Writing to Victory

It’s done. It’s been accomplished! Out of all the years I’ve participated in NaNoWriMo, I have finally won. Finally, I have been able to drink from the golden mug of victory and lap the delicious Hawaiian Fruit Punch of what it means to be a victor. I can sport the budding laurels of glory, tinged with the newness and sparkling dew of a fresh and crisp victory that I have only dreamed of. But, I am more than willing to cast the laurels aside and give my thanks and praise to the One who was more than able to make it all possible. That is the Lord God, and I give Him my thanks and my praise; because without Him, I would not have been able to trudge through the literary trenches and brave the battle against fiery missiles of the inner editor and the backspace button. I am thankful to Him for walking alongside me and encouraging me to get this novel done.

So say it’s done, but it’s really not. I posted it on Facebook, and people asked, “Can I read it?” I really didn’t know how to deal with it. I wrote a novel. Yes. What I had not considered is that people’s definition of “completing a novel” is “a full piece of fiction or non-fiction with chapters, characters, and a plot.” You know…like something you would see at the Barnes and Noble or even better–the library. I had to tell them.

“Ahem…

“Actually, it’s not done.  After chapter one, it loses all coherency. My novel’s a mess.”

And, it is. It really it is. Chapter one is the most beautifully crafted part of my second novel. After chapter one, however, it becomes a mess of tangled bits and pieces that I want to use, but didn’t feel like working to get there during the month of November. It’s also comprised of that one novel that I scrapped earlier on. So my novel is at best a steel skeleton of a building, with a few boards here and there, clinging on for dear life and some bits and pieces that I welded onto the frame. There’s not much going on with it, but there’s a lot that can be pulled out of the plot and its characters. It was not until the last few days of November, when I checked out a critique on my book cover, that I realized where I wanted to go with my novel. My novel, originally about a girl who works as a stand-in for a rich family’s daughter, was originally supposed to focus on that one girl and her life. However, that person’s wonderful critique of my cover got me thinking about two lives. Even though the girls featured on the cover are the same character, I thought perhaps I should write about two lives lived separately. I’m thinking either of focusing on the life of the stand-in and the life of the daughter or the life of the stand-in and the life she would have lived if she hadn’t been a stand-in. Sounds all interesting and psychological, right? It’s something for me to think about while I’m revising.

Riding the Momentum

For the first time ever, I’ve surpassed 20,000. The curse is breaking! Although my novel is a bit slow, I’m still riding the momentum, and in the middle of writing incoherent dribble, I came up with some new ideas to jump my plot in the middle. The word wars have really been helping, and the Lord has really been sustaining me, though I need to prioritize right now. I feel like right now I can pull out what Chris Baty calls “the key to the VIP lounge.” In other words, I can relax for a little bit. My word count is where it should be for the day, so today, I only need to write 900 words to hit the 30,000 goal for the day. I’m ecstatic.

In writing incoherent dribble, although it bothers me, I have to keep reminding myself that “this is the way it’s supposed to be. It’s supposed to be incoherent dribble.” What a horrible lie, but unfortunately, that’s how NaNo is. No editing, and I don’t even want to begin to look back at my work. Doing the word wars forces me to just keep putting out that dribble. What irks me though, is always come up just a few words short of 700 words in doing the 15 minute word wars. If I’m slow, I’ll get 595 words or so, but if my fingers are burning up the keyboard, I can easily do 690 or 696. I should type faster, so I can get to 700. That’s my word war right there.

Other than that, things are going good in NaNo-land, and I’ve found some time to study a bit of Japanese. The plan is to get to 30,000 tomorrow and get some real life work done, Lord’s will. Either way, I’m happy to be back on track again (says the person who has been off track since day 1). Happy writing.