Advance and Retreat

Let’s start with the advance part, shall we? A huge leap forward: on my first try, I’m a NaNoWriMo winner!


My partner and I collaborated on a novel, and our combined total is 105,332 words. I’m rather pleased with our first draft, and I loved the “loose outline” process that we developed as we went. We’ve set our novel aside for a bit in order to focus on holiday preparations (which are a big thing around our household), but I’m already looking forward to combining our documents and beginning the revisions, most likely in January.

There has also been some retreat. During the last couple weeks of November, I hardly got to any of my daily practices. Understandably so, as I was focused on my word count, and I had some extra shifts at my part-time job. But then once NaNoWriMo was done (and I’d finished with the extra work hours), I’ve continued to experience a sort of slump.

All I can figure is a potent combination of worry (my Aunt had surgery – she’s fine now but it triggered a lot of emotions), grief, hormones, and a dash of darkest-part-of-the-year. Bleah.

I told a friend yesterday, “It’s like NaNo just sort of deferred my grief, and now I’m right back where I was.” Her reply was, “no, honey, don’t worry. It just takes time.” Sigh.

So, not as much journal writing (though I’ve gotten back on track the last couple of days), exercise (ditto with the dancing), or drumming (that will come – my troupe is going to be gearing up for a New Year’s Eve gig) as usual. But I’m trying not to get down on myself about it.

My revised goals for the rest of the round are simple. I’m going to focus on: my new gratitude practice, my other daily practices, self-nurturing, and holiday preparations. I’ll start back up with the new calendar year, after Winter Solstice, when the days are beginning to lengthen again. I’ve done a lot, I’ve been through a lot, and I deserve a break. So be it.


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