Chasing a Dream
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NaNoWriMo Tales 2: Crossing the Midway Line

I did it! After four days of sporadic writing followed by two days of marathon writing (the last of which amounted to an as-yet unprecedented total of 6,453 words in one day—YAY!!!), I finally conquered the elusive 25,000 word count—and neglected my blog in the process.

A friend of mine told me recently that I should choose between travel writing and fiction writing, and concentrate on just one. I’ve been giving that a lot of thought ever since. True enough, I am having a hard time doing both. I’m not even gainfully employed yet, and already I’m struggling to keep the balance between updating my blog and keeping my novel on track.

Because of the extremely tight deadline dictated by the NaNoWriMo gods, though, I’m focusing the majority of my energies on my fiction writing—at least for the duration of this month.

It’s been one heck of a challenge so far. I’ve followed my gut and skipped scenes not once, but twice. The second time was brought on by another major bout of writer’s block. I was staring at the blinking cursor on my screen when I realized that the reason why I was having such a hard time weaving my story was because my scope was too ambitious. I initially wanted to do a Euro trip story (call it me pouring out my travel frustrations on my poor heroine), but it’s just too hard to condense all the country-hopping and culture-exploring in a more-or-less fifty thousand word novel. Especially considering that I have only a month to create at least the skeletal story.

And so, I’ve decided to limit Matty’s (that’s my MC) journey to just two countries. That’s still subject to a whole score of changes when I go into the editing process come December, though. I find myself excited to go through what I’ve done so far and to start really making sense of it all.

There was this quote in one of the November 2012 calendars I found via Google/DeviantArt (leftnwrite08):

“All good writing is swimming underwater and holding your breath.” //F. Scott Fitzgerald

Considering how much I know about swimming, this quote couldn’t be more appropriate for me now. I look at my first NaNoWriMo experience–my first serious attempt at writing a novel–the way I look at swimming. I don’t really know how to do it or if I can do it, but I’m just jumping right in and hoping that the view below and the new things I discover are worth the occasional moments of stress and anxiety.

And that I don’t drown in the process, of course. LOL.

Kicking off the third week of NaNo-writing, I’m proud to say that I’ve finally managed to keep up with the schedule and am at 30,668 words (and counting). I hope to clock in at a minimum of 32k today, just to compensate for any slacking off I might be doing in the following days…especially since, hello, I’m back in college! 

Well, okay, it’s just two classes, but still. It’s incredibly weird to be back in the classroom, surrounded with students about four to five years younger than me. Thank God, we haven’t had to do the individual introductions thing. I must admit, though, that enrolling for the semester was a good decision on my part. I’ve got a feeling that I’ll be learning a whole lot in the next four months. But that deserves a post of its own, which I’ll be writing, hmm, maybe after the month is over…or during one of my writer’s block moments.

I’ve also gathered a couple of ideas for my next travel entries, including a new top five list. I’m looking forward to doing that when I have the time. AND there’s my Wednesday coffees! I’ve got to try someplace/something new. Any suggestions are most welcome. 🙂

For now, it’s back to Matty in Berlin for me…then I’ve got to tackle those readings for tomorrow’s classes. Can’t wait for December! I can almost see the finish line…

//Featured image c/o

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