Not. Enough. Time.

Two weeks before NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month) started I was ready to go. Had my characters in order, plot planned, and outline prepared. I also had three people lined up to interview for my blog.

What I didn't know; my manuscript for my YA novel, The Keeper, would be ready for more edits on day one of NaNo, and my adult contemporary would need a little more work before the publisher would accept it.

In the meantime, the kids both had big soccer tournaments, we had visitors from out of town, my mom came to visit for a week, illness took hold of the house (twice), and and Rachel Caine's current Morganville Vampire book came out. To really screw things up a virus hit my computer! I lost 60% of my edits and the were darn good too. I wanted to cry. I learned a lesson that day. I was too lazy to back it up online or find my thumb drive to save it to, and poof, it was gone. No going back. I tried every means to recover the file. It was a no-go. Everything on the computer that week was simply gone, like it never existed. I reworked those edits, but I know they were no where near as good as the first round. I was secretly holding on to the thought of finishing my new novel, but when Thanksgiving came and went, I knew NaNo and I were over.

What did I learn from all of this?

First and foremost, to back up all of my work, no matter how lazy or tired I am. Secondly, life keeps going no matter what, and you have to deal with it. Sure, I didn't receive a nifty icon for "winning" NaNoWriMo, but I really did win in the end. I have 5,000 words I wrote towards that novel and I think it has potential to be a good story. It's on the back burner for now, but I will get to it one day. I've also met a lot of neat people during the short stint with NaNo and I plan to keep in touch.

I probably won't attempt NaNo again. It's a bad time of year for me. Even without working the edits, it was a hectic month, and it will be much of the same again next year. And maybe next year I will be working on edits again!

NaNo isn't for me, but I can see how it's good for others. It helps people who need that extra nudge to get started, or people who haven't written in a long while it gives them a jump start. I've also seen people use it for current works in progress to help move things along.

I've been working edits again for a week and a half, same book, and things are getting in the way. Again. Story of my life. I've worked 52 volunteer hours during that time for a Santa Shop at the elementary school. This took away a huge chunk of my writing time. A dear friend of mine was having problems with a creepy stalker guy, and I wanted/needed to be there for her. My kids are starting indoor soccer now, and it's tournament time. Had to hit up a meeting for my daughter at school, and helped her work on her volunteer hours at a local bookstore, and there is yet another illness working it's way through the house. I will get things done regardless. It can be stressful, but I really do love my life, and wouldn't change it for a thing :)

<3 Natalie


  1. You're amazing. And you ARE a NaNo winner. Who cares about a little icon? I'm not sure if I'll do NaNo again either--I did find it very helpful--but I've also learned that keeping a balance in all things is most important. I'm still recovering from November!

  2. Thank you, Morgan. I could hug you :) I will be recovering until mid January probably LOL.

  3. OMG, I'm exhausted just READING your post! Don't worry about NaNo. You had more important things to focus on. Good luck with everything and remember to take a few minutes out for yourself somewhere in the next couple of weeks!


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