Run With It

Something really neat happened yesterday.

On this new training routine that I’ve created, I run on Tuesdays and Thursdays, walking on Wednesdays while I do a weekly phone call date with the best friend, while I do strength training on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays. This Tuesday, I ran, but I wasn’t really feeling it. I felt slow and not as great, afterwards–though I still felt happier than if I hadn’t ran at all.

Looking at my tracker app, I ran the first mile in 13:47 and the second mile in 14:41. Considering I’m just getting back into running, after almost five months of not running regularly thanks to winter*, I’m not surprised that I’m back to averaging around fourteen minutes, which is what I started at, when I first began running regularly.

Having an impressive or even fast mile pace has never really been my main goal: completion always has been. But I had a conversation with a friend the other day about running. She’s looking for a running partner and, unfortunately, didn’t find that with me, as I’m definitely a workout-by-myself kind of person (especially when it comes to running). I’m better as an accountability buddy, when it comes to working out. But we started talking about paces and realized that we might not be the best running partners anyway, as I average 14-15 minutes per mile, whereas she sits at an impressive 10. Still, we talked about it and she gave me a couple ideas of how to increase my pace, if that was a goal I wanted to do.

dean winchester running GIF

So, Thursday rolls around. I’m not really in the mood to workout, let alone run, but I need to–especially since I didn’t go on a walk the day before. I head out to my trail after sleeping in a little too late, only to get a text from my boyfriend, finding out that he’s taken a half-day and will be home at noon, which means I get to see him before I go to work, which never happens.

But I still gotta go on my run, first.

So, I already want to get home as quickly as I can, but it’s nearing 10:45am and I am just hitting the trail. And I think about the conversation I had with my friend and although I didn’t want to use her sprint/jog method, I did wonder if I could actively think about my pace and try to increase it, if only so I could get home and shower before my boyfriend got back.

I finished my run in 27 minutes. My first mile? 12:49. My second? 12:53.

I won’t lie: I was seriously ecstatic about that. I shaved over a minute of my mile time simply because I chose to push myself–and then also sprinted the last 100 meters, which almost killed me. It was a little rough, afterwards, but the fact that I was able to do that and how fantastic I felt afterwards makes me wonder if I shouldn’t stop listening to podcasts while I run and instead, listen to my screamo playlist like I did today and actively try to push myself.

Who knows, maybe after running consistently again, perhaps I can make that 10 minute mile, too.

Cheers.

*Which, um, seriously? Almost five months of consistently poor weather for running conditions? Damn, that’s a bit much, Kansas, don’t you think?

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So Guess What, Brain?

This mini…dare I call it a rant? I think it’s more like word vomit. Yeah, let’s go with word vomit. Anyway, this word vomit is brought to you most likely by a combination of period hormones, the general nature of an overthinking soul and the need to release emotions through writing it out.

Ta-da.

So, feel free to just brush off everything that follows because it’s a result of all of that above, or feel free to continue reading and then offering your own two cents in the comments below. You do you, I’m not here to tell you how to live your life.

Except, don’t compare yourself to other people.

Because honestly, it really doesn’t help anybody.

So, I overthink. That’s as plain and obvious as gravity or the sun shining (the latter being a little more questionable, thanks to our unrelenting winter, but you get what I mean). Recently, it seems like I’ve been overthinking everything that happens to me or everything that pops into my brain. By stopping to try and think for a second, instead of just doing what overthinking does, where I have a thought and then let my emotions run away with it as truth, I’ve come to realize that a lot of my overthinking–and the negative outcomes that I create as a result–is thanks to my comparing my current experiences with similar ones I’ve observed others go through, instead of looking at what I have and appreciating it for what it is.

psych GIF

Let’s show some examples.

I love my boyfriend. Seriously, he is positively fantastic and I adore him and I am so, so, so incredibly happy to be with him and consider myself beyond lucky. Our relationship, however, has always been pretty private, on his end, especially on social media. Me, I enjoy posting pictures of us together and writing gushy birthday posts like I did for him last weekend. Him, not so much. When I do, it doesn’t bother him at all (I’ve asked), but he isn’t one to really do that that often. So when I wrote a gushy birthday post for him, he didn’t “like” it or say anything about it on social media. Did he thank me 100 times for making his birthday awesome and going above and beyond with the cheesiness levels in person? Absolutely.

Yet did I still get a little bit bummed that he didn’t say anything on that post? Or that he doesn’t really post cute, cheesy things of us together?

Sure, yeah, I did.

But why?

