Friday, November 09, 2012

No, I was not playing chess

When I was a teen, and I had an important school paper to write, I had to sit in the antique chair in the front hall and wasn't allowed to move from it until I had the draft done. I'm not sure if that chair made it when we moved things out of my dad's house, but it's not that particular physical chair that's the important part.

Needless to say, I haven't managed to completely distance myself from my own posterior, and the variety of chairs and corners of floor on which it has been parked probably do not bear numbering. Today (well, yesterday, to be honest; I didn't take pictures of where I sat today) I'm parked in the coffee shop again, in what has come to be my regular time for NaNoing. I would say for writing, but that happens in other places as well, as evidenced by the Moleskines that I keep filling, but we're talking NaNo stuff here.

Ask me on any given day how NaNo is going, and you're likely to get a different answer. From yesterday's really good session to today's wanting to curl in a ball and sob for an hour, venting to a nonwriter friend (who is writer-friendly) and then dragging my battered writerly ego back to the keyboard to see what more I can eke out, because if I don't tell this story, nobody else will. This NaNo has, so far, beaten me up more than the others. Today, for example, I had a casualty, ripping a secondary character whom I really like out of the story because everything else having to do with him had been deep-sixed and the things went better if my heroine did what this guy would be doing in this, basically his lone scene left in this version.

Still behind on count, but there's still a lot of November left in which to get things current. It's not always easy, but if the butt is in a chair and the fingers are on the keyboard and my head in the story, then one figurative foot in front of the other. I've done NaNo excited and prepared, trepidatious and only semiprepared, and this year, it's not so much a feeling as a determination. Maybe moving and family colds and all of the rest took up everything else. Whatever the cause, this year's NaNo sessions feel a lot like those papers and the chair in the front hallway.

In both cases, this puppy's got to get done, and nobody is going to do it but me, so onward.

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