I am pleased to report that I have managed to pick up my 7th NaNoWriMo win as of 10:30 last night.
This year is an extra special win, because not only did I manage it with my fibromyalgia getting worse and worse, but I also did it without the fibro and anxiety causing me to miss any work at my awesome amazing full-time job. I feel like I finally have my feet back under me, and I’m making a functional, (mostly) healthy life work for me. This makes 2014 a very special win for me. I am totally taking myself out to dinner to celebrate on payday.
Now comes the editing, and the never-ending debate of self-publishing vs. submitting to a traditional publisher. Either way, I feel like 2015 is going to be a pretty good year. 🙂
So, the first week of NaNoWriMo has been interesting. It started with a weekend full of food poisoning. I wasn’t able to get that first day surge that I was hoping for. Managed to catch up on Sunday, but then the work week came into play. I’ve managed to get to 5k, and I’ve been sitting there for a couple of days because even though I had time to write last night, the Universe in all its infinite wisdom decided that I needed a migraine. But tonight’s going to be bookstore time, and tomorrow is write-ins, and Sunday is quiet time. I’m very determined to make the best of it.
I also decided to ditch the project I was going to do. The outlining had me frustrated to the point of wanting to throw my computer out of the window before I even started Nano and I took that as a bad sign. So I’ve returned to the Soldaris Saga, trying to knock out the next book. The first five thousand words have revealed a lot of the things that I’ve been wondering about some of the places and characters for a couple of years now. So I don’t think I’m going to complain about the change in project.
I have an excerpt from the novel up on the NaNoWriMo site if you’d like to read it. I’m very pleased with it as part of a first draft. I also have my other projects from past years with their excerpts on the site. So please go read, let me know what you think, and enjoy. You can follow my progress there, or off to the side here on my blog.
Wish me luck catching up this weekend. I know I can do it, but a little bit of encouragement never hurts!
So this will be my tenth NaNoWriMo. I feel like this deserves something special, at least in terms of the way I do things. I’m totally splurging on a t-shirt even though I never have before, and donating to the non-profit, and all of that fun stuff. Having a job is nice.
This year I’ve decided to revisit an old, old idea that I had in high school, but really just didn’t have the maturity and sophistication to pull off back then. Although to be honest I’m not sure how much maturity and sophistication you actually need in order to pull off a 90s anime-flavored space opera romance…
So in preparation for November I’m binge-watching Robotech and reading Stardoc again. My outline is actually starting to resemble an outline instead of random thoughts. I’m totally a planner, not a pantser. So it’s good to see it coming all together well before the 31st of October.
I’m getting excited.
Anyone else joining me this year?
All right. Sort of hit bottom again on the depression about a week and a half ago. Don’t know why. But getting back on the horse. Because to keep going really is the only thing I can do if I’m going to get anywhere.
What I’ve accomplished the past (two) week(s):
- Dug into my journals since 2009 and came up with a fairly comprehensive list of projects available to me just from ideas I’ve already had, without having to come up with any new ones. Henceforth and forever referred to as the Giant List of Ideas I’ve Had or GLIIH. (How do you pronounce that? “Glee”? “Gluh”?)
- Enjoyed having family in from out of town for Independence Day here in the States.
- Started Camp Nanowrimo and am totally “pantsing” it (flying by the seat of my pants). I am also discovering that I am not a pantser when it comes to writing.
What I’d like to get accomplished this week:
- Get back on the horse with The Artist’s Way because I fell off with depression.
- Tentative outline so that I’m not pantsing Camp Nanowrimo anymore.
- Word count goals for Camp.
- Go through the GLIIH and separate it into short story, novella, novel, and series ideas.
- Finish expanding the story that got rejected by Sword and Sorceress and submit it to Writers of the Future contest.
- Backlog. (Yeah, I know this one is always on here and never gets done…)
The beginning of December always brings what some people call a Nanowrimo hangover. It’s the feeling of “now what” that comes with having completed 50k words in 30 days. At this point, the insanity is over.
So I’ve finished NaNoWriMo. I’m pleased with the way that it turned out, and although I did get my 50K words, I’m still working on the story. It’s turning out so very nicely. I can’t wait for some of the twists that have been trying to show themselves. I’ve just been through a difficult breakup. I feel like I can talk about it now that it’s over and resolved “successfully”. But that was what was so very emotionally draining for the entire second half of November. And in some ways, it was also very motivating for my writing because pushing so hard for word count kept things from being worse than they were. I survived Thanksgiving with a minimum of family drama (my family does not share my political or religious views that I don’t discuss here so there is always drama).
So now it’s time to answer the “now what?”
Now I finish the rest of the story. It’ll probably end up being an 80k-word novel, when all is said and done.
Now I work on a query letter because I really need to get published soon.
Now I learn how to be lonely, and I imagine that all that time and effort I was putting into a struggling relationship might find new expression in writing and reading.
Now I start looking for new ideas, new projects that I can work on when I’m done with this one.
Now, I move forward.
I’m sitting here crying.
Not everyone cries when they manage to complete 50,000 words of writing. And I’m certain that between blogging and other social media, writing, and roleplaying I manage to write 50k on a regular basis. But as I said in my last entry, winning Nanowrimo has a lot of emotional implications for me this year. I haven’t won since 2009. More than that, I haven’t completed anything of any real noteworthiness in the last four years. It’s been a very difficult journey lately, and to finish something this big, that means this much to me, is a big deal. My health forced me to drop out of college, and it has cost me a few jobs since the divorce as well. But it hasn’t stopped me from winning Nanowrimo.
Some people might say, “it’s just fifty thousand words, you don’t get any real prizes for it, and the novel isn’t even finished yet”. Well, no. It’s not finished yet. There are still about fifteen thousand more words of story left. Maybe a little less. But it’s 50k words closer to being finished. Edited. Submitted. Published. I’ve hit a point in my life where writing is becoming truly do-or-die, and being able to stick with Nanowrimo, to be dedicated to writing a significant amount every day, is a huge step on the way to making writing do what I need it to do for me. As far as real prizes, well, who cares? There are some little goodies that winners have access to, like discounts at Createspace and whatnot. But the euphoric sense of accomplishment is prize enough for me, at least tonight. Getting this project published in the next year would be an even bigger prize.
My first project for December is to get a good query letter together. I’m not stopping here, not resting on my laurels.
So I’m sitting here crying, because I finished something that actually means something for the first time in years, something that is a huge step to greater and grander things.
I’m also sitting here eating pumpkin cheesecake in the bookstore cafe. It is my reward to myself for a job well-done.
Victory is delicious.
I have good NaNoWriMo news. I just hit 45k. This puts me ahead of the par for today (43.3k). Not only that, but it was a 9k day yesterday catching up. I will have won Nanowrimo for the first time since 2009 very soon.
I have some serious momentum built up behind me right now and it is possible that I will hit 50k before midnight. And if not midnight, then it is doable before I go to sleep for sure. And even if I should happen to get tired and a little brain-fried, by latest I think sometime tomorrow I will hit that 50k mark.
There are so many thoughts running through my head right now about what this all means to me. But I don’t want to count my eggs before they hatch, so I’ll save them for the post I will inevitably make when I do hit that 50k mark.
For those who want to follow the last 5k words of my progress, I’ve been keeping a running commentary on Facebook, and to a lesser extent Twitter (which you can see on the right-hand side of my blog, too).
50K isn’t going to be the end of the book, though. Which means I may just see how big a margin I can give myself by the 30th on that win. 🙂