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on the power of showing up

note: I wrote this post in April of 2019 (pre-COVID). It's been sitting in my drafts for quite a while, but I think it's time for it to see the light of day. It's been helpful for me to reread over the past few months, especially as I continue to try to make an effort to write, and I hope it can be helpful to you, too. i got an invite to a writers' group a few months ago, and i had never felt like more of a fraud in my life. it had been months, if not years, since i'd felt like a writer. the proverbial well of words in my heart had dried up, it seemed, and i wasn't sure if it was ever coming back. i agreed to go out of a sense of helplessness—i'd identified as a writer ever since i could remember. if i'm not a writer, who am i?  i told myself that it was important to show up and act like a writer even when i didn't feel like one, because even though i hadn't been writing, i reassured myself, i still was a writer. but sometimes the words f

the NaNo diaries: week two

a little motivation.
i have no idea who made this. if you did, let me know and i'll credit you!

I was going to do a vlog like last week but the past few days have been extraordinarily bad for me physically (more info on that here). I did end up recording a vlog but I haven’t decided whether I’ll post it or not considering I sound completely brain fried and ramble… a lot. So in lieu of a vlog, here’s my update for week two before time passes us by.

The main points:

I introduced Charlie Baldwin and his bald eagle, Pixie. I also realized some weird parallels—Charlie is a cross between Robin Hood and Peter Pan, and Ryll (the place for all the outcasts) completely fulfills my childhood dreams of living in the forest. Ironically enough, I named his eagle Pixie before I even realized the Peter Pan connection.

I also introduced Ryll and its inhabitants, including but not limited to Enda, Clay, Fritz, Spice, and Anchor. The first four all came to me at once one day, introducing themselves, showing me their appearances and personality almost instantly. (I’ve had to dig harder to discover more about some of them, but they’ve been very cooperative thus far. I haven’t been sorry. Oh, except for the fact that Clay hates Lynx and radiates hatred off of himself like an oven. What a jerk. Don’t worry, he’ll reform.)

Enda is birdlike, and she and Charlie are totally shippable. (Speaking of shipping, I’ll cover that later.) Fritz and Spice are the cutest kids in the world and completely inseparable. I love them already. And Anchor is a late arrival, even though he’s been around since last year’s NaNo. I came up with the idea for he and Lynx last year and they made a brief appearance in Silver Tears, but in that book Anchor just wasn’t gelling so he’s gotten a major age, appearance, and personality overhaul, and several secrets about him have come out that I didn’t expect. It’s kind of amazing.

One thing that’s been a subject of discussion amongst my NaNo support group is shipping. We all ship each others’ characters (canon or not canon…) and it’s overall been a lovely experience. After all, it’s not every day that someone ships your unpublished characters. Oh, and several keysmashes have been received. That was doubly lovely.

And now for the more somber edge of things: I’ve discovered that Rane and Lynx’s story is going to be a lot more heartbreaking than expected. Earlier this week I was writing an extremely emotional scene and my heart literally ached along with theirs. That’s one of the first times that’s happened to me. It was wonderful and awful and beautiful and horrible and one of the worst parts of writing and one of the best parts of writing all at the same time.

My plot is going interestingly. It’s been coming to me in chunks—I got the beginning chunk a bit before NaNo and then I got the middle chunk early in week two. And let me just say wow. Like I said—it’s going to be heartbreaking. I really don’t know how I’m going to write it, and that’s been part of the problem. I don’t know if I should write it, if this is the direction I should take my novel, or if I should try a different angle. This direction, should I choose to accept it, would be pretty devastating to Lynx and the people around her. Really devastating. But as long as there was some redemption in the end, I might be able to handle it. I’ve been kind of undecided about it all which is affecting the writing process. I’m lagging behind and really lacking inspiration. I have to wonder if this is because I’m not looking forward to what I have ahead of me to write. Any ideas on how to balance that out a bit? I have a feeling that I need to add things to my plot that I can look forward to, even amidst the bad.

Writing itself has been hard and laggy. Earlier in the week it was okay but in the past few days it’s been a little harder. Like molasses. I’m thinking this is probably because this week has been insanely hard for me physically. I did have a good writing day today, though—and I hit 30,000 words! WOOT.

But in the midst of all this sluggish molasses and plot uncertainties and physical pain, it’s been good. Really good. This NaNo has helped me remember once again how much I love writing.

Guys, I really love writing.

I want to do it for the rest of my life.

As a random side note, earlier this week I got inspired for Souvenirs. Yeah, guys, my two-year-trouble-child. I figured out a majorly troublesome character and everything just finally clicked.

The only problem? This inspiration decided to hit right in the middle of NaNo.

So it's faded a bit since then. I'm hoping the inspiration sticks around until after NaNo, until I can actually start the blasted thing.

Until then, I’ll be procrastinating, hanging out on Tumblr, and reblogging lovely photos on Pinterest. See y’all over there.

:: little snippets::

I'm keeping a snail's pace for NaNo this year. BUT AT LEAST I'M KEEPING A PACE.

I've had so much inspiration flowing out of me for my NaNo novel... and other novels that I want to write when I'm done pouring out my heart this November. I love being a writer; best thing there is.

i feel like i should take the day off of using capital letters just because
it feels like too much energy to hit the shift key.

- from my facebook


  1. Haha, glad your plot's going well! I ought to go and bully mine for a bit . . . ugh. Have lost all motivation for the cursed thing. Kill it with fire.

    Breaks from the shift key are also totally acceptable. yep. totally.


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