…we are alive. – Graham Greene
Tomorrow begins NaNoWriMo, and today I learnt an important lesson: it is okay not to know. I do not know what will happen as I begin to write my story. Yes, I have outline. Yes, I have been reading various books on novel writing. Yes, I feel passionately about my ideas thus far. The fact, however, still remains that the moment my fingers strike the keyboard; tapping out words to form images, tapping out words to create feeling, tapping, tapping; it means I let go of my control. I let go of the safe thoughts that have been circulating in my mind about what my story is or what it ought to be. I place myself at the mercy of my imagination and my subconscious. Is this scary? Heck, yes! It conjures images of failure of all types, and failing is something I fear greatly. This is what I realized also today. I fear failure, which goes hand-in-hand with my fear of not knowing.
It is okay not to know. I write those words to remind myself that I am capable of being a good parent to myself, capable enough to allow myself humanity. There are often times when I surrender to not knowing the future, not remembering the past, not being in the present. Now, I surrender to not knowing myself in my entirety. It is okay not to know.
This is my mantra starting tonight. The last three weeks have been something akin to internal hell with a body that was failing me, a mind that was frustrating me with old expectations that echo from words spoken by people in the past: there is no room for failure, 99% is not enough. Still, even after thirty-four years, the drive for perfection in so very many things continues to present in my waking steps, perhaps too in my dreams . It is okay not know, perhaps never to know. I am a living being. I am not static. I am dynamic, ever-changing, ever embracing the process of life.
I remind myself now that there is nothing for which to ask forgiveness, and perhaps there never will be as long as I am trying my very best. Some days I will achieve 100%. Some days I will achieve 50%. There are only two points: to live and to write. Perhaps it is to live through writing.
It’s time to begin NaNoWriMo! 😉 Good luck, everyone!
- The Pros and Cons of NaNoWriMo (onewaytowonder.wordpress.com)
- The NaNoWriMo Preparation (writtennerd.wordpress.com)
- TLN’s Plan for NaNoWriMo (thelivingnotebook.com)
- I am ready for NaNoWriMo (cindydejager.wordpress.com)
- NaNoWriMo and Publishing . . . (nfaa.wordpress.com)
- Good luck with NaNoWriMo this year! (tysonadams.com)
- [My trials in worldbuilding, cartography and conlanging ] NaNoWriMo (vorropohaiah.blogspot.com)
- Lifehacker Does NaNoWriMo Once More (lifehacker.com.au)