So, yes. I did not “win” NANOWRIMO. Not even close. After the midway point, our family had a string of minor illnesses that left me with little sleep and much laundry. I had a hard time keeping up with my standard responsibilities, so writing for fun got squeezed off the to-do list most days. I learned a lot though, and I will use those lessons for Camp NANOWRIMO in July. Here is what I learned:
1. I don’t write well at night. I already knew this, but for some reason, I imagined that I would work on my novel after the kids went to bed. Nope. Cory simply couldn’t drag me out of bed after I snuggled in to read bedtime stories. Sleep trumps all. At least for now.
2. I missed fiction. I have been reading nonfiction almost exclusively. I would say in 2014 I’ve read about 4 or 5 novels and zero in the last three months. I felt a little out of my element as I dipped into novel-writing. Before I try again in July, I will need to study up with some good fiction.
3. Dialogue is hard. Really hard. I need practice and great models. See #2.
4. I must plan ahead. And I don’t mean story notes! I mean meals and chores and errands and activities. Writing a novel is a bit like birthing a baby. Although babies are more cuddly! You really need to figure out how to cover the regular LIFE stuff when the baby (novel!) is being born. Honestly, generating ideas for my novel was the easy part. Figuring out how to write those ideas while still keeping my children fed, clothed, and educated was a much bigger challenge.
Those are the main lessons learned. Thanks for all the supportive messages here and on Facebook! I hated letting you down!