NaNoWhatNow?

Every November, the National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo) taps me on the shoulder and whispers ‘go on, you can do it’ in my ear.

Over the MANY years I have tried to achieve the ‘just out of reach’ 50k word target, I fail. So for the past few Novembers I have been creating my own achievable targets instead.

After a creative blow to the start of my year I finally started writing again. Slowly but surely the words came. I left myself little notes of encouragement in between the more lucid paragraphs. Things like ‘something scary needs to happen here’ and ‘need a teacher’s name’ to ‘he needs to fall here or something happens where he hurts his toe’. Not very useful, I know, but I was determined to have a first draft ready to edit for November’s NaNoWriMo and I knew that all of these things and more would be resolved and polished in the coming drafts.

And I did it – not quite the 50k but a full edit was completed over the month and a few days into December, just to keep me on my toes.

I love to hear about other writer’s and illustrators NaNo months, do they achieve what they set out to do or do they procrastinate through the month and cram it in the last week? My local SCBWI network interviewed me and a few fellow creatives throughout November to find out how we tackle the mammoth task, keep ourselves emotionally and mentally well, and embrace our creativity as we go.