Well, here we are: at the end of a wild month of unbridled writing with our empty coffee cups, neglected friends & family, cramping hands and feelings of both proud accomplishment and profound sleep deprivation.
Not all of us made the 50K mark, but nonetheless, all of us are proud of ourselves and each other. This is what NaNoWriMo is all about: community, mutual support, and writing.
Now that it’s over, we asked the team about their final thoughts and impressions about the past month, and what their plans are for what they’ve written, be it eventual publication or just as a lesson learned and moved on from:
||Mark Lefebvre, Director, Kobo Writing Life
Wow. That was close. I almost didn’t make it. There were several days where I didn’t end up writing, and that was a huge mistake, because it slowed down my forward momentum quite a bit, meaning that when I did sit down to write, I had to write more than 1667 words – I had to play catch up. The last stretch was one of the toughest due to that.
But, even if I hadn’t made 50,000 words, I think I still would have thought of this as a win. After all, the fact that I dedicated time to ACTUAL WRITING and getting words onto the page means I won, based on the sheer fact that I did it, that I did something, that I made the effort to actually do it. A lot of people have great ideas for writing and a desire to write. But most don’t. One of my favourite writing quotes is from Hugh Prather: “If the desire to write is not accompanied by actual writing, then the desire is not to write.” That often motivates me to keep going. Thus, anybody who participated in NaNoWriMo, even if they only just started something, is a winner, because they sat down and committed time to doing it. I applaud them all.
My plans for EVASION will be to put the project on the back burner for at least a month while I focus on some other writing projects I already had in my queue, then come back and do a re-write. I think it’s a decent story, a fun novella-length work, and I plan on, once I do a re-write, sending it to an editor, having a decent cover designed for it, and then self-publishing it in eBook format. I haven’t decided on whether or not there’ll be a print version.
|Christine Munroe, US Manager, Kobo Writing Life
My first crack at NaNoWriMo was a great experience. Although I didn’t hit the 50k mark, I like that I managed to get into a routine of making time for writing in my daily schedule, which for me is a huge accomplishment. I did not like the 1600-word-per-day pace – I only hit that a few times, and I felt plagued with guilt every time I didn’t. I guess I’m a slower writer, at least for now! A more realistic mantra for me to utilize moving forward is: write something every day. I am really happy with where this project is going. I plan to finish the novel, but feel like I can’t plan further beyond that at this point.
||Camille Mofidi, EU Manager, Kobo Writing Life
TGIO! To be honest, I kind of let it go for the last days (OK, it’s more the last two weeks…), but I really enjoyed my first experience with NaNoWriMo.
It was great to be part of a group of people all around the world, focused on writing, plot, and characters at the same time. It was fun counting my words and keeping track of my writing buddies on the NaNoWriMo site, sharing widgets of our word counts. It was nice sitting at my desk and having words or ideas flowing like butterflies.
Of course, I’m a little disappointed that I didn’t win any badge – not even a “Well done! You’ve reached half of your words!”. But that’s part of the game 🙂 I prefer seeing the glass half full: after all, 25.000 words on a first journey with NaNo isn’t that bad, is it? And I have a goal for next year: reaching 50.000 words for good! Besides, I can’t leave Chloe and Ben, my main characters, without knowing if their love will overcome the difficulties that kept them apart…
So see you all on November 1st, 2014 and in the meantime just keep writing 🙂
||Sarah Carless, Technical Writer, Publisher & Author Communications
This is my fourth time participating, and although my last year was 2005 (my first was 2002), it’s my third win! This whole experience has been invaluable to me, as I’d sort of let writing take a back seat lately, behind work, behind hobbies, behind life in general. I now know that I can make time for it, and I remember how much I love it. I need to keep this up — perhaps not 1667 words a day, but at least something.
Not everything I wrote this time is useable, but I have a few stories that, with some editing, could be coaxed into a state that I would let see the light of day. You might, over the coming months, see one or two of them show up on Kobo through my Kobo Writing Life account.
I will definitely be doing this again. See you next year!
||Sebastien Bago, Merchandiser, France
I won! I had no other plan but to do it, but still, I wasn’t that sure I would be able to make it considering I was on a business trip for 8 days at the end of the month. So, my NaNoWriMo was more around NaNoWri-23days.
Looking back now, what a challenge it was. I must admit that around 30K, I started to feel a bit tired and confused. I was asking myself if I would be able to keep the same pace until the end. When you do the NaNo, you’re going through a lot of emotions and feelings, from good to bad. Fortunately, I was always ahead of the plan, so it was mostly 90% good feelings. It’s a hard thing to do that writing 50K in a month, but finally not that much. It makes you write, that for sure, but it also show you that, as a write, you’re able to provide such a terrific ever whenever you want it too. That said, next time I’d have to write a lot, I could think about this month and tell myself: “you can do it.”
Now, what am I gonna do with all those words? Well, I’m gonna use them! It will need some editing, especially the final 10K, but still, it’s good material.
And, as a conclusion to this amazing month, I would give some kudos. First, a big think you to the people who first asked me to do it. Then, to the KoboWriMo team because it’s always good to feel part of such an amazing group. And, last but not least, thank you NaNoWriMo: I needed this!
See you next year. Well, maybe.