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You may have noticed (if you care) that my blogging went down to a trickle last month. Shall I count the ways?

Chief among them was my attempt to write 50,000 words in the form of a novel. And I did it. I am now a proud “winner” in National Novel Writing Month (www.napowrimo.org).  Although I write quite a lot it’s the first time I’ve tackled anything remotely this level of word count.

My pretend book cover

My pretend book cover

Saying “yes” to this challenge meant disciplining myself to write 2-3 hours a day specifically on this. Not on blogposts. Not on newsletters, Not on poems. Or reading other people’s stuff for that matter. On writing this particular thing.  And developing strategies to keep writing this particular thing – a novel.

However, as they say, life goes on.  So I was still teaching, learning some dances for an upcoming performance, learning music (or not so much) for a new choir. And keeping up with a few other writing assignments.  I said yes to all these things, And hosting Thanksgiving. And still got my stuff written.

I will not do this again if I can help it.  Some things suffered (see music, above and friends. Oh and cleaning). In the past, I’ve occasionally bumbled on the limits of what I can absorb and do and this November made those very, very clear.  I can say yes to too many things, it’s my magpie nature.

I learned a few more things, of course. That I can do without some of my life’s timesuckers (email, etc!)  That it’s hard to write dialogue that is cliché free, because we talk that way.  That the thesaurus or my new word finder are good friends to have.  That I have an understanding family (knew that, helps to be reminded). And that I am finally going to add “writer” to what I do.  Because I do that.

As I head out to today I’m also heading over to the Style Crone (www.stylecrone.com) for the monthly Hat Attack get together where there are some wonderful hats on display.  I managed to find lovely purples down to my shoes (which unfortunately you can’t see.)