Hallelujah, we’re half way through. Time for a quick status report.
I have to admit, I’m finding it really tough. Get behind by a day, and suddenly life makes damn sure you stay that way. Phone calls, lost relatives, life, the universe and everything.
I’m also finding it hard to stay positive – I know that quite a few (ok, the majority) of the posts I’ve put up have been garbage. It gets pretty depressing when I read around some of the other NaPoWriMo blogs and see work that is so much better than mine.
And it’s also bringing home to me how indulgent I usually am – being self-employed, I have virtually no fixed demands on my time other than those I choose to accept. And I’m finding it hard to write a poem a day. Even a rubbish poem every day. How on earth do other people – people with kids, or jobs, or both – how on earth do you manage?!
But then again, I am learning. I’m learning to shed some of my ego. Being committed to posting a poem for every day means that I have to accept that sometimes I’ll be associating my name with things that wouldn’t normally make it past a second page in my workbook, let alone ever be paraded in public. And I’m having to grit my teeth and push past my usual blocks and superstitions – I usually avoid typing up a poem until it gets to a certain stage, because it seems to get “fixed” there, and I find it really hard to push past that. But I don’t really have a choice here. And I am having to make starts on a lot of poems that otherwise would have stayed in my journal as “poem seeds” – I need them now! Right away!
I used to be able to write poems quite freely. Anything. Out of my head, onto the page. A bit of tinkering, but sometimes not very much before I’d send them off somewhere public. Then I started to really learn my craft. These days my poems don’t usually get sent out until I have really worked hard on editing them. Which is good discipline, but also a way of protecting myself. I now have something to lose. Credibility, I guess. And NaPoWriMo requires that I either
- invent a 72 hour day,
- clone myself a couple of times,
- cheat, or
- find some courage, and show my poems off stark naked
The latter is what I’ve been doing so far. With mixed results, but then did I really expect anything else?
And on the plus side? I’m not going to have to create anything for the rest of the year. I will have more than enough material to work on for the next eight months at least. And having made it public, I’ll have plenty of motivation. (Ah shame, where would I be without you?)
How is NaPoWriMo treating the rest of you?