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Why Tom Merritt Stopped Writing

Tom Merritt
Tom Merritt
Hey folks,
Putting out the newsletter a little early this week because I’m headed up to the bay area for my niece’s 6th birthday party. We’ll be taking over a children’s play area? And there will be pizza? Anyway it will be awesome.
It will also take my mind off my current dilemma. It’s National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo) and I haven’t been writing. Every year for more than a decade I have written 50,000 words during NaNoWriMo. The only exception was 2015 and I’ll get to why in a second.
I planned to write. I had been working on an idea all year long and still have the notes for it. Then as November came near I changed my mind and sketched out an entirely different idea and had it all ready to go.
Then November 1st came. And unlike previous years where I got excited at having the excuse to sneak away for an hour and write, I found myself making excuses.
Rey (my dog) has lymphoma and her cancer came back right around then. We weren’t sure what was going to happen so that was a daily stress right at the beginning of the month. A new regime has got her back on stable ground again as of this week. The one year I didn’t finish NaNoWriMo, 2015, was the year my old dog, Jango got cancer. So there’s something there.
Then I got Covid. Which sapped me of energy. I was able to do DTNS and such easily but I really didn’t have extra energy for a few days in there. Those two things overlapped.
But even then I think I would have maybe lagged and then rallied back. And I haven’t. And part of me thinks it’s because I have so many completed books from previous NaNoWriMo’s competing for my attention. I think I need to face the fact that I don’t need NaNoWriMo anymore. I’ve been writing on two ideas all year. I caught myself a few times stressing about what I would do with the next NaNo book once it was done this month. And that’s not what the month is about. NaNoWriMo is to remove excuses that are keepign you from starting writing. Not a thing that should make you worry you have too many books written.
So thanks. Writing this all out really helps me solidify that. Maybe I graduated. I can do NaNoWriMo when I need it. Heck I can do it any month of the year. But I shouldn’t feel like it’s an obligation.
My next challenge is to figure out what to do with my writing Patreon. To be honest this makes me think that should be my focus now. Use that as the motivation to progress all year long. So if you want to follow my writing progress, you can go sign up there,
And I’ll keep you updated from time to time here as well!
Now off to the birthday party!

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Tom Merritt
Tom Merritt @acedtect

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