It took me a while to figure it out. It’s simply because that’s what I’ve always seen only couples do. When I reached the age where dating started to become a thing was also the time when social media really started to pick up, so I’ve always been used to my friends having very public relationships on social media. So that’s what I’ve always expected to have, while I dreamed of being in a relationship for so long. Now, I finally found a man willing to put up with me and he just happens to be the type where he uses social media to share recipes and DnD memes and that’s about it.

Guess what, brain?

That’s okay. Stop trying to convince me otherwise and get upset when his way of showing affection is slightly different–and more private–than yours. If he doesn’t comment or like something you shared? That doesn’t have to mean he doesn’t like you–so stop telling yourself that, you dolt.

kenneth branagh film GIF

Let’s take another example.

Because I’m a writer, I absolutely love to read the acknowledgements sections in the books that I read, because I understand how much work it takes for an author to write a book and I like to read who they thanked in helping them through that process–because after it’s written, it becomes a very big team effort. Plus, I just like reading them and then dreaming about writing my own, one day.

When I read them, the expected culprits are usually there: parents, siblings, close friends, partners, dogs (because let’s be real, dogs are an amazing support system). And I read about how vital the support from those people was for the authors over the book I’m currently reading and sometimes I feel…jealous.

Because when I start comparing, my experience doesn’t feel the same.

I’ve written quite a few books, now, and I have a great support system. My family, close friends and my boyfriend all believe in me fully and don’t hesitate to tell me that. Their support is…everything. Yet my best friend has read a novel I’ve written. My Mom, two. No one else has read any of them, not even when I actually sent them out to them and invited them to read them and tell me what they think. I have my beta readers who have read more, of course, but sometimes I look at how little those close to me have actually read and I begin overthinking why they haven’t.

It’s because my books suck and they lose interest. They believe in me, but they don’t actually care about the books I’m writing. I’ve somehow failed in ways that these other authors haven’t…

Yeah, I know.

Ridiculous.

For one, everyone’s experience is different. Two, I have no idea, when an author thanks someone for their support, what that support looks like. It could be reading every draft they’ve written of every book they’ve written. It could be texting them and asking how writing is going. Or it could be cooking meals so they have extra time to write or telling them they believe in them, even if they haven’t read a single word they’ve written. Just because my support looks different doesn’t make it less. Just because I read about someone else’s Mom reading their novel in one sitting doesn’t mean my novel is suddenly worse because mine doesn’t.

Guess what, brain?

Support comes in all different forms and just because mine is different than what I read about and see (and don’t fully understand) doesn’t make it any less important, meaningful or real. So let’s back up on the self-pity and novel-deprecation, okay?

You see what I mean?

dule hill burton guster GIF

Through comparison, it’s so easy to take something good: like my healthy, loving relationship with my boyfriend or the amazing belief, faith and support I get from those close to me with my writing; and suddenly become insecure or question how those relationships and that support works, simply because it doesn’t match up 100% to those similar to it I’ve witness or seen and believe to be good, as an outsider. Obviously, that’s a silly thing to do, because I do have a wonderful boyfriend who treats me right, loves me and is fantastic…even if he doesn’t use social media to shout out those truths or he doesn’t always text me back. I do have a great support system with my writing from my parents, sibling, close friends and boyfriend…even if they haven’t read the books I’ve written.

It’s time to stop comparing what I have to what others have and instead, remember and look at what I have and been thankful and cherish that. Because honestly? I’m really damn lucky and I’m tired of my brain trying to convince me otherwise.

Cheers.


A Pointless Fear

I started writing the first draft* of a fantasy standalone novel called BLOOD PRICE last week. I’m pretty excited about it’s progress, considering I have 20,000 solid words down that, once upon a time, I thought were complete rubbish, and still over two months to get the rest of the words written, so I’m pretty ahead in my writing game at the moment. I’m really excited about the idea. Though I’m not sure if it’s the most original idea I’ve ever had, I do think it has a nice blend of originality and marketability that gives this idea a lot of promise; so much so–in my mind, anyway–that I’m actually really excited to get this book written, edited, beta read and then edited again, so I can actually send it out into the trenches and see how it does.

A foolish, brave part of me believes, on my good days, that this idea, this book, will be the one that helps me find an agent to partner up with me during my career.

It’s a really promising thought and helps keep me going during those days where I feel like everything I write is shit and I’m not ever going to go anywhere.

And yet, I find myself having another thread of thoughts which have the exact opposite effect: inspiring fear and worry where, honestly, I shouldn’t be feeling them.

