So, as some of you may know or remember, going into this whole experiment of doing NaNo for the first time, I was fairly sure I could do the goal of 50k in a month, though by no means was I certain. I was sure that the book would take more than that to write. Going into this last weekend of the month, I now know that I can write 50k in far less than 30 days, and I have proof the story I thought of takes more than 50k to tell, since I’m still writing it at this point and have long since passed 50k, back on November 18th.
It’s a nice feeling to get this far and not hate the work I’ve done. I can’t say how I feel about what I’ve written so far beyond that as I’ve only reread a few very small parts that I seem to be addicted to (2 parts really). The rest of it, well, I’m trying to do what you’re supposed to do in NaNo, which is keep faced forward, writing the story, until either it’s done or the end of the month comes. I will be writing until it’s done, because I’m happy enough with it and damn it, I want for once to write The End. I have such an immense hunger building in me with each word I write for that. It’s driving me when my brain has turned to mush, and the part I’m writing is fighting me, pushing me to keep going, write one more word, then another. And wouldn’t you know it, it’s working out.
The story is coming along well, building toward that climax that has to happen. There’s a major, but not THE major, conflict coming up, and I’m starting to find Tavis and Fay groping their way toward the realizations they need to have before the story can resolve itself. It’s an amazing feeling, partly because it’s a first for me and partly because it gives me hope. I suspect I’ll end up wrestling with the ending itself when I get there, because I have very little experience with them, but I’ve still got time for that to resolve itself in my head, and with the way things are going, I think it will. I have this feeling that, as long as I keep my eye on the prize, the ending will be there when I’m ready for it.
I feel like I’ve already learned so much about myself as a writer from this experience, and there’s still five days to go. This has been an incredible journey already though, a maturing process for me as a writer. I also think that one day, I’ll look back on this and see it as a pivotal moment in both my writing and my personal life. I know it sounds kind of grandiose to say that, but it’s how I’m feeling, and I don’t think it’s just the fried brain talking there. I actually feel different right now, changed from the writer who started this wild ride on November 1st.
For the number-lovers out there, here’s how the last few days stand for actual word count:
Nov 23: 2,610
Nov 24: 3,075
Nov 25: 3,429
As you can see, the last few days have been going increasingly well, partly because I managed to battle most of the way through a difficult part on the 23rd, and things are flowing well again. One note, the total for today may or may not change, as I’m not 100% sure I’m done. I feel done, my brain feels done (stick a fork in it, please), but you never know. Sometimes I find that ten or twenty minutes away from writing and I’m raring to go again. I think this makes me an official glutton for punishment, but there are worse things to be when it comes to your own writing.
I’m still estimating I’ll come in somewhere in the 90-100k mark (maybe a bit higher, we’ll see how the writing this weekend goes, how many words it takes me to write out certain parts I know are coming up), but I am continually having to revise upward how far I think I’ll be on November 30th. When I started this, I thought I’d be lucky to be much over about 55k, which would have meant all of December at whatever pace I managed in November. Because I’ve managed such a fantastic pace in November, though, I’m much much further than I expected to be at this point. My current total is, as of tonight, 70,120 words (according to my word count feature on Open Office). Wow. Them’s a lotta words! (had to, same goes for the title of this post, I know some of you are still chuckling about that one, admit it) Given that I am now off work for the next four days to write all day as much as my heart and by now much abused brain desire, I think I can get even further, depending on how that battle goes. I think the heart’s going to win, as it has done all month and the brain will just look longingly toward later in December when it *might* get a short reprieve. Key word there, might. I’m looking at 80k and thinking, “Yeah, I can do that. 5 days left to write in, 4 of them not working, maybe even 85k, that’s not totally out of the question!” Dear gods, I really am a glutton for punishment. My poor poor brain.
And so I continue this journey, with hope and Ibuprofen in hand. I think I’m going to need both, perhaps in equal quantities, to sustain me this weekend.