If I thought that NaNo had been difficult last year, then 2014 was a complete nightmare. I wasn’t worried about my slow start and I was away for four days the first weekend of the month to celebrate my little brother’s wedding (gratz! I love you little bro!)
However, each day it got harder and harder to put anything down at all. I pushed back the writing again and again. This went beyond the usual lack of motivation, I was in a deep dark funk. I had weekly appointments with my doctor, half of which I blew off to sleep instead, and my daily medication didn’t seem to be touching the depression in the slightest.
My starting idea was a story called Asylum. I’d recently started playing the game The Evil Within, which had inspired a wild theory about a committed serial killer that I had plans of spinning into a novella. The first two real writing sessions went well, but it quickly became apparent that either my story wasn’t going to pan out or I didn’t have the skills to build on the concept I’d created.
Either way, I abandoned the idea. The sifting around and idea bouncing that I would have needed would have taken too much time and produced too few words to be conducive to the November NaNo rush, so I dug up an old idea and gave it a shot. I returned to Picklekin, Kindlewisp, and the Dragon, which I’d kicked around once or twice in previous years. Again, I stalled, hitting a hurdle that I needed to “workshop” in order to move the story forward.
In the past I might have jumped past the troublesome section and picked up somewhere further down the track and wrung some extra word count that way. This year I just couldn’t do it, so it was on to another idea. All said, there were five different partial stories that I explored, two of which I cannot even talk about, and the last of which is an idea I like, but didn’t manage to do justice to.
The only reason I made it through the word count this year is that I couldn’t stand the thought of not finishing once I started. If I hadn’t even made an attempt, it wouldn’t have been so bad, but there was no way I could have a partial word count marring my record. So, I made it, and that big 7000 word push at the end felt great, so the year wasn’t a complete write-off.