True Confessions on NaBloPoMo and NaNoWriMo

NaBloPoMo_November
One of these years, I swear to Christ, I’m going to unplug from the whole goddamn Internet for November.

We just do not get along, November and I.

November and me?

Whatever.

I don’t know if this NaBloPoMo thing is for me. I mean, just this week, there were – still are – quite a few topics I want to write about but haven’t had the energy for. Book reviews I need to finish. Thanksgiving planning. An update on a writing conference that happened on October 18. Friends’ novels I’ve promised to tell you about.

At the earliest, I’m usually sitting down to compose my daily NaBloPoMo entry at 8:30 or 9 p.m. I may know what I want to write about, but this first week, I’ve felt like I’ve been phoning it in. The writing isn’t up to my usually-too-self-critical standards.

Part of this has to do with the fact that I write and edit for a living. And believe me, I am grateful beyond belief to be able to spend my day focused on words and ideas that will help make Pittsburgh a better place, trust me. As a survivor of long-term unemployment hell, I am blessed to be where I am.

So far, I’ve been able to keep up with NaBloPoMo for 14 days.  That’s 13 days longer than I thought I would last. But I’ll be honest: some days I feel like I’ve been phoning it in. I’ll admit that I’ve taken unfinished drafts and added new writing that day to make them a finished post and to clear the docket of some languishing reviews and whatnot. (I have, as of this writing, 146 posts in Draft.)  In my view, this practice is OK because as long as new writing that day is involved, it counts. Right?

But it’s hard, and when it’s hard, that’s when the writing feels like writing just for the sake of posting. Is that what we want our blogs to be? Or is it better to write every day, knowing that sometimes our writing needs to marinate for several days before serving to our guests?

For me, blogging feels better when it is more the latter than the former.

Don’t even get me started on NaNoWriMo.  I haven’t written a word. This might as well be called NaDaNoBo  (NaDa. No Book.) Besides, I would technically be considered a cheater anyway because I would be writing a work in progress.  And that’s undergoing some revisions in genre to a collection of linked stories … of which I have some other thoughts.

Again, whatever.

Fifteen more days.

2 thoughts on “True Confessions on NaBloPoMo and NaNoWriMo

  1. redpenmamapgh

    I like the November writing exercises, but I don’t do them every year. I have a good idea of what my limits and boundaries are as far as writing. What I like about NaBloPoMo are the prompts. My blog is going away from what it started as (as it should — I’ve been doing it nearly 8 years!), and it’s nice to have prompts or ideas to draw from. I think reading and writing are vital to being a good writer. Not all of it has to be perfect, but we have to work those muscles.

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