I heard horror stories about Week Two (that's right it's capitalized). Everyone on the NaNoWriMo website talked about it being the week to push through. My inbox was flooded with e-mails from the NaNo team encouraging me to keep on going. Needless to say, I was intimidated by how hard they said it would be.
Turns out? It wasn't so bad. It was actually pretty great. Even considering the fact that I nannyed a very sick and unhappy baby last week. I was able to finish the week with 25,247 words (over the halfway point in just fourteen days)! And with those words came crazy, exciting, and frustrating new changes. Those changes? Well, I rearranged several chapters, had Maddison confess deeper feelings than I had planned, and added a death threat to the plot just to spice things up a bit. This story continues to surprise and excite me. And after a year of stumbling through six chapters of another project, I thank God for the fact that as of yesterday I had eleven complete chapters. ELEVEN!
And I would not have made it through these fourteen days without my family and friends asking me about the story, praying for me, and commenting on facebook. Three of these friends were special gifts last week, and so I'm going to brag on them a little bit 'cause I'm so grateful:
First, I have Sue. The woman who started the online crit group I've been a part of, and the woman who introduced me to NaNo and gave me great tips for preparing for it. My friend is already published, with good reason, and I can't wait to stand in line at a book signing for her. The novel she worked on during NaNo last year rocks my world, and I agree with Erynn that "it's gonna be huge." This wonderful writer friend is extra busy with a husband, her boys, civic duties, and her own writing pursuits, yet she has cheered me on in just about every facebook status, left me comments over here, and sent me links. If my book is half as good as hers, it'll be worth this crazyness. Sue's a genius and I'm so glad to know her.
Second, my friend Rebecca. She doesn't write fiction herself, but she will listen to me go on and on about mine forever. And she is always excited about it to. :) She has designated herself as the "spontaneous hang out friend" this month because she knows I can't make plans to be with friends but wants me to have a way to see one of my girls if I need a break or have already met my word count for the week. She drove up from Durham on Thursday night just to encourage me with her presence and pizza. She told me on Friday that she is already planning a celebration for the two of us at the end of this crazy draft. My job is just to let her know what day I finish. This mysterious celebration is motivation enough to finish.
Finally, my best friend and co-journeyer in this crazy writing process, Erynn. She's my accountability, in that I have to send finished chapters to her and keep them coming. She reads each one and then e-mails me only positive feedback so I am encouraged to keep on going. (In fact, after reading chapter ten, she paid me one of the highest compliments an author can receive). In addition, of her own accord, she's decided to critique every single chapter but save them up in a folder until the month is through so that I'm not tempted to revise early. Finally, she is fielding no less than two, and sometimes many more, phone calls a day when I start to freak out about what comes next or how my characters are complicating things. Most of the time, I just need to hear myself talking about the situation to realize what needs to happen (and that it's really not a crisis). But in the moments I need insight, I can call her and, without having to give her a complete backstory, ask for her input. Invaluable. She's completely invaluable to me, and I know I would've gotten off this crazy train in week one were it not for her counsel and her demands for more Noah.
To these three women, and all of my other sweet friends, thank you. I dedicate this month to you.
Now on to week three...