About NaNoWriMo: Week 1 – Getting Started

NaNoWriMo is here and the ball is rolling. The first day still has some time to go, but I’ve already reached my target for the day. As I mentioned previously, last year I reached 136,000 spanning two novels. This year,my goal is 145,000, but I’d really like to hit 150,000. If you do the math, that makes my goal 5,000 words per day. It is a hefty load, but with focus, I should make it.

With a goal like 150,000, it is easy to be paralyzed by fear. In theory, I only need to write 500 words more each day. The fear of failing, of not reaching my goal is almost paralyzing. Then I remember, how can I ever reach my goal if I don’t start. I spent a few days talking myself into not quitting with the rationalization that if I could do what I did on my first real writing endeavor, then of course I could do it now with a year of experience under my belt. I also peppered in the levity of failure, just means I didn’t write as much, but I still wrote a lot.

Fear is capable of paralyzing you. Fear can make you believe that you can’t do what you actually can. When it comes to NaNoWriMo, there is no reason to be afraid. There are thousands of people out there who are doing the same thing with you and they have struggles to face to. Instead, you have to imagine the beginning of Nano as an opportunity to improve yourself and write more. At the end of the month, whether you finish or not, you have more than you started with. And that is the key, you need to start.

Just because November 1st is half over, you can still join. You can still write like a person gone mad with the sole goal of having written more on November 30th than you had at this moment. I plotted my entire novel from beginning to end. November 1st is the day my story finally gets to come to life.

For the rest of the month, every Friday, I will be posting an excerpt from one of my NaNoWrimo WIP (work in progress). The first piece I will be sharing is from my Fantasy novel.  I want to advise you that these are first drafts. Sure, I’ve cleaned them up a bit, but they are very much dirty drafts without any polish. Without any further ado, the excerpt.

Mrs. Jacobsen only asked one of two questions every time she waddled up to the teller’s window. Generally, she went with: How is your day, sweetie? But that day, she went with: Can you help me to my car when we’re done?

Elle rubbed the tender skin above her eyes at Mrs. Jacobsen’s request. It would be yet another day where she spent far too long in the bank to cash a measly pay stub. She ran her moist fingers along the off-white apron that hung limply from her waist, when a teller shouted for the next customer in line.

As Elle inched closer to freedom, long brown hair caught her eye. She didn’t know that hair. Elle knew everyone’s hair. Weaving to the side, Elle tried to get a better look at the man the hair belonged to. He had a long face. It wasn’t until he caught her looking at him and she dropped her purse did she notice his green eyes.

“Sorry, sorry,” Elle muttered to Mr. Roberts in front of her. Collecting her items, she glanced back at the mystery man.

“Next,” Ava, the next free teller, called. She cursed silently for not getting her. She’d be stuck with lousy Larry again. She wasn’t in the mood for his small talk about government conspiracies.

The mystery man took a step forward to stand at Ava’s window. The stranger had to have been someone’s relative. No one ever wandered into this town without a reason. Who would want to?

Ava and the man muttered quietly as Elle shifted from foot to foot.

Mrs. Jacobsen and Thomas walked from the store at a pace well suited for a snail. She didn’t ask for help often and tended to give monetary thank yous. With that sort of incentive, she couldn’t blame Thomas for taking up her occasional request for help. Elle couldn’t deny the reliability of Mrs. Jacobsen’s knee. It was like a sign from god, signalling some unfortunate event in town. It had started after Mrs. Jacobsen couldn’t get to her husband in time to save his life all thanks to that arthritis-filled knee.

“Next,” Kevin called from the final window and the last person before her rushed to the window. It was good to know she wasn’t the only one in a bit of a rush. The only lines that moved slower in town could be found in the post office. Elle made sure to avoid the place like the plague.

A bit closer to the mystery man and Ava, the sounds of hushed arguing became a bit more clear. Ava stepped away from the window and disappeared into the back room. A moment later, she returned with the bank manager. What was his name? Eh, who cares.

“Next,” Larry called as Thomas made his way back into the bank. He pocketed the cash he surely just received from Mrs. Jacobsen.

Elle stepped forward and took a deep breath and said a quick prayer for patience. As she passed the mystery man, his chilled fingers grabbed her wrist in a death grip.

Check out the other participants in the AW NaNoWriMo Blog Chain
orion_mk3 – Week 1
robjvargas – Week 1
AshleyEpidemic – Week 1
vertigo78 – Week 1
bdwilson – Week 1
amaliegreen – Week 1
RhondaParrish – Week 1
sunflowerrei – Week 1

5 thoughts on “About NaNoWriMo: Week 1 – Getting Started

  1. Pingback: About NaNoWriMo: Week 2 Excerpt | So, I pondered...

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