Monday, November 30, 2015

#NaNoWriMo2015 Not winning is still a success

For the last thirty days, I (along with numerous amount of my author friends) took on the task to complete a 50K word novel in 30 days.

Halfway through the month, I was way ahead. My estimated finish date was November 22, I was feeling great.  I started see "NaNoWriMo Winner" badges on my Facebook wall as fellow authors completed the journey.

Then life happened.

I got sick, my kids got sick, housework, the Thanksgiving holiday... you name it. "Hook's Little Mermaid" came to a screeching halt as life took over.

And here I am, the last day of NaNoWriMo2015 and I'm less than 7,500 words from the 50K mark. So close!

But as Dom says in the original The Fast and the Furious. "It don't matter if you win by an inch or a mile. Winning's winning" and apparently, loosing is loosing... or is it?

It took me a year and a half to write my first three books. A good personal accomplishment to be sure, but not exactly a world record. However, thanks to NaNoWriMo I was able to push out nearly 43,000 words in a month. I have never written anything so fast in my life!

So, by not hitting the 50K mark, does that make me... or anyone a looser? No at all, and here's why:

  • You tried. You made a commitment to give it your best. So what if life got in the way; it happens. Your heart said "I'm going to do it" and you gave it your all.
  • You learned something about yourself. Everyone took a different lesson from NaNoWriMo. Mine? I was able to write more in a month than I was able to do in a year with my second book. Your lesson? Only you know the answer to that.
  • You pushed yourself out of your comfort zone. By making the commitment and signing up to NaNoWriMo, you pushed yourself to succeed and you declared it to all those you know. Sure, making it to the finish line feels great. However, the journey there is the part that is the most important.
Yea, I may be rambling on, and I may sound as though I'm making excuses for not succeeding. But I'm not. If I wanted to, I could jump on my computer and throw out seven thousand more words of jumbled content in order to get the "Winner" badge, but instead, I am going to take a step back, look at my book, and keep on trucking during December.

So for those of you who are beating yourselves up about not completing NaNoWriMo, remember these quotes I came across: (sorry, I couldn't find the sources... feel free to comment if you know the sources)

"Sometimes you win, sometimes you learn."
"Sometimes we need to loose the small battles in order to win the war."
"We didn't lose the game; we just ran out of time."

And remember, NaNoWriMo is not a list of winner's and losers. It's a community meant to encourage and motivate. Let it be that for you.


  1. Well said Suzanna! Everyone is a winner even if they didn't hit 50K. It's all about learning what you are capable of and committing to a writing routine.

  2. Love that you quoted Dom. <3

    And this is so true. Words on the page create a success. I always say you can't edit a blank page. What a great post!