An Overview of Madness – My Nanowrimo Experience

For those of you who are regular readers, yesterday was probably a bit of a disappointment. But fear not; I didn’t forget you. In fact, this was perfectly planned out. As you may or may not know, I participated in Nanowrimo this year. (For those of you totally out of the writing world loop, Nanowrimo stands for National Novel Writing Month.) Yesterday was the last day, which is why I’m posting this on Sunday instead of Saturday.

My goal this year was to complete the second draft of Alliance of Wolves. I put a lot more effort into Nano this year; I scheduled my school around it, I planned sprints, I even signed up for a class at the community college to help keep myself on track. I’ve done Nanowrimo twice, only getting around 25,000 words both times, and I’ve done Camp Nanowrimo four times. This year, I wrote 50,2331 words.

WOOOHOOOOOO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! (I’m completely stoked, can you tell?) I’m even more excited because I didn’t think I would be able to finish. I wrote every day this month, and even though there was a day when I only wrote 15 words, I stayed pretty close to my goal. Friday 29th was supposed to be my day where I finished, or almost finished, because we had company coming for most of Saturday. And the on Friday morning I got up…. and almost fell over. I was too dizzy to stand, I threw up for hours on end, and I had blinding pain in my neck. Which turned out to be a migraine. yay. I wrote 2 words, and only because I could bear to lose my streak on day 29.

Saturday morning dawns, I can stand (for moderate periods of time) and I have 3,718 words to write. So I wrote first thing in the morning, I wrote in between cleaning various parts of the house, I wrote when I had to go lay down because I was so dizzy, I wrote during a lull in the party, and then I drank a cup of really strong tea at 10:00 pm and wrote some more.

I finished at 10:56. And could not go to sleep for a long while after that because it was really strong tea.

What really made a difference this year was being part of the Novel Challenge Class. It was a six week course at my local community college, taught by Kathy Dunnehoff, author of several National Bestseller romantic comedies. Most of the people there were retired or close to it, leaving me as the youngest person in the class. I loved it. No one had filter, most of them knew each other, they were friendly, interesting, and I have every intention on seeing them again. If you have any chance of joining a class or a group or getting some really devoted friends to do Nanowrimo with you next year, I highly recommend it. Over the next few months or so, I’ll be sharing what I learned in class, but that really is another topic for another time.

Nanowrimo Highs (or lows). Really, it’s just whatever I can remember from the insanity.

Saturday 11/2/19

Wrote 5,290 words today. And it took all day, instead of five hours or so like it should have. Talk about excruciating.

Tuesday 11/19/19

One of my characters had an unplanned psychotic breakdown during my morning writing session. I proceeded to be upset all day.

Wednesday 11/20/19

Graphically described decomposing bodies. Blurgh.

Thursday 11/21/19

Let the shipping officially commence!

Friday 11/22/19

Slept through my alarm and didn’t wake up till ten. Already a bad start. I proceeded to have a ridiculously busy day with school and other commitments. I kept telling myself, After this task, you can write. After this task. After this task. Then, at 11:54 pm, I sat up in bed going, OH NO. I wrote a whopping total of 15 words.

Saturday 11/23/19

Made myself physically ill from my own writing. (No, I didn’t throw up, but I certainly felt like I needed to.) Aren’t torture sequences fun?

Tuesday 11/26/19


Friday 11/29/19

Migraine. 2 words.

Saturday 11/30/19


I didn’t actually finish writing Alliance of Wolves. I started the month with about 20k words and like four chapters. Now, the manuscript is 78,051 words long and I’ve written chapters 1-24. There’s five chapters and about 20k words left, so I’ll be finishing that up in the next week or so. If you haven’t looked already, you can read Alliance of Wolves for free on Wattpad. I update every Friday unless some disaster strikes (like sickness or temporary memory loss).

After that, it’s time to say bye-bye to Drew and Blaze and everyone else for a bit while I shift gears into editing mode for the world of The Wolves of Wullferg Keep.

(Speaking of worlds, you should be seeing some posts on them in about a month. Shh! It’ll be a total surprise for new readers.)

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