Summer is over.
It might seem like I’m running late, making announcements like that at the end of October, but my slice of California does a poor job showing the changing seasons. The desert is the same half-rusted brown all year round, and I’ll sweat in the afternoon’s heat whether it’s January or July. Last week, though, I decided it was time to start keeping a coat in the back seat of my car for when I leave work after dark and step outside into the sudden, sweet cold.
I am thrilled.
It’s Fall now. Halloween is a week away. Thanksgiving is coming. Christmas feels less and less distant as the decorations sparkle in stores. And National Novel Writing Month starts in nine days.
I love it.
This will be my ninth year competing: attempting to write 50,000 words at a breakneck pace inside thirty days. My first year, I won spectacularly with more than a week to spare. I loved the novel I wrote, and I hit 70,000 words smoothly and gleefully. But I was seventeen years old. I was homeschooled. I had already been accepted at my first choice college. I think I talked my mother into letting me start the holiday break a couple weeks early. And I just wrote.
This year looks so different: In a lot of ways, it will be my first adult NaNoWriMo. It’s definitely the first time I need to make rent and car payments while writing my butt off. First time with a full time job. First time with a significant other. He’ll probably want proof of life from time to time.
I’m more excited than I have been since that very first year. I want to win more than I have in ages. And I’m probably going to sleep less than a giraffe on espresso (look it up).
I’m trying to drag as many of my friends as possible into this mud-happy mess with me. Might as well drag you in too.