It didn’t work out between NaNoWriMo and me. We just weren’t right for each other. I don’t think either of us was completely to blame, though one of us was kind of demanding of the other one (coughNaNoWriMocough).
We both just went into this thing with unrealistic expectations. It all felt too rushed. We were doing things I wasn’t ready for, and NaNoWriMo wasn’t very understanding about my hesitations. He was all, “Just shut off your inner editor! Just write 1,667 words per day!” and I was getting a little irked.
It all started out pretty well. I was writing more than the requisite 1,667 words and was feeling pretty proud of myself. My mind was focused on the end of the month, when I would have a completed or nearly completed novel. How tempting.
Then it all went to hell. One day, just one, I tried to have a life outside of NaNoWriMo. Well, he wasn’t very fond of that and made me feel super guilty the next day. And there’s nothing like guilt to make me shut down and not write.
At least now I know: NaNoWriMo and I aren’t meant to be. It seems to work for some writers, but I don’t know that I’ll ever be one of them. It was too much pressure, and I was so singularly focused on writing that I didn’t get to do anything else I enjoyed for the first eight days (he even made me miss Homeland! What nonsense is that?).
I won’t say it was all bad, though. The positive thing about this experience was that it pushed me out of my comfort zone and made me realize that I can top 2,000 words in one day. I just can’t do that EVERY day. So now, only ten days into the month, I’ve already written almost 12,000 words when my monthly average before was only 10,000 words. And I’ve still got twenty days left of this month to write more. In my book (pun intended), that’s not too shabby.