30 November, 2006 - 12:39am local time.
Call that puppy done.
(My bride, incidentally, finished two days prior, but only had 50,597 words. That's right: I wasn't going to quit writing until I had surpassed that number. Another buddy of mine, who shall remain nameless, has verified on his NaNoWriMo author profile, has written 101,912 words... Steve, we hate you.)
And how is my novel? Is it the gripping page-turner that is destined to climb the ranks of the New York Times best-seller list? Is it an epic work of fiction, destined for awards and an eternal place on the mandatory summer reading lists of high school juniors? Are there three coherent sentences strung together in one place? Well, ok, yes to that last one. Maybe.
Hey, it's about quantity, people, not quality. And while I did have a good time writing it, and surprised myself a couple of times during the process with unplanned events or characters that seemed to fall out on the screen unexpectedly, like when you find that stale, overlooked piece of popcorn in the bottom of the air popper, but hey, it's only been a couple of days since you put it away, after all, so why not eat it? No one's judging you here. I actually ended up with a piece of work that's nowhere near completed, and rough enough around some of the edges that you could use the print out to sand down that rusty metal porch chair you keep meaning to fix, but with a couple of pretty solid, halfway likeable characters, and a framework that could be readable, given some work. But it was fun to do, and hey - what did you accomplish in the last 30 days, eh? That's what I thought. But don't worry. There's always next year.
Now that we're done, I can get back to all of the normal hobbies that I've dropped this past month. Like reading, or playing the banjo, or regular showers.
You may now bask in the glow of our accomplishment.