Sunday, January 24, 2016

2015 NaNoWriMo: 50 hours, 5 holiday drinks, 1 novel


Toasted Graham Latte
Remember when I said I was breaking the rules for NaNoWriMo2015? Well, my one-month 50-hour novel editing challenge turned into 3 months and 52 hours. Finally, today, I have finished editing my novel. 

This whole experience has been an amazing learning opportunity. Not only did I learn about the process of editing a novel - as well as  the time and skill involved - but I also learned a lot about myself. Now that I am living in the U.S. again and working a regular 9-5, I'm finding new and different challenges that impact my writing. 

Location, Location, Location
Peppermint Mocha
Having a 40-hour-a week computer job is not the only hiderance to my ability to write. Living within a short drive of many friends and family also takes time away from writing. While I was living in rural Japan, I had few social distractions to keep me from writing in the month of November. Here in Portland, where I live near 15 family members and about 20 friends, it's a completely different experience. 

Cafes vs. Couches
Eggnog Latte
I need to have a comfortable private space to be creative. Haven’t I learned this already? The fantasy of spending all day café hopping is really an illusion. In reality I can’t work at a café longer than 2 hours and if I don’t have a space where I can get into comfortable clothes and use the bathroom as many times as I want and take naps on the couch then I am not a productive writer/editor. 

The Great Escape
I can be very productive on get-a-ways as long as I have a regimented schedule. Much like my writing retreat in Okayama on my first NaNo, taking a retreat to my partner's empty condo in Portland this December enabled me to edit for 8 hours in one day.

Caramel Brulee Latte
 Breakdown
 When I hit a point in the story where major plot revising is needed, it helps to take a break and come back to it. This happened twice. Once when I decided to re-write an old character who I had previously deleted back into the book. The second time when I wanted to majorly rework a couple scenes in the opening chapters. 

Overall, I learned that I actually am capable of writing a novel. Start to finish. I can do it all. And now that I am looking at the finished product, I am pretty damn proud.

Gingerbread Latte
Editing my 117,000 word novel was not my only objective this winter: I was also on a quest to sample every holiday drink at Starbucks this season. 

While overseas, I missed the delicious holiday lattes, but once I returned to the states I found that Starbucks drinks are just too damn sweet. Two years in Asia must have altered my senses. Now I'm completely grossed out my these syrupy American drinks. Oh well....






What an editor's schedule looks like:
Month Date Comments Time Time Words
November 1   0   10598
November 2   0    
November 3   0    
November 4   2 5:00-7:00  
November 5   2 5:45-6:30, 7:20, ~8:35~9:10 7275
November 6   0   7126
November 7   2 1:30-2:30, 8:00-9:00  
November 8 lots of writing 3 5:45-7:45 10822
November 9 plot crisis 2 6:15-7:15~8:30 4714
November 10   0   5764
November 11   0    
November 12   0    
November 13 major restructuring 1 5:30-6:30  
November 14   1 7:40-8:40 515
November 15 lots of writing 2 6:00-7:00, 7:20-8:20 4487
November 16   1 9:00-9:30, 10:00-10:30 7162
November 17   1 8:20-8:50, 1:15-1:45 1745
November 18   0.5 8:15-8:45 2104
November 19   1.5 4:20-5:50  
November 20   0   1730
November 21   3 7:20-8:20, 10:17-12:17  
November 22   2.5 4:00-5:00, 9:30-11:00 7583
November 23   0.5 12:35-1:05 4380
November 24   1 6:10-6:40, 11:00-11:30 968
November 25   1 5:10-6:00 555
November 26 plot crisis 0    
November 27   0    
November 28   0    
November 29   0    
November 30   0    
December 1 restructuring 1 10:00-11:00  
December 2   0    
December 3   0    
December 4   0    
December 5   0    
December 6   0    
December 7   0    
December 8 restructuring 0.5 6:00-6:30  
December 9   0    
December 10 restructuring 0.5 12:30-1:00  
December 11   0    
December 12   0    
December 13   0    
December 14   0    
December 15   0    
December 16   0.6 6:22-7:02 2245
December 17   0.4 8:20-8:40 922
December 18   0    
December 19   0    
December 20   1 10:00-11:00 1490
December 21   1.5 6:00-6:40, 11:00-11:50 3446
December 22   0    
December 23   2 6:00-7:00, 10:30-11:30 4575
December 24   0    
December 25   0    
December 26   8.5 8:25-9:25, 9:30-12:30, 1:15-2:30, 4:45-5:45, 9:20-11:35 26486
December 27   1 9:00-10:00 377
December 28   0    
December 29   0    
December 30   1 7:00-8:00  
December 31   0    
January 1   0    
January 2   0    
January 3   0    
January 4   0    
January 5   0    
January 6   1 12:20-12:50, 9:00-9:30 4334
January 7   0    
January 8   0    
January 9   0    
January 10   1 1:37-2:37 1268
January 11   0    
January 12   0    
January 13   2 5:30-6:30, 9:20-10:20 2286
January 14   0    
January 15   0    
January 16   0    
January 17   0    
January 18   0    
January 19   0    
January 20   0    
January 21   0.5 12:40-1:10 1925
January 22   1.5 12:36-1:06, 6:00-7:00 4626
January 23   0    
January 24 lots of writing 1 3:15-4:15 2374



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