The post title sounds a bit dramatic, but after thirty days of furiously typing as many words as I could, I do feel as though I’ve survived some kind of spiritual trial.
If you saw my twitter feed, you already know that I won NaNoWriMo by writing 50,000 words between November 1 and November 30, or about 1667 words daily.
It feels good to have accomplished the 50k word goal, but the reality is that I don’t have a finished novel. For those unfamiliar with NaNoWriMo, the goal isn’t to complete a publishable novel. The goal is to get a first draft. I don’t have one of those right now either, though. At 50,000 words, I’m just past the midpoint of my novel. This puts me on track for a 90,000-ish word novel which is just about the length most novels are.
I’m happy with what I’ve written. I’m even happier that my practice in writing short stories has given me the ability to see that I have some enormous plot holes that I need to go back in and fix before I move on with the second half of my novel.
Currently, I’m taking a break from my novel. I’ve switched to editing my most recent short story so that I can polish it up and start shopping it around before the year ends. I have gotten several hard critiques, and those are the best kind. With every new critique I add new skills to my writer’s tool box.
I love learning. I love that I can actually see the way my writing is developing. Have I sold anything? No. Have I had any of my work published? No. But the joy that comes with improving my skills is tough to beat.
To all my fellow NaNoers, happy NaNo’s End. I hope you got as much out of it as I did.