I don’t know about you, but I thrive under pressure. I have 15 minutes to complete a task that takes 30? I’ll give it a shot and be damned if I don’t have something near to a finished product. Last minute revision? I’m your man. 30 days to write 50,000 words? Bring it.
So since I discovered NaNoWriMo, I have done every November and every camp. Except… I won’t be doing April.
The main reason? Because I respect my parents’ wishes not to. However, I am also under a lot of stress at college (I EVEN HAVE COLD SORES WHAT IS THIS) and life events.
So, when are targets bad things?
- When they’re taking over your life and mental health.
- When they’re causing you excess amounts of unnecessary pressure (unfortunately due to the messed up schooling system, projects don’t count as ‘unnecessary pressure’ despite however many nights you spend crying about them).
- When people have asked you not to set them because they’re worried about you.
This post might seem to be rather angry – and it is, about some things – but what I’m trying to say is it’s fine, probably healthy, to set targets. But, hey, don’t go crazy.
My target of writing a 20,000 word novella during a month wherein I should be madly revising plus trying to have some sort of a social life may be a bit unrealistic. But 10,000? 5,000 even? That’s not crazy talk. Neither is having a goal of having 3 novellas written by the end of the year, or even by the end of next. That’s realistic. And that’s what you have to be too.
I’m not trying to be demoralising here. Targets are good. Without them, we’d never get anything done. But if they’re too much for you, no matter if your friend/family member is doing it, then don’t. Know your limit (much like with alcohol. Also caffeine. Perhaps I should listen to the latter). But keep writing and don’t give up!
This post also appeared on Hannah Brown.