Monday, November 10, 2014

Wherein I Say No to NaBloPoMo

Here's what I believed: that being assigned a bit of writing every day would improve the quality of my writing and get me into a regular writing rhythm.

Here's what I learned: I don't want to write every day, and I don't need to write every day in order to sustain my writing mojo.

Now and then I have an urgent need to write something down. You might find me getting out of bed in the middle of the night in search of a scrap of paper and a pencil so I can write down the idea that randomly popped into my dreaming brain. You might also see me the following morning scratching my head as I struggle to decipher my 4am handwriting.

But more often than not I do not have anything to share, and I don't like feeling forced to come up with something that I would not otherwise think worthy of a post. It reminds me of the old saying about traveling across Europe just to check off various destinations: If it's Tuesday we're in Paris, if it's Wednesday we're in Rome... I personally cannot write because it happens to be Monday, November 10th. I respect those who can, but it's not for me.

The post I wrote just before this, about something that happened to me when I was fourteen years old, took time and some degree of psychological mastery over the negative emotions it called up in me. I don't feel like writing anything else until that memory and the writing of it settle a little.

Of course you can well argue that I've just written a post, and that's true, but today's post serves only to explain why my thirty-day experiment became a ten-day experiment.

To NaBloPoMo, I wave farewell and hereby recast you as NoMoNaBloPoMo.

Sorry for making a promise I could not keep. I hope those of you who still check in here will understand.


Amy said...

I just posted how I'd failed at my 30 days of gratitude picture a day project. I'd done it in past years and only missed a day or so, but this time I just can't do it. I'm grateful for many things, don't get me wrong. But after one successful, and several half-done, 365 day picture projects -- I feel just as you said. No need for a daily ritual and feel silly just photographing to complete something. Anyway -- I get it. You just keep writing when you feel it, and I'll photography when I see it. That's the way to do it at this stage of the game for us.

Catty said...

I quit too. It wasn't for me, and I walked away. Nothing wrong with that! I learnt something.

Bibliomama said...

Honestly, the only thing I don't understand is why I read this and immediately made it all about me. What does it mean if I say good for you for quitting, and then keep doing it? Not all my posts are big and insightful - for me the challenge is purely in posting every day for a month. All that means is we were looking for different things from it, and you didn't find your thing, and I'm still finding mine. AND THAT'S FINE. But now I have a voice in the back of my head saying that you will respect me less for continuing. Because I'm insane. Sigh.

alejna said...

I'm just glad you're continuing to write, and that I get to read what you write, at whatever pace works best for you.

For me, I find that I seem to need a daily commitment to keep going. I certainly don't post things that are worthwhile every day. My problem is that if I stop bloggin for too long, I get hung up on the feeling that I need to post something witty or meaningful when I start back up. So instead I post nothing for weeks, and I feel the void of any creative outlet in my life, and I sink into a hole. So lately, I've been posting daily. Mostly just pictures, and very few words. But to me, it feels like I am holding the door open to say more.

Rima Tessman said...

I have always felt the same way about NaBloPoMoFo month. I understand the sentiment behind it, that writing begets writing, but that kind of writing need not always be shared with the world. (Although all of your posts this month were top notch, as always!)

Emily said...

Yeah, I never got the idea of writing every day. We let fields lie fallow, but not our minds?

slow panic said...

I lost my NaBloPoMo MoJo about a week in. Not even sure I made it that far. Still glad I gave it a whirl. Hoping it keeps me in this space a little more regularly.