NaNoWriMo Winner

Well, it’s official.  I finished NaNoWriMo with over 78,000 words.  Here’s the proof:

Now, those of you who know me have seen the title before.  I’ve only been working on this novel for forever.   I even had a couple of people tell me I cheated because the novel was already complete.  I disagree and here’s why.

I finished the novel last year and sent it off to a publisher who came back and said, “We like it but we’d like for you to consider making changes X, Y and Z.” I considered the ideas and thought, “You know what, I can make those changes.”  So I began. The thing is, the more I wrote what the publisher wanted as far as “Z”, the more I strayed away from the story I wanted to tell.  The very crux of the story, the core, the glue that held the trilogy together was rapidly disappearing.  As I wrote, my gut told me I was going in the wrong direction.  Eight months into the re-write, I tossed it aside.  It wasn’t my story.  I was writing for someone else.  Something had to change.

I revisited what the publisher said about X, and Y and they were right.  Spot on, actually, and I decided to keep those changes.  The changes worked well and did make the story better, but I had to re-write once more to put back in what I removed.  It was harder than I thought.  I actually had to put the novel aside for a while, write some short stories, and let the ideas percolate on Dragon King.  Occasionally I would revisit it but couldn’t get in the right frame of mind to finish it.  That is until November 1, 2012.

I had no plans to participate in NaNoWriMo this year, but the time presented itself so I went for it.  I knew in my gut I had to finish Dragon King or at least make some significant headway in its completion.  The first week or so started off really slow in the rewrite/revision…only 4,000 words in 5 days.  Not too good.  I had to give myself a pep talk and put my mind to work.  Today, I completed 78,266 words – rewritten, revised – from two manuscripts that didn’t work on their own, but together?  Well, let’s just say I hope people will like it when I’m done.  I don’t have that much more to complete and I hope to get it back out to beta readers after the first of the year and the holidays are over.

So, in my opinion, I didn’t cheat.  I like to think of it as having two elaborate outlines that I merged together into what hopefully will be something worth reading.  During this time, I also have been diligently writing on two short stories and another one that turned into a novella I titled SUMMERFIRTH.    Hopefully that one will go to betas soon, too.

So what about you?  Did you participate and finish NaNo?  Do you have plans to finish?  I would love to hear your struggles and successes.

18 thoughts on “NaNoWriMo Winner

  1. Congrats! This was my 3rd NaNo (I limped across the finish line at 50,049) 🙂 Your publisher’s story makes me cringe at the thought of submitting it for consideration! I’m in the early stages of editing…


    1. Don’t be afraid. Polish it the best you can. Send it out to trusted beta readers and critique partners, polish it a bit more and hit that submit button (or package according to agents’/publishers’ requirements and send out), then start on your next piece. Hopefully, you’ll find a publisher like I did who gave me a gold mine critique with a request to resubmit. If not, keep believing in your work and keep sending out. Eventually, someone will grab it. Good luck and congrats on winning NaNo! Great accomplishment. 🙂 You should feel very proud of yourself.


  2. I think you have a right to feel your sense of accomplishment. I think it is doubly earned since you’ve been struggling with the rewrites on this particular novel.
    As a non-participant, I’m not in a position to judge whether your revision and merge of two works fits the guidelines for NaNoWriMo. What I do know is that it’s an incredible accomplishment.
    I look forward to reading the finished product…from a bookstore in my neighborhood:)


  3. Don’t listen to the naysayers. You should be very, very proud of yourself. You’ve crafted a novel in a way that most writers cannot. Plus others stories at the same time? Your beta readers are going to be very, very busy (and happy, I’ll bet! 🙂 Congrats!


  4. Woot Woot! Congratulations Jenny, you rock! It’s not an easy thing to do to write an entire novel under such time constraints – and I personally don’t care how it happened; I’m just delighted for you that it did. So I say hats off and kudos to you! And you worked on other writing too (which is more than I’ve been able to accomplish since my move, lol – and no, I knew I didn’t have the stamina to participate … but one of these Novembers …) Way to go! ~ Julie 🙂 xox


Please join in

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.