Winner of NaNoWriMo 2014 lets a heavy glass pot lid fall over her head…

Sunday I declared myself winner of NaNoWriMo 2014 and to celebrate I let a heavy glass pot lid fall over my head. No, I’m not crazy, neither eccentric, it was just an accident. Very interesting way to celebrate it though, a huge bump in the head and an ice bag over my head. So people were telling me “wow! You must be excited to have finished your writing month and must had celebrated a lot” And I just go back to my memories of the terrible pain my head was in that day. At least, I managed to write the last words before the accident, because I wouldn’t have written anything else after the glass lid decided it was good to bounce on my head. Although, a good scene of pain and suffering could have actually come up well inspired at that time.

nanowrimo certificate

But anyway, let´s stop talking about the bad part of last Sunday and talk about the best part. I did it! I finished the first manuscript of an entire novel, over 88000 words in total. When I started NaNo I was at 38000 words more or less, it took me around 3 months to write those 38K. If it wasn’t for NaNo, I wouldn’t had pop out those remaining 50K and I would have finished my novel next year.

Never have I ever (I’ve just remembered a drinking game… if you know what I mean, if not just continue reading 🙂 ) I’ve would have dreamed that when I put in my 2014 New Year’s resolution “Start writing for seriously” I would have ended up the year with a whole first manuscript for a novel. Surreal.

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Of course, I must point out it´s a “first” manuscript.  This December will be harsh polishing and editing. One of the things that you learn with NaNo is to just let it flow; write, write and let the characters guide you through the story. No editing during November, not only because it would have caused constant deletion of words but also because there was no time. And it works, it really does. This is my first time writing a novel and believe me, I struggled very much at the beginning figuring it out how to start, how to plot the story, how to define structure, pacing, etc. Now I know that there has to be some planning at the beginning, but then if you want the story to really flow and reach its end, you just have to let it go, it works. But then of course with no editing in this “flowing” stage, a second, and even third draft have to be considered, the disadvantages of spontaneity.

But I declare myself satisfied. Never have I ever, I’ve been more consistent and persistent in doing what I want to do for the rest of my life. I proved myself that I can do it, that I can create the habit of writing every single day (including weekends and holidays). I can do it. “I’m a roller coaster that only goes up” John Green (Yeah, I’m quoting The Fault in Our Stars, but the quote felt righter than ever).

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How brave are you?

This post is going to be a little bit different from others…

Some time ago there was an incident in a city near mine; some guy was killed on the streets through gunshot in the middle of the day in a not so dangerous neighborhood due to some “business settlement vendetta”.  The incident was on all the local news and a security video from the street showed exactly what happened. The guy could have been saved, because you can see how the assailant starts shooting from the other side of the street first, the victim goes down to the floor without being hit first and then runs to the car of a woman and begs for her to let him in. The woman got scared and pressed on the accelerator of her car as fast as she could and disappeared. A couple of seconds later, the shooter arrived to where the guy was laying and shot him to death.

Would you have done the same thing as the woman? Would you have let the guy inside the car to save him? I’ve always said that I would have tried to help him, opened the door and then accelerated as fast as I could. Maybe I would have gotten myself into trouble. I imagine myself already in a persecution, with the guy in the car, and the bad guys’ cars trying to intercept me.  Then, I hear some close friends saying that the woman did the best, and I can’t help but to imagine that If I were the woman I would feel so guilty that I could have saved one life, and that  I was so “chicken” that I left the poor guy to die.

I don’t know, I would have had to be there, in the “moment”, in the “situation”, maybe given the time I would have reacted equally to the woman, maybe I would have paralyzed or maybe I would have gotten the “guts” to save him. I’ve always considered myself more courageous than the average, but I’ve never been in situations where I could actually prove myself how brave am I.

But apart from this type of “hero braveness”, how courageous or brave am I in my ordinary life?  Because there is another type of “courageousness”, the one that make us go through our believes, no matter the difficulties we may found on the road, the one that makes us continue and gather our strengths to defeat our most simple fears.

Was I ever fearful of leaving my routine, leaving jobs, leaving cities, leaving countries, changing my paths, or changing everything around me?  Luckily I can answer that with a No. And I know maybe I may not be the most courageous person in the world but I know that I’m brave enough to face my fears, risks, changes and the unknown…

And you, how brave are you? I think we must always make this analysis….

Until next post…

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