I’m 10,000 feet in the air. I’m in an airplane. I hate to fly, but I’m not paying much attention to that. I’m much more consumed with what’s waiting on my laptop.
Because NaNoWriMo. I have over 10,000 words to write in the next five days.
Disclaimer: There are strong feelings on both sides about NaNoWriMo. I say that because I’d like you to keep reading regardless of how you feel about it. This post is about writing constraints and creativity and about how sometimes creativity can be forced, but it uses NaNoWriMo to get there.
Meanwhile, I’m still 10,000 feet in the air, but only for another hour. It’s a short hop, Baltimore to Portland, Maine. Only 40 minutes between ascent and descent. The second the captain announces it’s okay to use electronics, I pull out my laptop, feeling pressured, and as my fingers touch the keys, I’m suddenly afraid I can’t produce at all. I mean, I’m already anxious about flying, every air pocket and thermal making me jump. Now I’m anxious about writing, too.
Not the ideal set up.
I read the last sentences I’ve written in my WIP, type some tentative words, then a few more, and after several minutes I’m already feeling freer in my writing. A little while longer and the words flow. In the end, I’ve written about 500 words.