NaNoWriMo: Why I’m Glad I Did It, and Why I’ll Do It Again

It’s hard for me to believe that it’s been less than a week since NaNoWriMo ended. Although time always seems to speed by quickly, the days of having how I’d get my wordcount in on my mind every day feel far away now that that mentality is behind me. And although that might not sound pleasant, that is exactly what made me realize how much I love NaNoWriMo.

I was so resistant to participating this year, and for good reasons; and yes, some of my other priorities DID suffer (I’m still playing catch-up in my freelance email account). But it was such an important reminder of what it feels like to be a writer. NaNoWriMo keeps me conscious of my writing every single day. It forces me to make it a priority. It also gives people in my life for whom I usually “put writing aside” the opportunity to see what it really means to be a writer who writes. I took my writing everywhere–to Thanksgiving, to my fiance’s house for the weekends I spent there, to Florida for a wedding (although I couldn’t get the technology to cooperate enough for me to actually accomplish anything down there).

Because of this, and because there’s just no time for writer’s block, and because word count is the ONLY thing that really matters, NaNo ends up being a total immersion experience. It allows me to totally sink into the world of my writing in a way I haven’t done since I was a teenager, and writing was my escape from a real world I wasn’t all that thrilled about. I’m endlessly thankful that I’m much happier living in the “real world” these days — but I also appreciated the reminder of how rewarding building and inhabiting another world can be.

I am glad to be taking a break and back in the “real world” full-time again. But I’m already hoping to take the plunge again next year.

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