The spirit of NaNo

As November comes to a close I can either panic at how far behind I am, or I can reflect. This year, I’m choosing to reflect. In the Facebook group for my NaNo region, someone mentioned that though they knew they wouldn’t ‘finish’ this year, they were still grateful for the progress they had made.

This, ladies and gentlemen, is the spirit of NaNo. At its heart, NaNo teaches us that consistency is the root of progress, and without progress, we have nothing. NaNo teaches us that a little bit each day adds up and that yes, we can make time in our busy schedules if we want it badly enough. NaNo teaches us to make us a priority.

Now, maybe you think that’s a stretch. Maybe you think the spirit of NaNo is the competition and the camaraderie and to that, I say – you’re right. But I think it’s because the competition and camaraderie lead us to the consistency and the progress.

If we’re open to the lesson, rather than just the words, it teaches us that yes, finishing is important, but so is trying.

So, as my word count is lagging (this month has been more trying than most – including the death of my much loved grandmother who fostered my love for reading, writing and language in general) I’m going to remember that even if I don’t finish, I tried.


One Comment Add yours

  1. Alex says:

    I wholeheartedly agree with you on this. I haven’t ever successfully completed a NaNo, which is something I used to be kind of ashamed of (I even went as far as to delete the “failed” projects from my dashboard). But one day I was rereading a project from Camp NaNo and I realized that I was actually pretty proud of what I had accomplished. I may not have hit my goal, but I sat down and wrote every day for a couple weeks, and that experience was more valuable to me than hitting an arbitrary word count would have been. So when you say that NaNo teaches us it is important just to try, I couldn’t agree more. That’s definitely what it’s taught me!


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