Get Your Words Out! 2012

by Shannon

I swear, this notebook is what gets me through the day.

So, in the face of having crashed and burned post-nanowrimo (okay, I’m being dramatic. But I really liked being productive, ok, and 200-400 words at a time is just not cutting it) I signed up for Get Your Words Out. Basically, it’s a year-long self-motivated writing contest for people like me who, as of two months ago, can no longer function without an imposed deadline to motivate them.

The big differences between nanowrimo and this project are that…

  • it’s a year long
  • you pledge your own word count goal
  • you can work on a variety of projects

It’s a bit intimidating, since I pledged for 250k (the “modest” range). Admittedly, 250k over the course of a year is a thousand words a day with two days off, which is more than reasonable. Not to mention my intention of joining NaNoWriMo in November depending upon my progress on my two existing WIPs… I’m hoping that GYWO does more than force me to write; I’m hoping it helps me create better habits in general. NaNoWriMo already helped a lot on that front; no, more often than not, I WANT to be writing or am at least thinking about my projects on some level, even if I’m not good at setting aside regular time every day and expecting a certain amount out of myself.

Another really interesting thing I have noticed between nano and GYWO: I am becoming more of a handwritten writer. I have taken to carrying a notebook with me to work and when I go out so that I can get in a hundred words here and there, especially on days I know I won’t get a ton of time when I get home. I never used to be good at writing by hand; I used to feel that it slowed me down. Now I just let my handwriting degenerate into illegibility (see above) figuring that at least I could figure out what I had meant by it, and am forced to put a bit more thought into what I’m writing. Also, it just feels right. (OKAY, OKAY, notebooks don’t have twitter, and tumblr, and livejournal, and wordpress, and IM, and…)

So, that’s where I am, writing-wise. Still not finished anything, but active and with promise, even if that promise is of a draft of total crap. As John Green said in one of his videos, it’s impossible to write a good novel in a first draft anyway, and that novels are written in the revision. All I have to do is GET to the revisions.