Friday, November 30, 2012

The Power of Words

I realized near the end of my novel that the big kicker at the end that would allow the good guys to win was the power of words. It hit me like a ton of bricks and I couldn't help but just sit there for a minute and smile. You really shouldn't ever underestimate the power of words. Not only do they allow us to express and share, but they allow us to create and mold, and in the case of hundreds of writers this month, words allowed us to come together. Hundreds, even thousands of us teamed up this month to tackle what many people, including published authors with big names, would say was insane and even impossible. Well I am here, and so are so many others, to say that we proved them wrong. To people on the outside it may seem that I sit at home by myself all day with nothing to do, but they couldn't be more wrong. I've never had so many friends in my entire life, and none of us are really ever alone, because no matter where we live, or what time it is, somebody else is online too. NaNoWriMo brought us together, but it was our common goal and the luck that led us to the NaNoWriMo group on Facebook that really knit us all together so tightly that I doubt we will ever pull apart. 

There are only a matter of minutes now before midnight comes in my time zone and NaNoWriMo 2012 is officially over. For many of my friends it has been over for several hours and they are already bustling about in the sunshine, or taking the chance to get some much needed sleep. I hope they are going for it. We all deserve to sleep in. We more than deserve it! I also have other friends who will still have a few more hours to enjoy this blessed month after it has officially ended for me. This month hasn't just been full of  a bunch of furiously written words and ridiculously worn out cries of "I don't think I can make it." It has been thirty solid days of encouragement, hardships, heartache, loss, understanding, hope, longing, anger, despair, love, learning, growing, becoming, creating, bonding, juggling, laughing, crying, rejoicing, and so much more. I don't think I have ever been happier with a month in my entire life. Not only did I accomplish something that few think is possible, but in the process I made so many close and dear friends who I believe will stay with me forever. 

On this final day of NaNoWriMo there has been much celebrating, cheering, and furious writing until the very end, as well as several people posting their sentiments regarding the group of friends that we have formed. One post in particular brought me so much joy that I wanted to share it with you, courtesy of it's brilliant author, Serenity Wever:

"As I sit here, celebrating my victory, I can't help but think... This is my third year of participating in NaNoWriMo, but this is my first year to truly experience it. I am mind blown and in awe. It was such an honor to be able to write with all of you. I've had so much fun this November that it's absolutely amazing. Every day after work I'd look forward to running home so I could sprint and catch up on everyone elses progress. You were all the greatest writing buddies I've ever had. We did something more than just write this November, we created a community bond together by one common goal. For one brief moment we were like Gods. We forged together with blood, sweat and tears a universe of each our own.

"We, who are all from different backgrounds, made something beautiful... We have done something that most people will only say they will do. We weren't the "Oh! I want to write a book!" person. We DID. Whether or not you finished, you accomplished more in one month than many have in their whole lifetime! We've all suffered from malnutrition, writer's block, uncooperative muses, dont-talk-to-me-im-writing syndrome, and temporarily have become hermits. But we did it together! Everything from Random Starbucks Guy to Tameka flipping tables to Eric Kovach the Untaggable (thankyouforlettingmeturnyouintoameme) who suffered many painful deaths in the name of our art (Heather!)

"There are so many more of you I want to give shout outs too, but my brain is so... mushy right now! Kimiko the amazing, who was able to join late and completely own this challenge! Great job! Sian who was great at boosting everyone's morale! Brendan Sta and his creepy spiders! So many more people, not enough memory space in brain or energy in fingers to thank them all! ♥

"This has been a great experience for me, and I will miss you all!

I will be looking for all of you next NaNo!" 

You know what the greatest thing about all of this is? It doesn't end here. And guess what else? It never will as long as there are two writers around to support each other. Never underestimate the power of words. Never underestimate the power of your words and what you can do with them. You can change lives. You can change the world. And guess what friends? That's not just a possibility. We've already done it! We've done it together. 

- Heidi Nicole Bird

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