NaNoWriMo (or the National Novel Writing Month) is coming to a close.
NaNo is a movement. It’s a not-for-profit organization. And it’s a website.
I participated in NaNo this year, but I didn’t “win.” To win is simply to self-report that you wrote at least a 50,000 word novel (That works out to a 1,667 word-per-day average, but you already worked out that math.)
I didn’t win because the quality and content of the story I’m writing are more important to me than just hanging on and barreling through. I’m currently at 14,505 words at the time of this writing. I also did a bit of a no-no in that I changed stories on the seventh of the month. It wasn’t anything personal against the first story, but the idea wasn’t quite baked and it wasn’t quite coming out. The current story I’m writing is much more fleshed out.
I “won” NaNo back in 2014, but I’ve never edited that novel. Nor have I ever shown it to anyone. It was handwritten in a notebook and it was the first manuscript I ever finished. I’m not sure I’ll ever go back and edit that one. It seems like that story might do better just sitting tight in the box in the closet.
Though I didn’t win this year, I am quite pleased by the amount I got done as well as the direction this story has been going. It’s a very personal, yet non-autobiographical story. It means a lot to me. And it’s something that I hope to finish in the near future.
The best thing about NaNo is the push that it gave me. It’s always fun to have a place to check-in, and to know that there are people working in much the same way that I am. Solidarity and such. Sometimes writing feels like typing papers and scattering them in an empty room that no one will ever visit.