I'm just over a week in to National Novel Writing Month, and it's a little weird to admit that I'm not doing well.
Even when I've slacked off for most of the year on the writing thing, November has always been a time when I can sit down and get into the groove. Words once again come easily, and I'm able to fall into the story.
That isn't the case, this year. This year, I feel like I'm fighting for every sentence; every word.
I don't know if it's because the story I'm writing isn't really that good (and it's not--I just couldn't think up anything better), or if the guy writing it just isn't as good as he used to be.
I took Natalie and the baby to the airport Saturday--she wanted to go visit her family in Ohio, and we thought November would be a good time for that, so I could focus on NaNoWriMo while they were away.
Sending them in November was mostly my idea, and it was mostly a stupid one. It's hard to focus with my little boy hundreds of miles away. I miss him.
It's a constant undercurrent of distracted loneliness, but every once in awhile, there'll be a sharp twinge, as well. Have you ever gotten up in the night to get a drink of water or pee or something, and you unexpectedly step on something sharp, and there's that intense, sudden, surprised pain in your foot?
That's what it's like to miss my kid, but in my heart instead of my toes.
So I've been struggling with words, and every so often, I find myself wandering aimlessly around the house when I really thought I had planned on sitting at my desk for the rest of the night.
I'm also going to the chiropractor three times a week, which means an hour drive each way, which means there are at least 2 hours in which I am not writing. I try to use the time to think about the direction my story should move, but mostly I just end up thinking about whatever song is playing on the stereo, or just watching the road pass beneath me while my mind burns blank.
In short, the first week has not been nearly as productive as I'd hoped. And also, I just realized that it's closer to being the second week than it is the first; even more discouraging.
I've been in contact with Kim, who has been my writing compadre since we stared doing this thing half a decade ago, and although she got off to a rough start, she seems to be doing pretty good, now.
Of course, she scrapped the story she started with after a few days. I fought doing that, both because I didn't feel like starting over, and also because I really hoped the story would get ironed out in my mind. The idea of scrapping it now and starting from scratch is both horrifying and somewhat appealing.
I know that it could end up being a good story, I just don't know if I have what it takes to make that happen.
When this month started, I imagined that not only would I easily make my word count each day, but I'd have enough spare time to write entertaining update posts about it. This is obviously not the case.
That said, I do plan on writing progress updates more often. The way I figure it, if I'm not able to write a novel, I should at least be whining about it on the internet.