A shirt is a shirt is a shirt


NaNoWriMo has gone and past, and guess what? I won.

I had started my newest novel, Tin Man's Dreams, in February after the Southern California Writer's Conference, and in the next six months I wrote about eight thousand words. I had started the book over and over and over again, nothing was right, nothing was even good, and I'd hated it. But I loved the idea of it. So, I faced a problem. There was this idea that I loved more than any other I had ever in my whole life, but I hated writing it. Why?

Early in October I had hit another low point in my waves with Obsessive Compulsive Disorder. I had started so many projects, so many books, I occupied my time in so many ways, with college, an internship, a job, and a business. However, good intentions do not mean constant motivation. I decided to do what I've always wanted to do with my life, and that is to become an author.

I started NaNoWriMo with about 15,000 words in my arsenal. I pre-ordered a t-shirt that said I won the NaNoWriMo challenge. I adjusted my calendar. I took time off. I took a stance and I got ready.

And I didn't start.

It was only on Wednesday, November 22nd when I saw my t-shirt in the mail that I realized 'oh shit, I have eight days to write a book!'. And guess what I did about that?

If you guessed 'not a damn thing', you'd be right.

On Friday, November 24th, I put the t-shirt on my wall where I would have to look at it day in and day out. I vowed to myself that I would not take that shirt down until my book was finished.

By Monday, November 27th I had written about 20,000 words of the book.

It was only on Tuesday when I looked at my shirt on the wall and I realized something I'd never thought I'd realize. "I can't do it." 30,000 words in two days, that's impossible.

But my momma didn't raise a quitter.


I'd managed to write up 30,000 of the fastest typed words in the world. Every hour or so I'd get discouraged, I'd think that there was no way I could do it. But every time I looked up at my wall and saw that shirt. I finished a full thirty minutes before the deadline. Never in my life had I been so driven over a damned t-shirt.

It wasn't a shirt. It was a monument to myself, a reminder that I was capable, a bold trophy on my wall that I could do whatever the hell I set my mind to. I danced around in that shirt way longer than I care to mention and showed it to every person I could.

I won NaNoWriMo, and I won solace in myself.



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