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Non-NaNoWriMo – Complete!

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Website quote: "We'll have a complete stats breakdown on the blog in the next few days, but I just checked in on the winner's totals (32,000 winners as of 11:30 PM Pacific) and saw that we've hit a 19% win rate for the first time in modern NaNoWriMo history. We're also ahead of last year on collective word count, total sign-ups, donor percentage, number of brown-haired Scorpios with green eyes writing fan fiction, and pretty much everything else that matters."

With the end of November comes the end of National Novel Writing month, where budding authors worldwide try to write a 50,000 word short story during the month, the aim being to get the rough ideas out there rather than craft something perfect.  During that time I set out to either write a further 50,000 words of the novel I’ve slowly been working on for years, or maybe even finish it.

As it happens, I ended up doing both.  You can see the whole month’s progress here, broken down by day, but the short version is that in November I wrote 55,462 words, finishing with an overall average of 1,848 words per day.  I hit the halfway point of 25,00 words on the 14th, one day early (the 25,000th word was “said”), and the final point on the 26th, four days early (word 50,000 was “watching”).  I then completed the final chapter of the novel on the 29th.

From keeping an eye on other people, it’s clear that not everybody approached NaNoWriMo in the same way.  Some people wrote as much as they could every day, hitting the target in the first couple of weeks, while others were like me, trying to hit the required average each time and not going much further.  My approach worked well for me, because it meant I was spending time on it each day without having the entire day consumed by writing, and still found time for TV, little bits of gaming and browsing the web (although I am still behind on all those things now).

I found the whole thing to be lots of fun and I’m really glad to have written a story from start to finish after years of procrastinating.  There’s lots more to be done to it now – editing, additional chapters, rewriting of earlier chapters to incorporate ideas that came to me later – but it feels really good to have the very rough first draft completed, and I’ll definitely consider doing the same thing next November.

Congratulations to everybody who took part, whether you hit the goal or not.

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