NaNoWriMo 2018 Diary | Post-Mortem

It’s been a week since NaNoWriMo ended, and I haven’t looked at – haven’t even thought about – my draft since then.

That’s a good thing.

NaNoWriMo 2018 Diary | Week 5

I was this close to giving up on NaNo yesterday.

I had just under six thousand words to go. No problem: I had two days, and I’ve been hitting over 3000 words/day for the past week.

… and then the power went out.

NaNoWriMo 2018 Diary | Week 4

That is the problem I’m having with NaNo this year, and the reason I’m thinking about maybe not doing it again next year: I’ve been writing at a pace that just isn’t sustainable for me. If I’d been able (or willing) to write every. single. day, I’d be fine, but… I can’t sustain that, either. I seem to be at my best writing around 2 hours or 2000 words a day – whichever comes first – and writing 4-5 days a week. More than that, and I start to risk burnout, and I don’t want to go down that road again.

NaNoWriMo 2018 Diary | Week 3

So. I’m still about 4000 words below where I ‘should’ be with this story.

But considering my slow start to the month, and the fact that I’ve been taking weekends off, that’s not terrible. I’ve been averaging about 2500 words a day; if I added one more short writing session every day, I could push that up to 3000 with no difficulty, and still only have to write Monday through Friday.

I’d rather not. I’d rather keep going the way I have been, and I do have a few things I’d like to do with my time besides write, but I could.

NaNoWriMo 2018 Diary | Week 2

… and I’m back on track!

I mean, I’m still behind the ‘official’ target for NaNo – after that one terrible day last week, I wound up taking the weekend off entirely – but the last five days have been really good. I’ve been meeting my personal goals, and today I closed out the first act.

NaNoWriMo 2018 Diary | Prep Week 4

There’s a little less than a week left before NaNo officially starts, and I’m feeling really good about my story.

If you’re just tuning in, I’m rebelling this year. I’m still aiming for 50,000 words during November, and I’m not counting the words I write before then (obviously), but this year it was much more important that I strike while the iron was hot and start writing my story as soon as I was ready.

That turned out to be Tuesday.

NaNoWriMo 2018 Diary | Prep Week 2

Over the past few days, “almost definitely” has turned into “definitely” – I’m going to be working on Violet Lane this November. I’m not going to wait until the first of the month to start writing, but I am going to aim for 50,000 words during NaNo itself.

My prepwork is moving along nicely again. I’ve spent this week on character work, figuring out exactly who these people are and why they exist in the story. It’s been incredibly helpful; developing original characters with unique voices has always been a challenge for me, and it’s only something I really started to feel confident about when I was preparing for last year’s NaNo. (Which means, of course, that I had no idea what I was doing the first time I tried writing this particular group of people.)

NaNoWriMo 2018 Diary | Prep Week 1

I know we’re only a week in, but it feels like October is halfway over already. In the last few days, I’ve gone from feeling like NaNoWriMo is still an abstract concept, something happening sometime in the future, to freaking out because NaNoWriMo is right around the corner.