Originally published December 01, 2014
NaNoWriMo 2014 has come and gone, and to everyone who participated, I’d like to extend my warmest congratulations. Whether you wrote 50 words or 50,000, you wrote something more than you had in October, and that’s to be celebrated.
For myself, I’m happy to say I made it to 50K. That manuscript isn’t finished by any means; there are still plot holes, and I have to wrap it up (I left it at the end of the climax), but I can say I do have a first draft.
What Do I Do With My NaNoWriMo Novel?
That first draft, so lovingly crafted over these 30 days of November, is going into a dark drawer to ferment for at least 31 days. I recommend this to anyone who has a month to let a manuscript stew in its own juices. When you come back to it, things just pop out at you. Themes emerge. Characters become more (or less) lifelike. Plot holes become as easy to spot as those Black Friday banner ads that keep popping up.
The Aftermath of NaNoWriMo
After I finish exams, I’m going to pull out last year’s NaNoWriMo win, a manuscript that still doesn’t have a title. I’ve worked on it several times over the past year, but it’s still far from finished. I birthed it, coddled it, and put the meat on its bones for a year – now it’s time to make it real.
I’m going to teach it the 3 R’s and table manners, dress it in its best suit, wipe the dirt from its nose, and send it out into the world in hopes that it will meet some nice people and make something of itself. A book parent can only hope.
So… what really happened this time in 2014?
I did put that manuscript away, and I haven’t looked at it since.
Will it end up being a part of my Deviant Behaviors series, as I had originally planned, or will it be a stand-alone novella? That’s hard to say. Will it even be published at all? I hope so, because I really felt a connection with the main character, India, and I want to see her story told.
As we wrap up NaNoWriMo 2016, please accept my heartfelt wishes that you make it to your goal – while I’m scrambling to make it there myself!