The last week of October was a busy one for me. I had a novel to write.
A brief background of what I am talking about –
Last year, I found a few of my fellow bloggers waxing eloquent about NaNoWriMo – National Novel Writing Month. It is a competition of sorts where you write a novel of 50,000 words (or more) on any topic/genre of your choice in a matter of 30 days. Random ramblings or serious script writing, it doesn’t matter what you write. The point is to write. I was so kicked about it. Unfortunately I was too late to participate last year and decided that I would get set and write the next time definitely.
Opportunity presented itself when I found NaNoWriMo updates for the month of November. I promptly registered myself and began thinking about a plot line (which involved scouring online articles for story ideas). How difficult could it be? You just had to connect finger to keyboard and type away to glory, keeping a daily/weekly word count in mind, There are writer forums and discussions and tips and all sort of material floating around that can help one have an awesome novel writing experience. I had a couple of plot lines in mind and couldn’t wait to start writing.
On the morning of 1st November, 2013, when I was officially supposed to begin writing, I paused. Erm,..maybe I need to refine the plot line a bit more. I’ll start writing tomorrow.
On the morning of 2nd November, 2013, I obviously couldn’t write. It was Dad’s birthday and I had stuff to do.
On the mornings of 3rd & 4th November, 2013, I couldn’t write because It was Diwali (The grand Indian festival of lights, sweets, firecrackers, merriment and family get togethers).
On the morning of 6th November, 2013, I deleted my NaNoWriMo account, Who was I kidding. Enough of excuses.
I’ve been wanting to write a novel. I don’t care if it stays collecting dust in obscure shelves of unknown bookstores. I want to feel the satisfaction of having completed something that has been at the back of my mind for so long. Someday I will – sooner than later.
Maybe I’ll keep signing up on platforms like NaNoWriMo and never completing what I set out to do. Years maybe, if I can resist the temptation to write for that long. Maybe I’m right when I think I don’t have it in me to write a novel. But how will that be confirmed unless I START writing one. I think I (mis)judged myself too soon. I ought to give myself a chance. Once in a while.
I’m not saying it’s going to be easy. Nothing in life is easy. But that’s no reason to give up. You’ll be surprised what you can accomplish if you set your mind to it. After all, you only have one life, so you should try to make the most of it.
– Louis Sachar
It is a horrible feeling to know you have failed even before trying. So go ahead and do what your heart tells you, and give that cross-questioning brain a much-needed vacation. It is ok to fail after having given your best shot. You’ll still be happy for having tried.
Note to self: Read the last two lines every time self-doubt raises its ugly head.