I have finally decided to take part in National Novel Writing Month, or NaNoWriMo as we word nerds call it.
This is a challenge to write 50,000 words in 30 days. This is something I’ve wanted to try but 1.) haven’t been in a place with novel projects to stop for a month and take part, and 2.) I have a steroid-crazed, muscle-bound inner editor who I fear won’t let me write non-stop without stopping to spend obscene amounts of time tweaking and editing.
But this is one of the beauties of NaNoWriMo. They help you (I’m told) learn to turn off the inner editor and just write glorious garbage like the wind. Something I’ve not done since Jr. High, and something, I suspect, could be very freeing and possibly even diamond-in-the-rough producing. (All bets are off as this remains to be seen.) And since I’ve taken all of 2012 off of novel writing (the wedding was lovely!), I would love to end the year with at least the bones of a book in hand.
That inner editor can be helpful when the proper time comes to perfect all the nuances of grammar, style, rhythm, research facts, plausibility, plot holes, etc… the list is endless. The inner editor is an anal left-brain, shoulder-pinching, whispering detail-freak (at least mine is) who shuts down the right brain and stops the blood flow of creativity. There is a proper time and place for detail work. Unfortunately, some people, like me, can NOT figure out how to keep that thing from butting in when the Right Brain is trying to do its thing and get the story bones down.
Then of course there’s the problem of hearing voices in the first place, something that was probably nagging at the back of your mind, right? Oh, if you didn’t already know this about novelists, sorry.
There are voices you can listen to, and then there’s that other voice. The evil one. I get the inner editor’s voice confused with a very similar sounding voice, one that tells me what I just wrote was dripping dumpster slime. The one that whispers, “You thought you were a writer?” while hopping from one shoulder to the other, giggling. (Yes, this IS as disturbing as it sounds, be glad you don’t live near me.)
As a Christian, I understand the problem of listening to that lying enemy of our souls. Why is it that it takes no more than a tiny doubt-casting whisper to send us screeching to a halt in our walk of faith? It began in the garden with Eve, poor girl. “Did God really say…” It only takes one subtle seed to plant doubt, discontent and divisiveness that undermine and destroy. It takes going back repeatedly to the Voice of Truth, to God and his word, to tune out that crafty voice bent on complete destruction.
So as I prepare to block and tackle (holy moly, that sounds like defense and offense at the same time…) my inner editor, evil or otherwise, I will remember that I have a powerful weapon at my disposal: Truth. All I have to do is keep my eyes and heart trained on what’s true. And I have to trust God to keep me straight on that.
Just a little FYI: If during the month of November you see me plugging my ears and yelling “Shut up!” to no one at all, do not be alarmed, I’m totally fine.
And since I’m now preparing for this story and will then bear down like a rabid dog to get 50,000 words written in 30 days, you probably won’t see much from me in the way of blog posts, unless inspiration burns straight through my fingers. So your prayers and patience over the next several weeks are gratefully appreciated!
Q: How do you respond & deal with the devil’s critical lies?