Okay, so I really meant to write a blog post during Week Two, but… that would have been pretty close to impossible for me. Why, exactly? Let’s back track a little bit to Week One.
There I was, having finished my exams on Nov 1st, and off to a flying start. I made the daily 1,667 word target easily in the first three days, and I realised that I loved my MC more than I thought I would!
Over the next five days, I only just managed to scrape together 1,000 words. To blame: my final assignment for my undergraduate degree – a Philosophy Essay. 😛 I just couldn’t find the time to work on my novel, and when I did put some time aside, I ended up feeling insanely guilty for writing my novel when I really should be writing my essay instead. It was… frustrating, to say the least. It was like I’d been given a taste of the familiar and epic craziness of NaNoWriMo, only to have it snatched away after one teensy lick.
So, I finally finished my essay – hooray, officially finished my undergrad degree! – and so it was time to dive into my novel.
What a fail. I just wasn’t feeling it! Honestly: my muse had deserted me, I had no idea what my characters were doing, I had no plot, the science fiction elements and techno-babble were confusing the heck out of me… and I couldn’t write a word. I started procrastinating by tinkering around on Photoshop, making myself a book cover – which was actually incredibly fun, and I think I came up with a pretty good one! 😀 But yes – I was around 8,000 words behind, and steadily losing ground each day.
I was definitely feeling the typical, dreaded NaNoWriMo Week Two Blues.
However, I had a few secret ingredients up my sleeve, to create some sort of motivation and set my metaphorical novel ball rolling again.
- First of all, I had to face the facts – it was far too early in the month to even contemplate giving up. I mean, a whole heap can happen in three weeks. So there was no way that I was going to let myself pack it all in at the first hurdle.
- This is my 5th NaNo. My real life friends were tackling their 2nd NaNo – and were whipping my tush with their word counts! Eep, the shame! 😛
- Plus, the internal pressure – I’ve already won NaNoWriMo, which makes me fully capable of winning again. In fact, I shall never really have a proper excuse to fail, now.
- And damn it, I was actually falling in love with my characters. And my setting. I didn’t want to tell them all to get lost!
At the mercy of such absolute logic, there was only one thing for it.
Just. Keep. Writing.
So, I did. And believe it or not, things started happening! I killed off a character, I punished another. My two main characters finally meet each other, and start hating each other right on cue. One of my main characters decides to go and get drunk. Oh yes, and then I discover that this same main character has some kind of romantic history with a minor character, which was a surprise to me. But hey, rogue characters FTW! 😀
And as I got more and more into my story, the easier the words flowed. Which worked really well for my plan to catch up. Yesterday, I wrote 5,000 words in one day – squeeeee! It actually felt relatively effortless, which makes me just want to dance around my room 🙂 I am almost completely caught up now, and have a much clearer idea of my plot.
The main problem I have now is that I am pretty convinced that my novel will not be finished by the time I reach 50k. I’ll be lucky if I’ve reached the climax by that point. Which is slightly troubling… it means that I’m going to have to make a real effort post-November if I want to finish my novel. And of course, I do want to.
But I’ll cross that bridge when I come to it.
For now, let me share some virtual gingerbread men with you all, and celebrate the awesomeness of NaNoWriMo! 😀
Word Count: 19,288 words