NaNoWriMo 2023 participation badge

Fifty Thousand Words in One Month aka NaNoWriMo 2023

Sounds crazy, right? When you consider 50,000 words is roughly half the average novel, that’s quite the undertaking, never mind having to do it within one month.

Let’s break that down. Writing 50,000 words in one month equals 1,667 words per day. 

Now that doesn’t seem so bad, does it? Let’s consider it from a different angle.

During the month of October, I wrote Here Lies Vincent Jacobs as part of my YOU ChooseDay feature. I wrote 4,500 words in two and a half hours on a Wednesday evening. That makes trying to write 1,667 words for the entire day seem like child’s play.

But don’t be fooled by what was a great writing session. 

One of the other YOU ChooseDay stories, Mama’s Gift, would not come out on the Wednesday night. I wrote nothing meaningful and only listed the prompts that my readers voted on and stared at the screen. Finally late Thursday evening the story slowly crawled out of my head and its 2100 words was a struggle.

Add to the challenge that I work full time 8-5 every single weekday and many evenings my brain is fried leaving me incapable of doing anything except stare at the TV. So writing every day to meet the challenge will be something quite extraordinary.

So, no pressure.

Despite the challenging circumstances, every year thousands of writers participate in the National Novel Writing Month challenge (aka NaNoWriMo). While some stories are abandoned after the challenge, there are also many more that go on to be published, which is ultimately the goal.

This is my second NaNo. Back in 2012, I informally participated and knocked out about two-thirds of a novel. I was dabbling with a blog at the time and my intention was to focus on writing and kick off my career. Naturally, life happened and I put the book aside, attempting a few times since then to revive the story. 

In hindsight, the problem was clear – 1 I didn’t have the confidence I do now in my writing and 2 I never saw the ending. Age and experience took care of the confidence, and all the effort I’ve put into learning has shown me that I was writing without an end goal in mind. Now that I can break down the structure to apply a beginning, middle and end, I am sure I could finish that book. However, I’ve re-read the beginning so many times that I can’t see it with fresh eyes. The story is worth writing, but I intend to step away from it long enough to have a bit of amnesia.

In the meantime, my short story adventures have sparked a book idea. I’ve hinted at it but now I can officially tell you, that Here Lies Vincent Jacobs is asking to be written in further detail, with surprising sub-plots to unravel into a sinister tale. 

This is my NaNoWriMo 2023 project. Are you as excited as I am?

The plan is to publish on the 1st of July 2024, so that’s eight months of build-up that y’all will have to endure before you can read the finished book. Obviously, I’ll share teasers along the way – like the back blurb, the cover reveal, and maybe a chapter here and there. You’ll have to subscribe here on my blog, and of course, follow my social media to keep up to date.

But let’s not get ahead of ourselves yet.

I still need to get through the month of November. I will do a weekly update on my blog, with daily word count updates on social media. Luckily the book doesn’t have to be finished within November, only the first 50,000 words. I’ve got this whole timeline worked out and there are some important milestones along the way that I’ll share too.

Because of NaNo and the demands it’ll put on my creativity, time and energy, the YOU ChooseDay feature will no longer be weekly, and it’ll skip the entire month of November. From December onwards, YOU ChooseDay will be the first Tuesday of the month. That means y’all still get a short story to read once a month, and I can share loads of other content during the rest of the month.

See? Exciting times are ahead! As always, share your thoughts in the comments or click on the contact page to send me a direct message. 

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Scroll to Top