Keep Awake, Keep Writing

Currently Listening To “Two Elixirs” by Abney Park

I like this song. It’s about how I feel most of the time. Work all day–whether that’s actual work, class work, or other obligations–and then at night, there’s more to do. For me, night time means driving an hour to get to my classes (or driving an hour to get home from said classes), and then trying to squeeze in time to work on my writing. Sometimes I need help to manage it.

Of course, for me, caffeine is my poison of choice, and I have all kinds of it: tea, coffee, caffeine pills*. You name it, it’s stocked somewhere in my house. The downside of that, for me, is that I don’t actually have the luxury of indulging in my need for caffeine most of the time. Basically, caffeine and I do not play well, for all sorts of fun reasons. I can handle a little, but not generally enough to significantly help boost my energy.

So my writing ends up falling by the wayside more often than I like. And I just keep getting more frustrated because I know what I need to do: finish edits on my completed novel, work on a few other manuscripts I’ve got going, and now I’ve also got NaNoWriMo added to the list. Or rather, I will have it added to the list, starting Saturday.

What is a poor writer to do when there aren’t enough hours in the day to get writing done? Start multitasking, I guess. I’ve taken to jotting down notes on my cell phone when I have a minute, I constantly have some of my writing open on my laptop while I’m working and while I’m in class*, and Siri is a godsend for taking down dictation while on the road.

Basically, if I want to write, I have to figure out ways to make it work. We all probably do, unless we have the luxury of being independently wealthy or something.

But it’s so tiring sometimes. This time of year is when I really start to feel it, because come November 1st, I know just how crazy my life is going to get. NaNoWriMo. 50,000 words in 30 days. Or more than 50,000 words, which is what I’m aiming for. Last year I managed over 70,000, and that all turned into a complete novel by midnight on New Year’s Eve. A complete novel which has been relentlessly edited and beta-read and re-edited for almost an entire year now. I’m aiming to top that this year, and maybe get the whole first draft of this next project finished by the end of November. Which means that every waking moment that I’m not being forced to do something else, I’ll be writing. Or taking notes for later writing. Or trying to mentally walk through some new scene–or edit an old one.

As usual, I’m going to embrace the crazy. I’ll embrace it and dig a hole and live in it, for an entire month. Hopefully I’ll make it out the other end with my sanity intact. 😛


*I know, that’s probably not a great idea. I should probably be paying attention to the course material. But I only write during the dull classes, I promise.


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