So I've been doing NaNoWriMo for the past few years (four, to be exact). And today, FINALLY, I finished. I won! Final word count:
Started out really slow. It didn't help that Fun Fun Fun Fest and Thanksgiving all fell in November. I tried to hold myself accountable for 2000 words a day, splitting that up by 500-word increments just to make it less daunting. Purely psychological, but that technique seemed to make it easier.
The thing I learned about NaNo is that it is intended to get you to write. Not labor over a sentence or a word for ten minutes--that's what stops so many people and makes you not even want to come back to it the next day. (That was certainly true for me in past years.) The more I write, the more I realize it doesn't have to be perfect the first time. So I basically took this as a massive free write. What was important was getting the story, ideas, characters, plot down. I told myself, "it's okay to write poorly, if you think you're writing poorly. It's okay to be erratic and not make any sense. It's okay to have run-on sentences. Just write."
Then, there came a sort of freedom.
How do I feel now? Accomplished, but unfinished. Because it's not--there's so much left to flesh out and develop, so many sentences that need to be rewritten, so many often-occurring words that need the axe. But that's what revision is for.
Most of all, though, I feel proud. Not because I wrote 50,000+ words or basically a novel, but because I finished what I said I'd start. I think it's maybe one of the most noble things one can do: Finish what one starts.
What's next for December? I'll be focusing on Intersect Projects and writing a screenplay. Listen, life is short, and I want to try my hand at everything. That's all.