I actually did it. I wrote 50,000 words before the month of November was over. There were rough spots, moments where I felt I couldn’t possibly continue, but I did and I won! (What did I win? Mostly just the bragging rights of being able to say I wrote most of a book in a month – but also . . . yeah, the bragging rights.)
How I feel about my book
Mostly good, but it is going to need a whole lot more work! I have at least 30,000 more words to write, minimum. I have serious revisions to make, errors to flesh out, characters to beef up, and plot to tighten. But I wrote words, more than 50,000 of them in one month. A huge chunk of the book. They’re not all bad either. Writing so much so fast I quickly forgot what I’d written and as I found myself re-reading passages that I had written this evening after feeling discouraged that I had written 50,000 words of garbage. I found myself drawn into the story. I had forgotten what I had written and was amazed that I had even written it. I’m not saying this because I think I’m such an amazing writer. No, I’m saying it because I’ve been feeling like the lousiest writer on the face of the planet, and I need to build up my self-confidence. I am a writer. I am a writer. And I have a story that needs to be told.
What I learned about myself this month
I am an ADD writer. I write until I get stuck and then I jump ahead to a part I know I can write about freely. Then I write until I get stuck again and so on and so forth. Mostly it was the research that I didn’t want dragging me down which made me jump ahead, but also I just don’t think I can stay in one place too long (hello moving 6 times in 6 years?). When I get ‘bored’ in one section, I jump back to another section and fill out parts I had missed, then jump ahead again to another part. It sure is a good thing I know exactly what is happening in the book and how it ends or else I don’t think I could write. If I had no plan, no skeleton from which to work, I would dive into a book get bored, not know where I was going and give up writing. I’m an ADD writer, and I need structure.
How I make the time to write
I wake up early and write – 6 am early many days (which gave me an hour or more before the girls woke up). I write when everyone naps and after everyone goes to bed at night. On Sunday’s I have skipped out of the house for four hours at a time and written like a mad woman in a little coffee shop with other NaNoWriMo participants, and then have kept writing later that night. I participate in write-in’s on Wednesday evenings too when I can and write (and get encouragement from other writers). And then, when I don’t write, I am thinking about writing. The good thing is, I’m not sick of the story yet. I’m taking this as a good sign.
What I plan for the future
Conceivably if I keep the pace that I have I could finish the first draft before the end of the year and throw myself into revisions all during January/February. My hope is to be able to send out queries (with a completed manuscript in hand) by the end of February no later. Perhaps that is a very lofty goal, but I’ve always liked to aim high. I need accountability, so hold me accountable!