Tuesday, November 29, 2016


Aftermath, one word not two. After math is like 3rd period, after math. This is more like Donald J. Drumpf is going to be the next POTUS. Yeah. Bad. Or maybe a little gentler aftermath would be post-NaNoWriMo. That is coming up (maybe today!). I've hit 48,765 words, so today (and tomorrow if necessary) I have to write 1,235 more words. That's less than a single day of normal NaNo. I'm getting really psyched! I have an excellent track record, so far, of ONLY buying a WINNER shirt on years that I win - but I buy them BEFORE I WIN! It's pretty motivating, actually, because they ain't cheap and if I lose I force myself to donate the shirt. Harsh! In the (almost) aftermath of the crazy marathon of writing I (almost) find myself relieved and ready for a break, but also full of inspiration and confidence I didn't have going in.

1. I fucking did it! It's hard. It takes diligence and perseverance, neither of which I actually have. It also takes generating a story that has enough interest to keep my ADHD brain engaged. Not easy.

2. If the story is great, which sometimes it is, I love that I now have a HUGE pile of words to pick through and pull from to create a cohesive arc and build on personable characters. Often the NaNo work itself is kind of chaotic, because that's me. I'm a pantser. But it gives me a ton of material to work with.

3. As disorganized as my pantsed work is, I do work hard to think the story through before I finish. There is generally a beginning middle and end. Occasionally there's a theme or moral. Infrequently (but once it's happened) a long string of pages work really well together and just get plucked from their nest and into a new home, a new document, impressive and whole.

4. Making time for me can be really challenging. It comes with a heaping spoonful of guilt, because I am the caregiver of a child, a dog, a husband, a house, two cars, a potted garden (which is mostly dead, now that's it's the end of November), and a host of volunteer jobs, not to mention my mom/brother, friends, in-law family, and other activities. I don't think I'm unique, or have more on my plate than most - in fact I think I have less. And I have pretty understanding people in my immediate world. But it can STILL be hard. Plus most of the time I can carve out is either giving up one of the aforementioned things (like friendships, laundry/cleaning/shopping/housework, or something even less lovable, like making our end of year cards for everyone we've ever met etc.) or my OTHER me time - binge watching Netflix original series. Tough choices, to be sure.

Anyway, the glow of this aftermath is so close I can feel the brushed cotton of the t'shirt. I hope everyone gets to experience this feeling in some way - whether it's art or programming, finishing a really hard puzzle (I've got one of those on the go now too), sports, or cooking; this feeling of aftermath - as opposed to the OTHER aftermath (i.e.: DJT) is AWESOME!

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