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1. Getting ahead doesn’t mean squat

I was a day ahead at one point during the first week. A day ahead! Days of 2k were my usual. But unless you’re already to 50k, so what? It just takes a few crap days to undo all that hard work to have a pretty looking graph.

2. Getting behind isn’t the end of the world either

I started off Monday woefully behind. I kind of felt like, okay, this isn’t for me. There’s no way I can catch up to be on par. I’m just going to lag behind more and more. I can’t write more than 1k in a day…and then I wrote over 3k in a day.

3. Good feels from camaraderie are awesome

Writing is generally a lonely occupation. But during NaNo, it’s easy to find other people who are going through the same things and to share with them. There are people on my facebook page who write, and I had no idea! Or well, not until NaNo. It also made me realize how much that camaraderie is needed to write, if only as a link to the world outside.

4. No outline, no problem

I’m taking more chances with my writing not having an outline than I’ve done in a long time. I know I mentioned the freedom that pants-ing has given me, but it’s a little more than that. The head editor still likes to show up, but not nearly as much as usual. Okay, so some of what I write may be cliche, and I know it, but there’s some things characters say or do, things I don’t expect. And instead of doing my usual, “is this right?” dance, I roll with it.

5. I can do this

I’ve written more in the past two weeks than I usually do in a month. Yes, some of it is crap, but when is it not? If anything, I’ve learned to trust myself as a writer more, and well, be more on my own side. I’m one of the most self-critical people I know. Hell, I have trouble showing my revised stuff to friends. I spend a lot of time trying to hide that I write, or at least to play it down as a hobby. But it’s not. I can do this thing called writing. It may take me a while to get to where I’d like to be, but I can do this.

And for the first time in a long time, I’m not so scared to admit the truth anymore. I’m a writer. I make-up stories and put them down on paper. Nothing anyone can do or say is going to change this. It’s not a choice, it’s who I am.