Post NaNo

This was an interesting journey, this year, I wish I'd thought to keep better track of it. :-) It was definitely a testament to persistence. You know the old mail man's creed: “neither rain nor sleet, nor dead of night shall keep this postman from his appointed rounds”? Well, for me it was more along the lines of “neither tooth ache nor migraine, nor sinus infection will keep me from completing this challenge.”

Last year the secret to my NaNo win was late night writing in my easy chair while watching Star Trek movie marathons, and eating gummi worms. This year it was writing at my desk while listening to Loreena McKennitt, and eating rockets.

And that wasn’t the only difference. Last year I was unemployed, so I could write at whatever time I wanted. It was my first win and I finished early, ending at around 60K words total. The story just spilled from me – there were times when I couldn’t write fast enough.

This year I had more writing commitments – my blogs, my poetry group – and let’s not forget I’m in school full time. I had my idea before I started, but unlike last year it did not pour out of me. In fact, there were times when I had to grab it by both hands and drag it kicking and screaming out of my head and onto the page. But, for all that, I think I ended up with a better draft this year, and what’s more, I think it’s more of a saleable story.

So, now that it’s over, what have I learned?

1. I can live without playing on-line games. And what's more, I get more writing done.

2. My office is good for something other than storing books.

3. A tooth ache can make it difficult to concentrate on writing a sex scene.

4. My CD player has a repeat key so I don’t have to keep getting up to press play again.

5. Sometimes you just have to let the characters have their own way.

6. I can increase my wordage without resorting to sex.

7. Coffee, when used as a last resort, can work miracles.

8. Writing in an official NaNo t-shirt is more inspirational than writing in my pajamas.

9. Sometimes I just can’t rush the story, and even when I don’t I can still get high word counts.

10. An outline might not be such a bad idea after all. :-)


Jamie D. said...

A-ha! Come to the outlining dark-side. You know you want to...

It's truly amazing how much time on-line games suck up, isn't it? I might have time for them again in January...or maybe not.

Great list of stuff for you this year! May I humbly submit Matcha (powdered green tea) for next year's stimulant stash...I found it worked wonderfully this year, but didn't try it until the last few nights. Should have earlier!

Rushing the story - I so want to do that all the time. Should do a blog post on it soon.

Many congrats on your glorious win!! :-)

Tara McClendon said...

Do online puzzles count as games?