Tuesday, July 3, 2012

A Novel Writing Challenge

Report: JuNoWriMo 2012

At the start of this year, I had set a goal to finish my current Work in Progress before November. I wanted this one done and out of the way so I could start fresh with a new WiP for NaNoWriMo.

Then, I heard about June Novel Writing Month.

It was literally the day before it was to start, and I quickly did the math – story problem style of course.

"If your goal is to finish a book in a year, how much more could you accomplish if you complete the first draft in June...?"

June was going to be a busy month for me, so I knew I had to figure that in and take into account the number of days that I would be unable to put fingers to keyboard or pen to paper. At the end of my calculations, I decided to set a personal goal of 25-30k words for the month.
So I strode onward, without the slightest idea of what I was getting myself in to.

Most days, I didn’t meet the required minimal 1600-plus word count. I probably averaged between 800-1000 on my writing days. A few days were really bad and I logged less than 200 words, but then again, there were couple of awesome days when I managed to produce around 3000 words on my WiP.

At the start of the last week in June I was hearing some stellar reports from other JuNoWriMo’ers who had already surpassed the 50k mark. I was feeling pretty blue about my own seemingly insignificant word count and depressed because I was unable to write that whole last week.

But then it suddenly dawned on me; I had already written more than that anyway.

Keeping with the math theme, I want to share an estimation of my total word count for the month of June. I’m not trying to brag, just want to humbly share.

  • At work (a weekly newspaper) around – 25,000 words.
  • For my blog and guest posts – 8,000 words.
  • Long hand in my journal, approx. – 1,200 words.
  • When you figure in my JuNoWriMo total of 26,358 words, you get a grand, estimated total of: 60,558.

I’m elated by that number, especially because I missed writing eleven days last month.

I know for a fact that my fingers have just produced more words than they ever have in any other 30-day period in my life.

And now I really can't wait for NaNoWriMo to see what I can do now that I know what to expect!

Did you this year or have you ever participated in JuNoWriMo? How did you do?

Plus, don’t forget to check back Thursday for my first ever author interview! There’ll be prizes!


  1. Hi Amanda, I like the way you think. You wrote a heck of a lot in June. You should be proud. June was such a great month for all of us. And, so happy to have made such great new bloggie friends.

    1. Thanks Sydney, for stopping by, reading, commenting, prodding, encouraging, being one of my new bloggie friends, and on and on!

  2. Well done Amanda - I really enjoy the challenge of NaNoWriMo but once a year is enough for me!

    1. I heard about NaNoWriMo for the first time last year and am determined to do it this year! When someone suggests to me to plan something in November, I'm like, "No! Not this year!"

      Thanks for reading and commenting - hope you'll visit again!

  3. I haven't done the June writing challenge, I was a little too late for it. Your numbers are really impressive here though. You can only get better, with every word that you type! So be proud of yourself! You've accomplished a great deal and you have still so much yet to achieve. (:

    1. Thanks Katie for the encouragement! You should look to join me in November for NaNoWriMo!

  4. Great job!! They are doing one in August as well, but I will be editing my novel so I think I'll just participate in November :) Any tips you can give me would be fantastic!

    1. I heard about CampNaNoWriMo in August, but I think I'm just going to do the November one - between now and then, I'm going to be asking for tips and tricks from others who have completed it and then put together a post!

      Thanks for reading and for the encouragement!

  5. A great report! As someone who "failed" JuNoWriMo, I like your way of doing your word count. Although I "only" wrote 17.000 words for my WIP during the month of June, I did write for my blog and at work, and your post reminded me of that :)Also JuNoWriMo was a great opportunity for me to meet fellow writers and that, in itself, was a good reason to join!

    1. Wahoo! 17,000 is still a huge number! It may be less than 50k, but it's more than one! And even if you did only get one word in during the month, look at it as one more word than you had before.

      I agree about meeting new people during JuNoWriMo. There are so many great writers out there who are so willing to support and encourage - I know I couldn't have gotten through without them.

      Thanks for visiting and commenting EM!

  6. I tanked JuNoWriMo...

    Maybe I was too hell-bent of building a web/social media platform, doing book cover designs, etc to really focus on my writing.

    I think it came down to the pressure, though. It felt like a commitment, and I was staring at my word count more than I was trying to develop a great story.

    In total, I only got about 11,000 words. I wouldn't let @SocratesPug pee on that manuscript.

    You seemed to embrace this challenge properly, though, and 26K+ words is a great start. It shows that you CAN do it, and by the time NaNoWriMo comes, you're going to mess that 'ish up!


    1. Haha! Thanks AM, and hey, 11k is nothing to snub at! I just surely hope you would not let @SocratesPug pee on any of your manuscripts! (they can't all be THAT bad!) lol

  7. Hi Amanda!
    Well done. I didn't realize there was a June Writing month. I did the NaNoWriMo and thought, "why couldn't I do that every month?" But then, when would I edit the FAST DRAFTS? Commitment and discipline to your work will make you a published author some day. Never give up. You have more drive than many people I know.
    Write on-
    Random Writing Rants

    1. Thank you Michelle - Hope I'll get to catch up with you at NaNoWriMo this year. It'll be my first and I'm really looking forward to it!

  8. I signed up for JuNoWriMo this year...I loved the sprints on twitter. I wrote every chance I could... I finished with somewhere over 7,000 words. Total. For the MONTH. Yeah. It was a bad month. My worst since November and NaNoWriMo (my first, no I didn't win that one either). I'm okay with that. You know, I may not have gotten any writing done in June if not for JuNoWriMo. So it's a win for me. I have three young children, and I just can't do it. I know people who can, but I'm not one of those.

    I only sort of started the novel for NaNo, I had somewhere under 10K prior to that. I now have 107K. It's not done yet. I just keep plugging along. I try to write approximately 20K a month. That's my goal. I've done it twice. I've gotten close several other times. And then there are months like June. Ah well. The point is to just keep going until it's done. I appreciate the community it gives me more than anything else. I don't need the insane motivation. I don't think I should give up everything else in my life to finish a 50K goal in a month. That's just me. I'm glad it worked for you. :)

    1. Just keep plugging away Lissajean. A 20k goal per month is pretty good. The community was most certianly the best part of JuNoWriMo for me too :) And thanks!


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