Every November, I sit down every day for thirty days and pound out words. If I’m able to participate in the challenge next month, it will be my seventh year doing so. I can still remember the first time I did it after my friend told me about it, signing up with the YWP version so I could shrink the word goal from 50K to 10K. I made my goal, and it gave me the biggest writing boost anything had up until that point.
In 2015, I went into the challenge with no plan besides the concept of a novel. It wasn’t enough to carry me through, unfortunately, and between that and the fact that I had some technological difficulties, I didn’t make it past 10K again. It was still a worthy accomplishment, but I knew I could do better.
So, in 2016, I started some planning in October. I had decided to write the concluding book to my fantasy trilogy, and I was beyond excited to do so. That November, I wrote every night from roughly eleven at night to one in the morning. I made chamomile tea and lit a vanilla lavender candle, and those tastes and smells still take me back to that year. The excitement I had for the story as well as the beforehand prep was enough to propel me through the month, and on the 21st, I had 50,123 words.
2017 was a harder year. I had the confidence of the year before, but I was sick that month. It was hard to find motivation to write. My peppermint tea and a pine-scented candle weren’t enough to keep my spirits up, and I fell short of my goal, writing only 30K words. I was still proud of myself, but a little disappointed that the month was so rough after the previous year’s thundering success.
In 2018, I repeated the process, planning the story as far back as September and growing continually more excited for it. With Pirates of the Caribbean soundtrack in my headphones and a saltwater scented candle, I was off. Another 50K words down, and another novel under my belt.
2019, last year, with my bergamot tea and cedar and thyme candle, the result was the same: 50,000 words in 30 days.
NaNoWriMo sure is something, huh? I wonder how it’s going to go next month!