End of NaNoWriMo 2019

9:00 AM

November 30th has passed, and so it's time to emerge from the writing cave once more. 

I've heard through the grapevine that many writers had a lot of success with their writerly creations, and I congratulate them heartily. And I give hugs to all the writers that were in "the 50k race", no matter where they finished. 

As for me.... it's been an adventure. 

Best part of NaNo:

- Collaborating with The Pen Dragons for a second year. This group kept me going, it really did. We had lots of word sprints, encouragement, and funny stories to relate to each other. The typos were the best. 

- Collaborating heavily with my two main alphas. This was the first drafting session that I really picked their brains for stuff, and it was super duper useful. 

- Plot holes are being filled. The first quarter of the story is now a cohesive narrative rather than a bunch of choppy scenes. I can't wait for the next part of the story to be filled in! 

What I learned:

- Consistency is key. 

- Not every scene bunny lives. And even scenes that have been written may suffer the axe. 

- A laptop is still needed. Half of my dead days could have been avoided, had I had the portable thing to sit on my lap as I laid in bed. 

- Never write without a community. They are lifesavers. 

- Focus on one thing at a time when you're editing. Don't try to fix the plot and the character arcs at the same time. It doesn't work. 

- Even if your goal is laid before you on a silver platter, Life will throw a curveball and wreck everything. 

- Always always stock up on dark chocolate before NaNo. Another lifesaver. 

With that said, how did "writing" go?:

For the first three weeks, writing was actually ON TRACK. If you've followed me on previous writing excursions, you will know that I usually fall behind in the first week or so and then never catch up. 

It was difficult to maintain a streak because most of my writing was at night, and often crossed the midnight hour. If I was in a groove, I wasn't stopping to update my count.

I admit that I tried to do too much at first, trying to fix both my character arcs and my plot - the two were related after all. In the middle of the second week, I decided to fully invest into fixing the plot and left the character stuff for Draft 3. It may prove to be an advantage because then I have betas to help too.

Things went pretty swimmingly until the last week. Then things started to implode.
And it wasn't writing-related like it normally is.

No, my health decided to take a nosedive. I caught a bad head cold first. And then, because of work-related stress and a severe PMS episode, I had a relapse of some of the anxiety issues I had over a year ago. I'm a lot better now, but it took a toll on me and I'm still in the "recovery" phase.

All in all, my final word count was 38,622 words.

This, however, is not a complete draft. I was working through the old draft scene by scene, and I only managed to get to Scene 18 of 53 before I stopped. The word count of the old draft at that point was 19,189.

Which means that I doubled the word count of the first quarter of the book, adding in a total of 19,433 words. I knew I had written a lot more, but I didn't realize the scale until I actually crunched the numbers.

Now, the first draft of The White Rose finished out at 48,305 words, according to my Goodreads records. Which means, that if I continue this trend of doubling the word count, the projected word count for this novel will be close to....96K!!!

Oh my 'lanta....excuse me while I faint.

So....what's next? 

I'm giving myself a short break to get centered, and then I'll probably continue to draft the second draft through December and January.

Once this second draft is finished, the beta call WILL be going out. A year later than originally intended, probably, but it WILL go out.

It's official - this IS my debut novel. And it's being finished FIRST.

The goal is to complete this second draft before Camp NaNo in April, so that I may work on a different project then. Can't let myself burn out, ya know. There are other literary children that need to grow up.

I've rambled on far enough - tell me how your NaNo (or November) went! What plans do you have for this December?  

Scribbingly yours,


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  1. I'm sorry that you had a tough time! *hugs* Get well soon! Doubling what you had? That is so, so, so, awesome! Way to go!!!!

  2. I'm so sorry to hear about your health issues! :( That is no fun. I'll definitely be keeping you in my prayers the next few days especially!

    But YOU DID SO WELL. My gosh look at that beautiful word count going steadily up and up and up for the first two thirds of the month!! That is a very pretty chart and you should be justly proud of it.

    Filling in plot holes is no small feat!! I can't wait to read TWR!! (Despite the fact that my alpha reading is nonexistent at the moment. *sheepish laugh* Maybe Christmas break will fix that?)

    1. Tell me about it. Thank you so much Megan, I greatly greatly appreciate it!!

      Meeepp, thank you! I am proud of my accomplishment :)

      Haha, I haven't sent out the new draft yet, I'll do that when I finish it :) Hopefully it will be while you're still on break!

  3. Aw, I’m sorry to hear about your health issues. <3 I hope the recovery time continues to go smoothly!

    And wow, doubling your word count! That’s awesome! And even though you didn’t technically "win" NaNo, 38k is super impressive. Good job! :)

    1. Sorry, this is me, Nicole. My iPad is not cooperating with Gmail sign-ins. XD

    2. Ohhh! I thought it had to be someone that I knew - it was too familar to be a spammer.

      Thank you so much Nicole! I'm doing much better and am now getting back into the swing of things. I'm still plugging away - I hit 40k last night!

  4. Ohhh no! I'm so sorry that you were sick! ;-;
    That is still an amazing word count though. :-O Fantastic job friend!!! <33

  5. This is so exciting, Catherine!!! You made some crazy-epic progress this NaNo! *high-five*

  6. Not every scene bunny lives. XD
    Love that!

  7. Sounds like you had an amazing NaNoWrimo, Catherine. :) Mine went well, I am only trying to get a group of characters together, in a less awkward or weird manner.

    1. P.S. The reason why I say it was amazing, was because it sounds like you learned a lot from it.


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