YAY me!!! At 5:27 a.m. this morning, I completed an intense, month-long writing challenge in only 29 days. The goal: Write a 50,000 word novel in 30 days. (To put my awesomeness in perspective, It took me over 10 years to write Rose’s Will, a 68,000 word novel.)In order to reach my NaNoWriMo goal, I had to write 1667 words a day. Some days, I pushed myself for hours eking out one word at a time so slowly that I literally fell asleep with my fingers on the keyboard. Other days, my word count flew over 4,000!
Writing a 50,000 word novel in 30 days didn’t leave me any time to argue with my characters. They didn’t care at all about my plans for them and surprised the hell out of me every day. It was worrisome to write into that void, not knowing where they would take me. To preserve my sanity, I adjusted to the “one scene at a time” method. In this novel-writing microcosm, it became clear that if all characters in a novel take the next logical step, anyone could write the book and probably no one would want to read it.
Now that I’ve reached the goal, I’m looking back on a grueling regimen that’s thankfully over, but an experience that I invite every writer to undertake. I will not explain why, because it’s impossible to convey. Let’s just say that you will meet the writer you truly are at the end of it.
Hot Tip: Get out of town for the weekend when you’re done! San Diego, here I come!
**NaNoWriMo is short for National Novel Writing Month, which begins on November 1st and ends on November 30th.