NaNoWriMo 2016 | Diary

Week 1

Tuesday – 1st November 2016

I had no energy to start the day, all I wanted was to stay in bed, rolled in my duvet. But Love worked remotely that day, and I had to move my ass. I had breakfast, which I don’t usually take, while waiting for the library to open. I’m starting chapter 9 of my novel, and I wrote 617 words between 10.30 and 11.40 am. I reached my daily word count πŸ™‚

As for the life part, I received a nice call for an interview tomorrow afternoon at a place I really really want to work. Fingers crossed.

Wednesday – 2nd November 2016


I’ve read a great article by Non Pratt about the insecurity of being an author: Ten things to trigger your writerly insecurities (and how to cope with them). Read it, that’s very interesting.

I wrote 544 words at the library between 10.45 and 11.45 am, reaching my daily word count πŸ™‚ I feel that I’ve let my character be older than he really is, so I’ll have to edit that part later. Maybe I’ll tell you more about my two main characters in another blog post, I don’t know yet.

So I went to the interview, which went well. I’ll have news on Monday πŸ™‚
I’ve been accosted by an old man along the beach while I was on my way home, who told me lots of things about Brighton, the English language and knowing people. He made my day, haha.

I updated my Animal Crossing New Leaf game… I shouldn’t have, because I went to bed very late. Sure I’ll pay it in the morning.

Thursday – 3rd November 2016

I knew it: so difficult to get up this morning πŸ˜’ I’m really not a morning kind of person. And that’s weird because I write better in the morning. Life is complicated.

I wrote 564 words between 10 and 11.40 am. I reached my daily word count but went to a write-in in the evening πŸ™‚ This had been a chance to write some more in good company. And I did: 439 words between 7 and 9 pm. It was hard, but I had sweets and word-wars to keep me writing. I just realised that I couldn’t really do word-wars, as I’m not rushing my novel but think about every single word I write on it. But that was fun, and I got stickers πŸ˜€

Friday – 4th November 2016

Very hard to go to the library today. I haven’t written much in the morning. Instead of going to the library, I had a chat with my little sister. Then I talked to my writing buddy about my novel and his, good conversation. Lots of ideas came up from it, and I wrote them down for the editing process. I spent the rest of the day playing Animal Crossing New Leaf… I’m doomed, guys πŸ˜…

I still managed to reach my daily goal: 512 words written between 10 and 11 pm. I started writing chapter 10 of my novel, which I realised will be much longer than I thought it would be. And I’ve to think about my audience for the beginning of my editing process. Because at the moment one of my main characters is 8 years old, but if I continue writing over a certain length, it won’t be a children book anymore. Or not suitable for children at least. So I may consider changing the genre a bit after writing my first draft, so I need to focus on having this done πŸ™‚

Saturday – 5th November 2016

Ouch, that was so hard to get up… as always you’ll say πŸ˜› I think my problem is not that I don’t know what to write, but actually to find enough energy to get out of my warm and comfortable bed. I managed to write 592 words between 11.30 am and 12.45 pm, still in bed. Maybe that’s the compromise but hey, it’s the weekend. I feel I have perfectly the right to do it.

Sunday – 6th November 2016

For once, I didn’t have difficulties getting up. But I started writing very late, around noon. I managed to write 512 words before wandering over the internet, looking for ideas for a wedding dress that I could actually use during and after the wedding. If you have any idea of a dress that could do the trick, I’d be glad to have a look.

So, overall I can say I’m pretty happy with how many words I have written this week. I reached a total of 3,782 words, and wrote consistently over the past few days. I’m on my way to the first draft πŸ˜Ž

Week 2

Monday – 7th November 2016

Well, well, well. Will you be surprised if I tell you that… No! I haven’t had any problem getting up πŸ˜› This time, I haven’t written until very late in the evening (513 words today, thanks to Love), just because I had to make phone calls and I’m very stressed when it comes to phone calls. I called many Belgian venues for our wedding β€ I also made my first ever UK invoice because, yes, I’m a freelance (if you want to hire me, I work in digital marketing but I do French translation and copywriting/proofreading too πŸ˜ ). And I waited, all day long, for the news from the company I had an interview with last week (it’s a retail job). It never came πŸ˜’

Tuesday – 8th November 2016

I received the company’s answer at first lights in the morning. It’s an “unfortunately” email, you know the one that says you’re not hired but they wish you all the best. I would be very rich if everyone who said that to me gave me Β£1. Anyway, my day hasn’t really started the best way πŸ˜’ Psychologically, this email just crushed my day. I mean: they know the impact of such an email on people, right? So why do they keep sending them in the morning? Why don’t they wait until the end of the afternoon? Oh boy, how I hate those emails.

Also, this was a difficult time in my writing. I realised that I reached the halfway point of my novel. That means I had an insane urge to throw it in the bin and start a new project. I know I have that feeling each time I’m working on a novel, this isn’t new. But it added to the fact that I felt really bad today.

