Sunday, November 29, 2009

Day 29: Letting Go

Okay, well, I didn't write my 50,000 word novel this month. Not by a long shot.

But I did write 17,000 words, which is nothing to sneeze at.

Actually, a lot of those words I had already written before NaNoWriMo, so maybe it was actually something to sneeze at.


Lessons learned:

1) They tell you to start with a fresh, new novel for a reason. Writers have way too much invested in a project they keep making attempts at for years and years to write with the total crazy literary abandon necessary for NaNoWriMo. This is the second (and last) time for this particular mistake.

2) The Internal Editor needs to be locked up - and stay locked up - for the whole month. Every time I let her out, even just for a few minutes, it set me back - sometimes significantly.

3) Reading, especially good stuff, has to be off limits for the month. I read The Hunger Games in 3 days so I could get it in before November, because I knew it would mess me up if I tried to read it while writing my own YA novel. So what did I go and do? I read its sequel, Catching Fire, in the middle of November. When I finished it, my I.E. convinced me that I would never write anything even in the neighborhood - make that on the same planet - of how good it was. Final nail in the coffin of my YA novel. Oh well...

I'm not going to beat myself up over it. For now, I'll file it away with all the other cool things I almost did.

Like almost finishing my PhD.

(What would my beloved, deceased therapist have to say about that statement, I wonder? Somewhere, she's chuckling right now...)

And there's always next year. Maybe a novel for grown-ups for a change, as I mentioned before. If I have the guts (or a pseudonym!) to do it.

On the other hand, if there's still nothing but Vampire books on the YA shelf a year from now, I just may have to try this genre again.

For the kids.

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