My First NaNoWriMo Experience

Well, that title is a lie.

Truthfully, I tried NaNoWriMo in the past, and it didn’t stick. I didn’t finish. I ended up behind on my WIP (work in progress) and barely finishing it by the deadline I had set for myself (The Waking of the Nightmares…seems like I always have a tough time in the middle of writing a book or series, and an even tougher time in the middle of writing the middle book in a series).

So, to sum up, my first NaNoWriMo experience in 2018 was a failure.

But I found myself wanting to try it again this year. For those unaware of NaNoWriMo (short for National Novel Writing Month), the goal is to write about 1700 words every day for the month of November, so by the end you have a completed, 50k word novel.

If anyone else out there hates following guidelines to the letter like me, you will understand when I say when I decided to try it again this year, I also said, “But not to start and finish a 50k word novel! Oh no.”

Instead, I decided to finish my WIP (book 4 in the Phantasmic Wars series, which was over halfway completed when I began NaNoWriMo on Nov 1) and plow ahead into the next (and final) book in my series.

I didn’t write the full amount every day. In fact, I found the tracking part of the site interesting. As a teacher and a mom, the days with my highest word counts tended to be on the weekend, and the days with my lowest word counts were usually weekdays (with the exception of the Sunday after my birthday haha).


That exceptionally high word count day? That was when the end was in sight for book 4 in my series, and I was at my father-in-law’s, so my kiddos were distracted by all his fun toys. I finished book 4 that day, which I thought was more exciting than all the hunting going on.

Since Nov 9, I have been working on book 5 in the series. I’ve known how the series will end since I started writing, and so one of the first things I wrote was the first draft of the last chapter before getting started on the rest of the book. It has been so fun writing this last book, as everything is starting to come together!

While the snow fell outside today, I reached the 50k word goal for NaNoWriMo, which means I can officially claim this status: #NaNoWinner2019


And from here? Well, my editor has been busy leaving comments for me on book 4, and I still have about half of book 5 to finish.

Will I do NaNoWriMo in 2020? Most likely! I enjoyed the challenge, and have a few ideas for new projects to tackle.

For now, I need to rest, perhaps get in a workout (aka, go shovel…thank you, MN weather), and work on finishing book 5!


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