I am glad that I gave this a day, which added not only distance, but a better perspective. If I had written yesterday, I would have trounced this experience pretty soundly. Today, feeling as though the stress has finally been alleviated, mostly, I can offer a better opinion.
Two years ago, the novel I wrote, Riot of Purple Profanity, was pretty focused¹. There were a couple of wild tangents, but they fit and didn’t reek of desperation, unlike some of the tangents in Soup’s Off. Also, I don’t remember sitting in front of the screen and literally dragging sentences from my brain so many times as I did this year. Now that could be due to more than the issue of having an outline or not having an outline.
That said, when the writing was flowing, the experience was good fun. For all of you who are writers, you know what I mean. It’s that writer’s high you get when you become absorbed in the story and the words flow. I’ve said it before: there’s no better feeling. Well, take that with a grain of salt.
Will I ever do this again on my blog? Not unless I have an extremely prepared outline that took more than a day to construct. I adhere to: never say never. But we’ll just say, it’s highly unlikely. However, offering it on my blog, held me accountable. Sometimes, we need help with our self-discipline. Let me rephrase that. I need help with my self-discipline.
Writing a novel is such an extremely different process than the flash fiction that I have grown used to writing. Sure, you can be wordy, but when it comes down to it, those words have to work for you almost as much as the words in a flash fiction piece. You can’t become so enamored with your prose deluge that your forget about your prospective reader.
If I do New Year’s resolutions, it will be to practice the longer pieces in order to craft a novel. A real novel.
Lastly, while writing the novel on my blog held me accountable, those of you who showed up and let me know that you were reading, were out there in some fashion, paying attention, helped to the nth degree, and I thank you so much for that!
So, another year of NaNoWriMo ends. The writing doesn’t. Write on!
¹For those of you who didn’t read that novel, but did read this one. Phoebe and the Aunts who show up in Soup’s On were from Riot of Purple Profanity.