I learned something about myself this past week: I hate being behind and needing to catch up.
This year is my fifth year doing NaNoWriMo and it is the first time that I fell behind the daily word count target. By week 2 I had been ahead all the previous times, and laughed at the 'dreaded week 2' warnings that everyone dished out.
Only this year I was a victim of week 2, and I have to say, I did not like it one bit. Of course, the were extenuating circumstances (there always are, true?) but dammit, it is not as if I am a rookie at this. I should have seen it coming!
But I didn't. And that I think is where the true danger lies. We get so lost in the speed of life, that before you have a chance to blink, three days have passed. A few years ago, I set myself a personal target of 100k words in November. I made the target, but I learned something very valuable: taking care of myself, especially my hands. They were really hurting and I promised myself not to do that again. I write everyday, so why should I punish myself by overdoing it one month of the year? Not that 50k is what I normally do in a month, but still. I need to care for my hands. I only have one set, and I do like them just the way they are.
So stuck in the misery of week 2, I had fallen behind far enough that I was wondering how I could possibly catch up, without going through that pain again. And it hit me - voice recognition. So I put on my trusty gaming headset (thanks, Francois) and started dictating my words.
Only until I caught up those numbers that I was behind on, since I still prefer to type my words. I caught myself laughing a few times - at myself. Dictation requires practice and like writing you have to be 'fit' to do it, and I had forgotten that. Some of the words the computer wrote down...really had me going. Thank you, editing. Those words will really need a hard edit before this year ends, otherwise I will never remember what I wanted to write. But that is for after November.
So now I am caught up, a little ahead to be honest, and I can relax. Not completely though, since I still have a few thousand to go. But to my mind I am no longer a potential loser, I am a potential winner. And that makes all the difference, doesn't it?