Participating in NaNoWriMo

Time to power up the laptop because November is here which means so is NaNoWriMo. You may wonder, what is NaNoWriMo or National Novel Writing Month? Well, starting every November 1st people attempt to write 50,000 words by November 30. You can always write more but not less, at least not for this challenge. Since this is a square one draft, you can make all the mistakes. Mistakes encouraged. Edit in December. Just write 50,000 words in 30 days! Why would anyone undertake this torturous task? Everyone has their own reasons. Why 50,000 words? It was decided long ago 50,000 words was a challenging but not impossible goal. Also, some famous classic novels, like The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald and Brave New World by Aldous Huxley, are about 50,000 words.

I joined the website 9 years ago but I can’t recall ever participating. Some years it seemed just more stress and exhaustion on top of my busy schedule. Other years I had all the time but none of the motivation. It’s funny how much less you do something when you have more time. I’ve been writing with my free time but I could write more. With NaNoWriMo I figure what better way to push better habits then 1,667 words a day.

Seeing that daily word count goal made me a little nervous. So, I figured, best to be prepared. During October I tried to outline a bit of the novel I plan to write since I didn’t want to stall in the middle. The outline was going well. I was world building and constructing characters but I stalled when trying to produce an antagonist. After much time spend overthinking the creation of a villain, I have decided to leave the antagonist a mystery and let this character reveal when it’s ready.

I know one of the biggest problem I struggled with is thinking the first draft has to be perfect. I have given up on some projects  in the past with this thought of book perfection the first time round. What am I thinking? Seriously! I need to allow this writing to suck.I really have a need to finish this challenge. I have a few unfinished projects in my hard drive and I really need to stop giving up on stories. Even if it’s fashioning a one demential villain or this thought of the only good ending is an epic one.

I know NaNoWriMo is not a solution. I don’t expect some novel miracle. I’m going into this project looking to overcome some of the insecurities that seem to stop me from reaching my goals. I’m just using this challenge as a way to make it past all these cliché road bumps and librate myself from my fears. In the end it is all up to me. November is just a start and day one is looking good.

Fortune Cookie Wisdom
Fortune Cookie Wisdom

Today’s Count: 842 Total: 48,053

February 28, 2013
And I’m done. My first draft of my first novel. Holy shit I did it. I must say I learned so much from this beautiful failure. This was a novel on an image. I started writing with a picture in my mind and I kept the story going just with clique scenes and a goal to make it to 50,000 words. I didn’t make it to 50,000 but who cares. I wrote a full story. Beginning to end.

I learned so much. I now know my next story will have an outline. I learned where I can write. I learned to push through the hard parts. I learned to finish. I learned when I look over this story in a few months for the rewrite 95% of this story will be tossed and I’m fine with that.

The first draft is always shit. And mine was a big smelly one. But I can always say hell I did it! I did it for me.