19 November 2009

NaNoWriMo Update: Day 19 -- Seeking motivation

Daily Stats

Day 19 Word Quota: 2,500
Day 19 Words Written: 1,402
Cumulative Word Count: 28,228

Seeking motivation

Following Wednesday's less-than-stellar output on Snakebit, I decided on Thursday morning that what I needed was some good motivation. So I searched. And searched. And searched some more, until I found good stuff!

Some of the best came from the staff at NaNoWriMo. These people are incredibly encouraging, not to mention funny. They send out weekly "Pep Talk" e-mails which challenge, boost, and encourage all the NaNoWriMo participants. They tend to be humorous, and they usually speak directly to whatever it is I am experiencing at the moment.

This week's pep talk was a good one, but what really intrigued me was one from 2007 by Neil Gaiman (of Sandman and Eternals fame). I'm not quite sure how I happened upon it, but I'm glad I did, because he spoke to the work angle of writing a novel. To quote:

"You write. That's the hard bit that nobody sees. You write on the good days and you write on the lousy days. Like a shark, you have to keep moving forward or you die. Writing may or may not be your salvation; it might or might not be your destiny. But that does not matter. What matters right now are the words, one after another. Find the next word. Write it down. Repeat. Repeat. Repeat."

I needed to hear that.

In addition to Pep Talks From Writers Better Than I, the people at NaNoWriMo also put up some helpful videos, like this one describing Week Three of the bit of madness that is NaNoWriMo.

I also found motivation in an unexpected place. I'll admit up front that Wesley Crusher was not my favorite character in "Star Trek: The Next Generation", but I was impressed with the blog by the actor who portrayed him, Wil Wheaton. Who knew Doctor Crusher's baby boy could write?

I had been checking some keywords on Twitter when I saw a link from Wheaton' s blog posted as a retweet. I probably would have ignored it, but it quoted Warren Ellis, so I had to check it out. Turned out to be another motivational blog post that said something I needed to hear.

Of course, all this searching for motivation came at a cost: I only got 1,402 words done. But I feel good about it, and there is much more to come.

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