I’m a creative person at heart. I love doing arts and crafts, I’ve been known to bake a cake and then shape and decorate it into a three foot tall sunflower, and I always carry a pen with me in case the inspiration for a poem strikes me while I’m out and about. Give me a few moments and an idea, and I am going full-throttle towards completing a poem or a short story.
And while I love the idea behind NaNoWriMo, and even have several friends in the Indie Author Arena that have completed NaNoWriMo in previous years with excellent results, for me and the way I am? NaNoWriMo is the quicket way to not only stifle, but kill my creativity.
Too much pressure.
I had planned on writing a 50,000 word poem for NaNoWriMo this year. Because when I get going on an idea, especially one in regards to my writing, I can crank out poems and short stories very easily. I very gleefully announced on a podcast I was a guest on in mid-October that my plan for NaNoWriMo was an epic poem. And I just as gleefully said on my own podcast on Halloween night that I’d be writing the poem, and it was going to be awesome.
But the reality is, while I could write a 50,000 word poem over thirty days, the idea of starting November 1 and finishing by November 30 did nothing but have me saying, “Oh fuck!” and being unable to write with my usual passion. I have often said I’ll never make creative writing a career. Because once it becomes a job for me, something I have to do each day, its no longer going to hold the same joy and pleasure for me. Writing has always been my escape from the hurts and heartaches in this world, and it is my way of doing something just for me. I’ve written countless poems and short stories that are just that: for me. They’ll never be released to my readers. I might show one or two friends what I’ve done, but in the end? Those stories and poems will remain on my computer or in a notebook, simply for my own pleasure.
So I’ve removed NaNoWriMo from my “to-do” list for the month of November. I’ll still be writing the 50,000 word poem, because I love the idea of creating a piece of poetry that tells a novel-length story. And if I finish it in November due to the fact that I took the pressure off myself? Then hey, great! I can say I wrote a 50,000 word poem in November of 2012.
And as for my friends who are slugging away at their keyboards? You have my support, and I cannot wait to read what you’ve written when it comes out. Drinks are on me come December 1, 2012.
Also, there is no damn money in it. If you want me to enter something, at least give the possibility of a reward. Otherwise, I’ll be over here writing DMX/John Stamos crime fiction like a BOSS.
Colin, as always, you bring laughter to knowledge… thank you my friend!
I applaud you, because you know why you write, for you and the passion of it all. Sometimes pressure is good, writing comes from the heart and soul. I don’t see how that can be rushed. Good luck to all those who are writing..
Thanks Kim! I’m still doing the epic poem, just on my own time table!
Great post. Luv the honesty. I too started a novel during this month and I will finish it but I will on my terms not a 30 day challenge. It does become a numbers game instead of a creative moment during it all. Good luck with your poetry.
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