NaNoWriMo Update: One Step at a Time

Obviously, that’s not me above. I’m freezing right now with a blanket wrapped around my legs and it’s 60 degrees Fahrenheit outside. When you’re done laughing, I’ll be here.

As my last post optimistically described, NaNoWriMo is still in full swing and I have  a whopping 20,000 words. For the please-no-math people, that means I’m not halfway to the 50K goal which means I am unlikely to win again. But, if you remember, I only needed 35K to consider this a win, for that would be the most words I’ve ever written in a month. I’m pretty confident I can make that goal.

This NaNoWriMo has taught me a lot about what kind of writer I am and what kind of a writer I can be.

1. I’ve written every day this month. I’ve never done that before and am not sure I can keep it up forever, but it’s nice to get it done. It does illustrate my ability to write more frequently than I thought I could. Maybe I CAN write three books a year, as long as I continue to push myself.

2. I have, through careful experimentation, proved that I cannot make black symbols on a blank white screen from my house. I can add words at the barn while sitting in the car, with a friend at a write-in, or at a cafe by myself. Yet, in my home office or on my comfy couch, nothing comes out. I can edit. I can revise. I can outline. I can email with the best of them. But no new manuscript words are formed. I will keep this in mind as I set my daily schedule for next year.

3. Working on multiple projects at once is definitely the right approach. I did nothing but draft TARBIN’S FALSE PROPHET for the first two weeks. Though I still wrote everyday, I wasn’t as efficient with my time and got distracted more easily. For the third week, I continued to draft the sequel, but I added dev editing a book for Inklings as well as expanding the outline for THE CASE OF THE FALLEN DRAGON re-write. That week, I made goal four times out of seven days. It was my best week yet. My brain simply works better when I spread out the activities.

When was the last time you challenged yourself to something you didn’t think you could do? Whether you succeeded or failed, what did you learn about yourself through the process?


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