NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month) participants, I salute you, today, November 30th, the last day of this year's challenge.
Nobody ever said writing a novel was easy. But you, you slogged through the process in 30 days (or are still slogging for the next 15 hours) to write 50,000 words in the month of November.
Yes, November is known for Thanksgiving, for Black Friday and now cyber-Monday. But National Novel Writing Month cannot go overlooked.
For 30 days you toiled. You wrote with no thought to how good the story might be. If you had no plot, it was not a problem as the Nano founder said in his book, "No Plot, No Problem." (For a look at one NaNo-er's experience, check here.) According to the NaNo site, collectively you have written more than 650 million words to date.
You. You Wrote. You wrote a novel.
I did not. Last year, I wrote for one day of NaNoWriMo, not even making the needed 1,667 words for that day. This year, I shirked the challenge altogether. I say this with some amount of shame.
I am a writer. I should do this to stretch myself, to be able to say at the end of a month, "I have written a 50,000-word novel." Nevermind that during November I made significant revisions to The Work in Progress. Nevermind that during November I cranked out 18 new pages (roughly 4,500 words) to better link parts of the WIP together. I wasn't NaNoWriMo-ing this year.
Next year, I tell myself. November 2006 will be the year. (Of course, I told myself that about November 2005 after NaNo was done for 2004). I have 11 months to come up with an idea, 11 months to write an outline even to keep myself on track. Eleven months to get psyched, to get ready for this writing marathon.
Eleven more months to heartily congratulate those of you that did it this year.