Hell or High Water

I will finish my novel this year. I will finish my novel this year. I will…

Yeah, I’m going to finish my novel this year, during the month of November, just as I’ve done every November since 2012. That’s three novels over 60,000 words each, in 30 days apiece. Yes, it’s as hectic as it sounds. And I don’t claim to be completely done with any of the 3 novels, but the rough drafts have been completed in those crazy, stressful, yet ultimately fulfilling 30 days.

November is National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo), and I’m at it again in just four short days. How is it that that time flies by between Novembers? I was supposed to finish a separate novel and get it published by this point, but life takes over, and I’ll have to take a time out from that one to get this new one done. I did something similar back in 2013 when I took a hiatus from a current novel I was finishing to bang out one for NaNoWriMo. So I’m not worried.

What I am worried about is all the other stuff going on this year that I’ll have to navigate at the same time, many things I haven’t had to face in years past, the primary of which is the fact that I’m teaching this semester. That used to be my excuse for so many years when I didn’t do NaNo. “Oh, I would reaaaallllly love to do NaNo, but I’m teaching, and it’s just too much to take on in a month’s time!” But I’m not making excuses this year. I’m going to just do all of it instead. May god have mercy on my soul.

As of now I don’t have a plot, a theme, a list of characters — anything. All I have is the belief that on November 1st all of those things will come to me like magic. Then it’s off to the races. My goal this year is to write 1,800 words a day. In the past I’ve set goals like 2,000 words a day, but I’m trying to be more realistic this year. We’ll see how I make it, but the one thing I can’t do is get behind. I have to hit my totals every single day or it gets to be a mountain too big to climb. Last year it was a challenge hitting my goals every single day, but I did it.

And I’m going to do it again this year, come hell or high water (but I would prefer hell. High water just ruins my pants legs). Bring. It. On.



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