The Write-Up: What Happened This Week?

This week was a big deal for me! It was the fourth anniversary for myself and my girlfriend, National Novel Writing Month began, and I began a new role at work. Normally I use these blogs to impart some kind of message, or analyze a certain topic more than I normally would. And normally Friday’s are used for something special – short stories, Coffeehouse interviews, sneak peaks – but today is just going to be a simple recap of how this week has been for me.

First things first: I started my new role on Monday. As I explained in a previous blog, I am in an internship program that is comprised of three parts. Last week I was working with a non-profit in a fundraising role, and this week I am working on the 19th floor of a regional office in Corporate Citizenship. The biggest change hasn’t come from the new role itself, but from the environment in which I work. I live an hour’s drive north of Toronto, and this job brings me in to the big city every day. That means that I commute on a train an hour and a half each way, which is an entirely new experience for me.

Beyond that, there is something surreal about working in a city like Toronto. You know in those movies and shows that has the main character head to the big city for the first time, and they comically look up and around at all of the skyscrapers and buildings and people? I had to actively try not to do that. As someone who grew up in a small-ish town, and really only traveled to cities with a population of 125,000 people, this is a wee bit of a culture shock. I didn’t think I would like it. In fact, I think I went into this part of the role with the mindset that I will not like it. But, with week one wrapping up, the excitement of the actual work environment is still there. Let’s just see if I feel the same in two and a half months.

Tuesday marked the other two special events: my anniversary, and the start of NaNoWriMo (see how I intentionally put those in that order?). So November 1st marked four years with my amazing girlfriend. We had a lovely dinner to celebrate last night, and I am sure I can come up with sometime special. I can’t say too much, or she’ll see it spoil the surprise.

While we are on the topic, let me address a few things about my partner. First, I have mentioned her before a handful of times, but never in great detail. It isn’t that she is not a significant part of my life – she may be the most significant part of it! – I just do it out of respect for our privacy, and because this blog has always felt more professional than personal. Clearly today is a deviation from that, and we don’t know what the future holds, but that’s that. Second, I have been asked why I use both “partner” and “girlfriend” when describing her. To steal a line from Justin Trudeau: Because its 2016. I prefer using the term partner, I think that more people should. It is not only more intimate, but it is a small step to ending the stigma around people using the term itself. Also, I am a writer; I hate using the same pronoun too many times in a row.

NaNoWriMo also started on Tuesday. To be honest, I was a little worried. I have been so excited to tackle the event this month, but I quickly realized that my November weekdays involved me leaving the house at 6:30am and walking through the door at 6:25pm. I tried not to be pessimistic, but the shadow of that loomed over me as the day started. But I decided to make the most of my time; I brought my tiny little Chromebook with me and, as soon as I got comfortable on the train Tuesday morning, my fingers started tapping away. So how is it going so far?

Actually quite well! I, unfortunately, cannot write for the whole train ride. It fills up to the point when my elbows would be hitting the person next to me (I like my space when I write), so I whip out a book then. That, I think, is actually beneficial for my creativity. It doesn’t wear me out, and it gives me a little kick of inspiration. I have hit my target word count every single day that I have written so far – and am on track for today as well. The only exception being Wednesday, when I had company on the train with me. As someone who took (way) too long to finish Archangel, it is exciting and helpful to see what consistent effort can produce. And seeing all of the buzz around other people’s work is great as well!

So there you have it, my week in a few paragraphs! I have some exciting, uncharted waters ahead of me, but I am most definitely looking forward to the journey. My personal relationship, my job, and writing a novel in a month – all things that continuously develop and change over time, and I cannot wait to see what happens next.

Speaking of happening next, though, next week should see a couple of exciting things. I am currently working away on a review of an indie novel, which I hope to make into recurring (though not necessarily regular) addition to my site. Additionally, I am happy to say that I will be releasing chapter two of Archangel next Friday. If you haven’t already read chapter one, be sure to get caught up here.

Hopefully November is off to a great start for everyone! If you are participating in NaNoWriMo, let me know how your book is going in the comments below. If you aren’t, maybe leave an indie author who I should check out; I am always looking for new books to read.

Happy Friday, everyone.