Back in school, a dear friend referred to Underwater Basket Weaving as an “easy A” class. She made it sound so simple. But when I signed up for Underwater Basket Weaving it turned out to be much more difficult than promised.
I was so excited at the prospect of combining two things I loved, being in water and the decorative interlacing and interplay of reeds and wicker. I gathered my supplies: reeds of various sizes, goggles and snorkel, clippers for trimming the reeds and assorted other necessary items and found my way to my first class. Initially, there was nothing to it. We sat on the deck of the pool and learned some of the techniques we would need for keeping the shape of our basket. Then we practiced breathing with the snorkel. That was a strange experience. The noise the air made as it rushed through the snorkel was distracting and disorienting to me. But, I thought, it must get easier. This is an “easy A” class after all.
I was badly mistaken. We entered the water with our underwater gear and our weaving necessities and began.
I step in now to say, My friend was a big liar! There was nothing simple or easy about “Underwater Basket Weaving”! It was nearly impossible to keep the warp under control and the weave compact and the noise of my breath in my snorkel was so loud underwater that it really freaked me out so I took it off! Let me tell you. Static apnea is way harder too. I was literally and figuratively WAY over my head.
Now, as your Camp Advisor, I see that you have signed up for something similar to “Underwater Basket Weaving.” NaNoing looks like an “easy A” at first, too. You have your plot idea and that’s the hard part right? Writing is just stringing words together and you’ve done that since you were a little kid.
So, you jumped into this endeavor with both feet, excited and filled with the promise of that “easy A”. But now you’ve hit the second week. This is where the task starts to really get daunting. Your characters have stopped talking to you and each other, you’ve discovered that there’s more to a plot that just the idea, the house has never been cleaner because somehow washing those walls is suddenly more appealing than sitting at your computer.
I’ll share with you what I learned in “Underwater Basket Weaving”. Stay calm and keep going. Yes, it’s difficult and at the moment it feels impossible, but it’s not. You’re at the part of the basket where you are moving from forming the base to forming the walls. Just keep at it. In a few rows and in a few days it will suddenly become so easy. The story will suddenly take on a life of its own and it will barely need you. Just come up for air on occasion and then get back to it. Keep at the task, round the corner of the basket, change your goal if need be (you can until the 25th), get past the difficult part of writing and you’ll be just fine.
Underwater Basket Weaving is no easy task and neither is writing, but what Worthy Goal ever is?