Friday, December 27, 2013

How NaNoWriMo Forever Changed My Writing Life

So when I decided to attempt NaNoWriMo at the beginning of November, I didn't expect to finish. No, that would be far too ambitious of me. You see, I've been attempting to write my novel since ninth grade, to no avail. I've gone through nearly seven drafts, and usually never get farther than 150 pages. One solid draft had almost 240 pages, but I just stopped writing and eventually hated where the novel was going.

So imagine my surprise when NaNoWriMo actually inspired me to start writing again. And writing consistently.

It's now December 27th, and I'm still writing. I didn't win NaNoWriMo; on the contrary, my story still has only 45,782 words written. But it's encouraging to know that the challenge has helped me keep up consistent writing habits, which include sitting at my desk [usually at 1 a.m.] with a good smellin' candle (today, it's Vanilla Bean Noel), a radical record spinning (Fossil Collective's Tell Where I Lie), and sheets of photo inspiration all around me.

I'm a really visual person, so it helps to have pictures that I deem inspiration-worthy on hand when I'm writing. Often these pictures will inspire a scene, and help me visualize the location that I'm writing about; a small town in Georgia. And it helps that even though I'm sitting in the suburbs, I can at least mentally transport myself to the country, the wilderness.

What helps you to write? Did you attempt NaNoWriMo? I'm thinking next year I will give it a go again, and actually try to write 50,000 words in a month. I love a challenge!

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Go with grace.