NaNoWriMo – Week 4 – The Finish Line

I crossed the finish line (50,000) Wednesday, November 24, 2010 around 8:30 p.m. with 50,329 words.

My official #NaNoWriMo word count was higher, as the badge lounging in the sidebar will attest. This has been the most arduous, painful project I have ever undertaken. Ever. It is also the coolest thing I believe I have ever done. Really.

In keeping with the last three weeks of updates, this is what I learned in my fourth and last week of #NaNoWriMo 2010.

1. Word wars with your #NaNoWriMo buddies are necessary. Without those word wars, I would not have finished before the 30th. They were awesome (my buddies and the word wars).

2. Sleep was a luxury, caffeine a necessity. House cleaning non-existent.

3. It takes a lot more than putting words on a page to write an actual novel of fiction. It takes a lot of planning and organization, something I did not do much of. Actually, very little and it shows.

4. Writing without editing is hard – I have forgotten how to punctuate, spell and use proper grammar.  I am having difficulties contracting words (contractions are a NaNoWriMo “no no.”) I hope my ability to write correctly comes back soon.

5. The stress of writing under this type of pressure is thoroughly exhausting – it finally caught up with me this past weekend. Next year (yes, I will be doing this crazy thing again), I will pace myself.

6. I totally suck at dialogue writing (a common theme the past few weeks) and have decided to learn how to get conversation’s in my head on a page more coherently. I have writing classes planned for early next year. I am also getting a “writers” program to help me organize future writings. I may even dabble in beginning screenwriting.

7. I have finally written the story that has been tucked in the back of my head for many years. It is ‘fiction based on fact’ and deeply personal. It may or may not see the light of day as a finished product and that’s ok with me.

8. I could not have done this without the support of many people. Without their collective pushes (shoves really), I would not have made it through to the end. They are established (and published) writers and screenwriters that adopted me. I am honored to have been “adopted” by them.

Final thoughts:

During the month of November, I made some extraordinary friends whom I hope to meet in person soon.

I discovered I can write well, but need to better prepare and organize myself, if I wish to do this again (#NaNoWriMo or not).

I am a writer and the literary road of fiction may not be what I choose in the future, I am quite pleased that at least I tried. I am very proud of the fact that I committed to participating in  #NaNoWriMo back in July and did not back out. I am also very proud of the fact that even though I had no clue what I was doing (genre, fiction, structure, planning, etc), I went ahead and wrote anyway.

I’m proud of the fact that for my first #NaNoWriMo, with the thought of quitting running through my head multiple times a day – every day, I crossed the finish line… and won.

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3 thoughts on “NaNoWriMo – Week 4 – The Finish Line

  1. I second every sentiment. It was fun, exciting, tiring, laughable, serious, anxiety-filled (at times), and brought forth growth and learning. It was fun writing, hitting the word wars, and making the journey with you and so many others!

  2. Pingback: Tweets that mention NaNoWriMo – Week 4 – The Finish Line « Thoughts from the Farm -- Topsy.com

  3. I could have written this post. Except that I haven’t turned on my computer in almost a week ;). It’s been nice to “meet” some other writers and it was a worthwhile exercise even if nothing comes of it. I look forward to next year’s nanowrimo!!

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