Monday, December 2, 2013

Less than half of a book

November was national novel writing month. Also known as NaNoWriMo. (The camel humps always confuse me, so that took about a minute to type correctly.)

Information can be found on the website, but to keep it short, the goal is to write 50,000 words in one month. This requires an average of about 1700 words per day. For me, this takes about 2 hours.

I'd tried to do nanowrimo in 2011 and 2012. In '11, I got maybe 9 days in and stopped. '12 I did maybe 5 days. Total word production from both years was less than 10,000 words (in 14 days, it "should' have been closer to 25,000.)

The first year, I was thrilled to do it. Last year, I was also quite driven to succeed. This year, I kinda stumbled into it. I only remembered it was nanowrimo about 2 days ahead of time. Also, I worked more in early November, and am in school, which I was not for the past two years. With less preparation, less time, and less enthusiasm, how did I do?

This year, I managed to write 56,000 words in only 29 days. I was at about 30,000 words on day 10. What was the difference? How did I get 3x as many words in 1/3 less time?

Sprints. Which is to say, support. I got involved with other people doing nanowrimo. Seeing them write kept me writing. Seeing someone say "lets write 400 words in the next 15 minutes" and then doing it overcame my writing fatigue.

I wrote them words good I done did. Funny, because I already knew a community was key to writing. I've experienced that when I had more support.

Nanowrimo taught me a bit about how to write a bunch of words. Good advice has showed me how I might write even more. But I'm thinking I need to find a writing group, because clearly people are the best way to keep going in this world.