It’s official. I’m throwing in the towel. Last night, I decided that it was over. I ended yesterday’s writing with 40,989 words. I thought about making some sort of crazy attempt to cram in the last 9,011 words, but then it began to snow. For most people, the two should have nothing to do with each other, but for me it was a sign.
I grew up in a household that HATED winter. This is a shame since winter can last from October through April here in Michigan. No joke! I have pictures of daffodils covered in snow and it’s not unusual to see flurries before Halloween. But over the years, I’ve come to appreciate the beauty of snow. It covers everything in a white blanket and makes the world look perfect and clean again. Didn’t get a chance to rake up the leaves? Once they’re covered in snow, it doesn’t matter. Kid left his toys in the yard? It doesn’t matter anymore. They won’t be seen again until spring.
In a way, I’ve begun to think of snow as nature’s restart button. It’s a milestone event. Sure the calendar says that it’s technically autumn, but once the first snow sticks to the ground, it feels like winter outside. Snow is such a tangible thing. It physically ends one season, but it starts the new one. In fact, I don’t put up anything Christmas related until it starts to snow. I’ve lived in Michigan my entire life. My body has gotten used to it. I just can’t switch my brain to winter mode until there’s snow on the ground.
The last few days have been filled with NaNo catch up. I got behind on my word count and never caught back up. A lot a factors were involved, but it is what it is. I was going to try and play catch up right up until the finish line. Who knows? I might have made it, and I might not have. I’ve written 10,000 words in a day before. It CAN be done, though I don’t recommend it. Then it snowed. I went outside, and my car was covered in snow. My initial reaction was to grumble. That’s what I’ve been programmed to do since childhood. I wanted to get mad and curse at the weather for potentially ruining my drive home from work, but then something clicked inside of me. Snow. It was snowing outside. It was beautiful. It was magical. The weather had finally made a decision. Autumn was over. I made a decision too. I was done with NaNo. I went home and drug my hubby outside so we could enjoy the snow together. We shared a glass of wine in celebration. I said my goodbyes to this attempt at 50,000 words.
Do I have any regrets? Not at all! In fact, I don’t even feel like a NaNo loser. I have the start of a fun new story. I met some great characters. If it weren’t for NaNo, I’d have never worked on this particular story at all! I’ll finish my NaNo story over the course of the next few days or weeks in true NaNo style, with “wild abandonment.” Once I have a rough draft of my story, I’ll put it away, and then go back to working on my troubled vampire ending that was evading me before NaNo started.
Thank you NaNoWriMo! I look forward to trying again next year. Thank you hubby, family, and friends for being so supportive. Thank you new characters! Rhosyn, you’ve become one of my new favorites. You’ve been an enjoyable character to play with and a good sport! I swear your story WILL eventually be shared with the universe. Your faie family is way too much fun to keep to myself! Finally, a special thanks to everyone who attempted to educate me on Faierie Culture 101. I’m sorry any and all faie advice fell on deaf ears, but the “up north” stories I’ve been getting from these same buddies have been hilarious and incredibly helpful! It’s a Michigan thing. I don’t think you’re allowed to live here unless you have a crazy story about your trip up north. 😉 I love Michigan and all her diversity. I think there’s enough room for all my supernatural characters in this state, be they vampires, faieries, or…whatever!
Have a great day and congrats to any and all NaNo winners!