“When anybody asks, 'What are you writing about now?' if I try to reply, the book-in-the-works sounds so idiotic to me that I think, 'Why am I trying to write that puerile junk?' So now I give up; if I could talk about it, I wouldn't have to write it."
- Madeleine L'Engle, A Circle of Quiet


No NaNo For Me

Monday, November 01, 2010

It’s November 1st, and you know what that means. It’s NaNoWriMo time again.

But sadly, not for me.

I wrote my first NaNoWriMo novel in 2005, and I haven’t missed one since. I failed to finish in 2007, the year we moved, but I still attempted it.

But this year, right from the start, I have chosen to not even attempt NaNoWriMo. And I have a good reason.

For five years running (with the exception of 2007) I have come out of November with a 50,000 word novel, but not one of those novels has ever been complete. Even if I wrote a beginning, middle, and ending, each and every one of those novels needs to be re-written, edited, and transformed from a crazy mish-mash of words tossed onto the page into a clear, coherent novel.

But every year I throw my 50,000 words on the page and then, for the most part, neglect them until the next year when I start all over again.

This year, I decided it was time to make a change despite my disappointment in not being part of the thrill of NaNoWriMo. This year, I am editing a first draft from a previous year.

I am not calling it a NaNo project, as I am not starting from scratch. I am not even planning to complete the editing process in the 30 days allotted for NaNo. I think that would be a foolish goal for me to set. Thirty days to get a first draft out of my head and onto the page makes sense to me. It keeps me from deliberating over each and every word and forces me to just write. But the editing process, in my extremely inexperienced opinion, needs to be more deliberate, more precise, and cannot be rushed in a NaNoWriMo way.

So I am using November as a launching pad this year. I have already been working on editing this novel for a little while now, but in November I am going to force myself to work on it every single day, just like I would if I were writing a NaNo novel. And at the end of November, my goal is not necessarily to have a finished, presentable novel, but rather to have established a habit of writing every single day.

Tonight is the start (I worked on the novel before I started writing this). And for anyone who is doing NaNoWriMo this year, including my Geek, I wish you luck and hope to join you again next year.


At 11/03/2010 6:52 PM, Anonymous HolyMama! wrote:

The last few days I've thought, it's November... what is GW doing...? I must remember to check...

I like your plan - it makes a lot of sense. I'm skipping this year, but hope to join you next year!


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