Last night at midnight was the deadline of the 10th annual National Novel Writing Month. Although I successfully reached my 50,000 word goal by Nov. 30 in both 2006 and 2007, this year was a bit more difficult. Initially, I decided I wasn't even going to try to participate this year. Between working full time and attending graduate school, I just wasn't sure I could handle it all (plus, if I don't get to read a good 5 novels a week, I start getting cranky). With a term paper looming over my head for a Dec. 3 deadline, I just didn't think NaNoWriMo was doable. Then I talked to about three other people who were doing it, and I found out that this year was the 10th anniversary. Well, with all the hype of it being the 10th anniversary, of course I had least had to give it a shot!
I actually didn't decide to go ahead and go for it until 3 or 4 days into November. On November 1, the start of NaNoWriMo, I had written a couple of thousand words simply out of the desire to procrastinate, as I found noveling far more appealing than working on my term paper (which is what I was supposed to be doing). But a couple of days went by, and school was taking up all my time, so I basically gave up on the novel. It just didn't seem possible.
But then I caught my second wind and came back a few days later with a vengeance (and the desire yet again to procrastinate). Though encouraged to write a sequel about everyone's favorite veggie vampire, Clay, I had been wanting to expand on the short story I had published in the Citadel's literary magazine last year. I had to cut so much already just to publish it in The Shako, and there were so many other side plots I wanted to explore.
I lagged a couple of thousand words behind through most of November, and never really caught up until yesterday, when I forced myself to sit down and churn out the 3,000 words I needed to finish. And it went really well. I reached my goal, and was pleasantly surprised that I made it (I honestly believed this year would be the first year I wouldn't finish).
My "novel" is nowhere near finished, but I'd like to keep working on it. I felt good about some of what I wrote (not all of it, of course - it needs a lot of cleaning up), and I think I could really do something with it (other than relegating it to my growing collection of half-finished novels). Maybe this one will be an Oprah's Book Club pick someday. . .ha!!!