This month is the month all procrastinating, running amok, desperately in need of discipline writers come together to create 50,000 words in 30 days. I love this time of year!
The hardest part about writing is the whole sitting down and just doing it bit. There is this myth that the muse will touch our pens and fill it with new ideas, or that you’ll wake up in the middle of the night and have a novel in your head and your fingers on your typewriter. Yes, there are these moments of complete and utter focus. But come one–you own your mind, not the other way around. Want to write a story? Then sit down and get it done.
Miti and I are reading/have read Writing Down the Bones. I love how the author connects Buddhist ideas to becoming a more disciplined and earth-shattering writer. My favorite little Buddhist wisdom I like to remind myself of is this:
That is all there is to life. Well, essentially, but I am over-generalizing. But we writers tend to have this romanticized notion that good ideas will come to us. Honestly, even if that is how it works, you will never become a good writer if you wait on your mind to do the legwork for you.
Discipline yourself. Write a little bit every day, even if whatever comes out is complete crap. Every time you write, your writing as a skill improves. That way, when the good ideas come around, getting them on paper is easier. The more you write, the more ideas flow out of your fingertips. It is crazy! You can literally write about anything; who said you have to wait for an incredible idea?
So, all you NaNos out there writing, don’t forget the true message of this month: all you need to do to be a writer is to write something. It can be the worst story ever, or a piece of genius, or nothing in particular. Do not forget that the writer wields the mind to write, and that the mind is not your ruler.