Five Nanowrimo blog posts, twelve years of dreaming about writing my own novel, twenty-five long days of reaching my daily word count, and 50,000 words that nobody would ever want to read later, I am officially a Nanowrimo winner.
Just one month ago, I decided on whim to write a blog post about my feelings on Nanowrimo, with no expectation that I would reach 50,000 words or even get to one. I learned about Nanowrimo about three years ago and have always dreamed of the day I would win, but despite my good intentions, I never gave it a try until this year. I always used the excuse that I was too young, or that I didn’t have enough time, or that I wasn’t good enough, but I put all those thoughts aside for the last twenty-five days and did what I never thought was possible: I didn’t give up.
I’m still in shock that this day is actually here, but the winner banner is real and very, very beautiful. My story is not quite finished but it is close, and without this challenge I probably never would have started it at all. Right now it’s a complete mess, but it’s less of a complete mess than I expected it would be in the first place, and that in itself is a small victory.
The end of my story is well within view, and I’m happy with how everything came together, even if I did branch off a little from my original outline. In an earlier post I described myself as a planner, but looking back on the month I would say I am definitely more of a plantser, and it worked out well for me. I enjoyed the freedom of new characters introducing themselves by surprise and smaller conflicts cropping up in the middle of something bigger, while still having the structure of an outline and the guarantee that my novel will not reach a dead-end.
I haven’t decided yet whether I will edit this story right away or move on to planning my next project, but one thing I know for sure is that my consistency this month has formed into a new habit, and I don’t plan to take writing out of my daily routine for a long time. I feel this month alone has helped me grow as a writer more than anything else I’ve done before, and I don’t regret participating at all.
Overall, I’m proud of myself for sticking to my goals and working toward something I’ve wanted for so long, and I can’t wait to read my first novel when I’m finally finished. It’s not perfect and I still have plenty of room to grow, but I’m only seventeen and I have my whole life ahead of me to make my writing great, and now I’m confident in my ability to do that.
To anyone else who has reached their 50,000, congratulations! To everyone participating this year, whether you think you’ll make it to the finish line or not, we should all be proud of the hard work we’ve put in this month. And if you aren’t participating and you would like to, why not start now! Even though November is almost over doesn’t mean it’s too late to start something great. You’ll never regret trying.
Thank you all for keeping me motivated and accountable this month, and as always,