So, Week 2 was always going to be harder than Week 1… I mean, for one thing it’s a lot longer than just two days!
Anyway, Day 3, I learned from Day 2 and knuckled down straight away to finish the 767 words to finish off Chapter 1. Something to check right off the list from the get-go.
Putting in that word-count straight away was a nice feeling; it meant I didn’t spend the day feeling anxious that I wasn’t achieving anything and also prompted the Nano website into giving me the badges I really should have got on Day 2:
This one I was expecting, though I’m still confused about why it waited until Day 3’s updated wordcount to ping up. The ways of websites are confusing, I suppose!
The one I had forgotten was a possibility was this one though:
Sadly this meant having to sit staring at my plan for Chapter 2 and try to remember what I was thinking when I wrote the notes up. Even going back to the earlier more detailed notes didn’t help much. The motto of this mini-story is this: don’t write up your notes and think you can just pick the story up again six months later. No matter how detailed they are, they will still end up looking back at you as if a martian wrote them…
In general the middle of this week has been a masterclass in why I have never managed to finish Nano before. Work exploded into chaos, through no fault of its own, but sometimes things just happen, my drama group finally decided what they wanted for costumes, but had some very tight turn-arounds and of course at my ancient age, the days when sleep was an optional extra are long gone!
And this is both the good and bad thing I find about Nano, because having told all of you lovely people and my friends about how I wanted to do it, even though I didn’t make my target for the day, any writing I could do was a little bit of writing, you know? Some days I manged 255 words, or 200 words and that wasn’t a lot but it was something.
But on the other hand it also meant that I had insane days where I’d done a full day of work, worked straight through my lunch break while I was at it, then made costumes after work, arrive home very late and very tired, made myself dinner and rather than go to bed would sit up and start writing. And kids, let me tell you; that’s no way to go through life, not even temporarily. By Thursday I was dead on my feet and had to have a stern talking to myself in the mirror about how this was supposed to be a fun thing to do, rather than an endurance challenge.
Side note, I can’t remember if we had a daily counter graph in past years, but I wish there was a way to make it disappear so much…
No matter which form it’s in, there was nothing like this graph to make me feel bad that I wasn’t writing as much per day as I was last week. If you’re like me and you get stressed by not meeting totally imaginary targets, this graph? Don’t look at it. That’s a Top Nano Tip from the wyvern this year…
Anyway, Day 9 – being a Saturday – was much more successful! Having gone to bed early on Friday night, reasoning that burning the candle at both ends – during the academic term no less – was a quick way to make myself ill, I woke up with a lot more coherency, and decided rather than beating my head against the brick wall I was stuck on, to try a totally different bit.
And guess what? It worked!
I managed to churn out over 7000 words in one sitting before I looked up and realised that it was past lunchtime and I was still in my pjs! So the graph of failure looks a little bit more friendly!
Not to mention another badge was won without me expecting it (look, I’m bad at maths, so I never keep in my head how far along I am for total word count until a badge pings me:
So if nothing else, the detailed plan of details has proven itself to be a very useful bit of work after all! It doesn’t matter that I can’t do Chapter 2, because I could go for Chapter 7, which I can picture very clearly and tackle that instead and then fill in the blanks at a later date. Sure, there’ll be a few continuity and style issues from writing a story in such a disjointed fashion, but that’s what the second draft is for, right?
Also I am fully aware that this day is a total fluke; it’s not going to be my output for next week by a long shot and I have firmly promised myself that I will stop beating myself up about Nano targets. Some days will be good days and some days will be bad days and it will all average out just fine in the end, and sleep is a non-negotiable feature of my life!
We’ll see what the next week brings, but despite everything we’re still a little ahead of where we should be, and the month’s nowhere near over yet!
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