“Why did I ever decide to do this?” you mutter under your breath. “This month was destined to end in failure!”
The cursor keeps on blinking.
It’s that sentence. The Worst Sentence Ever Written. The sentence you’ve been monkeying around with for the past hour. You need to change it, but taking the time to change won’t help you reach your goal, and you’re already far behind in your daily word-count.
Your story is going nowhere. The characters are all one dimensional caricatures. The plot’s a dud, and the themes are non-existent, and…
…why did you think you could ever write a novel in the first place?
You slam your laptop shut and cry out in misery, “The mountain’s too tall, the forces arrayed against me too strong, and all hope is lost!”
This sounds familiar, doesn’t it? You’ve seen this before, somewhere…
Harry Potter, trapped in the besieged halls of Hogwarts, surrounded by the dark forces of He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named, desperate to figure out the location of the final Horcrux…
Lucy and Susan, holding onto one another in the bitter pre-dawn coldness, crying over the dead body of the great lion, knowing that all of their hopes died with him…
And then, it hits you. This is your dark night of the soul.
NaNoWriMo is your hero’s journey, you are the hero, and this is your point of decision. Do you turn back in defeat, or do you press ahead?
But it’s not just that. You’re also the writer, which means that this is your story.
You control the valiant champions fighting for good and the shadowy forces of evil. One side will win or lose at your beck and call.
This is your story.
It doesn’t matter if it makes sense, if your dialogue is believable, or even if it is well-written. What matters is that you finish.
And Hero, you are almost there.
With that knowledge, you are free to re-open your laptop and write, because this is your story.
And you are the only one who can tell it.
Thimblerig’s Ark 2: The Ark Heist, is being written this month during NaNoWriMo, and will be published in Spring 2016.