My NaNoWriMo Experience

It sprang to life during a trip to Atlanta in October. An idea. I chewed on it throughout the trip and found it sprouting limbs, branches and buds. Not wanting them to die in place, I set them down in my journal for safekeeping. After returning home to Ohio, the urge to actually form them into an outline– my first  wrangling with such a thing since college– took over.

Then a friend mentioned NaNoWriMo’s challenge to write a 50,000 word novel during the month of November. The mostly-formed outline blinked at me from the screen. It wanted to be born, fleshed out. But I had never attempted to write anything that lengthy. Would it ever develop from a mere jumble of bones to see the light of day? Would I get bored with the idea before it crowned?

November 1st arrived. I signed up with the site and laid down the first sentence– and the next. The daily wordcount to reach the goal was 1,667 per day. I quickly reached that mark & kept on adding meat. Soon, my novel had a heartbeat and there was no way I was going to leave it partially formed. The days clicked forward. The chapters flowed. And by the end of the month I had written over 95,000 words. We were both shocked– the novel and I.

But, it still wasn’t ready to gasp for air. It was a preemie still in need of a few more chapters. I set my own daily goals and completed the manuscript by the first week in December. It finished up at over 111,000 words. All from my head. All springing forth from the seed of an idea.

Two rounds of editing have been completed & a pair of literary-minded friends are giving it a good scrubbing. It’s not ready to be revealed to world just yet but it is kicking and screaming to do so.

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