NaNoWriMo 2015 – Debrief

Yesterday, around 5:30 PM, I reached 50,000 on my NaNoWriMo manuscript. It was fairly last minute, but not particularly rushed. Most of the month was slow and steady, and far less frantic feeling than 2014 – my first NaNoWriMo.

Knowing I could do this – because I’d already done it – was undoubtedly a key factor in my calmness around the whole crazy month. And while there were some days I barely wrote 100 words, I wrote every single day of the month. That feels good – like I’m creating a habit that I can sustain. While I don’t expect to write every single day for the rest of my life, writing more often than not feels good.

This NaNoWriMo was much different from last year in a couple of ways:

  1. Subway/Phone Writing: On a good day, I could write about 400-500 words on my morning commute. Better than waking up at the crack of dawn
  2. Far less word sprints: Last year, the only way I managed to write anything was through word sprints. This year, I only did a handful. In a way, I missed the frenetic energy of sprints, but I’m getting old and sometimes stability is more sexy.
  3. I wrote every. single. day. Some days it was only a couple hundred words (or less) but I managed to get words down no matter what.

Overall, NaNoWriMo 2015 was a success. I completed the requisite 50,000 words. But what is next? Well, my story still needs a lot of sussing out plot-wise. I’m hoping to write a bit this weekend (traveling by train which is always a fun way to write), but wondering if I should take a step back, and outline the rest of my story. One thing I’ve learned from my last NaNoWriMo novel is that I can keep writing, keep pushing the plot forward, but without an end in mind, there will likely be no end in sight.

One thing I definitely want to work on is more detailed character bios for all of my main characters and a people, places, world-building “Bible,” where I can find all the minute details conveniently. This is something I can do concurrently with drafting or with outlining, so I want to commit to it.

Still working out which route to take, but I’ll report back. One thing I do know, is that I want to stick with this story for a while – I’m not quite sick of it just yet.

I’ll miss you NaNo. Until next November…*





*or April for Camp NaNo 😜



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