Yesterday I wrote my 25,000th word. By the NaNoWriMo definition of a novel, that means I’m halfway done. I continue to be amazed that by just continuing to plod along on this, a little bit at a time, every single solitary day, I seem to be actually making progress toward writing my very first, probably truly horrible, novel.
However, today I broke two rules. I now know why I shouldn’t have. The first is Stephen King’s rule to never review your first draft until you’ve let it sit for at least a month (I think he said a month – but I’ve already returned On Writing to the library, so I can’t confirm this). I can see the benefit in letting it all just marinate for a while before returning to the beginning. I just skimmed the first fifteen pages today. When I go back for a real read of the whole thing, I’d like for it to feel completely new. I felt a little of that today – details I’d written in the early pages that I’d forgotten all about, but letting it sit a few more weeks would have been better.
The second rule broken was the NaNoWriMo rule to never attempt to edit your November draft until December 1st. For one thing, I didn’t need the discouragement halfway through the process of trying to make literature out of the, um, swill that I wrote at the beginning of the month. Better to finish this project while I still have momentum and the (perhaps overly optimistic) belief that something good could come of this one day. Having peeked back at the beginning pages is a dose of reality. I’m still optimistic, but it’s apparent that there will be a lot more work required than I like to think about after this first draft is completed.
So, enough procrastinating. I still have 2,300 words to write today. Time to press on.