NaNo 2016 ~ The Outcome

I realize I’m jumping the gun a bit, but November 30th is only a couple days off and I’ve got a few moments and a brain that feels like blogging.

The short version. I did not win NaNo. I was at 23,508 on the 23rd and, as of this writing, I’m still at 23,508. I don’t think I’m being pessimistic by announcing there is no way I can pen 26,492 words in three days. Even breaking it down to 8,000 plus words/day to meet the deadline doesn’t help, considering my daily average was 668, with atop day of slightly over 3300. Never to be seen again.

I did began November with a little over 3000 words already down. Something I wasn’t counting into the NaNo totals. So, if I call this The End, I’ve come out of November with the beginning of a rough draft standing at 26,641 words. It’s far more than I would have penned without the challenge of NaNo staring me in the face, and the support of a great virtual group on FB to keep me motivated and going. It’s a far cry from a finished rough draft. In my world, about 90,000 words worth of a far cry.

So, what happened? Outside of the dayjob and life in general, you mean? Well, an extra helping of Life in General, the details of which I won’t bore you with here. Also, a marketing project for The Darkness & Light Trilogy which fell onto my plate slightly before Thanksgiving break.

One would think being off work for 4 and a half days would have contributed to much wordage. I hoped as much prior to the above-mentioned project. Also, there was Thanksgiving. Let’s not forget the hubby was off those days as well and demanded some time and attention. Mainly, it was the marketing project.

Yes, here’s where I plug my author newsletter again, because if you want to be first to hear the details on said project, as well as get a sneak peek, you’ll want to sign up. It truly is painless. (I’m even putting the link right HERE so you don’t have to go looking.)

Anyhow, moving on. I’m not disappointed by my NaNo results. I knew going into it the cards were not stacked in my favor. Mainly, NaNo was an experiment as well as a distraction. I needed something to focus on, and it gave me that.

Perhaps that leaves you wondering…

Will I finish my NaNo project? Most definitely. I love the characters, the world, the story… oh yes, I will finish.

What did I learn from NaNo? A couple things.

First, I am most decidedly not a plotter. I tried. I did. I bought some craft books on the topic, wrote up a synopsis, sketched a bit of a chapter breakdown, and as soon as I got into the meat of the story, that all went south. In fact, I’m quite certain I didn’t refer back to the outline after the first week. I guess you could say I already knew I was a pantser, and NaNo didn’t teach me that, but until NaNo I never really gave outlining/plotting a real shot. Now I know it is definitely not for me. My stories need to grow organically off the skeleton I have in my head, and the odd notes jotted here, there, and elsewhere.

Secondly, the way my life and schedule currently is, writing 50k in a month isn’t doable. That’s not bound to change any time soon, and is just something I need to accept for now.

All-in-all, November went by extraordinarily fast! We’re staring December in the eyes. By the middle of the month I should (hopefully) know the fate of Hand of Fate. I have no idea when I’ll hear about Driev’s.

Cheers to my fellow NaNoers, whether you reached the 50k goal or not.

13 Comments:

  1. I’ve done NaNo twice and lived to tell the tale but itIS a brain drain. I’m retired.
    Kudos to you for signing up with a full life on your plate also vying for your attention. <3 <3

  2. You did incredibly well and I’m super proud of you! You should try CampNaNo with me next year. They have it in April & July. You set your own word count goal and can change it throughout the month. It basically just gives you a focus ^.^

    • Thanks. 🙂 Spring and summer are usually unbelievably busy for me, but we’ll have to take a look, see what’s on the plate, what projects are cooking… Never say never, right?

  3. I think you’ve done a marvelous job with that word count. Kudos to you!

  4. My hat’s off to you, kiddo. I cranked out my first solo novel in six weeks; it weighed in at around 70K which isn’t too far off of the NaNo target. But (he hastens to add) I didn’t do anything else that month aside from eating, sleeping and drinking. It’s not a pace I intend to duplicate, in *this* life anyhoo. I applaud you for making the effort, and I appreciate how demanding it can be. But doing along with a life? Oy. I’ll stick to one new book per year.

  5. You’re still a heroine for trying! And you’ve got a new story to sink your teeth into, can’t ask for more than that in 30 days. I am NaNo’ing but not for word count, just to siphon off the energy and enthusiasm of the challenge to help me with my book. I was doing great till Thanksgiving, then it all went haywire. ‘S ok–still 2 days left!!

  6. Hey, that’s a lot of words you didn’t have a month ago! Congrats!

  7. November is a lousy time for me to write, personally. You should pat yourself on the back for making 23K+ That’s really good. (You should also pat yourself on the back for being the type of author who can finish and publish books without needing Nano. 😉 )

    Congratulations on your progress and discoveries!

    • Well, my progress on that last is a bit like a herd of turtles in a wind storm. Actually, November thru February are when I have the most time to devote to my creative endeavors. The whole, lack of daylight after work and freezing temperatures thing.

  8. Marketing can definitely get in the way sometimes, can’t it?! It sounds like you did a GREAT job on NaNo anyway!

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