NaNoWriMo began four days ago.
I am not writing a novel, but last week, I planned to utilize NaNoWriMo as motivation to create my own, let's call it, NoBloWriMo. Or AarBloWriMo? Hmmm ... maybe WriMoBloPo? Maybe I need to keep working on this. I digress.
I'm not writing a novel. I'm writing a screenplay. For a film. Or two, because there's also this TV series. Or three? Because one of the scripts--originally a short film--might work better as a play.
Or one. I should stick to one. Because right now, I have none.
Or blog posts. Once easy, they have become impossible, even as every single day, something smacks me in the face, and that voice inside says, "Let's write about this!" They used to be easy, and not because I ever expected to turn them into anything other than random musings. Now, they've become impossible even
I never intended for this space to be an online journal. From that first post more than 15 years ago (Oy!), I simply wanted a place to express the random musings occupying too much space in my over-opinionated, infinitely-interested brain.
Somewhere along the way, as various work and life events (and Twitter; I actually do, in fact, blame those early days of Twitter!) got in the way, translating those thoughts into (coherent?) words on the screen with any regularity became too big of a challenge. Plus, I found a new, more private and introspective outlet.
My blog was not an online journal, and any possible need for it to become one evaporated when (after years of failed attempts) I not only started but also managed to maintain my offline journal. Credit due to Julia Cameron's The Artists Way, for her concept of "Morning Pages" led to my daily journaling practice of the last 10-plus years. The only habit I have sustained with greater perfection is avoiding even a single drag on a cigarette since the day I quit smoking nearly 25 years ago on Jan. 1, 1995.
(Second tangent: SHIT! Anyone out there nearing 50: Is it just me? Or does absolutely everything you encounter or contemplate first and foremost remind you of how old you are? Consider that rhetorical ...)
The first rule of "Morning Pages": Don't worry about doing them wrong! As Cameron writes, "There is no wrong way to do Morning Pages–they are not high art. They are not even 'writing.'" Still, I have never eliminated from my consciousness the idea that I must be doing them wrong. From discussions with several others, I'm not alone.
In Cameron's universe, this practice demolishes the barriers otherwise blocking one's creativity; it is the key to helping creative artists recover from what blocks them.
I have dozens of journals, filled with whatever word strings my OCD brain has spit into them. My routine has evolved over the years, and rather than "three pages of longhand, stream of consciousness writing, done first thing in the morning," I tend to use a timer, set to 30 minutes, which usually generates four-plus pages in a standard Moleskine notebook. However, no organization or planning, simply dumping whatever comes out onto the page ... well, that's what I do.
I wish "first thing in the morning" was possible. Once upon a time, during that other life of mine B.K. (before kids, natch), it was. Now, there are breakfasts to make, OIT treatments to prepare, kids to dress and take to school/daycare, and of course, none of that considers escaping my own waking-up sleep-haze, or those minimum requirements to start my engine (water, eye drops, coffee, bathroom, etc.).
Rarely does any of it progress smoothly, but I usually still manage to start them before 8 am, which could be "first thing" if a couple little people weren't ensuring that the day starts no later than 6. (Let's not even bring-up how fucked this past Fall-back weekend was!)
I show-up. I write ... or scribble ... or form stings of letters that reasonably resemble English. And yet, they don't break down my barriers, so ... am I doing them wrong?
My intent this NaNoWriMo is mostly just about a different "WriMo": I want to write more and not just say I plan to write more. On one hand, most recently, I've worked on incorporating the lessons of Seth Godin's The Dip, "quitting" the unnecessary things that distract and steal time from my main goals and (therefore) needs. But for some reason, maybe due to its utterly private and risk-lacking nature, I feel some compulsion to not quit this blog but rather to reinvigorate it; or at least, to post to it.
If you found your way here, and to the end of these roughly 900 words signifying ... something: Hi. Thanks. Hopefully, at the end of
NoBloWriMo ("November Blogging Writing Month") AarBloWriMo (Aaron's Blog Writing Month--problematic acronym!) WriMoBloPo ("Write More Blog Posts"? Not great, but will do for now), I'll realize precisely what I'm want to say here, and maybe more importantly, I'll stop spending time on the seemingly endless drafts I've started, sometimes finished, but never published for the world to see.