Let’s ignore the pessimism from my last blog post, shall we?
I’ve won! I did it! I hit 50,000 words today, giving me my third win in a row and my 5th win overall. I have now won more times than I’ve lost.
I admit, I lost mega momentum there after my day off. I managed less than a thousand words on both Friday and Saturday last week because I just felt so lazy and resigned. I honestly I thought I was done. I was happy to continue writing each day, but I had all but given up on the 50k goal.
But then Sunday happened. And I really don’t know how it did, because considering I spent almost the entire day at my grandparents’ house, I technically had less time to write than every other day ever. I couldn’t take my Neo with me, unlike on the days I go to work, so I couldn’t fit in writing sessions while sitting in the car or at lunch.
But, actually, I wrote over 3,000 words that day. More specifically, I wrote 3,540 words that day – the most I’ve written in one day during NaNo. Two sessions, one in the morning and one in the evening, with around 1,600 words per session got me that wordcount. I finished that day just one day behind target, and then the momentum stayed with me through Monday, when I finally hit the line again after multiple sessions of writing.
I didn’t think I’d do it, but I did. I’ve written something every single day this month (except one) and now I’ve even hit the 50k target. It may not be much compared to all the great writers out there who churn out quality writing and keep up a solid writing routine. It may not be much considering I’ve yet again stopped at 50k, rather than sailing right past it like I did in 2008. And it may not be much considering I haven’t finished the novel.
But it is much. It is very much much. NaNoWriMo does that thing where it makes a success out of something that you personally don’t feel is impressive. I look at my attempt at a novel and I can pick out the holes in the plot, the hideous characters, the drab writing style and the extreme clichés. I also look at it and see only 50,000 words, with the unseen potential to get to 100,000 or more. It doesn’t feel like enough that I’ve written every day because I’ve only just managed to write enough every day. Never mind the fact that enough is, actually, quite a lot of words to write in a day.
The thing is, I did something that I haven’t done any other year – I’ve managed to establish a writing routine that has actually gelled extremely well with my work routine. Getting up early and writing has felt so natural; as has writing in the evening with a scented candle lit. I’m confident that I’ll be able to continue this routine, even if I end up lowering my daily goal slightly, because it’s become so ingrained in my mind that I can’t really imagine going through my day without it right now. Morning is writing time, and I can’t believe it’s taken me this long to realise that.
My goal for December now is to keep up momentum and continue writing every day. In the mornings, at lunchtime, after work, before I go to sleep – whenever I can. Of course, now I’ll be able to share out my free time with my other hobbies too, meaning I probably won’t spend more than one session writing each day. Believe it or not, I may fancy myself as a writer, but I’m also other things too: a reader, a blogger, a gamer, a crocheter. What was frustrating about NaNo was that everything else I enjoyed doing was put on the backburner, albeit for a great cause and a short amount of time. What will be nice is aiming for 500 or so words a day and still getting fulfilment. And the lack of graph will be great too.
Overall, I’m very chuffed. But truth be told, I’m ready to be done with NaNo now. I was originally going to see just how far above 50k I could get before midnight. But now I’ve validated, I’m happy just… stepping away from it. Stopping at 50,000 shouldn’t seem like such a bad thing. It’s time for a little break. And a rest.
Yup. Plenty of rest.
How has your NaNoWriMo gone?