Hello everyone! Today, I wanted to chat about my NaNoWriMo experience last month.
For anyone who doesn’t know, NaNoWriMo is a writing contest of sorts where the challenge is to write. Traditionally, the goal is to write a new 50,000 word novel in the month of November but the “rules” are much looser now so you can check it out if you want to learn more!
Also, as you can see, I’m doing Blogmas again this year! That means I’ll be blogging every day until Christmas. I’ve done Blogmas in 2016, 2017, 2018, and 2019 so I am happy to be participating again in 2020.
My 2020 NaNoWriMo Experience
Before NaNo – October
Back in October, I started to plan out a few possibilities. I think I ended up with about eight ideas for what to write but couldn’t pick between them. I numbered them and had my sister pick a number. As I brainstormed though, I ended up combining that idea with another one and found my story!
At that point I had about a week left in October so I quickly put together a character list of everyone I knew I needed for the story, a separate list of extra names for random characters later on, drew a little map of the area I was creating for the story, and even planned out the general idea for a sequel (I got carried away on that one). After that, I did a planning chart that I found on a YouTuber’s video a few years ago that really helped me figure out the plot points of the story I was going to write.
With the basics done I was able to sit back and wait for November to arrive!
During NaNo – November
Once November started, I hit the ground running. Literally! Since the goal is 50,000 words in 30 days, the minimum is 1,667 words per day to finish on time. I ended up writing over 3,000 words the first day and I think my average ended up being somewhere in the low to mid 2,000s. I managed to reach 50,000 words by November 20th! It was actually 50,018 words to be exact. The most words I wrote in a day was 3,472 and the least was 1,792.
I found it super easy to reach 50,000 words, even if it wasn’t always easy to reach the daily 1,667 words. The chart I mentioned earlier was super, super helpful for me! Basically, the chart was a beginning, middle, and end of the story and each part was further broken down so each point was basically a chapter with a few extras added in there that added more details or something. However, I didn’t always follow the plot chart, because I realized that if I was getting stuck somewhere then that was most likely because the point I had planned before didn’t fit anymore. So I would end up changing it or leaving myself a note to change something later when I edit in order to move on and continue writing instead of worrying about it at that moment. That’s actually a tip that NaNo provides because the goal is to get to 50,000 words first, and then worry about fixing it up later.
There are a ton of edits to do though. There are characters that still ended up being unnamed, characters that I needed at the end of the book that I never introduced because I didn’t realize I needed them yet, and tons more details to be added. Since I was so focused on the major plot points and getting them all in, I realized I needed to go back and add a ton more to build on the main character’s relationships and even on the main character herself. But, I didn’t have time to add that in before during the original challenge, due to the fact that I was so focused on the word count and major plot points so I’m excited to add more now!
After NaNo – December and beyond
So, now that NaNo is over I view the project as having two possibilities. The first is, naturally, to leave it alone and forget about it. I wrote it for fun and that’s where that journey could end. The second is much tougher but it is the one I want to do. It’s to keep working on it! I have done a few NaNo challenges, completed some and gave up on others, but this is the one that was the most satisfying to write because I felt like it was a good idea. Not to say the others weren’t, but I think it was a good idea (in my opinion, of course) and it was the right story to tell because I felt like I was able to write it so easily.
As I said, there’s a ton to change and add, so there’s a ton of work to do. I honestly don’t think I’ve done any character descriptions at all, so I don’t even know what my characters look like in a weird way. So I do want to work on adding that all in.
As for publishing the story, I’d love to publish it someday! But the only way to do that is to finish it, so I should get to work!
So that was a little insight to my NaNoWriMo experience this year! Did anyone else participate? I’d love to know!
Thanks for reading!
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