November 06, 2002
On being a writer...

Its not exactly fiction, but this entry is *about* fiction.

NaNoWriMo continues on -- updates available on the Insanity is Contagious page. I've made it through six days so far, and over 10,000 words. I'm one fifth of the way through the novel, and clocking in at about 30 pages (1 1/2 spaced) and in the beginning of the seventh chapters (its a YA novel, the chapters are allowed to be short).

And I've been realizing just how it is affecting my life...

I knew it was going to change things. But then, I figured that it wouldn't *really* change all that much. After all, I usually game in the evenings after Kevin goes to bed. I do my PBEM moves and relax online and then go to bed a good bit later. We're on different schedules.

But this has become somehow different. And I have realized tonight that in as long as we have been married, and perhaps almost as long as we have been together, I have never really *concentrated* on my writing. I have continued to write, on and off, but my concentration has been on my other pursuits, like gaming. Or like journals for gaming. Things I couldn't sell, things that didn't really make headway towards my dream of being a (more) published author.

And I remember through the years Kevin telling me that I wouldn't make it if I didn't do it. That's a theme really -- I've heard it from others as well. The reminder that you can't win if you don't get in the game. And I've never concentrated particularly hard on being in the game.

So now I am. Instead of gaming while watching TV, I am writing on the laptop. Instead of staying up to game I stay up until I've hit my minimum word count. I'm distracted. I'm letting this novel take over my imagination and my life in a way that I've only allowed gaming characters to do in recent years.

I think its a surprise to Kevin. He's never known me like this, never seen me go into a writing fugue and come out an hour later quoting my characters or chortling over a particular turn of phrase or screaming because I just can't get it to work out or get past a scene that is driving me insane.

And as this has gone on, I've been thinking. Why couldn't I do it again? What's so special about November? If I do it, this proves that I *can* do it. I can keep to a schedule and accomplish something. So I could set my own schedule and work on one of those other novels that're in my queue. I could say I'm going to write even 1000 words a day, or do research and then I'd have a deadline. I could write a novel in 2 or 4 months instead. But I'd be working on it daily and really DOING it.

I've put the stick in the sand and I'm doing it. And I could *keep* doing it.

But this is showing me that it does mean change and adjustment for my family. Are we ready for me to write? To be a focussing and productive writer? Can we as a family adjust to that?

Gods... I hope so. In some ways, I have never been happier as myself than I am write now. This is something I want to do. And someplace I want to go. So gods... I hope so.

Posted by Deb Atwood at November 06, 2002 10:41 PM | TrackBack

Kim's been sweet in letting me have my time to write. I'm not overly thrilled with some day's output, but hey, that's not the point of this exercise, is it?

I need to take what I'm re-learning about writing and apply it to my gaming writing once NaNoWriMo is done. And maybe write a new novel.

Posted by: Scott on November 7, 2002 09:00 AM

*smile* You`re welcome. Glad it`s having a positive effect....

Posted by: Chris on November 8, 2002 05:30 AM
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