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Writers' & Artists' Blog

NaNoWriMo: Winners and Winners

Shea Wong

When winners are winners and losers are winners 


I was chuffed the past week to watch the #Nanowrimo hashtag on twitter. As people hit their 50K, and had their pieces verified, the relief was palpable. My favourites were the writers who were only a few hundred words away, and checking in on social media. They were soooo close, and when their perseverance paid off, it did my heart good to cheer with each of them. 

But what if the clock strikes midnight on Sunday, and you miss your goal? Are you consigned to the loser bin? 

Of course not!

Look, if you hit the 50K, you get the neat prizes that go with it – you get to call yourself a novelist, you get to buy a neat winner’s tee shirt, and you get your avatar changed to announce that you are awesome. But even if you didn’t hit the goal by the end of November, all of us, every single one of us, did an amazing thing this month. 

Those little snippets of ideas and stories and characters that may have been knocking about …

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NaNoWriMo: The End

Rachel Phipps

So, NaNoWriMo finishes this Sunday, and this is the moment where I start making excuses. In all honestly, I could lie to you all and doctor my word count, but where would be the point? I started this project in order to prove something to myself, so there would be no point lying in these blog posts.

I have not written a single word of my NaNoWriMo effort since I wrote my last blog post.

However, while I told myself that I was not going to go off on a self justification tangent as to why this is, making up excuses as I go along, actually I think it is a useful exercise. Why have I not sat down to write anything?

I feel my failure in the last week is two fold, but one cause directly feeds the other. I’m not lying or trying to assuage my own guilt by saying I’ve been insanely busy. Aside from the volunteering which I have been continuing to do, all of my deadlines for writing and recipe development seem to be coming all at once, meaning I’ve seriously had to slot things in and juggle …

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'Winning' NaNoWriMo!

With one day to go, I finally broke 50,000 words.


My overwhelming emotion as I peered at my word count and discovered it was up to 50,400 was relief. As much as I enjoyed the challenge, I’m pleased not to have 1600 words hanging over me every day. I love writing; I sneak moments of clicking keyboard pleasure whenever I get the chance. I revel in made up worlds and nothing makes me happier than sharing my latest fact finding fads with people I’ve never met.

But what I don’t love is schedules. I don’t like having to do anything to a predetermined plan. I achieve my best career work on my day off, the day I’m supposed to be writing. And I create my best fiction at midnight when I need to be up for work the next morning.  Committing to thirty days of ‘must complete’ has been more of a challenge than I could ever imagine. It’s a miracle I completed 27 out of 29 days ahead of the target line.


The first 10,000 words were the easiest with the last …

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NaNoWriMo Final Week: Ashley Newell

Ashley Newell

WE DID IT!

Final Validated Word Count: 50140 


The Writing Process: So my early lead definitely did not continue on. I did reach my last goal of 45,000 last weekend, and then pretty much took a premature victory week and wrote nothing, holding everything back until this weekend. I’m one of the last of my NaNo writing buddies to validate and win, but at least I got it in all in good time – it isn’t even noon yet on day 30!

The Story So Far: This NaNo has been the choppiest year ever! Even last year’s attempt, which only got 15,000 words in before I walked away, didn’t feel choppy, it just felt I had nothing to give. This one feels all over the place, which has made it very difficult to get back into a flow of writing. Just trying to find where I can start writing a needed scene somewhere between all of the layers has made writing this story extra daunting. 

I don’t dislike my story at all; in fact, I still really love the idea of it, and above all, the characters …

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NaNoWriMo: Final Week Slog

Shea Wong

Hello, NaNoWriMo-ers! I don’t know about you, but I’m still furiously typing, trying to shut up my internal editor, and reminding myself that it’s just a first draft, and I will be coming back to revise it in a month or so. We’ve got less than a week to go, so here are some tactical tips to get you ever closer to the magical 50K. 


  1. Have you been on nanowrimo.org yet to verify your word count? Remember, your word application may be different than the official NaNoWriMo counter – I’d hate for you to verify at 11.59 pm on November 30th, only to realize they count hyphenated words differently, and you’re 75 words down. 
  1. Speaking of word count, are you just a few words short, but have neatly finished your piece, and cannot bear to think about writing in a tiny scene or prologue? The find and replace functions in your writing applications are a life saver. Turn those won’ts, can’ts, and should’ves into will nots, can nots, and should haves. Yes, it’s sneaky, but …

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