Back from NaNoWriMo!

You may know that I committed to NaNoWriMo this year and I’m happy to say that I reached my goal and wrote 50,000 words in thirty days. During November, I only read two books. There was no time! Now that I’m finished, I’m looking forward to reading, a lot!

Here are just a few thoughts about the NaNoWriMo challenge.

  • On the first day of NaNoWriMo, I also started reading For Whom the Bell Tolls by Ernest Hemingway. That was a little intimidating and discouraging. There’s no way to measure up to that.
  • It was hard! Maybe it’s age, maybe it’s something else, but I had planned to get up at 5 o’clock every morning and write for an hour and a half. That happened some days, but I was simply too sleepy to do that every morning. Most mornings I didn’t get started until at least six-thirty and by then by other obligations were fast approaching. So not so good.
  • I had to skip a couple days then double up. It was doable but I don’t think what I wrote the following days was as good.
  • This year, I went in with a loosely defined plot. That worked well, but if I had been better organized, I would have known more what to write each day and I wouldn’t have struggled so much in the early morning hours.
  • I had a writing buddy. That was the best part. You may know her too, Jennifer Kelland Perry, author of Calmer Girls and Calmer Secrets. She also blogs on Jennifer’s Journal.
  • Throughout the month I often asked myself: What am I doing, and why did I commit to do this in November? November is the worst month for novel writing! Yet, having finished, I feel like I’m part of a community. Those who’ve done it can relate to the craziness of November.
  • I had fun. That was the best part. I revealed the plot to my family and we talked about some of the plot options. They were very supportive.

Did you participate in NaNoWriMo this year? Have you done it in the past? Leave a comment and thanks for reading!

61 thoughts on “Back from NaNoWriMo!

    1. Hi Darlene – thank you. I’m a plodder and I’m also a schedule person, though I admit I had a hard time this year. I think it’s because I had a plot in mind and had to know what I was going to say. Last year, it was a free for all! Thank you for reading 🙂

  1. Wow! Congratulations and that is an incredible achievement! You sense of fun and enjoyment in the writing is palpable and how wonderful that your whole family became involved with suggestions etc! It’s great you could team up with Jennifer for mutal moral support! Have a more relaxing December and enjoy all those books!

  2. Congratulations, Barbara! I knew you could do it. It all comes down to committing yourself and just doing it. NaNoWriMo is great practice to writing under contract. You don’t get to pick the month, days, etc. when you’re on a publisher’s deadline. Well done!

    1. Thank you, Jill. It’s totally unpublishable but I told my family I learned a lot this year about POV, plot and overall structure. I need to take some classes, but I’ve been so busy I don’t know how I’d fit them in! Thank you for your support. I hope your edits went well and that you’re about to enjoy a nice weekend!

  3. Congratulations! I did NaNo for the first time and I hit my goal yesterday. It was very satisfying. The last week the writing flowed. I had a loose plot and completed it at 25,000 words. Then I was struggling! I realized I had to fill in a lot between my plot points.

    1. Hi E.A. – I was thinking about that the whole time I was writing. I’m better at the filling in than I am with the plot points. I think next year I’ll go into it with a definite plot (beginning, middle and end). Congratulations to you on your NaNo completion! I’m glad your writing flowed so well the last week 🙂

      1. I need to do major rewriting and change the plot. I do like my characters, premise and the setting. There’s something to work with — but it needs a whole lot more work.

    1. Hi Karen, I’m not saying any of my words were good, though! Haha! It’s hard not to go back and edit while you’re in the middle of things, but I didn’t want to kill the momentum. Thank you for stopping by. I hope you are doing well. Looking forward to catching up with everyone’s blogs. I always enjoy your pictures on Instagram!

      1. Thanks! And you’re absolutely right with killing the momentum, not to mention the fact that when I get entangled in a correction mode, I can spend what seems like forever, and it may well be, going over the same passage. Then the next day, I read through my “correction,” immediately see the problem and take care of the situation rather quickly… well, on a good day!!

    1. OMG, Mary congratulations to you! It’s not easy to find the time, but it’s satisfying when it’s all over. I hope you are doing well and that you had a nice Thanksgiving 🙂

  4. Brava! I sort of did a bit of NaNoWriMo this year, but I wasn’t very consistent about it. Still, my goal wasn’t for 50K, because I don’t think my book will ever be full novel length. Say… do you write in WORD or do you use one of the special writing programs like Scrivener. If so, which one would you recommend? (I just downloaded the Scrivener free trial, but I’m willing to try others.)

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