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My NaNoWriMo journey: when absolute defeat leads to real victory

Monday, December 09, 2019

November is National Novel Writing Month, aka NaNoWriMo or even just NaNo. It's a global movement to spend time between November 1st and November 30th to write. Write that novel you've always wanted to write. Or a memoir. Or a technical manual. Anything you want. Just write.

NaNo is about pushing yourself, because there is magic that can happen when you show up at the page and just write. Don't edit. Don't listen to the voice in your head telling you this is impossible and who are you to write a novel. Just. Write. And if you have 50,000 words (or more) at the end of the month, then, you've met the challenge that is NaNoWriMo. And quite possibly, found some nugget in your writing that is useful.

I've been doing NaNo every year since 2003. The goal, for me , is not to publish anything, but just to write. Because at the core of my being, I am a writer. And when I show up, put the Inner Critic in a box out in the garage and just write, every single year I am amazed at what happens.

This year was no different. In fact, this year was my best year yet in terms of the magic that unfolded. At the end of the month, not only did I have 87,000 words, but I had 5 significant insights that have completely changed my world.

I will be writing about them over the next few days, because it is worth remembering that it was my darkest moments and coming face to face with my absolute defeat with weight and food issues over 5 decades that brought me back to real victory which I once had but had let go of. NaNo brought me back, and I am grateful.

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