Mission Accomplished

by , posted on November 23rd, 2010 in Just me




For 22 days, I lived in another world.

Alcoholism. Domestic violence. Love. Passion. Infidelity. A beautiful but troubled woman. Her too-perfect husband. And one chubby toddler.

I loved being there. Because it was a world I created on my own.

I was, unofficially, trying NaNoWriMo, aka National Novel Writing Month. The premise is to try to write – without editing – 50,000 words in the month of November. It’s equivalent to 175 pages. A complete novel.

I was afraid I couldn’t do it. But I wanted to try. What I didn’t expect was how much I loved it.

The characters I dreamed up came alive for me. They roamed around my head constantly. I never knew what they were going to do next.

They surprised me. They weren’t always likable. Sometimes they broke my heart.

I talked about them as if they’re real. And to me, they are. They are.

Last night, just before 10 p.m., I finished my story.

I admit it. I got all teary.

I don’t often congratulate myself. I always seem to downplay my accomplishments as being not that special. But this one? I’m proud. I’m proud I took a chance. I’m proud I stuck with it. And I’m proud I can say I’ve given roots to my passion.

Now, I’m well aware what I’ve created isn’t publishable. There is still a ton of work to be done. A TON. The writing ain’t pretty.

For now, though, I’m going to enjoy the simple pleasure of following through and working hard and bringing new life into my world.

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68 Responses to “Mission Accomplished”

  1. Cheryl D. Says:

    November 23rd, 2010 at 2:48 am

    Congrats! I’m so excited you gave this a try and are off to such an awesome start.

    Yay!
    Cheryl D. recently posted..I Hope her Teacher Has a Sense of Humor!

    [Reply]

    Cheryl Reply:

    Thanks, Cheryl! Now I can actually start visiting other blogs soon!!

    [Reply]


  2. Varda (SquashedMom) Says:

    November 23rd, 2010 at 5:32 am

    Cheryl, Congratulations! That is so wonderful. I can’t wait to see how the story grows and evolves as you work with it.

    And you manged to get it done before Thanksgiving so you could “relax” and enjoy the holidays. You Wonder Woman, you!
    Varda (SquashedMom) recently posted..Score!

    [Reply]

    Cheryl Reply:

    Thank you, Varda! I think I was just totally consumed by the characters and their story so it was actually a lot of fun!

    [Reply]


  3. cristina Says:

    November 23rd, 2010 at 7:55 am

    wow, you are all kinds of awesome. Congratulations!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    [Reply]

    Cheryl Reply:

    Thanks, Cristina!!

    [Reply]


  4. Sara Says:

    November 23rd, 2010 at 9:28 am

    WOO HOO!!! Congrats mama!! That is amazing, fantastic, impressive, and all around awesome!

    From the sneak peaks we’ve had already, this is totally a book I want to read.
    Sara recently posted..A Proposal

    [Reply]

    Cheryl Reply:

    I still have a LONG way to go, but at least it’s inspired me to keep going with fiction. And I’m glad you liked the excerpts. Because the rest of it? ACK! ;)

    [Reply]


  5. Jen Says:

    November 23rd, 2010 at 9:33 am

    Congratulations!

    That is really, very awesome.

    You are inspiring me.
    Jen recently posted..The Deer Whisperer

    [Reply]

    Cheryl Reply:

    Thanks, Jen! And I’m always happy to inspire..

    [Reply]


  6. Lori @ In Pursuit of Martha Points Says:

    November 23rd, 2010 at 11:33 am

    Friggin’, friggin’ awesome.

    So proud of you. That is hard, hard work.
    Lori @ In Pursuit of Martha Points recently posted..Locate foot Pull trigger

    [Reply]

    Cheryl Reply:

    Thank you, sister girl. Do I need to put you on retainer?

