At last, I’ve done it; I’ve won NaNoWriMo 2006! I’m pretty damn proud of myself for reaching 50k this year. I’ve only finished a novel one other time, back in 2003. I got up to about 37k in 2004 before deciding I hated my novel, and last year, I wrote maybe 1000 words before I threw down my (virtual) pen in disgust and gave up ever trying to write a novel in a month again.
Why did I change my mind this year? Well, I discovered upon surfing the NaNoWriMo boards that a regional group for my area of the country existed; I don’t know how I missed it last year, but this year, I knew getting together with a group of people also writing novels would help me finish. I’m very glad I found an inspiring group of people to meet with once a week; I left the meetings I attended motivated and ready to tackle the challenge ahead of me, and if it weren’t for all the moral support I received, I may not have finished. So, if any of you read this, thank you.
How did my novel turn out? In all honesty, not very good. In hindsight, I wish I had done a bit more development on my characters before starting, jotting down notes about their friends, family, and their sordid pasts, but I went into it blindly. Also, I wish I had started my novel in the third person instead of trying to attempt the entire thing in first; I ended up switching from first to third halfway into the novel because of my struggles writing from the head of my main character. (Aside: my main characted did end up getting a name, about 48,000 words into the novel. I wish I had thought of her name earlier, as writing a main character without a name is hard.)
Still, I don’t mind. I’ve finished, and now I’m inspired to write more. I’m happy to have gotten back into the swing of things, NaNoWriMo-wise, and I look forward to participating in future years.