December 1, 2011

NaNoWriMo Again!

Yes, indeedy! Once again, I took up the challenge of writing 50,000 words of an original work of fiction from November 1st to November 30th. And once again, I emerged victorious.

Yeah, epic language. What can I say? It's habit-forming.

As you can see from the sidebar on the left, this was my second year to seriously participate in NaNoWriMo, and my second year to win. Funny thing is, it was a totally different experience from last year.

Last year, I had never done NaNoWriMo before. Not really. I had dallied with it once, but I didn't really jump in and only wrote for like two days. I don't count that time. So last year, I was totally intimidated. I had no idea whether or not I could actually do it.

This year, I had already done it. I knew I could do it. The challenge wasn't whether I could, whether I had the ability, but whether or not I would, whether I had the determination to make it happen. I already knew what was necessary for success: time, focus, support, sleep. I just had to do it.

(Notice "inspiration" isn't on that list. Having done this twice, I feel confident telling you that Inspiration is a largely fictitious concept. I can tell you that most days, I certainly did not feel "inspired." And I still wrote 50,000+ words.)

Last year was the first time in years, since college, that I had written any piece of fiction of substantive length. Prior to that I had been blogging for almost two years. My mind was locked in a pattern of short sentences and thoughts that could be communicated completely in 200 words or less. I had to retrain my mind how to write and how to think about writing.

This year, I had spent almost the last year editing last year's novel. So I was already in "fiction writer" mode, so to speak.

Last year, I had no idea what I was going to write about from day to day for the first couple of weeks.

This year, I knew at the beginning of October what I wanted to write about. Then around Halloween, I changed.

Last year, I finished my actual story line well before 50,000 words and had to scramble at the end to come up with extra scenes, pointless description, an epilogue, anything to eek out those last few hundred words, because I had no idea where they were going to come from.

This year, I'm over 50,000 and not even halfway through my story. (I like this year's situation better.) So, as relieved I am to have crossed the finish line, it wasn't quite the nail-biter that last year was.

Source: via Claire on Pinterest

The same rules apply. I'm not going to talk about the book. It's not even finished, so don't ask what it's about. It doesn't have a title. (Neither does last year's) And it may be another year before I finish it. The nice thing about NaNoWriMo finally being over is that I can take a break from the writing end of it to focus on the research side. I started this project thinking I knew a lot about the subject I was writing about. Of course, the more I got into it, the more I realized there was still a lot I didn't know. So I'm going to take the next couple of months off of writing (like last time) and just focus on reading and research. And not being on the computer ALL day. (ha!)

And, of course, this means I'm back in the blogworld! So hopefully you'll be seeing more of me out and about, reading and commenting and guest-posting. Thanks for not abandoning me over the last 30 days, and for all the encouraging comments you've left me here, on twitter and on facebook.

Source: via Jaci on Pinterest

For being so good as to stick with me through this hiatus - and long blog post - get excited, because I'm going to have a very colorful blog giveaway starting MONDAY! Be sure and check back!


  1. Good job! This was my third year doing it and you're right, it's different than that first year.

  2. Way to go! I am glad it went more smoothly for you this year.

  3. Yay! What a feather in your cap!

    So, what's it about? ;o)

  4. Congrats! That is amazing. It looks like I'm not the only one who escaped the blogging world for a little while. I'm excited to start keeping up with you again!

  5. My sister always participates in NaNoWriMo. She loves it too, Congrats to you for making the goal, that's awesome!


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