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I briefly posted last week that I had achieved the goal of completing a 50,000 word novel by November 30th, 2012. This is exciting for me because A) my discipline was able to motivate me and help me forge ahead and B) it’s just proof that I can do it at all.

I recently had an argument with a former classmate on the concept of writing a certain amount of pages for an academic paper within a certain amount of time. Her excuse was that people have lives outside of school and when deadlines are not structured into the completion of the program, it’s nearly impossible to hand in an assignment on time. My reasoning was that if you care about something, you make time for it. It doesn’t have to be a long period of time even – during NaNoWriMo I was always able to find a solitary hour or two to write even during my hectic full-time school/full-time work/full time Hurricane Sandy junk. Why?

Because achieving the goal of NaNoWriMo was important to me.

The amount of effort we put into activities dictates our passion towards them. Think of a high school or class that you excelled in – why do you think you did so well? Because you cared about it enough to put the time in and get a good grade.

And there is definitely a difference between not being able to do something, and not full on not caring. Just because you don’t care about something doesn’t mean you’re a bad person, it just means that you are funnelling your energy and time into stuff that you do care about. I think that’s admirable and everyone has their own priorities. For example, I have math homework that I put off allllll the time to write travel articles instead. Am I the worst person in the world for not wanting to do math? No. It will get done. Just not as fast as I get my travel writing done…

So I am thrilled to have accomplished NaNoWriMo the first time around, and I can’t wait to participate next year. At this point, it’s time to revise and edit the content and see if it is worth publishing. I don’t have a lot of time to dedicate to that now – in the process of finishing schools and possibly moving. After this semester ends, things will be better.

How was your NaNoWriMo experience? Were you able to reach the 50k goal?