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Friday, November 1, 2013

November 1st Challenge

Hi, it’s Christina – 

The day has arrived, November 1st. I am about to embark on another frenzied month of NaNoWriMo – stressing, not sleeping, cramped muscles, and general obliviousness to what is going on in the world around me. During the weekdays, I will wake up, write my blog, take a small break while my daughter is getting out of the house, finish my blog until my husband wakes up, take another small break, and then writing non-stop until my daughter comes home from school. The weekends will be a little different. On Saturdays, I will only be able to write until they wake up, and then on Sundays all I’ll probably be able to do is my blog before church.
 
Translation, I’ll have approximately 125 hours to write the 50K words, which calculates to 400 words an hour. My blog takes me roughly an hour to write and generally they run between six hundred and eight hundred words. When I break it down that far and do the comparison, it doesn’t seem quite as daunting. Perhaps if I keep that in mind, and reward myself every 400 words, I’ll be able to plow through yet again, and not get completely freaked out on the days I can’t write. (Thanksgiving Day, the prep day before, and picking up my daughter from school are the three days I know of already, and I didn’t figure them into the 125 hours.)
 
I will keep you updated as to my progress, and any words of encouragement during this insane time, would be greatly appreciated. I asked last time, but no one took me up on my request, but I am going to ask again. If any of you have suggestions for writing prompts, please feel free to send them to me, so I can have a few extras to pull from this month.
 
Now, in an effort to share some anxiety, here’s a reality check for all of you. There are 27 days left until Thanksgiving and Chanukah, 55 days left until Christmas, and only 61 days left in 2013. Yeah, I know I can still be a brat at times. Sorry.
 
I hope you have a great day and happy writing!


Your Last Challenge:
 

I’m going to give you a whole lot of leeway on this one. Tell us about your favorite Halloween memory. It could be a special Halloween, an extra special costume or party, tradition, whatever you want to write about.


There are several Halloweens I remember fondly, like the year all five of us went as a family of Dalmatians. Yup, even my husband. But there is one Halloween in particular which stands out in my mind.

It was the Halloween on 1976, I was in fifth grade. Several weeks before Halloween, I had suffered a terrible accident. My foot went through the spokes in an exercise bike and was nearly severed at the ankle. After many hours of surgery, everything was reattached and my leg was casted.

A few days before Halloween, I was finally given the okay to walk without my crutches. I was thrilled. Although I was slowly thumping about in a cast, I would be able to walk to go trick or treating.

My costume that year was Raggedy Anne. My mother had made it, and it was adorable. I’m not just saying that now as an adult, I actually loved it as a ten year old. She had made the elastic on my pantaloons extra stretchy on my right leg to accommodate my cast, and for the first time in nearly two months, my accident was not as noticeable, or so I thought. I was still walking gingerly and with a distinct limp.

I hobbled up to the first house and when the people answered they had asked me what happened. So I told them. They we so horrified by my story, they gave me an extra piece of candy. The same thing happened at almost every stop. After an hour or so, my leg was tired from walking and my candy bag had gotten too heavy for me to carry, so we called it quits.

 

I remember lying in bed that night and thinking all these people, even though they didn’t know me, wanted to do something nice to make me feel better. They didn’t frown or scold even when I admitted the accident was all my fault, that I had been stupid and caused the whole mess. I think that night was when I started to realize accidents happen, and even if you were the cause of the accident, it did not make you a bad person.

I had been carrying around a lot of guilt over getting hurt. I had caused my family a lot of anxiety and worry all because I was being too competitive and made a bad decision. The kindness from strangers that night helped me start to release some of that guilt.


Your Next Challenge is (one from my writers’ group):


You work at a restaurant – you witness a blind date that goes horrible wrong


You have 10 minutes (be honest). There is no right or wrong, just write. Spelling and punctuation don’t count and NO ONE is allowed to criticize what someone else has written. Go.