I’m an aspiring author, but a definite writer. There’s no doubt that I have the chops to be a writer. I’m writing the first draft of my seventh book. Of course I’m a writer. Now, am I good enough writer to actually get anything that I write published? That remains to be seen. It’s probably not surprising, though, that I daydream about becoming an author all of the time. All the time. With the confidence I feel at the promise of this novel, it’s impossible not to continue dreaming about getting an agent because of this novel and then this novel getting published. But, of course, I don’t stop thinking there and I start thinking about my career as an author, finally getting started after over a decade of chasing it.

And I grow terrified.

Because, say that does happen. Say I finish this draft, take it through the necessary rounds of edits in order to get it up to snuff and query it. I get an agent. It gets published. But even before then, while my book is on submission, my agent asks me question. A simple one, but one that, in this made up, fantasy scenario, has me terrified.

What are you writing next?

At this moment in time, I have no idea how I would answer that.

I have a trilogy that I know will never get published traditionally, because everything about it is saturated for the traditional market. I have a quintet where I have the first book written and polished, the second book drafted and the other three I still need to outline, let alone write. It’s a series I plan to write to completion, even though it has been rejected before due to marketability concerns. So, even after getting an agent, it may not be the project they want my main focus to be, as I’ll probably do the hybrid author thing and self-publish that series. I have an idea for a sci-fi duology that is pretty rough and I’m not sure I can even make it good enough to actually write it.

Other than that, I have no other ideas floating around in my head.

In my made-up scenario, I’d have to answer with, Nothing, at the moment, which then, of course, results in me being a one-book-author who is dropped by their agent and oops, there goes the dream you’ve always wanted.

I hope you’re laughing, at this point. Or at least shaking your head.

Because, wow, Nicole, can you overthink any more?

There’s a lot of problems with that fear. One, there is so much, “if this, then that,” going on, that almost all of it is pointless to worry about, because there are too many unknowns within the scenario to really concern myself with, especially considering the first step to jumpstart any of this being possible, is a book that doesn’t even have a finished first draft yet. But the underlying fear is that I’ll somehow stop coming up with ideas and stories to write about.

*snorts*

I know, right?

When that fear takes me fully, I almost believe that’s even possible, even when I already have evidence stacked against that. Most noteable: the fact that I am currently working on my seventh book since I started writing seriously, at 15. Seven books in 10 years isn’t too shabby, if I do say so myself. And when I first started this journey, I couldn’t imagine completing that first draft of my first book, let alone the entire trilogy. The quintet I was working on wasn’t even a thought. Neither was the sci-fi I shelved or the book I’m working on now, that I’m seriously so jazzed about. Not to mention the fact that, last year, I joined a short story blog project that has resulted in, already, 12 short stories from yours truly. I write a new one every month; something I never thought I could do, yet here I am, writing at least 12 short stories a year. All of those come from prompts, but there are at least two that I wouldn’t mind thinking about a little bit more and trying to see if I can coax a novel out of them.

And you’re telling me, brain, that you’re nervous that I’m going to run out of ideas once my career “officially” starts, even though I’ve been at it for ten years, already?

Brain, hush.

I’m just getting started.

Cheers.

* I’ve mentioned this a couple of times, but this draft is technically the third, if you count the first time I tried to write it and then I deleted that draft and started over, before shelving the book. So no, I didn’t write over 20,000 new words in one week, I’m sorry to report. But it’s tiring to continue referencing this as the book I shelved but I’m now working on again, so first draft it is!


Enjoy The Process

If you follow along on my Resolution Sunday Blog Series, this year undertaking the theme called “Quest for Discovery,” you’ll know that I hinted at writing a post over the idea of wanting to maximize my time and enjoy the process during my Week 16 update.

This is that post.

You see, I have a lot of goals and a lot of dreams that I really want to accomplish. Two of my main ones include becoming a published author and shaping my body into the shape I’ve always dreamed I could reach. On top of that, a few hobbies that I have, I’m pretty involved in, like running three blogs and reading books (plus reviewing them). There is something in common about all of those things.

They all require work to achieve.

Want to be a published author? Well, you need to write books in order to do that. And writing books requires sitting down and putting in the work, writing word after word after word. Dream bodies are great, but you’d better be prepared to complete the workouts, control your eating and figure out a routine that not only works for you, but also creates the results you want. You can’t post on your blogs if you don’t write the posts and reviews don’t write themselves, either.

