About NaNoWriMo 2017
Posted: December 13, 2017
Event Dates: November 1, 2017 to November 30, 2017
It has been almost a year since my last post (which was the recap of 2016), for which I apologize. It seems that when things get busy, the blog is an easy thing to procrastinate. Probably too easy. This time, though, I had a good reason: my wife and I had a son! Indeed, our little boy was born in April and is now eight month old. During that period, I wrote only sporadically and I'll provide a more complete overview of my last year shortly. In this post, I'd like to focus on NaNoWriMo 2017 (which ended on November 30).
Last year, I barely reached the target of 50,000 words that is part of the National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo) challenge. So, one would think, why try it again this year, now that I have a baby?
Mainly: I needed to get back into writing. Simply put: I missed writing.
I'm happy to say that I've accomplished what I set out to do. I've put in 59,589 words this past month and completed the story the first week of December (reaching a final word count of around 73,000 words). More importantly, since then, I've continued to write on a regular basis.
Part of my success is related to the fact that I did a re-write of The Stranger of Ul Darak. Several sections of the story were in fairly good shape, which allowed me to gain momentum (and rapidly increase my word count). Still, I added enough new characters and chapters to make the exercise challenging and exciting.
Like last year, I wrote mostly at night, starting at 11pm, for one to two hours. On a few occasions, I wrote longer or during the day. The fact that our baby now sleeps through the night helped greatly! On the other hand, he is an early riser, so I had many nights that were fairly short. Because of this, I took four nights off writing to get rest and recharge. This was a good idea as it allowed me to keep up my energy (last year, I ran out of energy by the end of the month). I reached the target of 50,000 words on November 25, which was awesome as it reduced the pressure a good five days before the deadline (see the graphics below, which shows my progress last year versus this year).
I am quite satisfied with the final result. The Stranger of Ul Darak is much better because of NaNoWriMo 2017. I still need to go over the story once or twice (to finalize some details and add another four chapters), but I am pleased with the progress and hope to have everything done sometime in 2018 (with publication possibly late 2018 or 2019).
The benefits of NaNoWriMo were the same this year as last year: setting a clear goal to aim for, connecting with other authors (although I did less connecting this year), writing regularly and finding creative ways to make time for writing. For this reason, I continue to encourage any authors to give it a try.
I'd like to thank my wife for her patience and support during this past November (and my boy for being so good). I would not be writing if it was not for her encouragement and support. Any successful writer needs a good support system (especially if you write part time).
Because this was such a positive experience yet again, I expect that I will be joining the fray in 2018 as well.