The thing about Nanowrimo

Today is Nanowrimo’s donation day. I decided that after writing what would eventually become Legend of League Park during Nanowrimo last year, the least I could do was give them a few dollars this year. At the bottom of the page was the question “What does Nanowrimo mean to you?” I don’t want to sound overly dramatic, but I made it through the past year because of Nanowrimo.

Last November, I was a wreck. A wreck. I had been out of work for three months, with no prospects beyond a low paying freelance gig that wouldn’t start til January. I was a year out of graduate school with nothing to show for it. Two important people in my life had just gotten married to their soul-mates and while I wished them the best it served as a reminder that my own love life was in a car stalled out on the highway in a snowstorm. Something had to be done.

So I wrote a book.

I had previously balked at Nanowrimo, preferring a style of writing more along the lines of write a few chapters, edit and rewrite those chapters to perfection, write some more chapters, repeat. My first novel took me almost 3 years to complete because of this. I also get a lot of writer’s block because I want everything to be perfect before I can move on.

Nanowrimo forced me to just write the story and worry about perfection later. It was exactly what I needed. Not just in my writing either.

Nanowrimo gave me the ability to look myself in the mirror and say “I did something.” “I set out to do something and I did it.”

At the darker parts of the early days of 2012, when I was genuinely concerned about my life going on from where it was, I was able to say “I had a goal and I achieved it.” If nothing else, there was the book. I wrote a book. I had wanted to do that since I was a little girl.

In April, I got to hold a copy of Legend of League Park in my hands. I broke down into tears because it was the most beautiful thing I had ever seen. It was a reason to fight on. Because no matter what else happened: I did something. I set out to do something and I did it. I had a goal and I achieved it. I wrote the story and worried about perfection later.

That is what Nanowrimo means to me..


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