A. Benedetti

My First NaNoWriMo

Talk about writing craziness! I have to say, this past month has been one of the best in my writing career thus far. Until now, the writing process has been such a solitary pursuit, I felt I must isolate myself in order to accomplish anything. This time, not only did I challenge myself to complete 50,000 words in one month, but I met so many encouraging, wonderful writers in the process.

Wow, am I competitive! Give me a challenge and I will accomplish it. There was no way I was going to let myself fail. The idea was there for the plucking and all I needed was the motivation to get it down on paper. Lucky for me, the FaceBook writer’s groups focusing on NaNo I joined were exactly the fuel I needed. When my fellow writers surpassed my word count, it put me in overdrive. So much so, I finished a week early.

The one thing NaNoWriMo forced me to do was think about my writing every single day. When I finished a scene, it wasn’t time to relax. It was time to think through the next scene; to put words on paper every single day. Normally, I only write on my days off. Don’t get me wrong, I’m thinking about my writing all the time. I’m sure many of you have seen the spaced out look on my face. That’s creativity at its highest people!

I’d plotted and researched my novel before November and am so thankful. I have no idea how some writers come up with an idea the day before NaNo starts and plow through to a completed first draft by the end of the month. I needed every bit of preparation to finish and at times wished I’d done even more.

My novel, SECRETS BELOW, is going to sit and simmer for awhile. January 1, 2016, is the date slated to pull it out and begin tearing it apart. Nobody reads it at this point except me. My first draft is the keeper of ideas and the place I will go to see what works, what doesn’t, where I need to expand the ideas and which to jettison. It’s still a long way from a completed novel, but it is an excellent start.

With the challenge completed, I was asked if I will do it again and gave a resounding YES (much to the chagrin of my boyfriend). The community,  challenge, and experience were too amazing to miss the opportunity to be a part of next time. Now, I’m going to take a little break and do what? READ!


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