See that over there, on the right-hand side? That would be confirmation, glorious, wondrous proof, that I can set a goal for myself and meet it.
Today at a little after 2:00 pm, I finally met the word count goal for NaNoWriMo — 50,000 words written during the month of November. Added to what I had before November and my current work in progress has topped 91,000 words.
Am I done yet? No, not quite. I have about another 2,000-5,000 words to go before the story is finished. I can’t be more precise than this. I am at the precipice of the climax. The Main Character is about to lose someone dear to hear, and all seems lost. They have one more big confrontation before the denouement.
When Julia, one of the co-MLs for our region this year in NaNoWriMo asked me how much I had left, and I told her, she said, “Be careful you don’t do what happened during Script Frenzy. You thought you only had a week’s worth of writing and then you took another month and a half!”
Too true. But I don’t think that will happen this time. I’m strongly motivated to finish. I feel like this book might be THE book, the book I first finish, then edit, and then shop around. I really like it. No, I love it. These characters are so vivid, the imagery so deep, so bright in my head. I’m actually looking forward to the editing process, pen eager, whiskers twitching.
I will, however, be taking it slightly easy this month. Going to finish the draft in the next week, counting on about 1,000 words a day. That’s about 2/3 rds of the NaNoWriMo pace, and so very doable, even on slack-days. That should finish the novel by the end of the week. For the rest of the month, I am going to write, but not on any particular project. I want to pick where I left off in Burroway’s Writing Fiction: A Guide to Narrative Craft and continue working on the exercises in the book. And more free-writing, to keep me limber and fluid. I’ve been thinking a lot about my writing — how I do it, how it feels, how the words come out — that I will ponder and pontificate on later.
In the meantime, go and read the true and weird and heartbreaking and absolutely perfect Ponies by Kij Johnson over at Tor.com. Do it. Now.
Meanwhile, I’m putting up my figurative feet. NaNoWriMo 2010 did not best me, I bested it. And I’m feeling pretty damn good about it.