NaNo Pep Talk

I've never worked with toast masters. I do not have training in pep or talk. Any raw-raw that I have I came by naturally. But I know I'm supposed to give you a reason to believe me, build up my ethos. So how is this: I've finished five novels. I'm published in novel length fiction and short stories. Whoop di do. That does not mean that I know anything about the second week blues of NaNo. What do I know about the gut clenching panic? The drought of words, even the verbal kind, to describe how stuck you are? But I do know. 2nd week blues is a mixture of shame for falling behind on your word count and an assurity that you will never, ever finish, that everything you've written sucks. You start to think that you were crazy to even consider doing NaNo.

Those that quit or give up usually do it during the second week.

They describe it as “Life happened” or that they had writers block, but what they don't realize is that life will always be happening. There is plenty of time to get caught up, to figure out the plot holes, or just *gasp* ignore them and move past them. Often when words don't come writers take the literary approach and wait for that fickle friend Muse to sit upon their shoulder and whisper brilliant words into their ears. That is why it takes them five years to write a book. You've got thirty days. Don't wait. Don't hold back. Spew the words onto the page. Let it liberate you. Enjoy the naughty rush of incomplete sentences and adverbs, of spelling mistakes and unsupported data. Feel the power of bringing a whole new world to life.

My favorite part of motivational, keynote speeches, or author workshops is when they talk about their process. They talk about getting to a point where they can't write, where they are sure they have lost 'it' and will never write again or worse: that what they are writing this time is total crap and everyone will know what a fraud they are. Stephan King, Nora Roberts, David Morrell, Suzanne Brockmann, Anne Perry, Amberly Smith and hundreds of other authors. You're blocked and discouraged? How very writerly of you.

Skip ahead in the plot or describe your characters in the grocery store. Anything to get beyond the blues. You can do this. You are a WriMo and WriMos write. Don't give up. Roll with life as kids get sick and bosses add deadlines. Know that when you win, and you will win, that you'll look back at this dark period of self doubt and be proud that you kept going. That you soldiered on. That you kicked NaNo butt.

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