Writing: Accepting That You Won’t Manage To Do Something- And That’s Okay

At the start of April, I was filled with excitement and enthusiasm to complete my Camp NaNoWriMo novel. My motivation was ready, my planning was in place (vaguely- I mostly just make brief notes and go) and I was determined to hit fifty thousand words.

At the time of writing this post, I am currently twenty thousand words behind.

Am I capable of catching up? By the end of the month? Plausibly; I have by known to do five thousand words in a day, and with nine days left to go, that would get me there.

I’m not going to push myself, though. Let’s be honest: life is weird and horrific at the moment. I have it easier than a lot of other people, but I’m still finding simply existing to be a total nightmare.

If it gets done, excellent. I think I’m more likely to finish this novel by the end of May at my current pace. A few years ago, I would have been devastated to miss the target I’d set myself, and I might have even been tempted to give up on the project entirely.

Now, I’m more kind to myself, and if you’re reading this, I urge you to be kind to yourself, too.

NaNoWriMo: Camp April 2020

Last year, in 2019, I wrote an entire novel in April. Fifty thousand words, which are sort of linked together with a plot. This works out at just over 1666 words a day.

I’ve always wanted to write a novel. I’ve been writing for as long as I can remember. When I was a tiny child, my teacher used to let me write stories instead of taking part in maths class. (Irresponsible, possibly, although I did eventually get an A in GCSE maths, so it worked out for the best.) I used to spend hours playing The Sims and imagining little lives for my pixelated pals, crafting elaborate and dramatic stories in my head.

However, the first novel I ever finished was the one I wrote last April, at the age of 28.

It is still in need of editing. I keep meaning to go back to it, but life has been fairly wild for the last year. It is only just starting to settle down. Later this year, I intend to go through it and edit it. I’d like to publish it, I think.

The point of this post (and I have, classically, managed to write several paragraphs without addressing it at all) is to talk about Camp NaNoWriMo. National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo!) is in November, and I have yet to manage to write a novel in November, despite committing to it pretty much every year. However, they run a couple of smaller events in the year as well- Camp NaNoWriMo. The idea is that you set your own goal, and so last year I decided I was going to write fifty thousand words.

And this year I’ve decided I’m going to do it again. I will probably write a bit more about my project later, but I’ve been obsessed with numbers stations after hearing a show on Radio 4 about them, so it’s about them, and some other stuff.

If anyone wants to add me on the NaNoWriMo website, my profile is here. (The stats are wrong and I don’t know how to fix them!)