Blow those trumpets—the end is in sight! As of this evening, I am up to 44,255 words, and in racing parlance, I’m rounding the last corner and heading into the home strait. For the first time, I am beginning to feel I am actually going to complete the NaNoWriMo challenge and write 50,000 words in November. I am liking this image of myself of the sleek racehorse galloping to the finish and true to previous form I am completely disregarding the 5, 745 words I still have left to create and focusing on the champagne I am going to open on the evening of November 30. Looking at the NaNoWriMo site where you log progress every day, I observe some obviously driven and true writers have already completed their 50,000 words, but you can absolutely bet your bottom dollar it will be 5 p.m. on the thirtieth before I finish. The only reason I say 5 p.m. with confidence, rather than my more normal nerve-wracking 11.59 p.m. appointment with a deadline, is because I am already desperate to crack open that bottle and celebrate the fact I have actually done it.
November—or Movember as it is becoming increasingly known in Sydney—is a big month for all kinds of endeavors, including the sponsored growth of moustaches to raise money for male medical charities. As a letter writer called Rosie Lee remarked in the Sydney Morning Herald today, there are so many moustaches round Sydney at the moment it feels like we are all starring in a 1970s cop show.
The one absolutely invaluable thing that NaNoWriMo has taught me is that if I want to write seriously, then something in my life is going to have to give as there are just not enough hours in the day for family, job, dog, friends, and writing 2,000 words a day on a permanent basis. I have managed to get through this month on adrenaline, neglecting all family members including dog, and ignoring all household tasks, but I am not sure this is sustainable. Apart from anything else, my parents in the U.K. must assume I’ve died, as there has been complete radio silence from my end as I wrestle with my unsatisfactory imaginary teenager who, just as in real life, is completely failing to do what he is told.
There have been a few indications that things may be getting somewhat out of hand on the domestic front:
- I have just found a dishwasher tablet in the fridge—this introduces the interesting question of what I put in the dishwasher.
- The dog sensing he has been pushed down the pecking order for my attention has reacted by trying to recreate the Somme in the back garden complete with trenches and earthworks. Husband is waiting for one of the current excavations in the lawn to reach a suitable grave-like size before extracting his revenge.
- The washing has been hanging on the line for so long that when I took it in today I discovered a large spider had created a web between my shirts.
- Personal grooming has dropped to a new low, hair has taken on yak like tendencies and if I don’t get a grip I might be giving those Movember guys a run for their money on the hair growth question (on my legs I hasten to add, rather than top lip before someone sends me their top tips on ripping and stripping moustaches).
So roll on, November 30, which is coincidentally St Andrew’s Day, and like all good Scots, I’ll be celebrating our patron saint’s day; I might even be doing a little mini Highland Fling of my own just to give a little zest to the day before I reach for the champagne and razor.