Today is the last day of the National Novel Writing Month (Nanowrimo) competition. I “competed” to write 50,000 words in 30 days in 2011 but spent more time thinking about my content and wrote 501 words before giving up. I never posted my content and I was disappointed with my effort.
In 2012 I started strong and was doing well. I hit a writer’s block and that slowed things down too much to catch back up, but I am happy I continued writing. I am also happy with what I wrote. I finished with 10,117 words and I learned a few things from this experience.
First, 50,000 words is a lot. I am very impressed that I was able to write 10,000 words.
Second, I can’t imagine crafting 50,000 words of interesting content.
Nanowrimo is a “fun, seat-of-your-pants approach to novel writing” that values “enthusiasm and perseverance over painstaking craft.” My interpretation of that is to “just write” for 30 straight days and then, in a perfect world, spend December editing. The third thing I learned is that a seat-of-your-pants approach is extremely difficult to do if you have a degree in English. To slap something down without rhyme or reason — to undo what you were taught to do — is as much of a challenge as writing 50,000 words.
If you want to check out what I did complete you can see it here.