A wordy November

December and the season of Advent is upon us. Soon, 2017 is behind, us and I realize that yet again I failed to keep this blog alive.
With a scrutinizing glare I realize that the last entry I made was back in February. Sigh.

However, just because I haven’t been writing anything here, it doesn’t mean I haven’t been writing.
Or. That was actually the case up until November 1st. After a two year absence due to exam stress and a deep depression, I was back where I belong; at my computer with a cupboard laden with energy drinks and pringles to get me through the fray.

When I last did NaNoWriMo, back in 2014, I “finished” on Day 6. What I mean by that is that I hit the required 50 000 words, and then went into my usual habit of stringing out a couple of words more, and then abandoning my script.

Nano stats PRE reord Screenshot-2017-11-11 National Novel Writing Month

Until this year, the longest I’d kept up with a NaNo-script was Love Addict in 2012, which somehow turned into a proper novel two years later.

This year, I decided to try something new: If you have ever seen me play Diablo III, you will know that I am an achievement whore, I NEED those achievements.
This year, I found that while I had been away the NaNo site had implemented a badge system, and I was dead set on catching ’em all. Which meant I had to update my word count daily for 30 days.
Considering my plot this year is fairly simple, I decided that I’d either get the 30 day badge OR I’d finish the script. Preferably both, but considering how simple my plot is compared to earlier novel drafts, I figured there was a chance I’d be done before the 30 day mark (As it turns out, I still write in an extremely roundabout way, so that didn’t happen).

This year’s novel is about a young man named Miyuki. At 29, he feels like he has achieved nothing; he has no education, no steady income and he is deeply depressed. On top of everything, he is trying to nurse himself back from heartbreak, and this leads him on a train journey through Europe. His goal is to pick up the pieces of his life and come to terms with a painful memory.

As it turns out, my journey with Miyuki took a lot longer and was alot wordier than I had expected. I’m used to a dialogue-based form of writing, so having a character who is by himself 90% of the time was a challenge. There is a lot of filler material that I’ll have to edit out at some point.

Anyway. The story about Miyuki came to me about a year or so ago, and I had written down some notes for it (very few as it turned out). I had very little to run on, but with no other pressing ideas, I decided to make it my project for this year’s NaNo.
I was nervous at first, uncertain of how to go about tackling this script. I hadn’t written anything in the form of fiction in two years, and I felt like I’d lost my way with words.

But then, on November 1st, I sat down and started typing.
It was an amazing feeling. I felt like I was home where I belonged. The words were flowing out, as if I had never been away from my writing at all.

As usual, I sort of lost my drive once I hit the 50k on day 5 (which had been my goal. I’m always striving to beat my own record). I went from writing 10k-ish words a day, to writing the bare minimum for a couple of weeks. Then yesterday, for the final push I suddenly got the wild idea that I wanted to finish the script.
I nearly made it. Miyuki still has one more train journey to make, and the hardest leg on teh whole of his trip. I have about two chapters and an epilogue to go.

The script currently sits at a total of 138.231 words, and it is going to be a nightmare to edit.
Nevertheless, I smashed all my NaNo records. I wrote for 30 consecutive days.
And. I did it all without my N-key, which abandoned ship about two months ago.

Screenshot-2017-12-1 National Novel Writing Month

Leave it to me to hit this kind of word count and still be dismayed that I slacked off and killed my epic curve.

And though I broke my NaNo-streak, having been absent for two years, it feels good to be back in the saddle. I’m ready to reclaim my throne. But first, I’m gonna celebrate Christmas!

(It needs to be said that the moment I updated my word count for the final time of 2017 – I fled onto the internet and left Miyuki in limbo somewhere in Belgium. I promise I won’t leave him there for good)

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