So the month of November is long gone, which means National Novel Writing Month (known to most of us as NaNoWriMo) has come to an end. Did you finish your 50,000-or-more-word novel? If so, congratulations! That is a huge accomplishment, and you should be extremely proud of yourself. I hope you did something to celebrate.
If you did not meet the NaNoWriMo goal, don’t feel too bad. I’m right there with you. I never cranked out more than 250 words. Ouch, that’s less than most of my blog posts.
So why didn’t we do it? What caused our NaNoWriMo failure?
Of course, your reasons might differ from mine, but now that I’ve had some time to reflect, I can see several thoughts and actions that led to my downfall:
I set myself up for failure from the start.
If you look back at my post announcing NaNoWriMo, you’ll see that I said,
“I was hesitant to commit to NaNoWriMo only because I really have a hard time imaging myself hitting the 50,000 word mark. That breaks down to writing about 1,600 words per day. And that would be in addition to writing my one-to-three weekly posts here. And don’t forget about Thanksgiving.
But then I figured why not? Does it matter if I don’t complete the goal? Won’t it be nice to at least have something accomplished toward this goal than nothing?”
I was already envisioning myself not meeting the deadline and providing excuses for why I wouldn’t. That is no way to go about achieving a goal.
My heart wasn’t in it.
If you really want to do something, you’re going to do it. You will find ways to make it happen and you won’t let anything stand in your way.
It was hard to face that I obviously wasn’t as excited and into this goal of working on my novel as I had thought. I think I believed that NaNoWriMo was just a really good idea and an easy way for me to meet my novel goal. But in truth, sitting down to write the novel just wasn’t fun, so I didn’t do it.
It was just too much for right now.
Quite frankly, I’m tired. This has been one hell of an amazing year and I’m very proud of everything I’ve accomplished. I hope you are beginning your reflections of this last year and are discovering the same.
I’d love to say I am still full of energy and raring to go, but I’m not. I’m ready to just work on Tenacious Me and enjoy the holidays with friends and families. I’m OK with not achieving any more of my goals for 2009. I did well this year, and I know next year will be even better.
Perhaps NaNoWriMo isn’t for me. I still have the goal to write a novel, but maybe I need to do it on my own schedule. I’ll keep experimenting and will be sure to let you know.
What held you back from completing NaNoWriMo? Do you plan to do it again? What did you learn?
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