NaNoWriMo 2016 Day 19: Possibilities

by | Nov 19, 2016 |

“With self-discipline, most anything is possible.” — Theodore Roosevelt

My counter on the NaNo site tells me that if I write 2,010 words every day for the rest of the month, I’ll make 50,000 words. At this moment, due to illness, I’m feeling lucky if I get 700. But I trudge on, working when I can, and since most of this weekend will be spent tucked up in bed, I’m going to try to put a dent in that.

My husband lifted an eyebrow at me (like any good romance hero should) and asked, “Isn’t the idea for you to be resting?”

Well, yes, but one of the ways to rest is to take stress off your plate. One of the ways for me to do that is to stick to the self-discipline of getting my words done as best I can. Here’s the thing, as much as we cheer on the idea of “thirty days and nights of literary abandon,” a big part of getting NaNoWriMo done is having the self-discipline to sit down each day and do those words. There are going to be good days and bad days, but it’s the doing it every day that counts the most. And, if you want this to more than just a one-time or once a year thing, it’s a good idea to cultivate a little self-discipline.

I write commercial fiction. I have three books planned for 2017, one of which is supposed to be released in 2 months, 18 days. The second in 6 months, 24 days. The third in exactly 11 months. In addition to that, I need to plot and start writing future books in this series. It’s…not a light schedule, especially when you factor in the day job, elder care and the usual ups and downs of life. Self-discipline is the only way I’m going to be able to do this. Because I’m self-publishing, I have some leeway and can shift the dates somewhat, though the first book is themed, so it really needs to not slip. But that means self-discipline is all the more important because the only person I’m answering to is me.

Ever tell yourself, “I’m going to do X every day!” — only to find reason not to within a week of starting out? Yeah, I know that feeling. That’s why, sick as I’m feeling — and, yes, I am going in to Urgent Care today — I’m trying to stick to that particular self-discipline as much as I can because this is important to me. 2016 was the year to get myself published. I did that. 2017 is the year to go bigger.

You took this on because this is important to you. Maybe it’s a life goal, maybe it’s a need to get yourself back on track. If you’re struggling, tell yourself that you’re doing good by sitting down in front of that keyboard. You’re building a habit that will see you through this month and beyond. Even if you use the writing as an excuse to avoid doing the exercise you also told yourself you would do regularly (not that I would know anything about that), keep at day in and day out.

Because, yes, most anything is possible is we dream it and breathe life into it with our words.

Word Count Goal: 31,673

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