As we come upon the end of November, some of you are probably thinking about your ending.
If you’re like me, there are probably two endings you’re considering. There’s the “proper” ending, the one you know the books needs, and there’s the ending you want to write. The one you want to write is probably happy and perfect, with everyone living happily ever after and no death or sacrifice anywhere.
My recommendation is to go ahead and write the one you want to write. Sometimes you just have to get it out of your system or it’ll drive you crazy.
However, once it’s physically down on paper, I bet you’ll see how little substance it has. It’s fluffy and cheerful, but it’s not what you really want. What you really want is the true ending, the one you don’t want to write. And when you revise, watch how quickly and without regret you throw out the fairy tale ending for your true ending.
Timewise, as I write this on Sunday, Nov. 16, I’ve just passed the halfway mark for NaNoWriMo. In your real time when you see this on Thursday, Nov.20, we’ll be right at two-thirds of the way to the finish line.
Here’s what I’m proud of: I’ve written something every single day. My goal had been to write 2,000 words per day, which would bring me well past the “winning line” of 50,000 words. I made that word goal for a brave two days, I think. But here’s the thing: I have NEVER written this early in NaNo before in my 11 years or so on their site. I have been declared a “winner,” having reached the magical 50K by the end, but NEVER by writing daily. I may or may not make it this year, but what I WON’T be finding out, AGAIN, this year is that I can put myself through the ordeal of MOST of the 50K in the last 4 to 7 days of the month. I vowed NOT to do that again.
Sure, I’ll have to make more than the 1667 per day, but nothing like 30K in four days.
Here’s what I’m NOT proud of: though I’ve written every day, some of it has NOT been straight “story” – some has been outline-ish. This, from a “pantser.” Some has been research; yes, for THIS specific story (THAT part I AM proud of).
Here’s what else I AM proud of: I am getting farther into the story I intended to write. I have discovered things about some minor characters that lifts them above their original roles – and that doesn’t derail the story. I’ve kept going daily in spite of the inevitable struggles of family, home and friends’ well-intended interruptions. I haven’t given up. I may not make it all the way to 50K. Even if I get the word count up there and “win” it will not yet be a finished story. And I’m OK with that. And I’m enormously proud of ALL of you . . . ALL of US . . . for even trying!
How are YOU feeling about YOUR progress? Tell us what YOU’RE proud of!
Writing like crazy? Sprinting toward the NaNo finish line?
Or are you limping along?
If you’re behind, start anew today. By the end of the month you will have done half of the original goal. But half could be the bones of a terrific YA novel.
That’s what I’ve been doing. Going after my goals even though I am behind! And I’m feeling rather confidant!