Last 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…
I’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 inkygirl.com