Nanowrimo is done now for another year. Lots of writers, like myself, are freaking exhausted this week because we just spent a month writing 50,000 words. My final word count was 50,016, which is actually not as much as some other writers I was buddies with. It’s okay, I’m not judging myself by other people.
This was the first time in three years that I’ve participated, and I was honestly a little unsure I was going to be able to do it.
Because it’s been so long since I’ve participated, I wanted to give you an overview of my experience. It wasn’t all great, but I’m absolutely glad I did it.
What sucked hard
I rushed another project last month. To be specific, I rushed the end of another novel I was writing. It was supposed to be a novella. Actually, it started out as a short story and sort of blossomed from there. That’s the way of things, I suppose. But I’m not happy with the ending, and it’s going to need some major rewriting. I’m not really happy about how I left that.
Literally, nothing else got done this month. I did the bare minimum housework. I cooked the easiest things possible on my days to cook. My social media has been super lacking. I stopped doing Amazon ads altogether. I have the edits for Missing Stitches, and I’ve not worked on them nearly as much as I should have. I don’t think I sent out a single newsletter this month. I completely failed to do anything decent for Black Friday or Cyber Monday. I’ve let everything go in the pursuit of those 50,000 words. I’ll definitely be doing a lot more planning next year in October to get ready.
There were some days when I really had to push myself more than I’m comfortable with. Generally, I don’t spend hours writing in the evenings after I get home. But I spent a lot of nights doing that, only to go to bed late and get up early to write some more. That’s a schedule that I don’t intend to keep long term.
I scheduled a vacation and that was stupid! Honestly, the biggest problem I had with Nanowrimo this year was that I didn’t decide I was going to do it until about halfway through October. That meant that I was in no way prepared for this, and had already planned a four-day vacation to Erie! That meant that I needed to write way more every day than the normal 1,667 words.
My brain’s a little burned out right now. Again, I didn’t plan on doing this, which I think led to every one of my problems. If I had been smart, I would have written all my November blog posts in October, stocked up on oven meals, done a thorough cleaning job so I just needed to maintain, and not written a rough draft in September and October!
What was awesome
In an ideal month, I would have written 220 pages. Instead, I wrote 358 pages. And, I do mean, ideal. That’s based on me writing ten pages a day, taking one day off a week and not counting the days I was on vacation. To be honest, that probably wouldn’t have happened. There are plenty of days when I don’t get ten pages in, and I don’t usually play catch up. So I got significantly more done this month than I would have otherwise.
I was really excited to do this, and I’ve really wanted to do this for years now. I’ve missed doing Nano. And getting to do it this year was really great.
I met a lot of cool new writers, both online and in person. I can never have enough writing friends.
I free wrote a lot this month. Which is one of the reasons I approve of word counts like this. When I’m focusing on getting words on the page, I’m not thinking as much about what those words are. That sounds bad until you realize that’s exactly what freewriting is. It’s all about writing without ego, writing without forethought. Just, you know, writing. And when you’ve got pages and pages to do, you free write almost by necessity.
Normally my daily goal is ten pages when I’m writing a rough draft. Ten pages seem like nothing now. Like, after writing almost two thousand words a day, ten pages sounds like a freaking breeze. (Not having to stop and count words every five pages is also a delightful prospect.)
Finally, the real reason why I did Nanowrimo. I feel freaking fantastic because I accomplished something amazing! Something that people try every year and fail to do. Something that I can be really proud of. Yes, I’ve had books published, that’s not the point. The point is that we should always be striving to succeed in new things. We should always be setting new challenges for ourselves because we should always want to be better. But also, because it feels amazing to achieve new goals.
So what do you think? Did you participate this year? How did it go for you? Let us know in the comments below.
What better time of the year could there be for a Christmas story? Enjoy twelve little Christmas tales, ranging from heart felt to horrifying. Meet a young man who recieves a surprise Christmas gift, a little boy who gets an unexpected visit from Santa, and a young woman spending Christmas Eve in a new coat.
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