First of all, congratulations are in order to everyone who completed the NaNoWriMo and actually wrote 50,000 words. To give some idea of how much that is, George Orwell’s Animal Farm is about 45,000 words long. So good job!
There are some mixed feelings out on the web about National Novel Writing Month. As for myself, I thought it was a great experience (for me) for the following reasons:
- It made me commit to writing every day.
- I realized that a month is both a very long time and a very short time.
- The tight deadline forced me to make decisions about my plot, character names, etc. that I would have put off for eternity.
- It prompted me to find writing guides that would help me get over the hurdles of plot creation.
- It prompted me to learn new things about how to write a novel.
- It gave me a great excuse to say: Sorry, I need this time to write.
- I wound up with more than 33,000 words (over 70 pages single-spaced)…(it’s not over yet; I’ll be working on it today)
- I got an idea of what it’s like to write a novel. (It’s terrifying, long, tedious, tiresome, mind-bending, and exhilarating.)
- I discovered the value of working incrementally. While 1667 words a day was too much for me, 1000 words a day was fine.
- It opened up my imagination.
- It helped me silence the inner critic and realize that everyone has an inner critic that is just as awful as mine.
- It helped me admit that I want to do this. I want to write a novel. That’s a hard thing to say out loud or even in my head.
- It gave me an opportunity to dump all these ideas that have been wandering around in my mind for years onto the page and see what happens.
- It taught be the value of being brave.
So, I bought a coffee cup from the good folks at NaNoWriMo. I’m not sure that counts as a donation because I didn’t get the little halo around my avatar, but oh well. 🙂
Today, I’m off to finish up what I can. I’ll add some more words until I feel like I have everything in the novel that I need. Then I will print the whole thing out, read it, and write notes all over it—because it’s nowhere near done. Someone somewhere suggested flipping through magazines and looking for pictures that relate to the novel. This is supposed to active the right brain and spur more creativity. I might do that too. And my writing space is a mess. I need to put things in order.
Tomorrow, I’ll get back to my regular posting about books and short stories.
Tonight, I’ll post my final word count here: 33,453