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NaNoWriMo: How Did I Fare?

This is a crossposted response from mindyklasky, who is the author of The Glasswright Series, and whose LJ I frequently read:

Mindy wrote:

So? Those of you who are/were NaNo-ing? How has it gone? What have you learned? What will you do differently in the future?

My Response:

I started NaNoWriMo. I did not finish. I got to 5,433 words.

I enjoyed starting the book I’ve wanted to write for three years. I enjoyed the scenarios that came out of just sitting down to write. I intend to finish the book. The story has wanted to be told for a long time now. It’s given me the opportunity to renew my thirst for writing, which has been a dry well since I graduated college in 1996 – the same college which killed any love or thirst for writing when I attended, until I took a playwriting class there.

Things I know I need to do for next year:

Resist the temptation of the distraction. I play on a text based Greco-Roman themed online role-playing game, essentially interactive fiction, called Firan. During the month of November is when we hold our annual Fall Festival, and the nobles are expected to hold events for the common masses and entertain them during festival season. I play two noble alt characters so had in character social obligations to fill, plus some of the events were very, very tempting to enter.

Resist the charms of procrastination. I tend to write more under tighter deadlines. Having a month to do something means it’s a month of time I have to procrastinate. If I had stuck to my goals instead of procrastinated to play World of Warcraft or catch up on my latest TiVo’d Soap Opera or favorite television show, I would have gotten more done.

Create more challenges. The times that I was most productive were the times that I challenged myself to write as much as I could before a specific time was reached. Each time, I managed to write between 1,000 – 1,900 words within a half hour time span, which sometimes included minor edits. I think if I set myself some fairly simple, easy goals to achieve, that are fun in a sort of challenging way, I’d be more interested in writing.

Don’t be shy. I had two other people locally, one of them a recently published author in Paradox Magazine, who were doing NaNoWriMo with me, however given my college experiences with writing, I was very, very shy about even writing around them. It’s also a story that means a great deal to me since it’s been percolating for the better part of a year. I wasn’t even going to publish any part of it, but I did eventually add an excerpt to the NaNoWriMo site, but the more I wrote the more excited I became about the book I was writing. I wanted to share it. Just, when I first started, it felt very personal and I was too scared to talk about it, much less show it off.

Those are the three big things. I’m sure there’s more. And, while I didn’t win, a small part of me felt like I won, because my love for writing is renewed, and I still have every intention of following through. Maybe next NaNoWriMo I’ll be writing the sequel to this particular book. Who knows?


( 4 comments — Leave a comment )
Nov. 30th, 2006 07:08 pm (UTC)
Speaking as a 3rd-time ML for my NaNoWriMo region - an ML who is about to verify her final wordcount - I've learned that I really prefer writing short fiction, and that while I don't like write-ins, I like meeting with other writers to TALK about writing. Get involved with your region. Go to the kick-offs. It's so much easier and more fun when you have lots of support.

(Or, you know, be a remote member of DFW.)
Dec. 1st, 2006 01:13 pm (UTC)
What is DFW?
(Deleted comment)
Dec. 1st, 2006 01:15 pm (UTC)
Firan or any of the MUs I play is different. I'm working in a collaborative effort where the story isn't entirely mine to tell. When it's mine to tell, it makes it all that much scarier. I think that's part of the reason I stuck to RPG games that were text based rather than writing something for myself for a change. It was a means for me to write every day and a nice crutch to fall back on.


I will finish this story though!

Er. Once pixel isn't dead and I recover some of my work since I had no backup.

( 4 comments — Leave a comment )


Nynrose - Lisa Christie
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