I remember thinking last year when I found out about National Novel Writing Month that I should do it next time.Well, I did. And I met the challenge, finishing the required minimum of 50,000 words a few days early. The book itself is not finished, but I think it’s about two-thirds of the way there. I learned a lot from and about my writing during the past twenty-four days:
- Apply math. Once I had the 50,ooo word goal imposed upon me by the higher power (via Chris Baty), I divided it by 25, figuring I may not be able to waddle over to the computer after Thanksgiving dinner, and maybe there would be some unforseen events; better to have a buffer (I’m all about the buffer).I had to put writing the book first. I always said I was going to, but I (hardly) ever did. This month, if I hadn’t yet “written my 2,000 words” that day, I tried not to do anything else until I had.
- My family walked the talk: they always said they would help out with household chores if I was writing, and they really did. Dishes, laundry, meal prep…when I was writing, everyone pitched in (well, mostly my husband), and didn’t complain at all.
- There is time to write every day, and having a goal helped tremendously. When I read Stephen King’s book On Writing, this was a point he stressed as well. Before the challenge, I tried setting a goal to write 15 minutes a day, but I had trouble sticking to that. Writing 2000 words often took from 2 to 5 hours, depending on the number of interruptions (from kids, meal breaks, etc) but I did manage to stick to that. Go figure.
- My friends were and are very supportive. People (you know who you are!) went out of their way to tell me how much they liked reading what I write, and this was tremendously motivating all month long. Thank you so much!
- My husband is the best. Bill, YOU ROCK!
Now, the challenge for me will be to see if I can keep up the 2,000 words per day until the actual book, and not just the challenge, is finished.Here’s hopin’. :)Winner!