NaNoWriMo Isn’t Going Well – I Need My Easy Focus

It is the 23rd of November and I am hardly past the halfway mark of my 50,000 word goal.  I am now in need of more than 3,500 words a day to complete NaNoWriMo by the end of November.  And given some changes I have made in the story while writing it, I will need to write at least 50,000 words to have a complete first draft of the story.  So, whether my goal is to finish NaNoWriMo or to finish my first draft, I am behind, a long way behind.  On a goal I really care about.

My instinct when I get behind is to tighten my focus and drive hard toward my goal, pushing on at all costs. And, since I have an outline for this story, it is easy to tell myself that I must write each section of the outline as I foresaw it a month ago.

With writing, this approach doesn’t work.  If I try to force my way into a story, I struggle for every word. The process ceases to be pleasant and the product is forced.

This is a first draft, a time to get ideas on to paper, to discover richness in the world of the story, and to let things blossom. The outline is a jumping off spot, a map to get back on track if I get lost, a guide.

In order to progress, I must let go of my harsh focus.  I must allow myself to be free of the goal while writing.  I must find a way to write with abandon despite the pressure.

I turn to InterPlay, my box of tricks for creating more ease in my life.  One of the practices of InterPlay is Easy Focus; this is what I must cultivate now. Physically, easy focus involves shifting from looking forward at a focused point to using my peripheral vision. Mentally, using easy focus invites relaxation and openness, a spirit of play rather than the intensity of work.

Before I sit down with my writing, I must release the need to drive forward and invite a spirit of play.  Playfulness while writing enables me to spill words on the page.  And so, without further ado, I leave my web browser and turn to my manuscript to play with a big story.  Whee!

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About Kate Arms-Roberts

www.katearmsroberts.com

Posted on November 24, 2010, in Interplay, This Writing Life. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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