Value Proposition

Here’s why NaNoWriMo is so important to me: today I did not feel like writing.

That’s not an unusual day. In fact, out of the 365 days in a year, I’d say that ~300 are days that I do not feel like writing. And out of those ~300 days, at least half (and probably a lot more) are days where I don’t write, because I don’t feel like writing.

But during November? The fact that I don’t feel like writing doesn’t matter.

I’m going to write today. I’m writing right now. I’ve finished 1,000 of my requisite 2,000 words/day (I’m a minor overachiever this year), and after I finish posting this brief entry to Confabulator, I will go back to complete the other 1,000 words.

Do I want to? Nope. Still not at all in the mood. I’d rather be doing something else.

But NaNoWriMo gives me freedom.

I know, it probably seems like it’s the exact reverse, right? Freedom would be allowing myself to choose: write or don’t write. Right?


Freedom, in this case, is rising above something small–like reluctance, or self-loathing, or ennui, or a bad day, or a silly distraction–to focus upon something that is much more important. Something that will enrich my life in the long term. Something that will make me proud, and provide a sense of accomplishment. Something that I’ve always wanted, but never gotten, until NaNoWriMo set me free.

This year, like the last eight years of my life, I’ll write a novel. Despite myself, I’ll achieve that goal, one more time.

And it will be glorious.

NaNoWriMo is like a personal trainer, forcing you to battle past hurdles that seem insurmountable, so that you can become stronger, leaner, faster. And, afterwards, you’re given an entirely different perspective on the hurdles that were preventing you from succeeding in the first place, and you can recognize how trivial and silly they were in the first place.

NaNoWriMo lifts me to a higher place. It forces me to prioritize one goal above all others, and pursue that goal relentlessly until I achieve it.

That’s why NaNoWriMo is important.

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