If you're like me, a bit competitive, this whole hullabaloo about winning may be making you nervous. After all, you've (I've) been chugging along, doing the work, and you're (I'm) still over 10,000 words from winning.
I'm write on track. But some of my buddies are changing colors before my eyes and getting winner exclamations posted below their photos. I'm writing just what I need to to win, about 1,667 words a day every day. I will win, but I'm not first. Wah.
Okay, crying is over. Now, I'll celebrate those friends who have caught fire this year and finished their words, sometimes over 100,000 before the deadline. I'm impressed. I'm awed. And I'm just a little bit jealous. But I can still celebrate all the winning taking place around me. It's amazing to be a part of this organization and this challenge.
And I am going to win. Even if I don't write another word. I will have won. I've made great progress on my historical novel despite my poor planning. I've learned more about my period. And I've put in 4-6 hours of writerly work nearly every day this month. This is the life I want to live. The life of a working writer.
Of course, it helps that my youngest is off at college and doing well. It helps that my office trailer was delivered and it's all set up. It helps that my husband likes to cook and clean. It helps that I have not had any consulting work this month. It helps that I've been working all year to get to this point. But what really helps is that I set that intention. I aimed at 50,000 words plus continuing other projects and submitting other work. And I'm hitting that mark.
Even if I didn't write another word, I'd be a winner. But I'm here, warming up with this little message at my Sunday morning writer's date, and I'll get at least 1,667 words in today. I'll tell more of my protagonist's story. I'll throw in another red herring, I'll have my character have a little more conflict with her mother and her own heart, and I'll have her learn something important even though she won't yet know it's important. I'm writing to the end of the project.
And somewhere on the way, I'll hit 50,000 words, and I'll post them on NaNoWriMo.org. I'll get my purple badge and order my shirt. Then I'll wake up on Dec. 1 and continue writing. I hope you will, too.
Remember, even if you've only written 500 words, you've still written more than you would have without the challenge, so color yourself a winner.