|"Apocalypse" courtesy of Danilo Rizzuti at FreeDigitalPhotos.net|
In other words, I didn't make it to my goal of 50,000. In the end, I chose not to do the final push. At the beginning of November, imagining this scenario would have caused me to react like it was the impending apocalypse.
However, I had my reasons for throwing in the towel. It had gotten to the point where my writing had deteriorated. I was just putting words on the page to be on the page. My characters were offering snarky commentary on the plot, had lapsed into modern vernacular, and nearly every word that I wrote offered nothing to contribute to the story.
I had reached maximum creative capacity.
I think that it is important for a creative artist to recognize one's limitations. For me, I certainly could have finished it out, but I knew that at this point, I wouldn't be able to get back into the creative groove.
I didn't want to have words on the paper that added absolutely no value whatsoever. Up until the end, what I had been writing was of questionable quality, but was definitely of value to the story. It was in fact editable. What I had started writing toward the end? Not so much. It was editable in the sense that I could highlight it and delete it. In my mind, that's not worth putting down in the first place.
Nevertheless, I did succeed in writing out the plot of my story, covering all the points on my outline (though the last part was not very detail heavy). Of my 43,039 words, I have about 42,000 that are editable and rewritable.
At the end of October, I had none. That's a pretty incredible accomplishment. A week ago, the thought of not finishing was really depressing. I basically felt like not finishing was the end of the world as we know it.
But I didn't finish. And I feel fine. In fact, I feel great. I'm proud of myself. I learned a lot of lessons about my writing life that I think will really aid me in the future. I will be able to apply them on a much smaller, less extreme scale.
Did you participate in NaNo? Did you reach your goal? If you didn't, did you still get something valuable out of it, and why or why not? Also, 10 points to anyone who gets the "and I feel fine" reference. Share your thoughts in the comments.