    [Reply]


  7. Ratz Says:

    November 23rd, 2010 at 11:38 am

    Whoo hoo Cheryl. You rock. I feel so happy for you. it is simply great.
    Ratz recently posted..To Be Known As a Writer…

    [Reply]

    Cheryl Reply:

    Thank you! It actually feels pretty great!

    [Reply]


  8. Jen Says:

    November 23rd, 2010 at 12:02 pm

    CONGRATULATIONS!!
    Jen recently posted..The Candy Man Can… – Merging familes and traditions

    [Reply]

    Cheryl Reply:

    Thank you!! xo

    [Reply]


  9. Corinne Says:

    November 23rd, 2010 at 12:10 pm

    SO proud of you :) That’s awesome, and inspiring!
    Corinne recently posted..One on One

    [Reply]

    Cheryl Reply:

    Thanks, Corinne. I’m pretty excited!

    [Reply]


  10. amber Says:

    November 23rd, 2010 at 12:16 pm

    I bow down to your magnificence. I am trying, but have been sidelined by the flu. Maybe I can actually write 3000 words a day for the next seven days?

    [Reply]

    Cheryl Reply:

    Ugh. The flu. Not fun. Three thousand words a day is possible, but don’t kill yourself to do it!!

    [Reply]


  11. Sherri Says:

    November 23rd, 2010 at 12:19 pm

    Oh, you are the awesomest! And to finish a whole week early, too! Glad you tried it; there’s nothing like a personal goal and accomplishment to put some zing in your shorts. Or pants, actually.
    Sherri recently posted..Giving Thanks

    [Reply]

    Cheryl Reply:

    Ha! Zing in my shorts! That’s about the only zing I’ve gotten during this process, that’s for sure! lol

    [Reply]


  12. Anne Says:

    November 23rd, 2010 at 12:21 pm

    Big, big congrats, Cheryl! That is definitely an accomplishment to be proud of. Now you can start editing! (Editing is my favorite part of writing). Hope you’ll share some more of it here.

    [Reply]

    Cheryl Reply:

    I think after the editing process I’ll have closer to 500 words.. ;)

    [Reply]


  13. Andrew Says:

    November 23rd, 2010 at 12:22 pm

    Seriously, go re-register on NaNoWriMo.org so you can get your winner certificate (starting Thursday).
    It’s just a printout you can make and put up on a wall to remind yourself of your achievement.
    Andrew recently posted..My NaNoWriMo Cover

    [Reply]

    Cheryl Reply:

    I will do so. I’m sure the kids will be proud. Ha.

    [Reply]


  14. Myra Says:

    November 23rd, 2010 at 12:22 pm

    Congrats! How inspiring! I love that you couldn’t edit it. I’ve always wanted to write a novel but never set a goal. Perhaps now I will.
    Myra recently posted..Take Off to Paris

    [Reply]

    Cheryl Reply:

    You totally should! It’s not the most traditional way to go about it, but it does force you to put words on the page. I hope you do it! Let me know!

    [Reply]


  15. Mad Woman behind the Blog Says:

    November 23rd, 2010 at 12:28 pm

    Bowing down to your sheer awesomeness! It’s one thing to finish, its quite another to finish early AND still sane!

    Amazing! Can’t wait to read more.
    Mad Woman behind the Blog recently posted..Sexy Time- Magnolia style

    [Reply]

    Cheryl Reply:

    Sanity is highly overrated. But I enjoy the bowing to my awesomeness. LOL

    [Reply]


  16. Lin Says:

    November 23rd, 2010 at 12:34 pm

    That’s awesome! Congrats!

    I’m a new follower…would love it if you could follow back!
    oursomedayfamily.blogspot.com & oursomedayfam on Twitter
    Lin recently posted..Perfect Moment Monday- Full Circle

    [Reply]

    Cheryl Reply:

    Thank you – much appreciated!

    [Reply]


  17. Ash Says:

    November 23rd, 2010 at 12:35 pm

    So fantastic!! Congratulations on your hardwork and dedication. Can’t wait to see where it leads you.

