NaNoWriMo, say it three times fast.  No don’t, you’ll sound silly.  It stands for National Novel Writing Month and occurs during November.  I {insert one of the following here: Stupidly, Hopefully, Bravely, Begrudgingly, Excitedly} undertook this challenge with the assistance of Amanda and Kan and soon to be joined by Mare.  It was a challenging time let me tell you.

Have you ever had to write?  Been forced to under a deadline I mean, not “had to” as in “I just had to sit down and write this novel”.  Think back to high school or uni when you had to provide an essay of a certain length at a certain date and now turn that into a month long sentence where you have daily quotas, albeit as a guideline, and regular weigh ins.  You can see the terror in my eyes right?  Through the screen, you can feel the tension in my fingers as I type this out now just recalling it.

What seemed like a good idea at the time began over breakfast with ideas being discussed and me discovering how woefully underprepared I was.  But the biggest takeout from that breakfast meeting with Amanda and Kan was the sense of kinship, and the ridiculous amount of laughter that we shared.   

There was much interaction between “check-ins” and more laughter, of course.  The biggest struggle was to write when I had a very loose idea and no idea where to start.  Our small group was joined by Mare, who, having done this before was a wealth of ideas and support when we were struggling.  Mare offered a great suggestion to write in small pieces - just to get something down.  And it worked.  I now have some short disjointed stories from this exercise and an idea for how they actually do link.  This will be an ongoing challenge, but one I’m looking forward to.

The time and effort that went into writing (and not writing as the case may be) has inevitably meant that I didn't get to posting.  I’m thankful for you patience and as a reward, or maybe a punishment here’s the first piece I wrote:

The Sense of things
It seemed that there were days were everything was intensified.  The colours, the sounds, the scents and the feel of things.  Fingers trailed along the rendered gate pillars sensing every bump, reading them as if they were braille.  Her hands continued reading, the story changing over picket fences and hedges.   Visions swam before her, of conversations and small children playing, of flowers being picked surreptitiously whilst no one was watching. Of kisses being stolen behind the hedge.  She wasn’t sure if it was the impact that stopped her or the unwanted break in her story.  Either way it was over and her hand was now clutching someones face for support as she fell.