NaNoWriMo Week One

NaNoWriMoI thought I would do a post about my very first week of NaNoWriMo ever. This stands for National Novel Writing Month, and is known around the world. It is basically a month where you work your butt off to reach 50,000 words of writing. Although it is called ‘Novel Writing Month’ it can be anything as long as you do the word count. I had high aspirations two years ago when I signed up on their website and thought I could do it. I failed so miserably as life got in the way, and didn’t even attempt to do it last year.

This year I had just started a new book and was at 12,000 words before the month’s start so I thought I would do it, just not officially on their site. I found being signed up can be good for some people but I almost find it more distracting and I’m not looking for local people or groups to meet with to do the writing. It is a great community though and you can keep track of word count, goals, and encourage each other. If you aren’t a writer, it may not sound like a lot of words, and for some writers it’s not. For me, traditionally a short story author, 50,000 words may as well be a million.

I am trying to do the full amount and so far have done some of the words in a short story I’m working on for a project, and the rest on my book. It feels great to set goals and actually reach them. So here is my breakdown of week one.

To get to 50,000 words you need to break it down to a daily average which is 1,667. If you can do that many a day, you will succeed. While it doesn’t sound like a lot, it works out to about 5 pages of a novel. I sit at a desk for nine hours a day at my job, and it can be hard to come home and get back to it. I’ve been trying to do the writing after getting home, walking my dog and having dinner. Then I have my less on my mind and can focus on the task at hand. I’ve been very lucky with my book, because I have a good idea where I’m going with it and the words have been very fluid. There have not been many times where I sit there staring blankly at the screen for more than a few moments and that has helped me keep my sanity.

That being said, after week one I am behind schedule. Not by a lot but enough that I will need to play catch up sooner than later. Instead I averaged 1,240 words per day. At that output I would finish the month at 37,225, which wouldn’t be too shabby. But I want to do the full amount. Three of the seven days I beat my goal which shows me that it can be done. One day I did just a thousand, and last Friday I did zero. Instead I went and saw Alexander McCall Smith speak in Edmonton. He is the best-selling author of the #1 Ladies Detective Agency series and many others. It was a real treat to hear the man talk about his books, life and writing. Though I didn’t get any writing done that day, I got inspiration galore.

Now I am eight days in and have 10,754 words done. So that bumps the average up to 1,344 per day so far. With a little tenacity I hope to succeed at my goal this month, and I will have a good chunk of my book done by the end of it!

Good luck to anyone else out there doing the NaNoWriMo2015. See you on the other side.

Here is where the magic all happens

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