I have mentioned that I recruit…
This isn’t my first year to do something NaNoWriMo-related, but it is the first year that I’ve actually set up an account at the site, and the first year that the alternative I’ve crafted for myself is so close to the spirit of NaNoWriMo.
- I’m writing every day on one novel.
- I have a daily word count target I’m aiming for.
- I have the long-term goal of finishing the novel at the end of the month.
The only thing I’m doing that breaks the “rules” is that I didn’t start a new book from scratch on November 1.
Besides having several friends participating with whom I am checking periodically, this year I have recruited my mom to give it a try. She aspired to be a writer before I was born, and had a particularly traumatic experience when her new mother-in-law found mom’s unfinished first person romance novel and accused mom of having an affair. My paternal grandmother told anyone and everyone she had proof mom was having an affair, and she even coerced my dad into meeting with a divorce lawyer, among other things.
I only learned about that particular incident recently. Growing up, I knew my mom loved books, and she was quite supportive of my early interest in both reading and writing.
Anyway, for some years now I’ve been trying to encourage her to write, with only moderate success. Until I told her about NaNoWriMo. “Can anyone do it?” As soon as she said that, I knew she was hooked.
The first two days she did everything long hand. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve showed her how to use the word processor program on her Mac. For some reason it has just never sunk in that you can do something other than write a short note in those things.
So I walked her through it. I thought, given how she’s always talking about how much she likes having a laptop and how portable it is, that she’d want to write on it. Turns out that what seems to work best for her is typing on her iPhone. Yep, she now has not one but two Word Processors on her iPhone. I showed her how to set up the Dropbox synching with that, so she can work on the stories easily on either her computer or her iPhone.
And she’s writing away and so far having a ball.
The only pep talk I’ve had to give her was when she found herself worrying about some scenes she thought that maybe she should go back and edit. But she already knows that she has a tendency to get caught in unending revision loops on a single scene, so she knew it was a bad idea. I suggested that when the voice in her head started worrying about mistakes that needed fixing, that she just tell the voice that December is for revising.
She said it’s working.