Every year, after the madness of November is over, I find myself riding on a high.
I don’t know if it’s because I won Nano or because Nano is over, but every December, for some reason, I think myself invincible.
“I am going to do everything ever!” I declare. I make lofty goals. Every project I’ve ever worked on? WILL BE FINISHED RIGHT NOW, BOOYA. I am INVINCIBLE. I am amazing.
Eventually reality sets in, but that doesn’t stop me from re-enacting this madness every year.
I remember one year where I was going to write four stories at once. Maybe one of them was editing. I don’t remember. The point is that I drove myself crazy and instead of burning myself out on one story, I managed to do it on four at once.
I do think it directly relates to Nano, though. I’m pretty good at focusing on a single project at a time, if necessary, but if not, I tend to have several side-projects going on. I’m working on a collaborative novel and a serial novel at the moment as well as writing book two of a trilogy. I usually have at least one non-main project going at anytime anyway. It may sound counter-intuitive, but I find it helps with the main story. It lets me give my mind a break, and often will kick my subconscious into gear, so that when I come back I have new ideas and am ready to go.
Nano more or less makes me focus on one project. So then it ends, I’ve won handily, and I have all these ideas for all my other projects, and I cannot pick which to focus on so I decide to DO THEM ALL.
You’d think I’d learn.
On one hand, I don’t know that I want to stifle this urge completely. Yes, December is a bad time of year. There’s all sorts of things that need to be done for Christmas – shopping, decorating, hanging out with the family, etc. All sorts of organizations figure out the year is ending and demand your attention. Work inevitably goes into to panic mode simultaneously with everyone checking out for the holidays. But the rush is good. It makes me excited to be a writer, to have so many ideas, and so many things I could be working on.
It makes me want to try things I haven’t before, enter contests, get my work out there to be seen. It makes me want to tell everyone I know what I’ve been up to and my plans for the future.
Yes, the crash will eventually come. I will realize I’ve put too much on my plate, or that things aren’t working out like I hoped. But for now, while the energy’s high, it’s kind of amazing.