National Graphic Novel Writing Month, Day 16: You Can Do It!
At this point, those of you participating in NaGraNoWriMo are halfway there. Congratulations! You have made it past the initial excitement and momentum into the phase where you really have to put the pedal to the metal to keep going. Can you do it? Absolutely!
As a NaNoWriMo veteran and someone who keeps daily and monthly writing goals, I am familiar with the doldrums that come with the halfway point. You might start second-guessing your character ideas or worrying that you have fallen too far behind to catch up. You might feel you are a little bit ahead of the game and that you can afford some wiggle room. Some of you might even be throwing your hands in the air in dismay and wondering when you became so masochistic. No matter what you’re feeling right now, though, you have made it to the halfway point. If you’ve made it this far, you can make it all the way to the finish!
The thing about being in the middle of a project like this is that it can feel overwhelming. Your ideas don’t seem as shiny as they did when they began, and the road before you seems to be stretching into the distance. Two weeks seems like an eternity, and finishing your graphic novel seems like a fever dream. You may be feeling irritable and short-tempered. That’s perfectly understandable, because this is the hardest part of putting the story together. It’s the glue that connects the introduction to the conclusion, and sometimes it feels like that glue just isn’t going to stick. Every creative genius has been in this place, so don’t worry: you’re in good company.
If you’re still pulling your hair out and trying to lick the last smudge of dried coffee from the bottom of your mug, stand up! That’s right, get on your feet. Go outside for a few minutes if you can and take a walk around the block. Get some fresh air and let some oxygen get to your brain. Give your hands a little rest and let your mind relax. Drink some hot cocoa or a cup of tea. Congratulate yourself on all the hard work you have done so far. You’re awesome! Seriously, look in the mirror, give yourself a big thumbs-up and say “I’m so awesome!“
Yes, it may sound cheesy, but it’s much better than staring at the ceiling counting cobwebs or banging your keyboard against your head. It’s positive – and so is all of the amazing work you have accomplished over the past two weeks! This is the hump of the project. The proverbial Wednesday in the creative process. You can conquer this challenge, and you will! Know why? Because you rock! It’s true!
So, while you work on your daily goals, remember to appreciate your excellence and dedication, and smile to yourself about how great you are. You’ve come this far, and the finish line is just around the corner.
Remember: you can follow all the NaGraNoWriMo posts here!