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02 December 2020
11:36 am

I was coming here so consistently and then: whomp bam, November. I started doing thought logging/journaling, which is different than diarylanding. There are a whole lot of extra words and thoughts and.. it's similar, but different. Anyway, I ended up not coming to diaryland for an entire month, which felt strange actually. I'd gotten very used to putting my own words out sometimes and taking yours in. But for a month, it was just me and the words and the little creatures on this silly writing game site and..

I did it. I smashed Nanowrimo in the face in a way I never have before. You could say that being unemployed was a factor, and it is, but there were several years that was the case and still nothing got done. The site helped tremendously. Being off facebook probably helped a lot. (I'm a little surprised I'm still off.) It also helped that we realized that if Dan sits around with his headphones on (whether he's listening to his audio book or not) my brain registers that as him being occupied, and I am able to free myself from whatever obligation it is I think I have to make sure he is entertained and... I don't know... like, make sure I'm not "doing something wrong."

Truth is, I just sat at the desk for hours and hours most every day, hands and shoulders hunched over the keyboard like a goblin. I didn't know what to write. I started writing about a woman in a velvet robe sitting on a velvet couch in a badly lit room with an ugly lamp. I started making notes and putting together and idea and characters for a d&d fantasy type story. Then I finally (finally lol) came up with an idea for a Twilight fanfic (I've never written fanfic) and immediately went about writing plot notes and ideas in a way I never have before. Eventually I got to actual text even. In a moment of stagnation, Cadence and I had a conversation where I said I couldn't imagine being a 20 something living alone this year, she elaborated on what it might look like, I wrote some of that. And then I practiced my hand at some general smuttery, because my hand is shy and giggly and usually writes "and then omg they kissed" or some seventy four word flowery expansion on that. Oh, and I did a couple creative writings on some tarot cards and other photos.

So like, okay. I didn't write one single story, though the Twilight material took up about 25k. But who the fuck cares. All 51k was actual content, or directly related notes. In other years, there's always trash included. And I think part of the thing that helped that along was the intense (word wise) journaling I was doing alongside it. The thoughtlog words (along with some other scraggly notes and working words) tabulated another 50k on its own. So... like... tech-nic-ally... I wrote 100k.

My last win was in 2013. I consider it it a "technical" win because I don't know what fiction was even in that file other than a few short flashes, but I do know it was at least 30k of total garbage fire stream of consciousness writing. Like, I don't think anything about it was even good. So, by those standards, I "won" when I hit 50k on the 16th.

I forgot I won in 2012. I knew I won in 2011, and a day early. I beat that record by 36 hours. I hit the 100k on the 29th.

There was a bit of a comedown, an anticlimactic feeling. Nanowrimo wasn't the social event it usually is. There was no chance of finishing your 50k in a coffeeshop, cheered on by other folks. Video chat and Discord was the best I could hope for.. and my video chat friends are... well, they're a whole thing, but I didn't feel a lot of success feedback from them. And the Discord groups... I feel so awkward, like I'm not sure if I'm really connecting with anyone, and I end up second guessing my interactions even more.. even though I wish that was a way I could chat with new people. Maybe once the servers calm down now that it is December.

But Dan and I stayed up late that night, talking about my writing, and I read him some excerpts. All the content, whether or not it is any good, is all coherent, and that's not somethig I can say for previous years.

Really, I just smashed it. And not just November, but I wrote in a way I haven't, in what feels like a very long time. In some ways, like I never have.

I don't know. I have a lot of thoughts about it and fears that I'll just stop writing now that November is over, but I've got multiple projects I can keep working on, and a site that will keep me writing day in and out. I would say more about it now, but, though I'm lucky it held off until December, the typing mechanicals in my left arm are killing me, so I'm going to take a break and catch up on all the lovely diaries I have missed out on reading.

Oh, and continue gritting my teeth through the new day 2 because we picked up cigarettes at the election and of course I wasn't going to put them down in November, oops. But if I can pull this off - the "quit soon after relapsing," well, that is a new achievement unto itself too.