Wednesday, November 11, 2009

If at first you don't succeed, try, try again. Then quit. There's no use being a damn fool about it.

Ahhh, truer words were never spoken than those quoted in the title of today's post by W.C. Fields. A few weeks ago I was all gung ho about participating in National Novel Writing Month. (Check out this post if you don't believe me. November is National Novel Writing Month!) I was SO going to write the next great novel, or at least I was going to put 50,000 words down on paper/screen and pretend it was the next great novel.

As the start date got closer, I began to think about all of the things I could write about. I would literally wake up with storylines, characters, etc. on my mind. I couldn't wait for November 1st
to roll around so that I could unleash this epic novel on the world. And then November 1st rolled around. And where was I? Parked in front of the TV watching football. And you do know that football starts at 11 with the pre-game show and goes until 10:30ish, and that doesn't even include the post-game show, right?

So Sunday was blown, but Monday was going to be a new day. Never mind that I work a full-time gig and chauffeur a "hesitant to get her license" 16 year old around daily. I was determined! Knowing that Monday nights are reserved for football, I thought I'd get some writing out of the way at work...yeah, it's not what they pay me for, but I won't tell if you won't. Once I got settled, the words started to pour out of me. And then the phone rang...and people stopped by...and I had to do some actual work. I was fine with that though. I figured I had breezed through 1600 or so words in the course of a busy day, surely I could find some time each day to tap out a few more.

Unfortunately, that day never came. The work week went by in a blur. My evenings were spent doing the parent thing and watching my shows. Who wouldn't think that watching Grey's Anatomy or Parking Wars would inspire greatness on my part? And why wouldn't falling asleep
as soon as the sun went down on Friday be helpful? But Saturday was coming and THAT was going to be the big day.

Except, of course, I forgot that I signed my daughter up for a program at the local university and parents are required to participate in a four hour session. We emerged from the lecture hall like zombies and made our way to another university across the river so that the offspring could check out the campus. From
there we made a pit stop for lunch and by the time we got home, I was ready for a nap. The long awaited nap was interrupted to drive the angsty teen, who forgot about doing research for her history class, to the library, where we spent 45 minutes looking up
information on prison reform and Dorothea Dix. Finally back home and ready to rest and write, I was asked to drive the same teen to the anti-homecoming dance (Please don't ask). Thinking that getting her out of the house would be a good idea, I agreed. What should have been a quiet, three hour window to write turned into a "hey BFF, I haven't talked to you in forever so let's play catchup" phone call.

Then Sunday rolled around and I was right back where I was last Sunday, parked in front of the TV for a day of football. So it's official. I'm giving up. I'll continue supporting and cheering on all of the people I encouraged to give it a try. But let's face it, I'm a reader, not a writer.


  1. Your days sound a lot like mine. Going into the week I have such grandiose plans and ideas, but somehow along the way reality sets in and I am lucky to bet even half of what is on my agenda done. Alas, such is life. I'm just waiting for the summer when I don't have to go to work, thus I don't have any excuse for completing some of those projects.

  2. I feel the exact same way! I could have written this myself. I haven't given up yet but I am slowly headed in that direction. Life keeps getting in the way and when I do have some down time, I end up reading instead of writing. I'm giving myself until this Sunday if it appears that I'm on the road to nowhere, then I am going to officially put away my writing pen. This was supposed to be fun. I didn't think it was going to be this hard. Oh well. Maybe next year.

  3. If all else fails, we can having a Novella Writing Week. Perhaps in the late spring or summer when schedules are a little less hectic and the time commitment isn't too much?

  4. Yah, a novella writing weeks sounds good. I got a couple of those lying around the house.