I’m doing NaNoWriMo 2017 – Maybe This Year I’ll Win!

NaNoWrimo 2017 Participant Banner

Like every-single-bloody-year, I’m trying my hand at NaNoWriMo. The last week before it starts is always the hardest trying to hold back from writing all these ideas floating around. But I have been kept semi-occupied this year that made it a teeny bit easier.

I got WAY over 50,000 words of material ready, it’s the last book in a trilogy so I got all the characters, places, motivations down to a T at this stage. Now, I just need to get my butt in chair and write once November 1st comes along.

As always, I have a Love/Hate relationship with NaNoWriMo. I love it because for one month of the year I have an excuse to put my writing before everything else in my life.

Then why do I hate it?? Because it means that people who aren’t writers the rest of the year…Honestly don’t know why people do it when they aren’t….write 50,000 words and thinks it’s a novel and done and then swarm publishers and agents with whatever they’ve thrown together. So, I hate the whole main idea of throwing 50k words and hoping they stick, no matter whether they make a novel or not, but I like it for giving me a reason to actually put everything else a side and be involved with people who are doing the same thing as me.

– I got my food prep thought out for the first week – chick-pea curry that I’m batch cooking on Monday.
– Iv’e bought new comfortable clothes to sit around in and write. Sooo looking forward to putting them on.
– Got all due assignments done beforehand so I can free up as much time as I possibly can.
– I got my chapters, plot points and scenes all ready that I have 100k to work with. I’m just aiming for 50k, to finally say that I bet NaNoWriMo.

Camp NaNoWriMo Vs NaNoWriMo

Camp NaNoWriMo 2017

I’ve always had a love-hate relationship with the concept of NaNoWriMo and I’m officially jumping off the NaNoWriMo train as of right now. I’m not doing going to be doing it this year.

I love it for it gives me a reason to put everything else aside and focus on my writing.

I hate it because it’s used by people who aren’t writers and then publishers and literary agencies get bombarded with terribly rough first drafts straight after November from people who had no intentions of being a writer beforehand.

CampNaNoWriMo on the other hand I just love!

CampNaNoWriMo gives everyone, whether they are writers, scriptwriters, poets or artists a chance to put what they love into focus for the month. They can all go at their own pace. You don’t have to throw shit at the wall in the hope that it sticks. You can make you’re own goal!

It gives you the urge to put your passion before everything else for a whole month and get’s the clogs in the brain working again without having to strain yourself and ruin your work trying to up your word count.

So, for me personally: CampNaNoWriMo trumps NaNoWriMo.

Nanowrimo 2016 – Still Have Mixed Feelings.


Nanowrimo is mid-way over and I’m finally writing a post about it while it’s on. For anyone who doesn’t know, Nanowrimo is National Novel Writing Month. Basically you try to write 50,000 words in the month of November month.

I still have love-hate relationship with it. That hasn’t changed.

I always start off great at the start of the month- well not great- but I get consistent with writing again. The most I’ve written during a Nanowrimo before now was over 13,000 words. Not bad, but not exactly the 50k that they’re looking for.

There’s a few reasons for this:

One – Life just screws me over and I just lose steam or time.
Two – I run into a massive wall of writer’s block that I can’t bulldoze my way through
Three – and the one that happens most of the time – I realise how absolutely ridiculous Nanowrimo is.

I’m at about 26,000 words at the moment, the best I’ve done in Nanowrimo ever, but the same thoughts have started to swirl around.

Nanowrimo isn’t for writers. You should not need Nanowrimo to write. This is one of the major issues I have with the whole concept of it. One day at the start of the month I came across a topic on the forum- probably the reason why I kind of went ‘screw it’ with this Nanowrimo- the majority of people who do Nanowrimo- and please, I’m not talking about everybody, a large amount of them don’t write any other time…

This does not make a lick of sense to me either. Why spend all this time writing something that you have no intention of going back to or doing anything with? Some people just do it for the sake of doing it. I get that you have a story at the end of the 30 days and that you can feel proud. I just don’t understand why someone would give themselves the extra stress of writing a novel when they don’t actually like writing?? That’s like me picking up a paint brush and painting for 30 days straight just to say I have splodges of colour on a canvas…it doesn’t make sense.

