I think NaNoWriMo is hard to say, probably because I say it wrong. I say the Wri part like ree instead of the correct way, rye, which makes a certain sort of sense, but is much less fun to roll off the tongue.

Do you even care?

I hope not. Okay, so the challenge continues. This week has definitely been slower on the writing/editing front, but I’m still making forward progress. Why are things slow? Because there have been a few distractions along the way, like hospital visits, allergy attacks and reading other people’s blogs – dang them for being so tantalizingly intriguing! During my bloghopping, I came across an audio commentary that you should take a listen to. It definitely has an alternative, perhaps less supportive, view of NaNoWriMo, that I think you should be aware of. Here’s the link. Come back when you’re done.

So did you listen to it? I think Jeff DeRego makes some valid points, although I can’t say he’s completely right about everything because I’m taking the challenge, and agreeing with him would make me look like an idiot. I do agree with his take on the process of writing. Writing isn’t simply about producing, it’s about making sure that what you’re producing isn’t complete crapola. On the other hand, before starting the Anaedor series, I wrote four novels that were complete crapola and I wasn’t even in a hurry.

Okay, so here’s the deal. Whether or not you agree with either of us, if you’re going to take the challenge, do it with a big grain of salt. It’s nothing, if not motivation, to get yourself seated on your hiney and putting in some time. People are their own worst obstacles. I think that if you sit down and write a lot of pages, maybe even complete something, you’ve shown yourself that you can do it – that writing a book is achievable. In the beginning stages of becoming a writer, I don’t think it matters what you’ve written. What’s important is getting over that hurdle of starting and then finishing what you started. Keep in mind, as well, that editing was invented for the main reason that most of us don’t get it right the first time.

As Jeff maintains, you certainly don’t have to write every day to be a writer, but it also doesn’t hurt to write as much as you can for the simple fact that more practice means better writing (and it also becomes easier over time). However, if you don’t write every day, if you don’t complete the challenge, I truly believe that somehow you will survive and maybe even flourish. The main point is that you need to find what works for you and then try to stick to it.

In the end, books don’t write themselves. Sad – shocking even – but true. If you want to be a writer and someday, hopefully, a published author, then you’ve got to write. It’s that simple.

So far this challenge has forced me to be productive at a time when I kept putting off writing to do other things. I am sincerely thankful for this push because while I was missing my writing, I was not carving out the time to do it. Whether or not I meet my goal of completing my book this month is not important to me, but getting back on track is.

So thank you Jeff DeRego for putting this challenge into perspective and thank you NaNoWriMo for kicking me in the butt!