[NB: I forgot to post this back on Monday. Then the week got away from me.]
Well, I am past 50,000 words. So the NaNoWriMo web page declares me a winner. Does that mean I don’t have to go on, even though the novel doesn’t really come to a satisfying end? Even though it’s just a blob of 50,000 words, a patchwork quilt of writing that may or may not be something you can call a novel? What to say about this past 26 days, this exercise in focus and sustaining interest? Truth to tell, I don’t think I did all that well.
The daily word count requirement is definitely a motivator to get one seated in the chair and cranking out the words. But, for me, I also need the drive and desire to work on the story. After about ten days or so, I think I lost that. I don’t think it’s that I’m lazy. I simply don’t think my brain works in these novelistic ways. I don’t think I’m fascinated enough by the machinations of made-up characters, the intricacies of a twisted, turning plot. It’s always been about the words for me, which is why people have always said I’m a lyrical or literary writer, a superb stylist. I don’t have the interest in all the other crap you need to care about to write a truly successful novel, at least one I’d be willing to put out there with my name on it.
So I guess, even with technically five more writing days left during which I could plug holes, fill in gaps, flesh out missing detail and action and information, I can quit. Does that mean I’m a quitter? J. thought I should stop weeks ago when I first realized I didn’t like it and didn’t have the interest. But, instead, I slogged along accumulating more words. I have to say: I am amazed at how much I’ve written, how much I’d previously written, how easy it was to write more especially if the inner editor stayed away. So a lesson in that, the “just do it” and what? the words will at the very least come? Maybe that, but nothing much else.
Also, the whole process didn’t ever get “fun” enough for me. It was too much like work, drudgery really, the same old, same old. I originally signed on to do this to find the fun, which I never did. Maybe it would have gotten fun if I went out and did the social NaNo things with people in the Portland group of if you had a wider circle of buddies who interacted and inspired one another day in and out. So it's the end of the November and now it's on to whatever is next...