It’s true. For about the first twenty days of this month, despite deteriorating health (don’t worry, I’ll be fine, it’s just making life difficult for a month or two it seems), I managed to hammer out a poem a day. I remember thinking around the 20th of the month that I should post up some more poetry, but found nothing that I liked enough to post. Then, over the last week, my health threw a few more curveballs at me, and it all just fell apart.
I should have seen it coming really. I like to think I’m invincible, that I can take on more and more challenges in my life and that I won’t ever burn out. However at the start of April I burned out with work, and even now I’m in the slow process of easing myself back into my job, so I should have really known my creativity was going to slump as well. I thought at one point that if I have beaten NaNoWriMo three times in a row (last year knocking out 75 000 words in a month), that surely I could handle a poem a day? But it turned out I couldn’t, at least not right now.
And this is why it’s a good thing I failed – I needed to remind myself that I do have my limits, and that sometimes I have to say “no more” and just stop and let myself recover, without beating myself up over my failure. It’s okay to fail once in a while, so long as you stand back up afterwards, dust yourself off, and try again, which is exactly what I’ll do. And all things considered, I gave it my best shot and did pretty well under the circumstances, I think (not to mention that I have never been as comfortable with poetry as I have been with writing stories).
To all of you who attempted and actually managed to knock out thirty poems this month, I salute you! You people are amazing and inspiring, and have the resolve that will get you through so many other challenges in life. And for those of you who, like me, attempted, but didn’t quite get there in the end for whatever reason – I still salute you, because you tried, and because we’re all human and we can never predict where our lives are going to take us, even in the small space of a month.
Next year I’ll beat this challenge. For now, it’s time to get my health back on track, get my 12 novellas back on track (yes, I still plan to finish writing 12 novellas this year, despite how behind I am), and brace myself for my fourth NaNoWriMo coming up in November.
How did you all go with NaPoWriMo? For those who didn’t participate, are there any writing challenges or goals you have missed lately, and have you learned to forgive yourself for it and move on?