NaNo wrap up

I’m back! NaNo burned me out and I just needed a break. I apologize for leaving you all hanging for a couple of weeks.

Well, the good news is, I won NaNo. I completed the first draft of a new novella, sequel to the one I’m currently editing. I did it by the skin of my teeth, and only by counting editing time as a part of my word count (yeah, I’m what’s called a NaNo Rebel – don’t mind me). But I did what I set out to do and that’s what’s important. A new first draft. A new adventure for my beloved boys.
The bad news is, it’s terrible. I mean objectively terrible. I’m not happy with the story at all. I’m sure that I can lovingly craft this pile of clay into a sculpture worthy of my boys, but it’ll be an uphill battle all the way.
NaNo has also given me a skewed sense of how (not) to edit – I am constantly afraid of backspacing and my fingers hover over the strikethrough command keys instead. I’m even now thinking, “How could that sentence have been reworded to get me more words?” And I’m checking my word count every few minutes. At least every second paragraph. It’s a little nutso. (214 to this point, in case you were wondering.)

In other news, I’ve been working with my editor and I’m starting my first-round edits on my novel, tentatively titled Falling Apart. Look for it through MLR press in the spring, I hope. No release date yet, but I’m optimistic that spring will be the time. (Dear self: stop checking your word count. It’s a blog post. NaNo is over.) The story is about a rock star, Ryder, who falls for a cowboy, Billy, and their journey together. It’s sweet, spicy, and really reflects what we’re willing to risk for love. I also adore the characters – they really speak to me – so they’re a lot of fun to play with.

Editing has been quite the trip already, and I’m only in the first round. There are notes from my editor that say things like, “You have used this word 157 times in this story.” I’m shocked by the things she noticed that none of my beta readers noticed, and neither did I. It’s a lot of fun to see it from a critical, professional, outside perspective. I also get to write at least one or two new scenes, which will be fun. Having never done this before, I’m excited about the process. I even filled out my cover art request form, and what a trip that was. I keep saying to myself, “I can’t believe I’m doing this!” I’ve probably said too much in these two paragraphs, so I’ll stop gushing.

Now for you: My NaNo competitors, did any of you have success stories you can share? ANY words written count as a win in my book, even if you didn’t get to 50k, so I’d love to hear
what you did.

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