If you’ve been following along with my writing for a little while, then you’ll know that during the month of November I partook in the National Novel Writing Month, affectionately known as ‘NaNoWriMo’.
The challenge is an attempt to write a novel in the space of 30 days, but really it’s more about finding a creative community to flourish in and developing a habit of writing more often, that’s how I saw it anyway.
When I began the challenge I had no preconceptions that I was actually going to come out the other side with 50 thousand words. The most I had ever written was about 16 thousand, and I could not conceive being able to write a single word more than that, especially in the space of a month.
Low and behold, and against all the odds I put on myself, I did it. I wrote FIFTY THOUSAND WORDS and I actually did it in under a month. I’m still not 100% sure how, but I think a lot of it had to do with the build up of momentum that tapping away on the keyboard day after day creates, and the wonderfully supportive Tasmanian NaNo group – what a bunch of truly fantastic humans.
So, what happens next, I hear you ask? Well, that’s a fantastic question and one I’m afraid I am still working out the answer to, but I’ll give you what I have so far.
In the month of November I wrote exactly 50 thousand words. The average novel in my genre is closer to 60 thousand so I am hoping that with revisions I can bump it up closer to that figure. There are certainly areas I can see that could do with some expansion, so it should be a relatively ‘easy’ task (famous last words).
My current plan is to take December as an opportunity to completely step away from my manuscript and let it work some magic on it’s own. Meanwhile I’ll be reading copious amounts of sappy Christmas books and attempting to regain some form of a social life (one where I am actually vaguely mentally present).
Come January, I am lucky enough to be taking a trip to a cottage with my sister where we will be spending a couple of days working on our respective writing projects. By this point I plan to have reread my book, probably in the first week of January, and, having hopefully made some notes, I can start redrafting and adding in scenes.
Once this second draft is ‘complete’ then I’ll probably pass it around to some beta readers to get some feedback and then it’ll be a couple more redrafts after that.
Once the drafting is actually done… well that’s where I’m stumped. I’m planning on having the piece professionally edited, if I’m happy enough with it, and then hopefully I can start to think about publishing avenues. Honestly, the thought terrifies me, but in the best way possible.
So, that’s where I’m currently at. I can’t give enough thanks to everyone who supported me through November, it was hectic but insanely fun and wow, look what I got out of it.
Keep your eyes out for more updates on The Painter, I’ll hopefully have some bits and pieces to say about the editing process soon, if it doesn’t drive me completely mad that is.
Chat soon x