    I too am surprised how absolutely addictive this process is. The freedom to drop a character just about anywhere is too much fun to give up once November is gone.

    Please remind me of that come January when I’m knee-deep in the chroming turd process :)
    Ash recently posted..To Tulpen – the woman who showed me how to make Limoncello- complete with curlicue zest garnish

    [Reply]

    Cheryl Reply:

    It IS addictive, isn’t it? I couldn’t wait to get to it every day. I cannot even fathom wading through 50,010 words worth of crap right now.. ;)

    [Reply]


  18. Jenni Chiu Says:

    November 23rd, 2010 at 12:45 pm

    Woooo hooo! What a huge accomplishment. I’m sure it was hard sometimes to stick with it- with all the other crap- I mean, responsibilities you have.
    Way to go, lady. It kinda makes you superhuman.
    Jenni Chiu recently posted..Thank you- misfortune

    [Reply]

    Cheryl Reply:

    It wasn’t hard to stick with it – it was hard to do all the other stuff, b/c the writing was much more fun than doing the laundry!

    [Reply]


  19. mommakiss Says:

    November 23rd, 2010 at 1:14 pm

    Major Accomplishment, friend! INCREDIBLE!!!
    mommakiss recently posted..A few of my favorite things – MK Memory

    [Reply]

    Cheryl Reply:

    Thank you! I’m pretty stoked about the whole thing!

    [Reply]


  20. Ethelyn Says:

    November 23rd, 2010 at 1:14 pm

    Oh you are an inspiration, Cheryl! I’ve always wanted to do this! And perhaps after the craziness of the holidays and my daughter’s wedding, I will. I keep envisioning having to lock myself in a room without distractions to write the first paragraph….my own form of writer’s block :)

    [Reply]

    Cheryl Reply:

    You so should! You have a lot going on, but you will so love doing it! And congrats to Kelly!

    [Reply]


  21. KLZ Says:

    November 23rd, 2010 at 1:33 pm

    Congratulations – that’s a HUGE accomplishment.
    KLZ recently posted..Word Up- Yo! Thanksgiving Break

    [Reply]

    Cheryl Reply:

    Pretty cool, isn’t it? ;)

    [Reply]


  22. Nichole Says:

    November 23rd, 2010 at 1:48 pm

    I never, for even one single second, doubted that you would finish.
    I am so proud of you!
    Congratulations, my friend.

    [Reply]

    Cheryl Reply:

    Thank you. You’re the best cheerleader EVER! xo

    [Reply]


  23. Andrea Says:

    November 23rd, 2010 at 2:05 pm

    Big pat on the back to you. Congratulations…you’ve accomplished something that most people can’t even dream of. Soak it in. Drink a glass of wine, let people congratulate you and then…kick some a– and edit the heck out of it and get it published! You rock!

    [Reply]

    Cheryl Reply:

    A glass of wine sound so good right now! It’s noon somewhere, right? I’m going to let the story percolate for a bit and then I’ll get to it. We’ll see what happens!

    [Reply]


  24. Elissa Says:

    November 23rd, 2010 at 2:14 pm

    And you told me all you wanted to do was sleep…

    So incredibly thrilled and vicariously proud of you. We’ve never met…but hopefully one day we will…at your book signing, that I will be coordinating for you in Toronto!

    “Heeee!”

    [Reply]

    Cheryl Reply:

    Yeah. I averaged about 5 hours of sleep a night during this process.

    But I thank you. And you know I love The Canada. I’m sure I’ll be huge up there! ;)

    [Reply]


  25. Kimberly Says:

    November 23rd, 2010 at 2:14 pm

    Good for you! How exciting. Make sure that before you start to edit, that you take a step back and do something really good for yourself. Than hack away!
    Kimberly recently posted..Pajama Logs

    [Reply]

    Cheryl Reply:

    Yes, I’m stepping back for a bit. I – and my characters! – need to catch our collective breaths.

