What a month, what a lovely month. NaNoWriMo is over for another year and nothing exemplifies what I did to it quite like this.

That’s right, I made NaNoWriMo my absolute bitch, which was an altogether strange role reversal for myself really. Perhaps I’m getting a little ahead of myself, but I haven’t been this excited since Asda had a sale on my favourite range of Head and Shoulders. This was never even a big deal until my wife taught me the benefits of sniffing around. Now she has me sniffing shampoo bottles like some kind of supermarket junkie. I’m excited, because after thirty days of writing my heart out, I get to say that I’m a winner. I won NaNoWriMo!

Day one got off to a bit of a rocky start when I picked up a wrist injury from going too hard, too fast on my mobile device. To be honest, it surprised me, I never thought that my first repetitive strain injury would come from writing my novel.

The whole experience has changed a lot about the way I approach my writing. Before now I’ve realised that, just like when I read a book, I’m always looking for a convenient place to stop, to take a break, and to do other things. However, with such a high target each and every day, I found myself thinking along those very same lines, just to sneak a look at my running word count to realise that it wasn’t enough. The whole experience kept me honest, and after writing 50,111 words in thirty days, consistently meeting the target whether I spent twelve hours at work that day or not, it’s taught me that I’ve always used the excuse that I don’t HAVE the time to write, when the truth is, I never MADE the time. I think this is the biggest lesson I will take away from all of this. What’s yours?

Despite completing my goal, I still find myself a long way from my novel’s ending, in fact, I’m about half way there. So, while I’ve been pushed for the first half, I need to push myself for the second, which will be the real telling factor on the success of the challenge as a whole. My characters are currently in the biggest pickle of their adventure, and if I’m honest, I’m still unsure how they’re going to rise above it. Tears have been shed. Blood has been spilled. Both in the real world and the one that I’ve created, and it’s been worth every minute.

I have to thank my wife for her continued support through it all. She encouraged me every step of the way and I couldn’t be more grateful for her undying belief. It means a lot to have someone believe in your capabilities, through the highs, and most importantly the lows.

Did you finish NaNo this year? Are you still riding the caffeine high? I’d love to hear about your  experience.