I know that. I totally accept it and I’m willing to do the work, in every single case. If I had to choose between giving up one of those dreams/goals/hobbies instead of doing the work (which, essentially, is what that comes down to), obviously, I’m going to choose to do the work. It’s what I have been doing and I have no plans on stopping now.

Yet I don’t always enjoy it.

Sure, that’s bound to happen. I mean, I’m not going to sit down every day in the mood to write, blog or read. I’m not going to enjoy every single workout I do. I’m not always going to want to do any of these things. Sometimes, I have to force myself to do it, to overcome laziness or anxiety or doubt. Sure, sometimes I need a break and I take that needed break, but most of the time, I need to be willing to put in the work, because it takes work to stay as consistent as I do and balance all of these things, on top of other commitments and aspects in my life I haven’t mentioned in this post.

But I want to enjoy it more, on a consistent basis, too.

It’s not that I’m miserable, all of the time, either. I don’t want to paint the wrong picture. But it does happen when I sit down to write and I have no desire to. Workouts, this happens a lot, where my brain is like, You don’t really want to do that, do you?, and tries to talk me out of it. There is a plethora of reasons I try to tell myself or that come up. Sometimes they’re valid, sometimes they’re not.

I think, however, that I could do a better job framing my thoughts around these activities and the work required to make my dreams come true, so that I do enjoy it more, instead of falling into the trap of an over-thinking brain or actually making it feel like work (which I think carries a societal taint that you’re not meant to enjoy it), instead of feeling things like pride in making progress and a sense of accomplishment. Mainly, I just need to remind myself that not only am I doing exactly that–making progress on my dreams, keeping up with my blog and my book reviews–but also remember how lucky I am to have the time available to do that. Because at the moment, I have a pretty good balance, as far as managing my time so I can complete all of these things daily. It isn’t always like that and it isn’t always going to be like that.

It also wouldn’t hurt to maximize on that time, either.

Despite being pretty productive pretty consistently, I know I’m still wasting too much time on social media. I scroll through Twitter a lot, especially after my dinner break, when work is at its slowest point. I could be doing a lot more and I want to try and lessen that time I spent wasting away and instead spend that time being productive, whether that’s writing a new post ahead of time, reading an extra chapter or hell, watching a TV show, seems so much better than just scrolling through social media for hours, instead of just checking it and then logging back off.**

The other thing I wonder is: what exactly do I want to replace my time spent pursuing these pursuits with? When I think about it, I can’t imagine what I would do if I didn’t blog, read, write and workout; how I would fill all of that time and still be happy. Sure, I’d probably watch more movies and TV shows and game a lot more, but even with doing everything, I still have a couple hours a day to actually game or watch a movie, if I want to. So it’s not even like I’m sacrificing those other hobbies that I love that don’t require any work to continue doing the hobbies that I also love that do take work. I need to remember that, if I wasn’t involved in and chasing after all of these things, I would probably be very, very bored.

So I’m going to be more conscious about my attitude when it comes to these endeavors, especially with writing and working out, specifically, as those are the two activities my brain fights me against the most, even if it isn’t all the time; the former, out of fear and doubt over my ability to write worthy books, and the latter because I just get lazy sometimes and it’s not a small amount of work to take control of your health and shape your body into something awesome that you’re proud of.

But in both cases, the work is worth it.

Now I just gotta remember that.

Cheers.

**In that vein, I find myself also feeling guilty rather easily when I make plans to accomplish X thing during Y time, but then something else comes up. Namely, in this example, I plan on working on X project at work and then my coworkers ask how my day was and instead of enjoying the conversation with them and the chance to catch up, I feel guilty for spending time socializing. That needs to change, too. Not that I want to spend so much time socializing on a consistent basis that I never get my work done, but rather, I want to enjoy the opportunity to socialize when it comes up instead of beating myself up every time that it does (because it isn’t often).


Quest for Happiness: Week Sixteen

Hello, friends!

Considering it snowed both days over the weekend, during mid-April, I’m a little peeved at the weather right now, especially after last week was so nice. It doesn’t look like it will be nearly as nice this week, but I’m hopeful that we can soon experience a little bit of spring, instead of being stuck in this perpetual stubborn winter or skipping straight into a miserably hot summer.

Image result for elegant page break clip artWriting 
Long-Term Goal: Write two new books and edit two books. Enter the query trenches.

Last Week’s Goal: Write 5x.

