Wednesday, December 01, 2010

And they crawl back out

All over the world this morning -- okay, this afternoon -- writers are crawling out of their caves, blinking, yawning, stretching. They mumble something like, "Gee, where'd all the leaves on the trees go?" and "Got any more turkey left over from Thanksgiving?"

Yes, it is the NaNo crew, coming out of its annual hibernation. Hats off to all of you who managed to do it, who managed to plug your ears and forget about November being the kickoff for the insane rush of holiday madness, who managed to turn thought into kilobytes.

Now if you'll just tell me how you dispatched your internal editors, I'll use the scientific method to see if I can replicate your results on my own Internal Editor, AKA the Demon Muse in Stilettos. She's been busy muttering things like, "Ya didn't even have to cook the turkey, so what's up with the no-writing biz last week, huh? Care to explain THAT?"

But enough about my long, ongoing battle with the evil twin of Fran. In addition to death and taxes, Evil Twin Fran is a certainty, unless I can get her sidetracked on the possibility of doing a makeover on me or on closet organizers to manage an impossibly large collection of feather boas.

No, I'm sympathizing with that time warp that NaNo writers are experiencing right about now. I've had to do massive writing projects where turnaround time consisted of days, not months, and upon surfacing, I found the following to be consistently true:

1) I have lost all track of time and season. It's true. If my crash writing episode happened to fall during a season change, I was as confused as a bear after his first hibernation session. You go to sleep and it's fall, and you wake up, and the crocus buds are poking out of the snow. (Not that we have snow down here in Georgia, but you know what I mean.)

2) My spoken language skills have regressed to grunts and moans. It's as though I'd drained all language skills into my writing. Even a two-word sentence that sounds anything more complicated than "Me want" is often beyond me at times like that.

3) I get the mother of all colds. Doesn't matter that I haven't been around human beings besides immediate family for the better part of a month; the first day I venture out into the world, it's as though I was Bubble Boy and the bubble burst. It must have something to do with stress and the immune system.

4) I never want to see a computer again. OK, this is short-lived, but for a day or so, the urge to surf the web or tweet or do ANYTHING that remotely involves a keyboard? It's dead, dead, dead.

5) After 48 hours, the relief I feel at finishing turns into euphoria and a huge burst of self-confidence. I'm at my mountain-top, shouting, "Huzzah!" (Yes, I know, that's so not a cool exclamation, but I've always wanted to say it.)

So it's okay, my NaNo friends, if you grunt with surprise at the lack of leaves, and you wave your hand in the general direction of the Kleenex box. I'll know exactly what you mean.


Matthew Rush said...

Every time I hear about your Fran I find myself wishing that my muse was a little more of a dominatrix. I'm not sure I could handle it though.

Linda G. said...

Awww. Hope your cold is better soon. :)

Jessica Lemmon said...

Hi Cynthia! Yes, I feel your pain, minus the cold - and do get better will you? I participated in NaNo, and am still revising/writing what I hope will be my breakout MS. I'm blinking at the snow outside and thinking, hmm, really shoulda made a Christmas list... in fact that is what I blogged about today. It's funny how your blog and mine seem to be in the same vein some days!

Nicole MacDonald said...

and here in NZ we're blinking wildly going 'it's summer!?! When did THAT happen!?!'
And feel better soon - chicken soup is a godsend :)

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Kathi Oram Peterson said...

I love your list of what happens after NaNoWriMo.

I catch colds easily, too. I certainly feel your pain.

Anonymous said...

Feel better.

You Nano-ers are awesome. I hope you all get a bit of relaxation with the holiday season.

Guinevere said...

I used to always get a cold in college once the term ended (we had seven week, intense terms) - scary to think that it happens to busy writers too, as I never enjoyed that. :p Hope you stay healthy!

chelsea said...

Wish you for getting better..

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Deanna said...

Speaking as a nano cave-person myself, I adored this post! Nice!

Anonymous said...

This one is Awesome and Hilarious. lol.. Hope you're feeling better now. Try and get back to work.. *ohh.. I sound like my manager now.. eeks!*

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Writer Agency said...

Nice Post:) How is your cold now, I know the sufferings of heavy cold.

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