Tuesday, November 29, 2011

And I thought 2007 was a PITA...

2007 I had to deal with doing National Novel Writing Month in temporary digs because our apartment was being remodeled after a flood two months before.

This year was a bit more emotional for me because of the entire Aspen Mountain Press debacle and because of upheaval at the Dreaded Day Job. The middle of November to the second week of January has always been insane, but because of program and department changes, it's been worse. I don't even remember this sort of insanity when I'd first started back in 1994.

We've been on mandatory two hours overtime a day, almost since before Halloween, and it's been wearing me down. Vacations and absences have caused us to double up and re-double up on our daily tasks, and leaving me precious little time after work for anything. I've been getting out around 6:00 and if I do something like go to the grocery store afterwards, I'm lucky if I get home around 8:30 (if I get really crazy and plan ahead to buy at least four meals' worth of food, I'll be home around 9:00). Max always vocalizes his displeasure with this arrangement because he's used to getting his kitty treats around 8:00, but when have you ever known a cat to "chill"?

And who knew you could teach a cat how to tell time?!

But I digress.

I went into NaNo this year with the specter of a rewrite of 2007's entry (no. Srsly.) so I could get it out for possible publication. Add to that misery the delight of writing a query, laboring over ONE SINGLE WORD and hating every thesaurus in my sight (they were all broken, even the print editions, because they all had the wrong words in them) for nearly two hours and getting it out near the beginning of November really took its toll on me. I thought I could do both and get the submission out of the way first, but that added pressure almost killed NaNo for me this year. I got the submission out about a couple days later, I had a serious crisis of faith. I seriously doubted my ability to finish NaNo but was convinced to continue since I usually build up some decent word overage so I don't have to worry about falling too far behind.

Well, guess who's eight for eight.

Of course, it doesn't help the story would take an entirely new direction just about every single day. What I've dubbed "The Flashback From Hell" since I began the scene on November 19 and is what I've been writing since, is now probably going to be the opening chapter(s). I'm touching on a few things I may not keep since the subjects are still pretty much taboo, even for adult fiction, and it's so far removed from the opening lines, I have no clue what I'm supposed to be doing any longer.

But, um, yeah, here I am, at win #8. I'm probably going to try and follow this to its (il)logical conclusion since it actually is ripe with possibility. Just continues the trend, not counting last year where I just got sick of the story and quit three days early.