I failed NaNoWriMo. I wonder how many people are in the same boat as me. For those of you who completed NaNoWriMo, congratulations! What an incredible achievement. For many people, the draw of NaNoWriMo comes because it is such a challenge to actually complete. Writing 50,000 words in the month of November is a huge feat of endurance, inspiration and dedication.
Does this mean that if we have failed the challenge that we have no hope of becoming published authors? Does it mean that we do not have what it takes? No. I will say it again, no, it does not. It only means we couldn’t, at that particular stage in our novels, write tens of thousands of words in a month.
I, myself, reached 43,000 words before I gave up with a few days left in the contest. I chose not to finish for one simple reason. I didn’t like what I was writing. My descriptions were generic and boring, I had long ago decided to change my point of view, and I was merely getting down words. I stopped enjoying what I was writing because I have so much left to learn. I am not ready to write thousands of words a day because I am still learning how to write a few words well.
Possibly next year, or the year after, I might be ready, but then again I might not. I’m not going to give myself a hard time for this because I learnt so much about how I work as a writer in the process. If you have also “failed” NaNoWriMo I would say to you that it isn’t that important. Is it a fantastic achievement to have made? Yes, undoubtedly. Is it a necessary step to becoming an accomplished writer? I don’t think so. For anyone else out there who is feeling down in the dumps about the NaNoWriMo, I hope this post helps you to see that what really counts in learning to write, is to keep on keeping on and not giving up, for a lifetime and not a month.