than I did yesterday after my mad sewing binge. It would appear that my body has become a loan shark for rest - it may lend out late nights with a flashy smile, but demands it back the following night with interest.
As I dive into the first few days of NaNoWriMo, I try to remember the incredible importance of balance in my life during a challenge that allows me to do something I love while forcing me to rearrange my priorities. One of those things is to make sure I get enough rest that I have the energy and mental clarity to get in my daily (or should I say nightly) word count.
They say that the secret to becoming a writer is to write. I believe that to be true, and leads inevitably to the secret to successfully completing NaNo (whatever your goal):
Don't fall behind!
You may tell yourself you'll catch up, but that may not ever work. Like borrowing money (or sleep) from a loan shark - borrowing words is a bad idea! Someone once said that the winner at the end of a race is not tired, but ready to race again. November 1st is here my friends - set a goal that works for you, and write!
And happy belated Halloween...