Completing the 50,000 words to achieve my ‘win’ for NaNoWriMo 2013 was, in the end, harder than I thought it would be. As I approached the magic number I was nearing a huge scene in the novel, one that I hadn’t quite worked out the details for. As a result, I found myself writing around it and becoming frustrated. The goal became the number of words, not the successful execution of the scene.
Those last 5,000 words were possibly the most difficult I encountered all month. I suppose this is where NaNoWriMo can fall down; 50,000 words is a great amount, but for me it doesn’t encapsulate a full first draft of a novel. I’m now left, in December, with a novel that is two third written awaiting a successful climax and resolution.
Having taken a few days off, I now need to get back to that troublesome scene and try and work out what happens next. Had I reached the scene earlier in the month, I would have ploughed on regardless and accepted that it would likely need a hefty rewrite. However, on the cusp of 50,000 words I wanted to end on a high. In the end, I could not. I left the scene half undone and still my brain hasn’t processed the solution to the corner I have written myself into.
Without the community spirit and competitive nature of November, I know that I will have to put in lot of willpower and self-motivation to keep writing this month. As mentioned in my previous post, as much as I want to lay down my metaphorical pen and just enjoy the festive spirit, in equal measure I really do want to finish this novel . I don’t want to have to come back to it in January and wonder what an earth I was writing. I need to continue the momentum, which means carrying on regardless. Only now, there is less of a reason for announcing my word count to the world, other than to prove that I’m doing it.
What do you do after NaNoWriMo when you haven’t finished that novel you set out to write? Take a well-deserved break, continue on or something else entirely?
Let me know in comments…
Want to know how I’m getting on outside of the NaNoWriMo challenge? Follow me on Twitter and get regular updates!