On NaNoWriMo and Success

On NaNoWriMo and Success

So, I recently completed NaNoWriMo for the second time. When you add that to last year (The End of Glory) and ScriptFrenzy (an un-named graphic novel), that means in the space of 13 months or so, I’ve written more than 300 pages. I’m quite proud of that statistic. Goodness knows what I’ll do with it, however.

My novel, The Birth of Conflict, snuck in at about 54,000 words, and I made it with about 5 or 6 days to go. It was strange – unlike last time, where i felt I had a real structure and knew exactly where I was going with the novel and where it was all going to end up. I’d put a lot of pre-planning in, had a clear idea and a story to tell.

This time, though, it was very different. I really struggled. Admittedly, I had spent much less time preparing this novel, and I think that really showed – although I had a rough destination in mind, the actual getting there – the fillin in the details of how to achieve that end result – were where I really struggled. The novel itself really felt like it was lurching. Every now and then I’d hit upon something that I was really pleased with, and the words would flow, and I would write more than 6000 words in a couple of hours. And then, there’d be times where I’d repeatedly spam the word count button, convinced that I’d written more than 500 words in an hour. But I hadn’t. I’d feel like I was tearing my hair out. I felt like throwing the computer across the room. I felt like throwing up.

But, perhaps, that’s all part of the process. Maybe, there was something that I’d missed the first time, when it seemed really easy. Maybe, the struggle is part of what it means to take part in NaNoWriMo. I say that because there were times, when I should have been working on something else entirely, I’d find myself thinking about the novel, wondering how I was going to get myself out of the literary pickle I had worked myself into.

And, lo and behold, I would find myself inspired – an idea would appear, and I would be able to work that into my story.