  • Status: Affirmative, Commander. Last week was mainly spent looking through the previous attempt I had at this book…and being surprised at how the first 20,000 words were actually pretty dang good. I ended up deleting the next 15,000 or so, because I made a switch in the plot, making those words impossible to use, so I had two days where I started writing completely from scratch. I won’t lie: I was a little nervous to start writing again, especially after going through and just being able to edit a bit, here or there. But I’m excited to continue this story and see where it takes me.

Weekly Goal: Write 5x. Look into writing contests/magazines to submit short stories into.

Reading
Long-Term Goal: Read every day, finishing up some old series and keeping up with new ones.

Last Week’s Goal: Read 5x. Write review. Go by the library.

  • Status: Affirmative, Commander. Though I didn’t finish the review for The Search for the Red Dragon, I did finish the book in two or three days and have already started the third one. Though I snagged a couple books from the library that I’ll have to read, so I don’t lose them thanks to unrenewable due dates, thus interrupting my James A. Owen streak, I’m really excited to be reading these books again. They’re fantastic.

Weekly Goal: Read 5x. Write review (x2?).

Fitness
Long-Term Goal: Continue living a healthy lifestyle and shaping a body I love and am proud of.

Last Week’s Goal: Workout 5x.

  • Status: Negative, Commander. So, I really like this new routine I figured out. I only worked out three times last week, thanks to my boyfriend having Thursday off work, so we spent time together, and then just being lazy on Friday, but I do enjoy the new setup I got: strength training MWF, running TR and then also going for a walk while catching up on the phone with my friend on Wednesday afternoons. I’m excited to do this consistently and see how my body responds, before I start fine-tuning the routine to best fit what I want to accomplish.

Weekly Goal: Workout 5x. Eat more fruits and veggies.

Financial
Long-Term Goal: Learn to have a healthy relationship with money and build my savings.

Weekly Goal: Stay frugal.

  • Status: Affirmative, Commander. 

Weekly Goal: Pay off credit card.

Spiritual
Long-Term Goal: Reconnect with God and grow personally to live more like Jesus.

Last Week’s Goal: Pray.

  • Status: Affirmative, Commander. 

Weekly Goal: Pray.

Carpe Diem
Long-Term Goal: Find a reason to smile every day and something to get excited about weekly. 

Last Week’s Goal: Get back into the routine and have fun celebrating my boyfriend’s birthday this weekend!

  • Status: Affirmative, Commander. Birthday celebrations were awesome. I did a cheesy surprise for my boyfriend, decorating the kitchen, and that was really fun. Also got to get lunch with my Mom and see my Dad/sister for a hot minute over the weekend, so that really nice, too.

Weekly Goal: Stay positive minded and enjoy the process, every day.Image result for elegant page break clip artI think the focus this week will be a combination of maximizing my time, while also enjoying the process. I definitely plan on writing a blog post about this, too, so if you want some more in-depth thoughts on what I mean by that, be sure to come back and check it out! But basically, I want to stop wasting the time that I have, especially when I don’t have as much on my plate as I usually do, and enjoy everything that I’m currently working on, especially related to these goals.

Cheers.


Looking At It Differently

So, I read a thread on Twitter the other day from author C.L. Polk. It discussed the delicate balance of readers interacting with the authors they admire; about how a reader saying, “I can’t wait for your next book,” could actually have negative consequences. Sorta like the same consequences a reader can inflict when they begin to guilt trip an author through social media, especially when they say things like, “Why aren’t you writing!?” in a comment after an author tweets about their latest enter-any-other-aspect-about-life-that-isn’t-writing here.

It’s a point of view I’ve never really considered.

Not the guilt tripping one.

The “I can’t wait for your next book” one.

I’ve been pretty lucky to interact with quite a few of my favorite authors. I met a few at WorldCon a couple of years ago. Especially ever since I started my book review blog, I’ve definitely interacted with authors online more, usually on Twitter. Some really awesome conversations have come out of that. I won’t lie: I get pretty starstruck whenever I’m able to talk to an author who I admire, virtually or otherwise. I’ve said some pretty embarrassing things before, as one is apt to do, when talking with an idol. (Gosh, you can imagine if I’d had the opportunity to meet Tolkien? I’m pretty sure he’d have to learn another language, just to try and understand my fangirling ((not that learning another one would be an issue for him, but you get where I’m coming from))).

That said, I never considered how me talking with an author and saying something like, “I loved your book! I can’t wait for the next one!” might not be seen as encouraging, like my intentions are.

It could actually be just as guilt tripping as someone who blatantly calls out an author for not spending every moment of their life writing, but instead, actually having a life, as well.

