Yet one more NanoWriMo Post…

nanowrimoLast year I made a post around this time about why I was not doing NaNoWriMo so let me tell you, no one is more surprised than I that I decided to do NaNoWriMo this year. Never say never…

So why the change of heart? Well sometimes you just need a giant kick in the ass to get you moving…

EditingObsession_005-500wI’ve been working on my YA novel Axiom for about three years now (OK – maybe closer to four…) and still don’t have a completed draft. Why you ask? Because I’m an obsessive compulsive perfectionist, which basically means I can’t quite get the “shitty first draft” thing down. NaNoWriMo is all about the shitty first draft, something I need to embrace in a major crushing hug.

I’ve decided to do a modified version of NaNoWriMo; I’m not starting a new work, choosing instead to get that shitty first draft done on Axiom. I already have about 20K words that are usable (I have another 20 that might be useable but may end up on the notused.doc) and a great outline that a very dear friend recently let me hash out with her after running down a dead end road in the middle of the novel (sound familiar to anyone?). I feel really good about where I am right now and where I’m going which I haven’t felt in a while (I really hate the mucky middle…)

Am I cheating at NaNoWriMo? Some would say yes but I say no (though I will not put myself down as officially completing the event) – at the end of the month I’ll have a completed draft. It will be a hot mess and that’s O.K. (breathe Shelley, breathe…) because then I can go in and start giving it the depth it needs and tidy up the loose bits. Isn’t that the point of NaNoWriMo?

So how many of you are with me? How many are doing a modified NaNoWriMo to rekindle a project they’ve been working on? What’s your plan and goal? Where do you get hung up on your novel and how do you push through it?

Critique group image by Debbie Ridpath Ohi.  Check her amazing work out at

About Shelley Koon

Artist and author - visit me at my site listed below.
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5 Responses to Yet one more NanoWriMo Post…

  1. cbrodtrick says:

    Omigosh Shelley, you echo every single reason why I’m doing Nano too. Have been in limbo with a middle grade novel for the same reasons and decided to get the show on the road no matter how bad it gets –and let me tell you, it’s pretty darn bad. But know what? I’ll have a FINISHED first draft come Nano’ s end. Hurray for us!

  2. I’m right there with you. There’s no way I could handle the pressure of NaNoWriMo but as I was starting a new draft at the beginning of October, I decided to try to do 50,000 words in 2 months. And I was doing great until November came and I hit a wall. But participating in NaNoWriMo and not completing your personal goals doesn’t make sense to me. The whole point is to get something written. It’s the spirit of the thing!

  3. Stacy Couch says:

    Shelley. I’m so glad you’ll be in your PJ’s and slippers, doing NaNo. Neil G. and I are SO PROUD. Let us know when Axiom’s done!

  4. mikecrowl says:

    Shelley, this is exactly what I needed to hear. Several members of our local critique group are doing Nano, and I chose to participate, although not officially. I can still commit to the goal, and I will make the numbers. I’m at 15,000 words as of 6 November. I have heavily outlined a YA novel, and that is REALLY helping me stay on track. I can’t wait to get home from work to write. It is exhilarating! I didn’t want to submit my work to the web site, and although I like getting writing tips, I don’t think I want them streamed at me in November while I’m trying to write! Here’s to all of us completing a shitty draft come 30 November!

  5. Shelley Koon says:

    Yay! We’re all in this together 😉 It’s comforting to know I’m not the only one who has the struggle of getting that first draft done. Than you all for chiming in. Please keep me posted on how it;s going for you wither here or drop me an email.

    Much ❤ and success to all of you!

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