Day 30: Is November over already?

Image of novel cover

Image of novel cover (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Hey, November! Come back here! I’m not done with you yet!

November is done with me though, and NaNoWriMo comes to an unceremonious end.

As I write, there are 14 minutes left (in my time zone) until the end of NaNoWriMo Day 30. There is a bit of a gap from my last post on Day 12.

I have come as far as I am going for this year’s NaNoWriMo effort. Final word count, over 15,000 words. Total writing days out of 30 was about 15. That means I averaged 1,000 words per writing day.

Does this mean I failed? I don’t look at it that way. Going into it, I thought of this NaNoWriMo as a Kobayashi Maru test. The no-win scenario. “How one deals with death is as important as how one deals with life”. Okay, not quite so dramatic as being a life or death scenario, but still a valid comparison.

A lot of my 15,000+ words is “raw footage”. I have multiple takes, I have bloopers, I have shots where the cast is out of character, I have footage in which the camera caught cast members discussing certain scenes with the writer – sometimes even arguing with the writer.

I also have some breakthroughs, some story points where I’d previously been stuck and found a way through it. I learned some things about my characters that I did not know before – that’s the part of creative writing I like best, when the characters come to life and take over the story telling process. Hey – Ian Green, if you only knew what your lady friend fantasized about doing with you in the zero-gravity room!

Perhaps I’ll set aside time in December and in January boost my word count up to the target of 50,000. Or maybe I’ll do some “production” work to turn my raw footage into fully realized scenes. Or maybe I will get busy with the other responsibilities in my life and find even more months flying by.

I wanted to have something in my life other than Toastmasters to write about; I had that in blogging about NaNoWriMo and in continuing to develop my story, Mission: Dawn.

If I had to answer the question “was I committed or was I interested” in NaNoWriMo, I would have to say honestly that my results show that I was merely interested. If I was committed there are certain sacrifices I would have made and I was not willing to make them.

Does this mean I will not do NaNoWriMo again? Far from it. I now have a benchmark against which to measure my future performance, and I have already put in my planner for next October – “prepare for NaNoWriMo 2013”.

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12 Responses to Day 30: Is November over already?

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  4. wlouison says:

    Congrats and I agree with the Kobayashi Maru. I LOVE Star Trek haha and NaNoWriMo. So your post was just that much better for me haha

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  7. DrDavisTCE says:

    I’m with wlouison; I too am a Trek fan and that made the post better.

    Any writing is good. Writing you wouldn’t have done otherwise is even better. Perhaps it’s not a “no win scenario” as much as it’s a “win-win” scenario. If you got 50,000 words it would be a huge win, but 15,000 is still a big win, too.

    Congratulations on the writing. Hope it continues to keep you moving forward.

    • orestgtd says:

      Thanks for your comment, Dr Davis.

      The big win for me was having a few story breakthroughs in parts where I had previously been stuck, and the new discoveries I made about some of my characters.

      The aspect of taking on something where the goal was 50,000 words knowing that I probably would not hit that target is what felt like a Kobayashi Maru for me. But taking it on anyways was also a win!

      Maybe next year I’ll reprogram the simulator and change the NaNoWriMo goal to 15,000 words 🙂

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