There are traditions in NaNoWriMo as in many things we humans do. And I'm known as a sucker for traditions - or any form or rite or ritual.
One of the traditions is a "List of things I learned doing NaNo". Tempting as that may be, it has as a basis the assumption that one has learned. That's stretching things in my case.
I'll do with the simpler "post mortem" analysis of how the month of November went. If you look to the right on this blog, you'll get an overview of how things went. On a day-to-day basis - not nearly as well as they might.
I began with some preparation, a few (brief) character studies, a (small) set of scenes and how they would play out. The intent was not to do a full outline of the story, but to get the bones laid down. The meat would come (ever hopeful as I am) during the month.
As it turned out, I never got more than the handful of scenes together. I kept telling myself during the month that I should take the time to create more scene sketches. Didn't happen. The ending of the story came to me about the middle of the month. However, I was quite concerned that I didn't know how to get from where I was to where I could see the story end. For a long time I was uncertain the story had fifty thousand words in it. Again - wrong.
I did add one or two more character sketches as I went along - largely so I could remember their names.
The other pre-NaNo tradition upheld was the buying of some new Levenger writing pads. It would not do to run out before the month end. Given the number I bought, there was no danger of that happening.
I had planned to use my Visconti Homo Sapiens fountain pen for the entire 50,000 words. Not so easily done when the ink runs out before the idea does. In such cases I just grabbed the nearest one with ink, and continued. There are parts of my novel written in a delicate shade of green and others in a rich navy blue. These courtesy of two Aurora Optima fountain pens.
I discovered it is best not to write a huge number of words with a pen where it's not possible to see how much ink has been drawn in at the last filling - or how much is left. The Homo Sapiens is a joy to write with and, even at speed, makes my handwriting look good. But the uncertainty of how much ink remained finally got to me.
I fell back on my excellent black and gold Waterman Carène. A beauty of a pen, and a beauty to write with.
But I let the time get away from me, in a most unforgivable way. The last day was a long-distance sprint. If that description seems to contain a contradiction, so be it. It also describes the eleven thousand plus word day quite well.
However, as can be seen, I made it. It was very difficult to come down from the high the day after. And, why would I want to?