Lily Tibbitts’ Student Life #142

Posted on 06th October 2023 | in Clubs + Societies

Even though it’s one of my favourite things to do, I haven’t been doing as much writing as I would like to recently (especially considering I’m supposed to be doing a creative writing degree). Ideas are high but motivation is six feet under, so for July I decided to do nanowrimo.

Nanowrimo – national novel writing month – is a challenge that usually takes place in November, but there’s a ‘bootcamp’ version over July that I signed up to. The general gist is that you have to write 50,000 words in a month, which in July averages at 1612 words per day, and log it on their website so that they can send you motivation and good vibes. If you’re thinking that sounds insane, you’re absolutely right.

I’d attempted it a couple of times before, years and years ago, with a suitable amount of arrogance, because of course I could write over four pages a day while also doing school work and having a life and coming up with the plot on the spot because I hadn’t planned a single scene. Needless to say the attempts were not a success.
This time, I had a story plan. I wasn’t doing school or uni. I still wasn’t prepared for how hard it would be.

Trying to write over 1600 words a day meant that almost everything else had to take a break, and if I did choose the ‘having a life’ option then I’d usually end up writing into the early hours of the morning to get it done in time. It was hard, but it definitely got me writing again.

After thirty one long days, I managed to do it. I now have just over 50,000 words of a novel, but more importantly I’ve got the knowledge that it’s something I can still do, even after what feels like ages since I wrote a longer story. Maybe next time I could come to that conclusion in a way that doesn’t involve losing so much sleep.

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