NaNoWriMo Recap: The Suck

Posting has been nonexistent this week as I’m attending a work-related conference and most of my brainpower’s being siphoned away as I attempt to look and sound oh-so-professional conversing with people that I’ve admired and Tweetstalked from afar.

However, I’m still committed to getting some NaNo-time and what better place to do it than the FANTABULOUS Seattle Public Library?

Where the writing magic happens. Personal photo via Adrianne Russell.

The Roommate told me it was Mecca for librarians, and now I see why. This place is a book-lover’s wet dream. Man! I used up a good chunk of allotted writing time running around all the floors in a euphoric frenzy.


Day 4: How can inspiration be waning so early? Probably has more to do with the fact that I’m still packing/moving/transitioning and motivation is hard to come by. Managed to churn out some words, but it was a struggle. Word Count: 6,666. Snippet: Why does Cooper look so stunned? It always starts like this. Nat pushes and pushes like a crazy person until he snaps and breaks up with her. In the end, Cooper feels awful about something that wasn’t even his fault and begs her to take him back. It’s what happens in the meantime that makes my stomach knot. She always finds some guy to fall in with, and this time it’s obvious who she wants it to be.

Day 5: Oh hai, Monday. Snuck up on me there. Work is slow and excruciating in that getting-ready-to-go-out-of-town kind of way. Devote many brain cells to making sure everything is covered while I”m gone. Word Count: 8,333. Snippet: Cooper pulls a crinkled joint and lighter from his pocket. Weed smoke fills the car. He holds it out to me. I’m torn. It’s got the Licardelli skunk, which means it’s excellent. And it would definitely help get rid of my walking on broken glass mood. But my parents already think I’m an irresponsible ingrate. Getting busted smelling like Bob Marley’s tour bus won’t help.

Day 6: Excited about The Roommate hanging out with me. Not so excited about the sudden gastrointestinal distress. Seeing as I have to spend several hours traveling tomorrow, I stay home to rest. Side note: writing does not reduce stress over Presidential Election returns. Word Count: 10,000. Snippet: Shay’s the imposter and she knows it. When she quick-steps out, every head she passes leans toward another and you can almost hear the hum of frantic whispers. No telling what the story will be by the time it gets back to Nat. I grab my phone and send her a quick 911 text. Nat sucks at strategy. She’ll need my help if she wants to spin this right.

Day 7: Spend most of the day stressing over traveling alone. Being sort of a crybaby about it, but mostly because I wish we could afford for both of us to go on this trip. It’s always more fun when you have cool people to share experiences with. Word Count: 10,422. Snippet: Josh sits down, looking annoyed. He says, “So you’re pretty good at that.” His voice is low, dark brown eyes locked with mine. For a second, my mind goes blank.

Focus, Palmer.

“I’m good at a lot of things. You’ll have to be more specific.”

Day 8: Conferencing, talking, schmoozing, cocktailing, but no writing. Word Count: 10,422.

Day 9: Practiced my rusty French at a restaurant overlooking a giant ferris wheel. Got points for enthusiasm and a “kick-ass” accent from a crowd of tipsy museum professionals. Awesomeness ensued. Word Count: 15,321. Snippet: It was Nat’s stupid fight that made me desperate enough to choose the unwashed masses on the bus over riding in a clean, shiny, expensive foreign car in the first place. It worries me that she’s behaving so differently. When it comes to her romantic life, Nat rarely deviates from the script.

Day 10: Last day conferencing. Said goodbye to my friends new and old, watched Kansas State beat TCU and trash-talked my Horned Frog sister & brother-in-law via text. Learned that ginger ale is amazing sweetened with local honey. Word Count: 18,321. Snippet: Sometimes, even I’m impressed by my powers of alienation. By lunchtime, I’ve managed to piss off Nat, confuse Cooper, and spook Josh.

We’ve hit the Dreaded Week Two, also known as “The Suck.” Are you bogged down, whipping through it like greased lightning, or wondering why we put ourselves through this at all?


11 thoughts on “NaNoWriMo Recap: The Suck”

  1. I think your snippets sounds excellent! I’d never have guessed it’s your first draft. I think you should retitle this post to “The NOT Suck.” Don’t be hard on yourself for the word count. Any progress is a win! 😀


  2. I’ve been keeping up, but barely. Sounds like you have really good reasons to be having a hard time putting in the words. I like your snippets. The writing is good and funny. Great voice. That’s the best part of Nano, looking back later and being like, “whoa, I don’t even remember writing that, but it’s actually decent.” I loved your “smelling like Bob Marley’s tour bus” line. LOL.


      1. Just! Today I’ll try to get in 2000 to day to put me right ar 25000 words. The halfway mark of relief. I’ll be able to write a lot better this week because my girls will no longer be on school holiday. I’ll have the silence of home to get me back to longer more efficient writing stretches. Good luck to you too! Get those words in!


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