I lost Nanowrimo. I only wrote 43,000 words.
I WON NANOWRIMO! I WROTE 43,000 WORDS!!! WOOHOOO!!!
It's silly to talk about 'losing' nanowrimo. It's an activity, it's an event. It's based on honesty. It has no true verifying system. The goal of 50,000 words is simply there because it's a good number. 50,000 words is a pretty short novel, anyways. It's not really about winning, or writing a certain amount, ITS JUST ABOUT WRITING ITSELF. It's to get you to write. To do something you probably wouldn't otherwise. The only motivation it truly adds is a website word-tracker. You have to put the number in. You have to put in the effort to go to write-ins and meet others if you wish to. Essentially, nanowrimo motivates YOU to motivate YOURSELF. Which is a good thing. Which means you can't lose, not really, not if you wrote even one freaking word. Winning doesn't mean anything, writing does. And I wrote. 43,000 words. It felt good.
The truth is that the only way to win, for me, is to keep writing. To keep myself honest by writing a certain amount of words every other day or so. And if I don't write, I need to edit my shit. And if I'm not editing, I need to be shopping my shit to magazines or learning more about author(self)-publishing. The idea is to continue writing or doing something that involves me writing and getting it out there, somehow, someway, hopefully getting value of some sort in return, even if it's only the value of having others read my work and enjoy it.
Did I want to write 50k? Of course. I wanted to write more. I wanted to cross the finish line, there were three or four days in the last week where I wrote 2500 words a day. Those were wild days, where I put on the music and zoned out for an hour and two and just wrote. Didn't really know I could just do that. It's good to know, makes me think maybe I can make this a regular thing, instead of a once or twice a year thing. I need to get in the habit, which means writing more blog posts as well. I really had fun writing one per day for a week before Nanowrimo, but that's too hurried a pace. One every other day is much more manageable, and something I'll be attempting once I get over the post-nanowrimo blues/hangover. Forcing myself to come up with new blog post ideas was a creative exercise, a good old workout for my brain-pan, my mind-noggin, my thinkin' blob.
I'm also planning on shopping some things over at JukePop Serial. It's a website for readers and writers full of serial fiction. As a reader, you find stories you like and put them on your bookshelf, getting notified whenever the writer adds a new chapter, you also vote on the chapters you like, which help the authors get paid, and you can even pay the authors directly, sort of like a tip after you read a chapter or something. As an author, you submit a first chapter, and if they accept it, you're good to go. They pay for the first chapter but after that it's up to you and the readers you gather. It sounds very cool, and a good way to gain a following. We'll see when I edit my shit and actually send them something. I'm also trying to figure out grad school so free time is going to fly by, for me.
So those are my thoughts on this years nanowrimo, and plans for the future. Look for more in a week or so.