See, I use Nanowrimo not to ‘win’…winning is not the goal for me with Nanowrimo. I use to get back into writing every-single-day. Then I get to a certain point where I know what I’m putting down is pure shit. That’s when I stop aiming for the 50k and just keep going at my own pace. I don’t care anymore about the end count. As long as I keep up with writing every-single-day, whether it’s 500 or 5,000 words, I’m happy. I’m not forcing it out of me just for the sake of it. I know that I most likely will go back and edit and delete everything I write, but again, I want to at least make a bit of sense than complete nonsense.

There’s just a fine line between writing and throwing shit at the wall hoping it’ll stick. That’s the line I just don’t cross, no matter how much I would love to write 50,000 words in one month, my writing still needs to make me feel something.

Nanowrimo 2015 – Day 8 : 9,102


I was aiming to finish the weekend at 10k, but I doubt i’m going to write 900 words in the next hour. For the next week I’m going to try and write 2k-a-day and by next weekend I should be up to where i’m supposed to be with Nanowrimo.

Work is killing me this year, between that and every day-to-day life I barely have an hour-a-day to myself, and writing is the last thing I want to do.

Going to try and get into work a bit earlier everyday this week, to get a few words in and another few at lunch so that I have a good amount before going home. Going to try and manage my time a bit better- set all alarms for exercising and reminders about going places, so I don’t waste time ding nothing.

Hopefully week 2 turns out better than week 1.

Nanowrimo 2015 – Day 5 : 5,022

At 13:00


It took me 2 days to get from 3k to 4k….

But, I’m now at 4,251!! Woo!!

At 22:00 

5,022 words!

I was aiming for 5k and with only one word sprint I managed it just before 10pm  🙂 I’m so happy. I didn’t really write anything the last two days and I’m just now waiting for the weekend to play catch-up with an all-nighter thrown in for good-measure. So, it’s now looking totally manageable to catch up with Nanowrimo for Sunday.

Hope Nanowrimo is going well for everyone else!!


Nanowrimo 2015 – Day 3 : 3,521

So, I knew I took it easy yesterday [only had to write 1k] and I knew I should have pushed myself a bit harder to write more, but it was after 10pm at night and my bed was calling me…

So because of that I had 1,564 words to write today.

I got home, had dinner, grabbed the dog for an hour walk, had a shower and the time was 9:30pm… I had two hours of writing if I forced myself to stay awake with cans of Red Bull…it didn’t happen.

The xbox called me and then my bed wrapped me up in cuddly hug. A total of 85 words for the day…


Sarah Lou’s National Novel Writing Month Survival Kit

This is my list of items that I either have or still need to get before Sunday…

  1. Macbook
  2. Scrivener
  3. Headphones
  4. Red Bull
  5. Coffee
  6. Oversized cozy jumper
  7. Fingerless gloves [for the cold nights]
  8. Spare money for coffee in the mornings
  9. Bus money to get to the meet-ups
  10. New comfy pjs
  11. Wooly Socks/Slippers
  12. Pinterest [for inspiration]
  13. Hot Chocolate [when coffee get’s too repetitive and boring]
  14. Hard Drive [backup every 5k+ words]
  15. Snacks [probably grapes- easy to eat and don’t feel guilty]

I have a small bit of shopping to do before the midnight on Saturday!

Why I keep doing Nanowrimo – even though I fail every year.

After six year I’ve never completed Nanowrimo, but I keep going at it every year. I knew there was a reason, but I just couldn’t put my finger on it till a eureka-moment about two minutes after I woke this morning.

Nanowimo 2009 was the year I started an original fantasy novel, I was still neck deep in writing fanfiction and was trying to break my writing back into original fiction.

I struggled that year, writing a measly 9,000 words. It was just a beginning of a story. It sat on my laptop for months, then all 9,000 words got deleted because they were crap.

Fast forward to 2015 and that same original idea has turned into…

5 outlined novels


305,000 written words.

I’m trying to get the first book published at the moment, so it’s why I haven’t written more. This whole world has come to life and has been transformed into something completely different than the original book.

The only thing that’s still the same was that very first thought.

I finally found my reason of why I keep trying Nanowrimo when everything else tells me to stop.

It has giving me my first and most precious series of novels that I’ve ever written, characters and a world I probably wouldn’t have thought of if I wasn’t forced too in 2009.

That’s the reason why I keep doing Nanowrimo. That even though what I write might be crap, might be deleted after November, that I can still scavenge something from the pile of crap. Something that I’d finally be able to send off to publishers.

It’s to kick my writing brain back into gear, to stop worrying about editing and to stop over-thinking.

It’s not all about the winning.