It's December 31st. The last day of 2014. I figured it was time to write about my experience with NaNoWrimo before the year was up.
It was really an eye-opening experience for me. It solidified for me that my writing process works just fine without having to write thousands of words a day. Don't get me wrong: I LOVED NaNoWrimo and plan to do it every year from now on. But I now know HOW I want to use it.
This was my first year so I figured I'd come up with an idea a week before it started, outline it and write the whole book in November.
I did this.
And it fried my brain, lol!
I'm a fast writer, but dang! I had to write 3,000 words a day to finish my book. And what did I end up with?
A total mess.
But I took the advice of the many who had completed NaNo before me and left the manuscript alone until mid-December. After reading the first chapter, I knew it was too soon. Something was missing. Something important, vital to salvaging anything that I wrote the entire month of November.
But yesterday everything fell into place in my brain. All the missing pieces came together and I know now what I have to do to fix it. But it's going to be a huge re-write! I have to thread through an entire sub-plot and change my character's history to make it work, but I have faith now that it could end up being a novel I could be proud of.
What I learned from this?
My brain takes time percolate. I'm an outliner by nature, but I still deviate from the outline as ideas come to me. NaNoWrimo doesn't allow for percolating. It's a sports car driving down the freeway at a 100 miles an hour.
Next year I'm going to use NaNo differently. I'm not going to write a novel from scratch. I'll use it as a motivator to write 50K of whatever I happen to be working on. I admit, I was a little overzealous writing a 70K novel. Next time, I'll stick to the 50K, not try and finish early and just enjoy the ride!
Here's to next year :-)
I'm a writer of YA fiction, fiction, comics, television and movies. I try to make all my stories full of jumbly goodness :-)