I am almost positive that I’ve written about this in the past, probably back in April about Camp NaNoWriMo. It’s alright. I need to give myself a pep talk (though we get enough of those sent to our NaNo accounts as it is).
Since 2012, I have attempted to complete NaNoWriMo every year. I’ve never finished; I usually get to the 42k mark and realize I didn’t know what I was doing besides just writing whatever came out. That might be part of the point, if we’re being fair. As a participant, your goal is quantity, not necessarily quality (though we can always go back and edit later). You want to get the story, one of those shitty first drafts, out by the end of the month. It’s a challenge meant, I think, to encourage folks not to get caught up in the often time consuming process of editing while writing (though that did work for Vonnegut, so who knows).
Prior to this year, I haven’t planned out a course of action, and I have boxed myself into that strict novel category despite knowing that I work better with short stories. I lose steam despite promising starts, and then I let the project die. Sometimes the characters come back in other pieces, segments, et cetera, but when I do return to these lengthy attempts, I find myself shrugging and deciding to cut most of my losses.
That said, I am on a self-imposed deadline this year, and its purpose is to get at least one new collection of short stories out by December 3rd. I need the supplemental income that it could provide. Plus, I have a list of stories that have been kicking around, and I think I know how to make them new and better and worth my time. So, for another year in a row, I’m going to sacrifice my limited free time in order to meet my word count goals and get those stories written.
This was going to be a post about my conflicted feelings regarding NaNoWriMo, but it isn’t for two reasons: updating from my phone is difficult, and I’m not sure I need to talk about it more right now. I’ll get there. I’ll hit 50k words. I’ll update as it goes along.