Although I already outlined a lot of my thoughts about this process in a previous post, I figured I'd add a couple more things now that I've reached the finish line of NaNoWriMo.
I've experienced a few distinct phases since uploading my work and receiving my winner's certificate.
Phase One was elation. I mean seriously, I have never written so much fiction in so little time at any other point in my life. That includes school. For some of the veterans of this event, 50k is nothing. They go into the hundred thousands on their word counts. But for a schlub like me, there were definitely times I didn't think I'd make it. If you look at my progress during the course of the month, you can see that I came tearing out of the gate with 10k in five days, but things really took a nosedive in the middle of the month. Initially, when I had lots of outline, I looked forward to coming home and fleshing out those ideas. But it didn't take long for the outline to run out (I'd guess around the 8th of November: note the four day gap), and that was when things really got interesting. I knew where I wanted the story to go, but without the safety net of the outline, it became harder to know just what I should write on a given day.
Phase Two was relief. Now I can finally relax, I thought to myself. Now when I come home I can sit down and fire up a game or the TV without any guilt whatsoever! And speaking of games, my moratorium on video games can finally come to an end!
Phase Three was realization. Even at 50k, my novel isn't done. In fact, realistically I'll probably need another 20-25k words to finish a full first draft of the thing. The ending isn't written yet, and damn it, I want to know what happens.
Finally, Phase Four: resolve. The moratorium must stand. December must be treated just like November. If I don't get this thing done now, I'll never get it done. I've proven to myself I can write 50,000 words in a month.
Now I need to prove to myself I can finish.
So Final Fantasy XII will have to wait.
And you know what? I'm okay with that.