What I Learned From NaNoWriMo

I know that NaNoWriMo isn’t officially over yet, but since I hit my 50K I feel like I can say I’m done. Woot!! I still have more to do, but that’s beside the point. Moving on!

Here are a few things I learned along the way while participating—and winning!—my first attempt at NaNoWriMo.

1. I can write everyday. Somedays that will mean I get 5000 words, other days that will mean I get 500. But, I can find the time almost every single day to stick my butt in the chair and write. I did skip a couple of days this month, but I was at DisneyWorld! I get a free pass on days I was at the most magical place on earth for 13 straight hours each day. Seriously, we were there forever. It was awesome!

2. Not every sentence I write has to be an award winner right off the hop. Some of them will suck for a little while and that’s okay because I’ll go back and fix them later. No one has to ever find out about the stinky first attempt sentences…shhh, don’t tell…

3. Turning off my inner editor was harder than I thought, but rewarding when achieved. I like to edit as I go. Write, Edit, Write, Repeat! But it does slow me down a lot. Writing with the freedom of knowing that I’ll come back to it in a little while was kinda nice. *Kinda* but now I really need to go and edit before I chew right through my red pen!

4. My house will not clean itself. Nope, it just won’t. And no amount of wishing, praying, or begging is going to make it start. Damn you stupid non-self-cleaning house!!

5. I can write *a lot* and still be a good mom. I was worried that one would have to suffer for the benefit of the others, but turns out I’m a pretty good mulit-tasker! Go Mom!

6. I get a lot more done when my hubby is away with work. That sounds kinda mean, but it’s totally true. When he’s home, we hang out in the evening, watching shows, talking, and playing video games — I *heart* Fallout Las Vegas. But when he’s away, I don’t turn the TV on. I sit and do stuff like this — yep, right now, writing this here little piece of glorious wisdom 😉 — update my other private family only blog, deal with pictures, etc. oh yeah…and I WRITE! A lot! I write a lot when he’s away in the evening. Still I’d rather have him home.

7. Halloween treats prevent writer’s block. There, I said it. No really, they do! I ate a steady supply of leftover treats and I didn’t have writer’s block once this month. Therefore, those little bite sized morsels of ooey, gooey goodness must cure writer’s block. Hmm, I think there’s a reason that NaNoWriMo starts the day after we all go collect bags full of candy. Now you’re thinking it too aren’t you?

8. Coffee doesn’t make up for lack of sleep. Heather is a cranky, cranky girl with not enough sleep. No one likes a cranky Heather. Don’t poke the cranky Heather, she might bite.

9. I can write quickly when I’m focused, and a lot of it will be not too bad. Some of it will stink up the place, but the rest is staying. Might need a few tweaks here and there, but the bones are good. Every story needs good bones. Good bones help prevent saggy middles.

10. Fellow writer’s — wrimo’s and non-wrimo’s — are AWESOME! I mean really, really awesome. I had no idea how important it was to have a network of peers who you can lean on, ask questions of, answer questions for, learn from etc…the list of greatness just goes on and on. Seriously, the support, encouragement, and cheerleading I received was just great. It makes the lonely job of putting those 50K words on my laptop screen so much more fun. So thanks. I heart you and your comments every time you stop by my blog to support me!

That’s it. That’s all I have. Every pearl of my ultimate (LOL!) wisdom is in those ten…well maybe I have one more…

11. My house won’t clean itself!!! What? How lazy is my house? Seriously, it can’t do the dishes once in a while for me? Not a single little load of laundry to help out the poor, tired writer? Come on!

ETA: Okay, I thought of one more!

12. I should not, repeat NOT think about my current WIP while trying to pull my rather large SUV in or out of my rather narrow garage. I swear I almost took the side mirrors off twice this month!!! Yikes.


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  1. Shoshanna Evers says:

    Fabulous list. Sorry about your house not cleaning itself. I’ve got mine set to auto-clean and… no wait, that’s not true. Darn.

    1. hthurmeier says:

      Sorry to hear your house has an attitude too. What’s with these houses?

  2. Janet Walters says:

    Really chuckled over My house doesn’t clean itself. In an interview I once responded to what was my hobby? I said cleaning house since that’s what you do in your spare time. Nice hearing you made your quota. Now get busy and revise.

    1. hthurmeier says:

      I’m just finishing up the couple of add ins, next up is editing. Exciting!

  3. Leslie says:

    Congrats on NaNo! I can’t wait to read it. Loved your list too.

    1. hthurmeier says:

      Thanks Leslie. I’ll send it to you to read after I go through and do some revising.

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