I was going to write an article on what I learned following NaNoWriMo last week, but I have been a bit busy doing absolutely nothing besides watching The X-Files on Netflix and eating cookies. So, so many cookies. To be honest, I think I’m suffering from Post-NaNoWriMo Depression. I can say that The X-Files safely lives up to all the hype I have ever heard about it and then some. [Also, for some reason even though I have watched it a multitude of times in marathon form on The Sci-Fi Channel (Sci-Fi Channel Fourth of July, I’m looking at you), I have only ever seen the first season prior to my lapse into slovenly heaven.] I can also say that cookies are by far the most satisfying of pastries, and I used to make cake for every single occasion in life. I never enjoyed eating cake quite the way I enjoy eating a cookie… but oh, I digress. That sort of train of thought has been the running idiosyncrasy since November ended. I completed my novel at 2:00 AM EST November 30 with a clocked in word count of 50,008. There was laughter and there were tears. It was that insane combination where you’re deliriously tired, yet overtly joyous all at the same time. I spent a couple of days getting congratulated and drinking champagne, but honestly after a day of soaking it in, I began to feel like a big fraud. Like everything I had just accomplished was some how, nothing at all.
Now that NaNoWriMo is over, I have this sort of sinking anxious feeling setting in. I have this large, unedited novel manuscript that I am at times quite proud of and at times utterly nervous about. The ambivalence makes me feel stir crazy. I want to work on it right away, but I know that would probably be an unwise move. The self-control makes me feel listless. It’s a never-ending cycle and thus, I have sat for the past week watching Mulder and Scully see fantastical things. Which, I guess hasn’t been all bad if you look at the first week of December as a vacation for me, which is probably what I’m going to do. I am pretty aware of my need to reflect on the idea of enjoying the process. I enjoyed writing a novel so much. My blog entries were sporadic at best during the month of November because of this love. It was the most cathartic, addicting experience I have had in a while and has caused an unsettled stirring within me to see the rest of the world so that I can continue to improve upon my craft. Even if it’s just a slow process of one foot in front of the other with a journal in a backpack (probably not). I learned from NaNoWriMo that you congratulate yourself for writing the beast, even if it’s only the first step in a long process. 50,000 words is a lot of words, after all. Maybe not nearly as much as some people write in a month, but it was definitely amazing to see what my mind could do and what my fingers could do, too. I do have some other projects in the back of my head that I’ve been thinking about and a little over half a month to kill before I start working on my novel editing full-time. It feels practically Kismet.