    [Reply]


  26. Carrie Says:

    November 23rd, 2010 at 2:46 pm

    Congrats!! I think I will try this next year and screw NaBloPoMo :)
    Carrie recently posted..Castle of Hope

    [Reply]

    Cheryl Reply:

    Hee! I did NaNoBloMo last year. I think the fiction was much easier! Plus no one actually has to read this!

    [Reply]


  27. Megan Says:

    November 23rd, 2010 at 3:56 pm

    Congrats! What an amazing achievement!
    Megan recently posted..You Can Pick Your Friends- You Can Pick Your Nose- But You Cant Pick Your Friends Nose Unless You Use a Booger Ghost

    [Reply]

    Cheryl Reply:

    Thank you! I’m pretty pumped about the whole thing!

    [Reply]


  28. Renee Says:

    November 23rd, 2010 at 4:22 pm

    Congratulations!
    I loved what you’ve shown us. And I want to read the rest.
    But do give yourself a breather.
    You done good!
    Renee recently posted..Now is the Time!

    [Reply]

    Cheryl Reply:

    Thanks! I definitely am taking a step back. I need to paw through it all and figure out if there’s a good story amidst all the mess!

    [Reply]


  29. Natalie Says:

    November 23rd, 2010 at 7:15 pm

    Congrats to you! I can’t wait to read it :)
    Natalie recently posted..My Claim To Fame

    [Reply]

    Cheryl Reply:

    Thanks, girlie! Maybe someday it’ll be fit for human eyes to gaze upon it.. ;)

    [Reply]


  30. Jessica Anne Says:

    November 23rd, 2010 at 8:15 pm

    Awesome, awesome, awesome! Great job! From what I’ve seen so far, those 50000 words tell quite a story. Can’t wait to read more.
    Jessica Anne recently posted..Max Reminisces- NaNoWriMo Excerpt

    [Reply]

    Cheryl Reply:

    Thank you! I think maybe 1,000 words are okay, and the other 40,000? Disaster! Hope yours is going well..

    [Reply]


  31. The Mayor! Says:

    November 23rd, 2010 at 11:15 pm

    Congrats! My arms are reaching thru cyberspace to hug you for being so awesome! Remember us when you are famous! Happy Thanksgiving to you & your lovely family too, enjoy! :-))
    The Mayor! recently posted..Wordless Wednesday- Photo Booth Edition!

    [Reply]

    Cheryl Reply:

    Mayor!!! I have missed you so!! And yours is the best hug I’ve gotten all day. ;)

    xo

    [Reply]


  32. Erin Says:

    November 23rd, 2010 at 11:31 pm

    Cheryl,

    I am jumping up & down for you! YOU DID IT! So proud of & excited for you. I didn’t do it because I was intimidated. I need to learn to LET GO. Sheesh. SO hard for me. But I’m thrilled and happy for you and CONGRATULATIONS!!!!
    Erin recently posted..Im Loving My Mess-Allison Nazarian Style

    [Reply]

    Cheryl Reply:

    Thank you! Yes, I am also quite good in getting in my own way. But I figured with NaNo, the pressure was off. I mean, it didn’t hurt to try it and if I didn’t make it, so what? I hope you will do it next time!

    [Reply]


  33. Rudri Says:

    November 24th, 2010 at 3:21 pm

    So Wonderful Cheryl! This isn’t a small task – I’ve tried NanoWriMo twice and gave up. Raising a glass to your accomplishment (8 days before the deadline).
    Rudri recently posted..Page 35

    [Reply]

    Cheryl Reply:

    Thank you! I was so surprised how much I enjoyed the whole thing.

    [Reply]


  34. Yuliya Says:

    November 24th, 2010 at 4:01 pm

    Congratulations! Now enjoy NaNoWino, copious amounts of wine!
    Yuliya recently posted..How to make friends- not alienate people

    [Reply]

    Cheryl Reply:

    Hee! NaNoWino – I LOVE it!!!

    [Reply]


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