Saturday, April 12, 2014

Day 12: April NaNo Camp

Okay, so you may already know that I've been working on 20k per month goal since last Novemeber,
and I've been being successful so far. But since April is "Camp NaNo" month, it seemed like a good idea to join in on the fun there with my 20k goal and kill two birds with one stone.

 Since I'm trying to concentrate on one project, and I'd really love to have it done, done, done!

So I did.

  It was interesting.

 Last year I did July camp for the first time, so I am somewhat familiar with the way the Camp site works. (Haha, got you there, that's an accidental pun!)
   Anyway, the real NaNo site is more fun, with the Plot Doctoring forums my favorite part, but having the "cabin mates" chat to talk in can be fun, too. My cabin mates so far aren't very talkative, so that's kind of sad. (I may have to resort to a different cabin...)

 So, I got some great days of really productive sprints in early in the month, and was almost nearing the halfway point on my wordcount.
 "If I'm doing so well at this," I thought to myself, "Shouldn't I try to do more? The faster this project is done the happier several people in my life will be, and that includes me. So... why not up the word count to 30K? After all, a measly extra 10k on top of the pile shouldn't be too hard, right?"

 So, I did.

 And now I've hit some days where I'm not getting the scenes rolling like they used to, and I'm kind of losing momentum, and I'm thinking "What was I thinking?!!!"

 But, I think I can still do it... it just won't be easy sailing. I'm on track to accomplish it, as the site stats say:
"At This Rate You Will Finish On
April 30, 2014"
In order to write 30k in 30 days; I simply need to come up with one thousand (high quality, intensely expressive, and on-track-with-the-plot) words per day.
 At 12k on the 12th, (today) that means I'm theoretically doing okay. But I know that I did more than 1k per day early in the month, which means that my actual production has downshifted... and this spells a bad forecast for the upcoming weeks.

 To add to my problems, I have the ridiculous tendency to desperately want to finish early. To the degree that if I simply finish on time I will feel somewhat like a failure; only if I finish early will I have actually won.
 And the degree of actually enjoying the win will directly correspond to how many days early I finish.

   Is this crazy? (Are you afraid to answer that honestly?)

   Does anybody else feel like this? It's actually pretty miserable, 'cause it totally steals the joy out of most accomplishments. (At least timed ones.) And I don't like to think of myself as going through life all joy-less, etc. but I'm not sure how to alter this tendency, or ever from whence it springs.

  Anyway, let me know what you think and make me feel less lonely, will you please? :-)



Hannah Scheele said...

Oh wow all you NaNoWriMo-ers work so hard! Reading this post made me totally feel your frustration...:( Yikes, it sounds SO stressful!
Uh--yeah,it's a bit crazy. Maybe. ;)
But plow ahead! You've got lots of energy, you can do it. Which story are you working on? Or is it supposed to be a secret? Would telling people wreck your concentration or something?
We definitely don't want that!

E. Kaiser Writes said...

Actually, no it's not a secret! You, and everybody who wants to, can see the snippet I posted on my Camp NaNo profile.

Let me know what you think of the snippet! :-)

And, before you ask, yes, it is inspired by a certain recent release. But they did so many things that were "misses" story-wise, (at least to me) so this is an attempt to remedy that and actually bring as many references in the Anderson tale into the narrative, as well as borrowing some themes from the Snow Maiden tale, of similar origin.
It's been a lot of fun so far, but I'm kind of desperate to finish it quickly so I can get back to Fia. ;-) So I'm feeling stressed. :-)

Anonymous said...

Hi Elizabeth,
I like the honesty in this post a lot.

So a few things I see. One trait, this desire to win. hmmmmmmm.

you see, its a drive inside us, and some have it more than others, and in many ways, its not bad. I feel both Peter and Paul of our early church had the exact same spirit. But it cant stay if we are following Jesus. At some point, it needs to be replaced with something else. We don't want that drive to die, but to be redirected.

So I used to have it, this desire to win, and I employed the drive to do so. Until God showed me that it wasn't the way of heaven.
That all that drive and energy needed to be redirected, to a love for only truth and righteousness, and to even lose, for truth and righteousness.

It took time, . . . . to change, . . . . for inner priorities to change from youthful to more mature in Christ, but when they did, . . . guess what, . . . as I changed what gave me joy changed, and now joy is not found for me in personal victories so much as in helping others obtain a personal victory over error, weakness, ignorance or sin.

And as I do that, I see more of my own areas in need of growth, and so I chip away at them.

If Jesus said we must overcome all things to inherit his Kingdom, clearly he meant the overcoming of sin and self.

This overcoming becomes a joy.

Well, I appreciated your descriptions of your feelings on winning, striving, accomplishments, being miserable versus joy, and I do wish you happiness and growth.

Hope you don't feel so alone.


Deborah O'Carroll said...

Oh yay you're doing Camp too! How awesome! :D I'm only doing 10k but it's a good push to get some stuff written.

I understand that urge to finish early... I usually want to finish a day or two early myself (if only so I'm not panicking the last day). But maybe you should TRY reminding yourself that hitting the goal on the last day is just as much of a win as winning early...?

You're doing good so far and can totally do this! :) Just keep going!!

Connie Jean said...

Oh, ick. Have fun with that. I'm horrible with deadlines. (For some reason they make me write even slower and lose my motivation.) So you're doing tons better than I am! ;)

E. Kaiser Writes said...

Thanks guys, for stopping by and making me feel less lonely! I don't feel so out on a limb by myself now!

Yes, BB, that is one reason why I don't play many competitive games... I feel badly when I lose, and if I win, I feel badly because everybody else lost. So I prefer things where everybody can simply improve over what they used to be, and that way everybody can win. :-)

Besides, once you start thinking of life in general as a "race" with your own self as "project", that keeps your hands full right there! So many things to be worked on.

Thanks for commenting! I enjoyed hearing form you!

E. Kaiser Writes said...

Hello Deborah!
Yes, I think you have hit the nail on the head. I am super scared of getting panicked by the looming deadline and subsequently failing completely.
And that would explain why I only feel safe, and therefore victorious, the further and further away from the deadline I finish!
I am definitely NOT a risk-taker, adrenaline junkie type of person, so I guess this reaction to pressure is actually a totally logical one. Thanks for helping me figure this out!

And 10k is a great goal, that is what I had last July, and it really did help me get some stuff done even in the midst of a very busy summer.
Keep it up! :-)

E. Kaiser Writes said...

Hey Connie!
How are you coming on your writing? ;-) I know deadlines can be tough, and I've successfully avoided them most of the time, but this is a good challenge for my creative muscle, so I think it can be a force for good! ;-)

Have a great day!

Hannah Scheele said...

Eeekkk! You're doing a fairy tale! :D
I like it so far! You should do more of this! Fantasy that's kid friendly is the sort of thing you do best.

E. Kaiser Writes said...

Thanks, Hannah! I can't wait to finish it and send it out to my betas!!!! :-)