Wednesday, November 30, 2011

What I've been up to lately: NaNoWriMo

NaNoWriMo - ever heard of it?  NaNoWriMo stands for "National Novel Writing Month." It's a challenge that happens every November -- can you write a 50,000 work of fiction in 30 days?

The point is just to write that book you always said you wanted to try.  You have no time to edit or revise, so you get to build without tearing down... create without destroying.  As you can imagine, the end result is filled with plot-holes and problems.  Only a handful of the hundreds of thousands of novels that get written during this month ever go on to become something worth publishing.

I did it in 2007 and ended up with a truly mediocre junior high mystery.  My four characters were just bumbling their way through seventh grade when somehow the FBI asked them to help solve an underground art ring that was being operated out of a secret basement in their school.  Realistic, I know.

I learned three things from that experience:
1)  Writing a book is harder than it looks.
2)  Writing fiction is REALLY even harder than it looks.
3)  It's satisfying to start a big goal and actually complete it.

So this year, I decided to NaNo again and have been holed up every night tapping out my required 1667 words.  I just validated my word count at 11:12 p.m. tonight, less than an hour before the deadline.

Here's what my stats looked like the moment after finishing.  All month, I've been watching those blue bars slowly inch over from nothing, to halfway, to almost there, to full.

The reward for finishing is a pdf certificate that you can print out and write your name on.  I will most certainly be printing my certificate tomorrow, and then I might actually sit down and read what I wrote.

It's sure to be dreadful.  I don't really care.

Now that NaNoWriMo is done, I'll be back on the blog a little more.  See you around!

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