In 2011, I took on NaNoWriMo for the first time. I was unemployed at the time, having been let go from my job at a university because enrollment numbers were plummeting1Making me the first of many there to suffer the same fate.. I got let go the day before Halloweeen and I spent most of November and December applying for and interviewing for jobs, I needed something to keep me sane. This was the first time since I was 14 that I didn’t have a job for a span longer than 5 days and it was getting to me.
So I picked up my metaphorical pen and started writing. I wrote a mainstream fiction novel called Amaranthine. It was full of plot holes and (objectively) was a subpar story idea that was not well-written. I mean, for the writing experience I had at the time, it certainly wasn’t bad a piece. I was passionate for writing it too. I wrote just over 23,000 words on the first day and hit the 50,000 word mark on day 15. I finished the story in 20 days with just under 59,000 words and felt pretty accomplished along the way.
In 2012, I tried again. I had what I considered to be a much, much better idea than Amaranthine2Even looking back now, it’s still one of the better ideas I’ve had.. I wrote just shy of 6,000 words on day 1 and 2…then nothing again until February. My new job had become somewhat time consuming and stressful and though I did enjoy my work, it seemed like too much time to devote to writing a full novel in a month and doing my job at the time.
Last month, I started to feel drained at work. Not just the tired, not wanting to work at home for one night levels of drained. It was more of the why am I even trying level of drained. I truly think that most people who have worked at a single employer for a relatively lengthy amount of time3I’m nearly at my 4 year mark. can say they’ve felt like that at least once during their time there. I needed something to do to try to clear my mind and make me sane again.
On November 1st, sometime around 11pm, I decided I was going to try writing a short, two to three chapter story. That story, Armed and Apathetic, was actually meant as a prequel for a larger project I started in July of this year, but then gave up on. Hell, Armed and Apathetic actually had nothing to do with the main storyline of that project, as the story that I began to discuss with the Armed and Apathetic chapter was mentioned for less than two paragraphs in the other project4And other than being historical setting for that story, would have had no bearing on that project. But I wrote because I wanted to.
One chapter turned into the three chapters easily enough, but it wasn’t until a Saturday where I pumped out 5,500 words that I decided to make this a NaNoWriMo project that I called The Angel’s Reckoning. Unlike last time, I wasn’t way ahead on my work. I spent most of the time (days 4-7, and again days 12-27) working from behind. I mostly posted in 2-3 day sprints over weekends and Mondays, knocking out 7,000-12,000 words in those times. Yet, despite that, I was able to finish yesterday.
To those of you who have been reading and want to finish, let me know. Either way, thank you to everyone who supported me during this project. It was exciting to finish NaNoWriMo again, especially after a 4 year break from it.