November: Writing Month Kick-Off!

240/365 National Novel Writing Month begins
Image by owlbookdreams via Flickr

Here I am jumping into November with as much enthusiasm as I can muster! I’m excited for this month’s resolutions, but I’m also greeting them with some trepidation as they’re pretty darned ambitious.

November 2010 – Writing
Focus: Jump start my writing practice and make it a part of my daily routine again.

-Write a Novel. November is National Novel Writing Month, or NaNoWriMo or simply NaNo for short. Did I know about this before this year? I think I must have. At any rate, I know about it now. One of the biggest hurdles to my writing has always been that pesky inner critic. She shoots down ideas before I can even get them on the page. She’s such a perfectionist that I end up staring at a blank page or an empty screen until I finally just give up and read a book. NaNoWriMo is my attempt to side-step this inner voice. I figure if I set a writing schedule and sit down and write as fast as I can and focus on averaging 1,667 words a day rather than on writing something “good,” I might be able to complete a “Shitty First Draft” (as Anne Lamott calls it in Bird by Bird) before that inner killjoy realizes what’s happening.

-Establish a Daily Writing Schedule. This is the second biggest hurdle to my writing practice. Something is always more important than writing. I recognize that this is largely a reaction to fear of that inner critic (she’s really mean and scary), and I’m hoping that with such a lofty goal as NaNoWriMo to motivate me, I’ll finally figure out how to squeeze in an hour or two of writing each day. I suppose I could always just count the time I spend blogging; in which case, I’m done!

-Facebook Fast. Facebook is the biggest time-suck of my day. It does often add value to my life, but the value I get back is a very small percentage of the time I put into it. The other thing I get back is information overload and a compulsive need to check for updates and comments people have left saying how witty I am, both of which are probably just as damaging as the sucking away of my time. I have my blog set to notify Facebook automatically when I post new entries, but I haven’t figured out how to automatically notify my Imperfect Happiness Facebook Page, so I might allow myself to log in once a day to post the link to my latest blog entry on the Page. If any of you Facebook-and-Wordpress users know how to do this automatically, I’d love some tips. Because I’m not at all sure I can simply sneak into Facebook, update my Page, then sneak back out again without getting sucked in. Also, I will allow myself to reply via e-mail to comments friends make on my profile and links and to messages they send, so if you’re a FB Friend and see me commenting, don’t get your panties in a bunch thinking I’ve broken my fast so soon. I’m just circumventing the spirit of the fast via e-mail, not breaking the rules per se.

I’ll also try to keep my resolutions from August, September, and October, perhaps without quite so much intense decluttering. If you’d like to see my full Happiness Project Schedule, please click the link to the left.

2 Replies to “November: Writing Month Kick-Off!”

  1. Great post! I especially love your Facebook Fast idea. I have a big problem with wasting time on there too and will definitely need to add this goal to my Happiness Project as well. 🙂


    1. The Facebook fast really was wonderful. I’m back on there more than I need to be (how much do I need to be on Facebook?), but it was a nice break last November. Thanks for dropping by! Good luck on your Happiness Project!


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