It’s official. Last Wednesday, November 30, I sat in The Hidden Shamrock with some of my best gal pals as I cranked out 3k words to complete my NaNoWriMo challenge. As the open mic gal sang “What a Wonderful World,” I punched in my last word and victory was mine. Along with a celebratory night with the gals.
After NaNoWriMo, I vowed to edit my novel all this month and start sending out once it’s completed. And I stand by it.
The support I had over the past month was overwhelming. It came from everyone who wanted to hear my story and I know without them, I wouldn’t have achieved it. People at work checked in daily, and sometimes hourly, to see where I was on my word count. As the midnight hour approached on last Wednesday, a plethora of congratulatory texts came through, making me realize that this goal wasn’t just about me. But naturally, I’ll go through my thank list in the acknowledgements to the book.
Taking a key from a lyric The Head and the Heart‘s song Coeur D’Alene, I’m finally taking the plunge and doing this. After hearing some kids talk about it after the Film Festival last year, I, Hanna E Soltys will make the grand attempt to turn out 50,000 words this November as part of the annual National Novel Writing Month, or NaNoWriMo as the kids call it.
I thought, sure 50,000 words? No problem! That breaks down to less than 2k words every day. And after actually telling people I was doing this, did it only dawn on me that holy crap, that’s a lot of words. That’s a ton of words. And this is a short month. And Jayhawk basketball season starts. And there’s Thanksgiving.
But I’m confident, I’ll be able to do this. After doing some serious reading the past month, I have just one more book to read to get to my goal. Which means there’s one thing out of the way. And the weather in Chicago promises to turn at any. So what better way to spend the days indoors than with some tea, great tunes (courtesy of THATH and Explosions in the Sky) and thousands upon thousands of words? I can handle that.
This challenge is about quantity over quality, which is something I have a hard time dealing with. I’m someone who likes to write and edit. Or edit while writing. I see this solely as an exercise feat. A massive one.
Aside from this challenge, I’ll also be running my first sanctioned running event since the age of 12 and the Point Eagles Cross Country days. Maggie and I decided this past week that after living with arthritis for five years, it’s time to celebrate my journey with the disease and participate in the 5K Jingle Run for the Arthritis Foundation. 5K isn’t much. But it’s a lot when it takes a while to get out of bed in the morning. I’ve got co-werkers and friends and dear loved ones running alongside me and encouraging me every step of the way as I go from brisk walker to runner again.
I blame the book My Year With Eleanor where author Noelle took on a challenge every day for a year.
Whatever have I got myself into? It doesn’t matter. Because my mind’s made up, I’m doin’ this, I’m doin’ this with you.