The Long Road to a NaNoWriMo Victory


Greetings children!
Shall we have a story time?
I have quite a story for you all. Perhaps it isn’t so interesting, but please bear with this circus’ ringmaster! She would like to get some things off her chest!
As you can all see from the right panel of my blog (and that nice pic up there), I actually managed to finish my NaNoWriMo this year!
I honestly took a day to process it all. I was emotionally and mentally exhausted. All I wanted to do was sleep. 
The first time I attempted NaNo was 2010.
It was the first time I attempted to write anything, besides my journals, which I still write to, from time to time. (My life isn’t that exciting!) My writing has been stagnant for years and after much coaxing from my future creative partner, I decided, why the hell not? 
I posted my NaNoWriMo entry here on my blog and as you can all see, nothing happened, story-wise. It’s just a bunch of thoughts that went through someone’s consciousness. What I didn’t know was that it was my starting gun. After a few months, I went on to write for comics for anthologies and planned to make a webcomic(s)!
(As you all can see from the links, Lindsy and I have been very busy for the past year. We wouldn’t have done it without support from our families, friends, and people that we’ve met online and random strangers who gave us so much support and believed in us. It’s amazing, every day.)
I would have attempted NaNo in 2011 but I was going through many things and I believe I would not accomplish much – I still have the story in my head though. I may write it later on.
But this year, I had no excuse.
But I was terrified.
Not because I did not know what to write. Not because of the fear of messing up, boring plots, criticism, etc. – that I can deal with.

I am terrified of losing my work.

50K words is a lot of work. I had terrible experiences when I was in my teens.
The story I wrote was post-apocalyptic. It started off when people were evacuating and I stopped towards where the survivors were just starting off to adapting to their new environment. I wrote it on paper because that was how I wrote back then. And besides, that was back in the early 90’s. Household PCs weren’t as common whereas now, you have at least a laptop, a PC and a smart phone, plus a tablet. 
I wrote feverishly. It was as if the universe bestowed its best muses to me all at the same time and I needed to write down everything they whispered in my ears. 
I will never forget that feeling. 
I wrote as if there was no tomorrow and I had insomnia back then so you can imagine the amount of work I managed to get done despite day to day school assignments and babysitting duties. I filled a notebook, with neat handwriting. I covered each page, front and back with glorious words.
What could be so bad about that?
Well you see, children, those pages were all torn from different notebooks. So I had stacks of papers piled up together and I kept it in between another notebook. 
One day, I left my notebook to concentrate on school work since it was the finals and I was cramming. I got home, did my homework, studied for a bit and then, I decided, it was time to go back to writing my story!
It was then I realized that my mother (bless her soul!) threw a whole stack of things that she thought were rubbish.
It was all gone.
I cried and mourned for months. I blamed myself for being careless.
After a year, my father decided that we should have a computer at home! Finally! Surely, this time I will not lose any work!
So, I attempted a rewrite.
Plot-wise, I changed some things and was overall very happy with it.
I saved it on a floppy disk (does anyone still know what that is?!) and believed that my work was guarded by the Cerberus itself.
One day, as I inserted the disk into the drive, waiting for the window to pop out – it happened to me again.
There was an error on the disk and that I had to erase the file completely in order for it to work.
I did everything I could do to save my work but it was pointless.
My work was gone again. I wondered if it was really bad luck or that it was written in the stars that I should never ever attempt to write a novel.
So as I wrote this year’s NaNo, I saved my work everywhere.
I saved it on my email, my Dropbox, my blog, my external hard drive, my computers at work, my laptop and a flash drive.
I was paranoid.
But I had the right to be, since I had two awful experiences.
Day 18 of NaNo, the same experience occurred! Oh yes it did!
The file on my flash drive was corrupted and so were the files on my laptop.
Either I was very unlucky or someone doesn’t like me…
I was smart enough to save everywhere but I was careless once again. I did not update the other files. 
I lost at least 8K words of my work.
8K words!!!
I panicked.
Who wouldn’t?
I had less than two weeks until NaNo wrapped up. Did I even remember where my plot was going? Did I have the time? Lindsy was trying to convince me to read the pep talks in the NaNo site but I refused. What if I convince myself to give up what I was writing? (I finally read the pep talks today and I have to say, everyone’s so encouraging. It’s such a breath of fresh air!)

I was scared. What if I don’t finish this again? How will I ever overcome this stupid bad luck? So many questions. So very little answers.

But as you all can see, I ploughed through.
I worked during the day and I barely slept. The most I slept was two to three hours at most. Finishing this novel became the single most important thing for me for the next 12 days.
I am surprised that I actually had a legit story and it all actually made sense! Ha!

For a whole month, I have slaved and wondered each day whether I was going to go through it. 

I have and what a journey it has been!

*cue fireworks all over the circus*

It was exhilarating and I thank you everyone for taking the time to reading this very long post from the very bottom of my caged heart.
A bid you all, a good night! *bows*

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