Sunday, November 21, 2010

2010 NaNoWriMo by Pencil: Week Three Report

Mini Gallery o' Ferrules (and such)

Whew, what a week.  I say this in both good and bad senses, but in all senses, it took away from my word production.

To begin with, last weekend my most local brother and sister-in-law welcomed their first son into the world.  What with waiting for news, fretting, and the flurry of phone calls and the posting of photos and everything else after his birth--plus all my usual weekend errands--I struggled to get much writing in.  Did OK, but didn't get caught up, as I'd hoped.

Monday, I thought.  Monday, I'll write like a mad woman.  I was going to hit that halfway mark by the end of Monday if it killed me.

And then the power went out.

Now, in some cases, this would be an opportunity for me to chortle with glee at the shortcomings of higher tech writing methods as I scribbled nonchalantly onward.  Couple problems with this: first of all, in Washington State in the winter, it's dark an awful lot of the day.  When it's pouring rain and windy, it's dark *all* day.  I do not currently own a battery powered lantern or a book light.  I couldn't see to write.  Tried writing by flashlight, but it really didn't work.

Secondly, within a few minutes of losing power at home, my pager started screaming bloody murder because the power to the data center at work had also gone out, and the equipment was Very Worried.   And it was my responsibility to calm it down and babysit.  I got some sleep that night, but the early morning hours and all the next day were spent dealing with the outage (over twelve hours at work) and its aftermath.

And then I had a reading assignment I had to finish.  So Tuesday night, with the power finally restored at home, I read until midnight, went to bed too keyed up to sleep, and then had to get up again Wednesday morning at five.  Wednesday morning I squeezed in a few words between the church thing and work, but in the evening, I had a dinner thing and didn't get home until about nine.  I crawled into bed and fell asleep instantly.

Now here, I'm sure someone is going to say, "Well, *I* would have stayed up until ten and gotten an hour's worth of writing in, you lazy good-for-nothing."  To you, I say two things: Well lah-dee-dah, and Bah!  I'm a morning person, and even on a good night, my brain goes into power-save mode after about eight, and that night I was so tired everything around me seemed sort of squished and muffled.  I could barely remember my own name, let alone put strings of words together.  I probably would have awoken in the middle of the night with drool on my notebook and graphite on my face and no words written.

I did, however, set my alarm for early the next morning, in hopes of getting some words in before work.  It was a futile hope.  I slept through the alarm.  I double-checked the clock when I did wake up, and it was set correctly; but I have absolutely no memory of it going off, not even as part of a dream.  *sigh*

I still managed to stagger across the 25k line during lunch on Thursday: the line I'd hoped to sprint across clear back on Monday.  Only three days behind.  Yay me.

I'll spare you the details of the rest of the week.  Let's just say the challenges continued.  I only get a thirty minute lunch but usually can cram writing in...but we were too busy for that this week.  And there was more family stuff.  Unexpected schedule changes.  Unexpected obligations.

I'm still hoping to finish this thing in time, but it's liable to be down to the wire.  The lack of morning and lunchtime writing time was the kiss of death this past week, so hopefully I can squeeze in at least some this week.  Thanksgiving will probably be a lost day, and I work Friday, so no extra time there.   There's next weekend, at least.

OK, enough of all that.  This week's stats:
  • Composition book pages killed: I passed 200 tonight (I'm at 203), which would mean a new notebook if this one wasn't poorly made...but it is, so I got twelve bonus sheets / twenty four bonus pages.  I'll finish filling it up tomorrow or Tuesday.
  • Pencils obliterated: the Helix Oxford is dead.  Or at least mostly dead.  I used it down to little more than a nubbin before reluctantly tossing in into the shorty jar.
  • Word count: around 31465, which means I'm about two days behind.  However, on Thursday I was three days behind, so hey, progress!
Pencil Achievement Awards:
  • Coolest ferrule: the classic Ticonderoga has an unfair advantage in this category.  I mean...look at it!  It has those distinctive and handsome yellow and green stripes, that textured band across the middle.  There is none cooler.  However, I would like to give honorable mention to the Mongol--that's it smack dab in the middle of the photo above.  Not only does it look interesting, but the eraser isn't crimped in, so you can yank it out and pop it back in.  It amuses me.
  • For courage under fire: OK, so courage is a strong word.  So is fire.  But I would like to publicly apologize to the Palomino for calling its lettering silver when it's actually pale gold.  Also for breaking off a big chunk of lead this week because I was careless when sharpening.  Sorry, little guy!
The story is...going.  No, actually it's working pretty well, aside from the whole being behind thing.  As I mentioned in one of my comments on last week's post, I've settled into a different period and plot than I originally intended: I fell in love with a few of the characters in the backstory, so they've become the primary story line instead.  Why? Because I'm the author, and I said so.

1 comment:

notagain said...

I'm using typewriters. I'm very impressed by the hand writers.
I've attended write-ins in two places and one is "normal" where everyone (save me) writes on a laptop and the other is old school - everyone (save me) writes by hand. I get the biggest kick out of that group. They're very quiet too - all introverts like myself, I suspect.