Monday, December 3, 2012

NaNo 2012: A.K.A. a lesson in masochism

Phew! NaNo is finally over! Huzzah!

My word count for the final week was 1400 on the novel and 1600 on the novelette. That's kind of lackluster for a final push but there were a couple days where I wasn't able to get much if anything written. Tuesday I went to Seattle for the launch of Jim Butcher's new book, Cold Days. The drive time meant that I didn't get much done on Tuesday and the subsequent road trip hangover made it near impossible to get anything done Wednesday.

Now, I know some of you are wondering if I reached my goal?

No. I didn't. But I got pretty darn close. Out of the 13 K I wanted to do on the novelette I wrote 8513. On the Novel I did 8281 of the 10K I set for myself. So out of the combined 23K I managed 16,794 words. I think that being a little over 6K from the finish line was respectable. Especially since my calendar looked like this:

                                          (Why yes, that is a Schlock Mercenary calendar.)

Add a 40 hour work week on top of that and yeah, that's a lot of commitments for any given month. But for NaNo it borders on the insane since, as I mentioned before, a few of those commitments took me as far as Seattle.

So what did I learn this year?

Two NaNo projects is CRAZY!!! Yeah, I am not doing that again. I'm not going to stop bopping between projects the rest of the year -- it helps me clear my brain -- I'm just not going to do it during NaNo. I do have to admit that there was one good thing about doing two projects. Normally I get burned out on the book about halfway through the month. Last year I actually resented the fact that I couldn't take a break from the novel without losing precious time. That was one of the reasons I did two  projects this year and while I didn't feel any of that resentment this year, I did have to continually readjust my brain for the different styles of the two stories. The protagonist's voices in each story are very different so I had to give myself time to push one out of my mind and pull up the other. If I spaced it out (worked on one in the morning and the other in the evening) it wasn't so bad but it still took a toll. I think it wore me out faster.

The other lesson I learned from this year's NaNo was that if I know my schedule is going to be that busy (like I did this year) than I'm going to postpone NaNo until December or January so I can focus on it more. I'm determined to make goal one of these years. As Hero Boy would say, "I will succeed!" And one day I will.

Oh yes, I will.

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