This NaNoWriMo was much much different for me!!
First off I got to be an ML. And I had these crazy huge wild fun ideas of what it would be like to be an ML. I looked at last years NaNoWriMo and how smoothly I rocked it, and then thought I could do the same this year. But a lot can change in one year. A LOT!! It came down to the wire crunch on the last day where I wrote 15K to win in one day. It was awesome!!
Honest to goodness guys, loved being an ML. Totally worth it. BUT!!!! Next year no point system unless someone else wants to tally them up. Also, cutting down on the number of write ins a week, unless as Co ML’s instead of trying to attend all of them we divvy up which one of us is in attendance at each write in! Trying to do everything all the time is just plain exhausting. The purpose of having two of us is to divide up the work, so divide we will next time.
I would also like to implement some more pre-November planning sessions for writers. Starting in October every Monday night, we can do some brainstorming in the library, character plotting, image colllaging, things to get us more prepared for November, because it turns out I really needed to do that and didn’t. Hence the race to the finish.
My novel: You ugly piece of duckling poo!! There are some kick ass shiny moments in there that really make me want to finish this idea. I have a beginning, part of a middle, and a very shaky dismount to work with from NaNoWriMo this year. This is way more than I had last year. The only difference is I am not quite as in love with this idea s I was with last years idea. I have learned a lot about myself as a writer in this past year. I like a cleaner first draft. I know that if I mention something in one chapter, I have to follow up with it later. I like editing, no edit that, I LOVE editing. The rearranging of the flow of ideas, making sure you have character arcs, the cutting of superfluous filler, all the parts that make it shiny and better, I love. The actually creation part, is scary, it’s the not knowing what comes next and then when it does come you wonder if it’s good enough, and oh crap I just repeated myself from chapter 4, damit, or, oh shit if I’m going to do this then I should go back and foreshadow that more. Also turns out I am a planner and not a panster. I may decide to throw my plan completely out the window once I get going but I do like having ideas to work with so the great abyss isn’t’ so scary to jump into.
After November, although I am not in love with my idea, I can see this as totally finishable. A good practice training wheels kind of book. One of these days I hope to pursue publication. I’ve read that it can take 1 million words or 6 finished books before you’re good enough to be published. I used to be skeptical about that. Now, I understand what their saying. You only learn through doing, and each time you do it you get better at it. You learn something new about yourself as a writer. Maybe the first novel you learn that you can finish. But in the second novel you really take a look at it and say, wow, I need to learn about weaving those threads though this novel much better, or this thing is going to clunk down the road. And the third one, character archs, and the forth one, foreshadowing, and the …. well you get my point. Each novel teaches you something different.
Remember the first time you got on a bike. That ity bity tricycle and you thought you had this bike thing down. But then you graduate to a real bike with training wheels and man those things were wobbly and you weren’t so sure and confident. And then some genius decides to take the training wheels off and gives you a push down the street, and you fall and scrap yourself up and it really makes you think back to yourself and that tricycle and what the hell was I thinking that this was easy. But you get back up and try again, and eventually it’s look mom no hands.
That’s where I’m at with NaNoWriMo this year. Last year was my tricycle, it was easy and I thought I could do it. This year I think I’m somewhere between the training wheels and the falling down part. I know it’s possible, but damn me, I want to be look mom no hands way before I ever pursue this publishing thing. I would hate to get to publishing and have my epic fail wipe out. So lots of words ahead of me for practice sure!! Is it a bit daunting, of course. But a lot of writers say it, enjoy this stage. (http://kierstenwrites.blogspot.com/2010/11/some-thoughts.html) Because when you get to the next one, writing becomes a job and not always something you do for fun. Each stage has its moments, but don’t forget to enjoy what you have now because of wanting more.
Also, next year, so being way more picky about the idea I choose for NaNoWriMo. This year it was the first new sparkly and I latched onto it and held it close. Next year though, I’m going to make sure it’s the right match for me as opposed to the cutest boy in town (who’s conversational skills match those of a walnut).