Nanowrimo in Retrospect

This was my first year participating in Nanowrimo. I can definately say now that it was every bit as crazy as people told me it would be. I didn’t make it to the finish line of a 50,00 novel (I only got to 37,048) but I am still happy that I took part in the challenge. It taught me a lot about myself and also gave me ideas of how to participate in this again next year.

Yes, although the end of November had me trying to stay up all night(which I was never able to do, what can I say? I’m getting older or something) and forgetting why I had walked into a room (even more times than usual) I enjoyed the whole experience.

 It was awesome feeling like I was part of a community of writers trying to meet a common goal. I even met a group of local writers which was very cool. I never got to meet up with them in person, but we have formed a facebook group and plan to meet soon.

I learned that I can write a lot more than I thought I could. I’ve always been able to write a lot when I get going, sometimes it’s even been hard for me to get to my point but 50,000 words is a daunting task! It’s more daunting once you’ve written your first 1,000 words and you realize that you have 49,000 more to go. Prior to Nano I don’t think I had ever written more than 1,000 words in a day. I now know that it’s possible for me to write 3,499 in one day if I push myself.  (I read about an Simon Hayne’s method for writing up to 7,000 words in one day but that wasn’t doable for me this year, that’s pretty hardcore writing stuff so I don’t know if it will ever be my goal! )

It was interesting to know that I could maybe write a book. This may be a strange statement coming from someone who didn’t finish Nano or my novel(yet) but I have made progress. I’ve gotten involved enough with these characters to want to finish their story. This being said, I was two days away from the end of Nano when I began to think about rewriting the whole thing from the start. It definitely needs working into, I know that much. Sometimes I feel like I may have added too many sub legends that could be their own books if worked into but I don’t know.

I also learned that I can spend time with my family and write and do housework.

There had been a time earlier this year when I had convinced myself that something had to give. I felt like if I spent too much time writing the kids or the house would be neglected. I took part of a “play every day with your child” challenge while doing Nanowrimo so I know it is possible to do both. Some days it is challenging, but it is always possible.

I also learned what I want to do next year. Writing in four spaced out intervals of 500 words at a time is my plan. I tried this based on what I read over at Spacejock.com  and it’s very doable. It certainly works much better for me then trying to sit and knock out a huge amount of writing in a limited time period, which is what I did at first.

As for my Nanowrimo novel, I haven’t even looked at it since the end of this challenge. I really wanted to step away from the whole thing for a little while. I read the first part so many times and then edited some of it, but after that I just wrote so there’s no telling what is in there. I am leaning towards just posting the story with a little editing and then doing a rewrite but I’m still thinking about it.

I have also decided to participate in Story Dam on a regular basis (Love this community) and I want to join  the Friday Fictioneers.(I haven’t participated in this yet but I really want to!) I think this will all help me stay connected with writing.

Other than that I’m also getting caught up with housework because the last week of Nanowrimo took a real toll on what got done around here. Basically what got done was laundry, meals and dishes and that’s it! I am also working on finishing up an advert calendar that I was sewing last month and never finished on time and I’ll be launching a new coloring page website soon.

The main thing that Nanowrimo reminded me of was how happy just writing makes me. This has made me promise myself that I am going to do my best to see that I make it a regular part of my life.

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One comment on “Nanowrimo in Retrospect

  1. DM says:

    NaNo really does bring with it newfound understandings. And from where I’m sitting, your nano project? is fantastic. I really do hope you finish it, even if you just write 500 words a day.

    I learned that Stephen King is right. Writing is a full time job, and you have to treat it as such if you want to succeed. I realized that if I set a goal to write every day that I can get it done. It works better, my writing seems smoother (though still very novice!) and I’m growing and expanding.

    I haven’t visited Kate or Martin since the end of November. I’m letting the story sink in and gathering more ideas to move it successfully to the end.

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