NaNoWriMo and Why I’m Not Participating This Time

I have won NaNoWriMo five times, and it has helped me complete three different novels.  The premise behind it is that you write a whole novel, 50,000 words, in a month.  It’s a short novel, but still a novel, and I’ve shown that I can do this.  You would think I’d be the biggest fan of doing this because, hey, it worked for me, right?

Spoiler: I’m not.

Don’t get me wrong, NaNoWriMo has done great things for me.  It has shown me I’m capable of the marathon of a novel, forced me to finish novels, forced me to write at a pace I never thought I could, and has given me multiple first drafts.

Multiple crappy first drafts.

The amount of effort needed to fix my NaNo Novels is… immense.

But more importantly, I need to be able to write when I’m NOT on a deadline.  That’s what’s really getting me.  I can’t just wait around for one of the events to occur and then drive myself into the ground hitting word count.

I need to be able to sit down daily or weekly or whatever works for me… and write.

I’ve proven time and time again that I can thrive on deadlines, and while they stress me out to ridiculous levels, I always rise to the occasion.

But I don’t write hardly ever when it’s not NaNoWriMo.

That’s NOT COOL.

So this year, I’m plotting my novel during NaNo… but I would have been plotting it regardless.  And as soon as I’m done plotting, I’m going to write it.

Without NaNoWriMo.

Without deadlines.

To prove I can.

Have you participated in NaNoWriMo?  Did you win?  Do you write daily or set goals for yourself outside of NaNo?  Inquiring minds want to know!