I am less than four thousand words away from my goal. I am actually ahead of the NaNoWriMo word target. I am so close to the finish line I can actually see it – no more visualising for me: I can actually reach out and touch the end of this month’s goal. I am so unbelievably tired and cranky and desperate to be done, that the thought of getting that winner’s certificate has me ahead of the game.
But…and isn’t there always a but…I’m not done yet. I’m only half way through my novel. Yes, that’s right – at 50,000 words (plus 10,000 from a previous period where I wrote an entire flashback to include) – I’m nowhere near completing the story.
It makes it all a little bittersweet. I mean, it is uber-fantastic that I have managed to churn out 46,000 words in 27 days. Yet the thought that I have to continue doing it post-November is exhausting in itself. Of course, I won’t *have* to drum out the words at such speed, nor maintain that 1,667 word target everyday if I don’t want to. Yet, I’m terrified that if I stop, even for a short while, I might never pick it back up again.
So – what is my plan? To carry on regardless. To continue in the persistence that I have shown throughout the month of November. I am going to keep all the great habits I have learned throughout NaNoWriMo and forget about all those bad ones I cultivated previously. I WILL write everyday – perhaps not 1,667 words – but something. I WILL keep a track of my word count and put rewards in place for when I reach those targets in a timely fashion. I WILL congratulate myself on attempting to write a novel when so many people say that it’s what they want to do, but never even write one single word of it.
As difficult as this month has been, for various reasons, I have maintained a habit of writing that has made me feel great – even when I know what I’m writing is terrible: the bit that makes me smile, and warms my heart in retrospect, is that I am writing. I don’t want to have put in this much work now just to abandon it because we’re not in the month of November anymore. I don’t want a half finished novel languishing in a drawer somewhere, forgotten to the world. I want to be true to my dream: I want to be a writer – and, if I’ve learned anything in the last 27 days, it’s that to be a writer you must write; not just one month out of twelve, but consistently.