Writing a Novel – Reaching a Word Count Goal

Last night, I reached my NaNoWriMo goal for November 2020 – by writing 50,000 words on my novel A Thousand Years. I actually wrote 51,486 words in the month of November. It’s the first time I’ve “won” NaNoWriMo though I’ve participated on and off since 2009. On November 2nd, I wrote this post, wondering if I’d really be able to do it this time.

It’s not the first novel I’ve written. But writing a novel isn’t easy. It takes time, it often requires an emotional investment or takes an emotional toll. Last month I made a decision to write quickly and to get it all out – as quickly as possible, not editing or changing anything I’d written on the first go round. So while it’s not the first I’ve written, it is the first that I’ve been so single-minded and dedicated to writing.

The novel is definitely longer than 50,000 words – which I mostly expected. I don’t think I’ll actually finish the novel in the next two days because that’s another 30,000 words I expect to write. I may, however write the final chapter before moving onto the second draft which will add the additional words and chapters I’m missing.

This experience has been a huge accomplishment for me personally. I’ve written so much – so many words in my lifetime – fiction and non-fiction. But I’ve yet to be able to dedicate time nearly every day to furiously reach a goal in such a short amount of time. My first completed novel took a ridiculously long time to write and it’s not what it could be.

So excuse me while I pat myself on the back for accomplishing this word count goal. This book holds a special place in my heart. I hope I can do it justice as I begin working on the 2nd draft in December.

For a few vignettes that can be found in the novel, go here, here, or here. Or the one that started it all, here.

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