Hello, dear readers, and welcome!
In case you missed yesterday's first InkTober post, happy October! If you're anything like me, you almost can't wait for it to be November (although you can wait for Halloween to be over, because you love Halloween).
As promised, this is the first of my NaNoWriMo Prepping posts, and I'll be doing more throughout the month to get you all ready and excited for NaNo! Please enjoy!
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
Every year around November I receive the same set of emotions: excitement and worry. Excitement is of course for the upcoming writing, the fellow Wrimos I will meet, the parties and write-ins, and just the general welcoming feeling of NaNo. But worry is the emotion that always attempts to gobble me up, chewing on me with its extremely sharp teeth.
Worry stems from many places: What if I can't find an idea? What if my idea sucks? What if I change my mind about what I want to write? What if I fall behind? What if the other Wrimos are crazy?
As a NaNo veteran -- well, I've been doing NaNo for six years; does that make me a veteran? -- I can honestly say that this is one of the biggest things about NaNo I've learned:
None of those worries matter.
I'm not saying that you don't matter, simply that your worries don't. We all are nervous about our ideas, about writing and trying something new, especially if we are new to writing or to NaNo, but in the end everything always works out.
There is something magical about NaNo that gets into your system once November begins, and doesn't leave. I'm not saying that it makes the month or the writing easy, because it certainly doesn't, but the experience is special, and the bonds you form during November -- both with your fellow authors and your story -- are special, too. I would never trade what I've learned from the hardships of NaNo for an easy-going month, but I have learned that worrying over my novel will not do me any good.
Worrying stifles creativity, so stop it now. It will take your enjoyment out of NaNo before NaNo even starts. NaNo is a fun challenge, but above all it's a fun time. You may not win your first year, or any of your others, but winning isn't really what NaNo is about -- it's about trying, about getting into good writing habits, about community.
Take your idea, and run with it, whenever it comes to you. Get out there and meet other writers in your area (and make MLs like me happy, because we put a lot of work into arranging write-ins and parties), and make new friends. Have an exciting November!
If you're worried, I understand. I've been bit by the worry bug myself this year, but I've managed to squash it, because I know what it does. Allow yourself to let excitement take over instead, remind yourself that everything will work out in the end, and be proud of yourself for trying something new.