I finished my NaNoWriMo novel on Saturday, with six days to spare. I proclaimed my win on several social networks and got, with one notable exception, a lukewarm response. Some people liked my status. Some people didn’t acknowledge the news at all. I am guessing, part of it is, that they are busy, but another part is, that they expect me to do it and win. I’ve done NaNo now three times and I’ve won it all three times. I did the same with the now defunct ScriptFrenzy twice. I write all the time. People think I have this in the bag.
It still takes a lot of work, concentration and focus. And that is what is good about this concentrated writing project with a set deadline. At least it is for me.
This year I worked on the third book of my dystopian series. I had been working on it for quite some time, but I never really got the ball rolling. I was stuck in a bog of sluggishness and half assed attention. Then NaNo came along and I vowed to myself to finish the damn book. I made a nice line under the 22,000 words I already had and counted everything I wrote from then on as my NaNo.I figured that should be enough to bring the story to an end.
The nature of the beast is such, that many people doing NaNO in our region go to the regional events and participate quite a bit. There is support and there is understanding. Combine that with the website and you got a place where people understand, more or less, what you are doing and what you are trying to do.
With that support system in place, I forced myself to come up with a story and an ending to the trilogy that was satisfying to myself. I can’t stand books that end with a whimper, I needed something more drastic. Talking with fellow NaNoers and ‘butt in chair, I will not leave until this is done’ focus got me there. I now have a story that I like. Of course, the writing itself is horrible. There are not even chapter breaks yet. Sentences are as pedestrian as they come and aside from lists, then she said, then he said, then that happened, there is little structure.
I’m not worried about that. I can fix all these things later. The story stands and that is what NaNoWriMo in my house was for.
Everything else is secondary.
If after all that you wonder what NaNoWriMo stands for: It is National Novel Writing Month.