A Month of Writing – September

MoW-ENMy friend asked me recently whether I ever feel like indulging myself with a day without writing. Looking back at my writing journey with the 365k Club and those 9 months of consecutive writing without a day being missed, I replied: yes, sometimes I feel like not writing or writing less. Over the days, weeks and months I’ve build up enough “extra” words to take even a week off if I wanted, but… it just doesn’t feel right. Of course, if I had a major life event interfere with my writing, I’d find it justified to skip a day or a month, but with life being somewhat steady, I’d feel like cheating with skipping a day without a good reason. But I’ll tell you a secret: sometimes I do procrastinate and then writing is the only thing I get done in the evening.

September went so quickly, I’ve barely noticed the days going by, and most of the time I focused on my fantasy romance while letting my brain work out the details of more serious projects. The story wrapped up in about 50,000 words and as much as I enjoyed writing it, I’m putting it aside for now. I’m happy it allowed me to relax while keeping up my 1000 words a day, but it would require a lot of revising to make it worthwhile and it would still be nothing more than a simple love story with no original twists to it.

Besides that, I’ve done some binge-reading, catching up with books I’ve been neglecting for a while now (which, of course, resulted in some sleep lost, but that was to be expected) and had a bit of time to relax playing video games and watching series.

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I have also passed the mark 300,000 words mark and it again made me think of the year coming to an end. I’m confident I will not only finish the challenge, but also will do it before December comes. While I like the idea of “writing for a whole year without even one day missed”, I also keep thinking about “By His Will” revisions and editing that I’d like to focus on, and I consider taking December “off” to catch up with that.

I start thinking about the next year, and seeing as successful the first edition of 365k Club was for me (and many other group members for that matter!), I’ll definitely be taking part in 2016. There are many changes and improvements waiting in the second edition, including the challenge levels, from 100k words in a year for the most busy people up to 500k for the ones who really want to push themselves. All that in a friendly atmosphere with a lot of encouragement and monthly Facebook events to help the participants, so if you want to join me and other courageous writers, hop over to 10 Minute Novelists group and wait for the sign-up to start.

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As for me, I’m planning on staying on my 365k goal and writing 1000 words on average, but the next year I want to see if I could move things around a bit: skip a day or two while I focus on editing the existing texts and then make up the numbers writing more on the following days. I might have mentioned before that what I personally find more difficult is not writing without missing a day, but coming back to writing after a break. I’ve always admired the 365k Club members who could come back to the challenge after days (weeks, months) of not writing a single word. And since by now I know I’ve already built a habit of writing, I want to see how it will hold when faced with a weekend of not writing. Will I have enough discipline to go back to the routine? I think it might make my 2016 challenge quite interesting. Or I might just end up writing those 1000 words a day consecutively and find some other way to incorporate editing and other things in my daily routines.

I’ve also signed up to help the Superwoman Jessica White who almost single-handedly coordinated 365k Club this year, and in 2016 I will be, along with other admins, taking some of the burden off her shoulders. I hope we will be able to support other participants in finding the confidence and writing routine that we’ve found ourselves.

But before that happens, there are still 3 months of this year’s challenge to come and I hope that soon I’ll be able to proudly present my winner’s badge. Until then, 1000 words a day it is. With 9 months already in my favor, I’m sure it’s going to happen.


 

This post is a part of the “A Month of Writing” series – a monthly report on my progress in the 365k Club challenge.

15 thoughts on “A Month of Writing – September”

  1. Congratulations on your success with 365k. I agree that starting back after a break is much harder than sticking to the daily min. I won’t compare my failure as mid-year my daughter got married, I moved, my first book released and I started a new job (all within a month)! Although I’ve been writing daily, I stopped keeping track of words as finding time to simply write is enough of a challenge at the moment. But your post reminds me that 2016 is a new year and one with less changes on the horizon for me. Thanks for the reminder that it is possible to succeed!

    1. Thank you, Roanne! 🙂 If you managed to come back to writing after a break, you’re still a winner to me, even if you don’t track your numbers.
      I hope 2016 will be as good for you as 2015 turned out to be for me :).

  2. Hi Joanna, I’ve been following you on Twitter all this time and just realised you have a blog. I’m impressed with your word count this year, although we’ll probably have to revoke your membership of the procrastination group 😉

    1. Hello Annalisa, thank you for stopping by! 🙂 And no worries, it’s impossible to keep track for everything.
      As for the Club: I STILL QUALIFY! I really do: I still procrastinate a lot (otherwise my book would be edited by now…). I just do some actual writing after I’m done procrastinating. 🙂

  3. Your self discipline and sheer determination is admirable – this week I attended a talk by Paul McVeigh, who has been very successful with his novel ‘The Good Son’ set in Ireland during the troubles. His talk was extremely good and the one thing that came through was his conviction that if you want to write, then you need to make writing your priority no matter what. Reading your account of your writing progress to date, his words came to mind.

    Congratulations!

    1. Thank you, Sarah. Paul’s words ring very true to me. Obviously, there’re things to be taken care of (food, a place to live, and a job to pay for it), but other than that I agree: without making writing the priority there’s hardly any progress. I guess I was just tired with myself finding excuses to not to write and procrastinating too much, and 365k Club gave me the motivation to focus on what’s really important to me.

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