The IceBlock [23]: Happy Belated Thanksgiving + A Milestone

Holy Wow (Maxi), here I am writing again. I'M JUST UNSTOPPABLE!

Okay, okay, I'm still a, lol, since I pulled my all-nighter. 1 A.M. to 7 A.M. this morning, sprinting to finish my 50,000 words for NaNoWriMo but, even bigger than that, sprinting to finish.

I actually felt myself wanting to cry a little this morning when it was all done.

If you see my word count near the top right (or perhaps directly to the right of this post at the time it is published), you'll see that I just barely finished my 50,000 words. 50,015 was my validated count. NaNoWriMo goes through to the 30th, so I technically still have today to write even more for my novel, and in previous years I have continued writing through to the end, and beyond for a week or so. But this year it's not even possible, because my novel is done.

Quite a while back (almost two years ago, in fact), I published my eighth The IceBlock post where I was thrilled because my short story, "Nino's Asylum," was done. Well, I've never been big on short stories - that's partially why I went the extra ten miles with my senior thesis and wrote a third of my first ever novel. The idea of writing a small collection of short stories was painful, so I said no. I want to be a novelist, so a novel is what I'm going to write. It was the idea I spent my first NaNoWriMo in 2011 working on, and it's still a story I treasure and will most definitely finish.

Then, in 2012, I had planned on participating in Camp NaNoWriMo. I asked my boyfriend at the time to throw random ideas my way. My first novel was a dream/nightmare that I had, revised many times over. This time I wanted something completely different - spontaneous, even. I don't remember all the ideas he gave me, but I do remember two words: Harmonica and Py. I sit here remembering all of those, completely floored, because I never thought those few random words would come together into a story I am not only proud of, but that is actually complete.

I started really working on the story in 2013, during my second NaNoWriMo, and when those 50,000 words were finished and I added about 10,000 more post-NaNo '13, I knew that the end was in reach and decided to dedicate 2014's NaNoWriMo to it, too. I figured this year's November would be especially challenging: not only would I have to finish one book, but I'd likely finish it only halfway through the goal word-count and would then have to switch my gears to focus on my first story from 2011.

Turns out it took all 50,000 words to finish only my prioritized story.

It really doesn't matter, though, because I'm done. I've written my first book. I've written a novel-length story. For the first time I feel validated. Like there was a reason why I chose the degree I chose.

Of course being published has a high percent of not happening, for now. If I stick with all of my ideas and put a lot of work into them beyond the first draft, I think I might have a chance. It's like the lottery, but I can't give up if writing is what I care about. What matters is that the first, and hardest, step towards that potential goal is finally complete: my novel is done!!!

Yup, I've said it a billion times in this post because I still can't believe it.

ANYWAY, I want to wish a quick happy belated Thanksgiving to all of those that celebrate it, and for those that don't, I hope you still have plenty of things in your life that make you happy and thankful that they're around. November is coming to a close and I'm ready to get back on track now that my monthly goal has been achieved. I'm ready to blog, and read books I've been wanting to read, and read my own book, too, to see what disaster follows, haha.

I hope you all had a fantastic month, and here's to being back. ('<>')>