I put myself in the role of the author, thinking of Polk’s examples and discussion in her thread. Here I am, having written a book that some people enjoy. Sometimes, they reach out to me and tell me so. But instead of getting elated that they are excited for the next book, I instead feel guilty. Because I haven’t been having a great writing week. Or the deadline is looming and I’m probably going to miss it. Or I’ve been spending a lot of time playing X new favorite video game instead of going over my word count goals for the week. Or I’ve been spending more time with my family than usual, instead of writing. Or I’ve suffering heavily through imposter syndrome. Suddenly, I feel this enormous pressure to not only live up to these new expectations, but also this fear that I’m going to disappoint my readers, because not only do they like my work, but they are waiting for more. Right now.

Thinking of it this way, even though I’m nowhere near close to being published, I can totally see myself doing this; reacting this way.

I think it’s really easy to not think of authors as people but instead see them as celebrities, putting them on pedestals where we idolize their creative prowess, and thus forgetting that they have needs, lives and wants beyond writing the next book we’re waiting for. And they should. They’re people. They’re human. They deserve to have lives, too, and not be guilt tripped as such. And to not be afraid to talk about those other aspects on social media, lest their readers moan about how the sequel isn’t out yet.

I do admit, however, that, depending on the day and my mood, hearing a reader tell me they are excited for my next book to come out would be a huge mood lifter. Perhaps I just read a negative review and it’s encouraging to know someone out there still wants to read more of my work. Or that comment was just the kick in the pants I needed to stop wasting time on Twitter and instead get back to writing.

I can see it both ways, now. Before, I’d never considered how that could be negative and harmful comment, despite the purest intentions. It’s something I’m going to be more conscious of, even though I have no idea how these authors online are feeling at any given moment, so I’m not sure how my comments are going to be received. But I don’t think it hurts to try and be more conscientious, and reminded that just because I intend a comment one way, doesn’t mean it’s always going to be receive in the same manner.

Cheers.


Lying Numbers and Cheating Thoughts

I started writing a new book this week and I’m already 13,000 words in, after two days of working on it.

Before you start cursing my name and wonder what sacrifices I’ve made in order for the Muse to be so kind to me, let me clear something up real quick.

Hardly any of those words are new.

You see, I started working on this novel last year. I actually wrote almost 40,000 words before I ended up shelving it, just not feeling where the novel was going. In my head, I thought the novel was shit.

I’m really excited to report that, after reading through the first six chapters in the past two days, making tweaks here and there, I’m actually completely in love with this book and I’m struggling to figure out what I hated about it so much last time, that got me to the point where I shelved it. I even almost started crying, because I have already put Natanni through so much shit and I’ve only gone through the first 10,000 words.

I really hope this feeling continues, because at this rate, I’m going to reach the point where I got stuck last time by early next week, if not the end of this week, and I’m nervous that I’m going to get stuck again. But I’m so in love with the project right now and I want to finish this draft so badly, I think my stubbornness will win out and I’ll have a completed draft by June.

If, you know, I stop beating myself up, first.

You see, I use WriteTrack to track my progress and I made a plan to start yesterday and finish by June 31st. Following that plan, writing Sundays through Thursdays, I had to write roughly 1,400 words a day to meet my (minimum) word count goal of 80,000 by the 31st of June. I assumed, based off the memories and feelings I had, that I was going to scrap most of the draft that I’d shelved. I wasn’t expecting to like the first six chapters, i.e., 13,000 words.

So right now, it looks like I’ve written 13,000 words in the span of two days, rocketing past my daily word goal counts, already 1/8th of the way done.

And I feel like I’m cheating.

I know, I know.

That’s stupid.

I’m not cheating, even though I didn’t write those words from nothing in the past two days. Instead, I’m discovering the words I thought were shit before actually deserve to stay–for the first draft, anyway. I’m sure there will be some intense editing and fine-tuning in future drafts, so some, if not a lot, of the words I’m in love with now might disappear. But just because I actually like what I wrote before and plan on saving it doesn’t mean that I’m cheating in counting both of those days as successful word count goal days. I’m still working on this project and I’m just really lucky to have some surprising headway towards my goal of 80,000. And it’ll be nice to look back at all of that really fast progress once I am back to writing for the first time, instead of reading through old material and deciding if it’s good enough to stay or not.

Because once I hit that point, I know I’m not going to be averaging over 10,000 words every two days.

So how about I stop beating myself up and instead get excited about the fact that I’m actually falling in love with this story again, eh?

Cheers.