I survived… but in terms of NaNo, I didn’t win. My anthology was a dragon that I fought with short sword and shield, rock and sling, bow and arrow, morning star and—well, you get the idea. It was brutal and bloody, but I knew it would be. We all know that going into it. Writing is damned hard work sometimes. But when the dust settled and the air cleared, this time I was on the losing end.
I might not have won, but I’m not defeated. I accomplished things in this single month that I’ve been struggling with all year, and in terms of my plans to publish, I’ve taken a huge step forward. That’s what I want to take a quick minute to look at tonight—the journey of the writer. We decide we want to write, we realize it won’t always—ever—be easy, but we do it anyway. We make sacrifices every day to make that idea into a character, and that character into a story and that story into a finished manuscript.
At the end of the day, that’s what makes you a writer. You made the conscious choice to write instead of <fill in the blank.>
Here’s my list of things I give up/do on a fairly regular basis to continue my writing:
- Forget to sleep
- Forget to eat
- Make sacrifices to the writing gods
- Use every spare moment to jot down ideas, including work breaks and lunches
- Skip my favorite TV shows
- Got a blood transfusion because after a while I ended up with ink in my veins and blood on my keys
- Threatened my muse (she’s still mad at me…)
- Ruined one of my rugs by I standing dripping wet on it after a shower because I had an idea
- Bypass showers entirely some days
Okay, so some of those are more fanciful than anything. Sue me; I’m a writer. What does your creative little writing sacrifice list look like?