I did NaNoWriMo, then I crashed. I wasn’t exhausted or overspent. Yes, I hit a major number with NaNo, but my stopping wasn’t fatigue it was what happens to me every year come December. I fall into a rut. A rut of not wanting to work. All that rushes through my mind is the desire to relax and play video games. I want to read and get away with doing not much at all. Those are after all not the days I remember in the long term, but the days I feel most happy. I’m content with my pizza, movies, and books. Hours pass much to fast and I’m longing for more time. I’m 24 and I still nap with no shame.
Unfortunately, sitting on my but and consuming media doesn’t allow me to really accomplish anything. If I want to do that, I need to slap myself in the face, have some coffee (so sleep isn’t possible), and write. There is always so much for me to do. So many words to string together or fix. It’s vital and exciting, but in December I want nothing to do with it. I want it as far from me as possible. The idea that I need to work when I’m rearing up and preparing for a total shutdown seems pretty much ludicrous to me.
All this means is I need to prioritize. December is simply hard for me to get in the swing. Once I stop after NaNo, I’m mentally done until the new year. I’ve come to realize this isn’t a problem. If I work hard 11 months of the year, I’m working the vast majority of the year. However, just allowing to check out entirely for a whole month just isn’t acceptable. So, I make a promise that I will work for at least a third of the month. 10 days. Generally I spread them out throughout the month. It’s enough to allow me to relax. It’s enough to keep me in the swing of things. More importantly it’s enough time that I can separate from my project and get a bit more perspective. It’s important and it’s relaxing.
Another benefit of slowing down a bit, is it allows me to take the time to look at my work objectively. I’m not just talking in terms of editing. It allows me to examine the projects I have waiting for me. I can determine which project I’m most enthused about working on. I can see if I need to take a new perspective. Most importantly, I can efficiently eye how much time I’m realistically going to need to get it to the next stage. Without stressing about following a timeline like I do later in the year when I plan. I’m thinking cautiously and with the intention of jumping into it with vigor.