The NaNoWriMo Postgame Report

Though I didn’t write as many words as last year and I’m setting aside the manuscript to work on something else, I still won. So NaNoWriMo isn’t going to be over for a while.

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Enough of that silliness. Can you tell I’m a little slap-happy?

Oh, boy, was this an interesting NaNoWriMo.

Let’s start with this bit from a post on my blog:

I let it sit for a while, got some very positive feedback that was encouraging and finally got around to editing it. Recently I sent the book to a publisher and got a great note back asking for some changes and to resubmit it.

That note came about ten days or so before the beginning of NaNoWriMo. It changed the whole month for me. I set some very modest goals of hitting the 50K mark by the end of the month, to average 2K words per day, then to write every day.

I made all those goals until I ended my run on November 21, the draft of this year’s manuscript still unfinished. Really only about half done.

My last goal for NaNoWriMo was to have a draft of the book done by December 31. That’s still possible but it’s going to be close.

See that quote above? The one that says ‘resubmit’? That’s what dragged me off-course for writing in November. I got to 50K as quickly as I could (with the help of everyone in the Cafe, the writer’s group and some very nice people in the Twitterverse) and then I switched gears to edit last year’s novel. I’d like to see that one published.

And if it gets to that point, I’ll have another book already done and waiting if the publisher is willing to look at it. Kind of writing on spec but with a clear goal, I suppose.

Last year’s book wouldn’t have been done without the incredible support of my cohort in the Cafe and this year’s book will get done the same way, just not on the same schedule.

Adding into the mix is the fact that I have a new job and am commuting 40 minutes or so every day. That time is what I would spend writing in the evenings and exercising in the mornings. So when I consider that I had a new routine to go along with the challenges I set myself – modest thought they were – I’m really proud of what I accomplished.

What I’m looking forward to is reading several manuscripts again this year like I did last year. I’m curious to see what the crew has come up with. I got a lot of inspiration in reading others’ works as I read them. They definitely informed the editing process on last year’s book.

So all in all, this was a really successful NaNoWriMo despite my accomplishments last year. Next year will likely be better as I get more settled into the routines of the new day job and hopefully see some better responses from publishers. The coming year is looking really, really bright.

Back to you in the studio.

Jason Arnett is a storyteller living in Kansas and writing in the plains of the fantastic. Some of his work can be found at

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