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Point of View: The Last Day of NaNoWriMo

NaNo Scott

NaNoWriMo is almost over.

It’s been 30 days of absolute writing madness, and I almost didn’t do it at all.

I first heard about this epic writing event last year, and I knew absolutely nothing about what it was, or what it meant, other than the name. I thought you had to submit your work to a panel of judges somewhere who would chose the “winner”. I was nowhere near ready to face that kind of competition.

Then I noticed that half of my writing friends were “winners”. And I finally figured out that “winning” NaNo was more about meeting a personal goal than about beating out your competitors.

Flash forward to this year, in mid-October. I had no plans to participate in NaNoWriMo. I was too busy, and there was no way I could manage an entire novel in 30 days. I only have an hour and a half a day to write, and half the time life intervenes and I miss even that small window. Plus, I figured I’d have to average almost 2k a day because I counted four days out at the get-go.

And don’t even get me started about the Thanksgiving Weekend at the end of the month, right when I’d need to be wrapping everything up.

But then I thought about it, and I realized that I’ve been saying, for at least a year now, that I have to get a novel done. That I can’t just keep writing just novellas and short stories forever – there’s too little money in it. And that this damned writing “contest” might just force me to actually do it.

So here we are, on the last day of NaNoWriMo. And I’m less than 1,300 words away from my 50k goal, with an hour and a half left to write later this afternoon.

I’m gonna make it.

Is my novel any good? It’s honestly too soon to tell, and I’m too close to it. But the first draft is almost done, and I can always make it better. I’ve proven that I can be disciplined enough to write every day, come rain or shine.

Don’t they say it takes about three weeks to form a new habit? I may just have one, then. And they say the writing habit is a hard one to kick.