Wednesday, November 14, 2012

NaNoWriMo Declaration: Take Two

I know last month I was all gung-ho about NaNo and once again, I failed before I even started. The past few days I've been seriously thinking about why I never make much progress and why it seems like this daunting task instead of being fun.

Here's what I've come up with:

NaNo is just not for me.

Yep, that's right. To successfully NaNo is just not in the cards for me. I cannot write without abandon and ignore the little things that I shouldn't in order to reach that lofty goal of 50k in 30 days. Some people are able to write through it but I am pretty much physically incapable of doing so. If there's something I'm not sure about I would much rather sit there and ruminate on it before moving on. If I don't, I can't stop thinking about it and it really bothers me. I wish I weren't that way, but I am. I guess the first step is admitting you have a problem so there you go.

As I sat at my kitchen table last week I found myself completely tree-d (stumped for you normal people), and realized that while I have some sort of outline going on in my head, I don't have all the details I need to just sit and bang out all the words. I like to discover the world and the little parts of it while I write and that takes time that I don't necessarily have while doing NaNo.

While I was teetering on the edge of "should I or shouldn't I?" I saw that my friend, Jessica Love, blogged about her NaNo experience and I can't tell you guys how creepy it is that she's always able to say what I'm thinking but just haven't vocalized it yet.

Much like Jess, I have this incredible need to be included in what everyone else is doing and that's why I've attempted NaNo since 2009 but also, I too, am a slow writer. I would much rather take my time and produce something not completely craptastic and that's not going to be painful to edit versus meeting a word goal that may have things I can't use and that's going to cause me a major headache later on.

So thanks Jess. You helped me realize that I'm not alone and that there is absolutely nothing wrong with being a slower writer when it seems like everyone around me seems to be producing quality work at a much faster pace. It may not be easy at times, but I'll take it and like it.

I may have quit NaNo but that doesn't mean I'm not writing. I'm (slowly) working on two different manuscripts and so far I'm happy with what I've got.

To those of you who are still working on your NaNo projects, how are you doing? Are you meeting your goals? Are you finding that NaNo may not be right for you?


  1. I think figuring out what works for you is the key so I'm glad you've come to this conclusion Crystal!

    I'm still working out what works for me. NaNo doesn't fully work - I mean it gets the job done mostly, but it's still not perfect for me I guess.

    Anywho - just keep writing - that's the important part right? Get those details figured out and GO! :)

    1. I am too! Trial and error is the only way you're going to figure out what's best for you and I know you'll get there!

      As long as we're writing, that's all that matters.

  2. I hear ya, sister. I have never done NaNo for this very reason. My first drafts, while far from perfect, are also far from being crappy, and I like it this way. I usually write about ten chapters, then re-evaluate and revise and get them where I want them to be before I move on. It works for me, so that's how I roll. No shame!

    1. I think that's smart. If something isn't working the way you want it to, it seems easier to revise a small portion than the whole thing.