The Joy in Creating Story


November is NaNoWriMo and has been for me since I began writing as my full time job.  This means that for the month, I dedicate myself to word count, hoping to hit the magic number of 50,000 words by its end.  That works out to about 1,667 words a day.

I wasn’t planning on doing this in 2016.  I have a vacation in November, and who wants to work on vacay?  Plus, I am coming off a stress-filled last few months, editing and releasing five books, dealing with a sista/friend’s lingering illness and tragic death, and feeling like my life is not mine to control.  Who wants to add more tension to that?

BUT – I have a dear, wonderful friend who has been in a writing slump.

D.E.B.:  <cautiously excited>  “I finally feel like writing again.  I think I’m going to do NaNo.  I know you always do.  Can we buddy?  That will be just the kick in the butt I need.”

Me:  <hesitating>  “Sure!”  <then wondering where the hell that came from>

Well, in for a penny and all that.  I rallied other writing friends, and we reactivated our private FB NaNo group.  We report word counts (aka, goal accountability), inspire each other (aka, egg each other on), and commiserate about things that “keep” us from writing (aka, excuses).  “Buddy” in NaNo-land is like “liking” someone on social media, and we’re all linked there too.

And all the while, I wondered where that assertion of “sure” came from.

But then November 1 rolled around, and the characters who have been chattering in my brain for months began to tell their story, and I remembered.

This is fun! 

The thrill of new words, of creation, something I had been missing in the frenzy of the last few months, returned.  I put fingers to the keyboard and I didn’t want to get up!


I know I’m only four writing days into the month, but I’m significantly ahead of my daily word count goal.  At this rate, I can take vacation time off and still finish the 50K challenge.  In reality, I won’t.  There’s a joy in this raw and fast dump of story that makes me happy.  Not gee-I-made-goal-today happy, but truly thrilled as the characters take form, track along on their hero’s journeys, and engage in their lives.

I love it!

So for all of you who dread beginning a new creative work, seek the joy.  That’s why we create, because we love it and it brings us happiness.  Yes, I will have a full draft of a new book by the end of the month (at this rate), but somehow, that’s secondary to exploring new people in a place I’ve created and love.

I am a fiction writer.  I get to spend my days making sh#& up.  How much fun is that?

And D.E.B., thanks for providing just the kick in the butt I NEEDED but couldn’t recognize myself.  It proves that when you help others, you end up helping yourself even more!

How does the joy of creation impact your life?  How does it make you feel?  Please share your comments!

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