If anything the National Novel Writing Month offers to any writers is the profound lessons one learns of oneself. Consider boot camp in the army, serving to tear a person down to see what stuff they are made up. The NaNoWriMo does much the same.
I certainly learned about myself in 2007 when I won the NaNoWriMo then. This year, I’ve learned new lessons. To explain, you need to understand the basics of this contest are simple; write 50,000 words in thirty days of fiction. For me, my project was non-fiction. I didn’t realize the rules read ‘must be fiction’ until two days into the month of November. My bad. I felt any ‘novel’ meant any book. (My blond moment).
So I set aside the two days of writing on the non-fiction piece to start a story, only to find that without having plotted and planned beforehand, writing was not only unpleasant, the story meandered hither and yon. Typing words became too much like work. As much as I wanted to follow the rules, thoughts of quitting altogether came to mind.
Then I discovered the ‘rebel thread’ at their site. They admit technically you can’t earn the winner sticker, but they made that neat rebel graphic for those of us persistent with doing our own thing. Awesome.
Once I found and read the words that its okay to be a rebel, I felt this huge weight lifted. Now I’m back to writing what I wanted to, the planets are aligned, harmony is restored, and I can enjoy what I write.