Which is exactly what you all would be reading if it were November instead of May. As it stands, though, I reached the 50k word mark on my novel, which is what the NaNoWriMo challenge considers a novel.
So from one perspective, I’ve written an entire novel. From another, more realistic perspective, I still have a great deal of writing to do—somewhere between 30-45k.
Either way, it feels good to know that I have reached a milestone that at one time seemed entirely unreachable. So here’s me tooting my own horn!
Things I’ve Learned:
- 50,000 words isn’t nearly as long as I thought it was. I am almost 2/3 of the way through, and honestly worry about having to cut the story I want to tell short in order to keep it under 100k. Before I started, when I heard that people were writing 50k words in a month for NaNoWriMo, I thought it was an almost impossible task. Now, I am sorely tempted to work on a second novel during November because I know just how much work it will take me to churn out ~1600 words seven days a week—it’s very doable. My fear: November is anniversary/finals time for Beej. We’ll see how it goes.
- Blogging helps. A lot. I think I have to have some sort of ADD because when I concentrate on one thing for too long, I just don’t care about it anymore. Blogging helps me keep myself in the writing mode while not letting me burnout on non-stop storycraft. I think that the Blogathon might have been the best thing I could have done this month to compliment my novel.
- I couldn’t do this alone. The support I get from friends and family regarding this project is astounding. I have people ask me all the time about how the book is coming along. And I’m amazed by it. Having so many people who seem genuinely eager to read something I am writing makes me happier than I really know how to express. I already have a few people lined up to be beta readers at the end of the summer, and I’m sure there will be more to come.
- I love doing this. I am happy doing this. Monday-Friday, I wake up, load up Google Reader and lazily read through whatever awesomeness the blogosphere decided to throw at me as I take short “thinking breaks” from my novel. By noon or 1pm, I’m done with “work” for the day, and the afternoon is free to blog, play a game, read a book, work on my Slayage presentation, or laze around my house in my boxers, hoping that no one knocks on the door and makes me put pants on. And I love it. Last week, as I walked around the track at four in the afternoon, I realized that this is the lifestyle I want and was very happy that I am making the conscious effort to solidify it. I love writing. I love being able to consider myself a writer. And I will love being able to make a living by doing it.
With 50k words under my novel-writing belt, I can honestly say that this endeavor is hard. It is work. It’s not just sitting down at a computer and spewing some unreadable gibberish onto the page. It takes thought and concentration and discipline. I love it, but it’s hard. But I guess that’s why they pay us the big bucks, huh?