It’s the final countdown . . .

Now that I had my characters in amusing trouble (got to have that last “whoops!” moment), it was time to make them work their way through it. There is nothing like a “Freaky Friday” scene to get characters engaged and to bring out their personalities! They solved their problem, everyone is more or less okay, and our hero and heroine are together at last, crossing the 50,000 word count mark. Woo hoo!

Writing the final scene felt triumphant and scary and frustrating and delightful. These were the last words for this first draft, and I wanted the story to end on an upbeat, happy note, so I spent more time fretting over the words and characters’ dialogue than I would normally, but at the same time I felt like I was riding a great wave and flying.

Reached 50,402 words and promptly uploaded them to the Nanowrimo website to have my word count validated, and with a click of a button—ta dah! Winner!

Now what?

Now I have a finished first draft of a novel, which is about the equivalent of an artist’s piece of marble or lump of clay. The next step is to refine it and make it better, more cohesive and consistent. (Like carving away the excess to reveal the sculpture.) It’s odd to have to finish a story to figure out what the story was about, and who the characters were. Knowing what I know now, I can go back through the novel and make corrections and changes to make it the book I envisioned. Once that is done, I will see about publishing it. When will all this happen? Sometime after the holidays (which will probably mean July).

Final thoughts

Thank you to everyone for your support and questions and encouragement. This was the first time I have blogged about my writing process (rather than just keeping a spreadsheet tally of time and words). Hopefully, it’s inspired others to give art a shot (any art—not just writing, but writing is good, and cheap to start).

Notes for the Future (aka Useful Things):

  • Have story/plot points to accomplish, esp. in 500 word increments
  • Place Butt in Chair, alone, with no noise or distractions
  • Writemonkey FTW (i.e. distraction-free writing software)
  • Have a concept/vision for the story
  • Borrow story frameworks from classic novels (particularly novels you love)
  • Create individual files for each day’s writing in addition to the one LARGE file of the entire work

Writing sessions today:

15″ – 330 words

50″ – 1333 words

35″ – 1057 words

Total novel writing time: 1445 minutes (24 hours 5 minutes)

Total novel word count: 50,402 words