Wednesday – 9th November 2016

Got back into writing, with 634 words today. I realised I was stuck when I deleted all the words I had done the day before. The thing is that I was in such a bad mood that I did it very badly. I was working on the 11th chapter, and I didn’t know how to link it to the rest of the story. But Love told me to move on to the next chapter, in which I knew already what would happen, and then go back to the hard one. I think it’s a good idea, even if I still don’t know how to write it. So I’m now working on chapter 12.

Thursday – 10th November 2016


Good news about our wedding venue: Mum got a good feeling about a place we really like. I can’t wait for Mum-in-law to visit it too β€

I didn’t go to the library today. Actually I haven’t been to the library this week, that’s a shame. I think it’s because my week has been emotionally strong so far. Anyway, I wrote 551 words this morning, between 10.30 am and noon. I also went to the weekly write-in organised by the Brighton’s NaNoWriMo group in the evening, and I managed to write 1,005 words! I couldn’t believe it, so many words πŸ˜€ That’s my biggest accomplishment so far.

I’ve watched an interview of Maxime Chattam, a French author (so the interview is in French I’m afraid), about writing. It’s so inspiring to have the views of a writer about his own work. I recommend, if you understand the language πŸ™‚

Friday – 11th November 2016


I wrote 549 words today, in the late afternoon (I think it was around 5 pm). Yes, I admit I was procrastinating. I did the laundry, some groceries, the washing up, I called Sister-in-law and Grandpa. I felt pretty much like the comic strip, except that it was pure laziness. No writer’s block, because I think it doesn’t exist.

You can find more of Debbie Ridpath Ohi’s drawing on her website πŸ˜‰

Saturday – 12th November 2016

Oh well, I just switched mornings with Sunday to create a lazy Saturday morning with Love, as he’s going to a drum fair tomorrow. We watched a few Gilmore Girls episodes in bed before getting up. Then I finished the book I was reading (Vicious” by V.E. Schwab, she is a fantastic author). And I wrote like 344 words when Love took his shower, late at night. That’s better than nothing, but I have to keep up with my ritual! My week has been a complete mess lately, very chaotic. I have to get back to something more stable.

Sunday – 13th November 2016

I went to the Sunday Write-In, and I wrote 1,022 words, from 3 to 5.30 pm. I’m pretty proud of myself considering that I haven’t really followed my schedule this week (talking about time, not words).

Anyway, this week had been incredibly crazy because I reached the middle of my novel, I had to skip two chapters because I didn’t have them in mind, and I received a bad job-related news. However, I’ve been able to write no more than 4,618 words this week, which raises my November word count to 8,400 words. It is a big win as I’m way ahead of my schedule. I should celebrate, and I will πŸ™‚

Week 3

Monday – 14th November 2016

I think this whole calendar thing is beginning to pay off: I can’t think of anything but colouring my red dot in it every day. And when I can do more, I’m so overjoyed πŸ˜€ I managed to write 652 words today, around 4 pm, with the playlist “Peaceful Piano” on Spotify. I do enjoy working with music sometimes.

Other than my writing, I’ve read an interesting article about what is a literary agent. I also watched a few episodes of The Crown, a new series on Netflix about the early reign of Queen Elizabeth II. I enjoy it quite a lot, as I’m learning about the life of the actual Sovereign of my country of adoption. Did I mention I love historical shows? Well, now you know πŸ™‚

Tuesday – 15th November 2016

I went to the library, hooray πŸŽ‰ I wrote 533 words between 10 and 11 am, again with the instrumental playlist. I think it’s good to keep my focus. I finished chapter 14 and I know exactly what is going to happen next πŸ™‚

Love asked me a tricky question about the potentiality of opening an Etsy shop to make candles or other things. So I spent the evening looking for materials, watching videos about Etsy, etc. Without mentioning the hour call with my friend who had just known her marks from uni, and she will graduate πŸ˜€ So happy for her β€

Wednesday – 16th November 2016

Well… It has been a long time since I told you that I had a difficult time waking up πŸ˜… I think I stayed up too late yesterday, so I had to catch up with my sleep. I watched a great interview with Samantha Bailly, French author again, about writing and her own story. She is kind of a model to me because we are the same age and she had already published so many books. It’s exactly like Victoria Schwab, who is also my age. Maybe next time I’ll tell you my relationship to writing. Anyway, I haven’t written anything today, considering the busy day I had πŸ™

Mum-in-law has visited the venue for our wedding and… it’s a big yes πŸ˜€ I’ve sent an email to the manager and am still waiting for an answer, but we should have our venue for the wedding. That was quick, hahaha.

Thursday – 17th November 2016


566 words this morning at the library and I reached a total of 10,000 words for NaNoWriMo πŸŽ‰ I had planned to go to the evening write-in to do even more words, but I didn’t. I don’t know, maybe I wasn’t that motivated to brave the rain.

I spent the day reading Oh oui! On se marie by MaΓ«lis Jamin-Bizet and Anne-Sophie Michat, two wedding bloggers. It has some good advice about organisation in it, one of my friends recommended it when I asked him questions about his own wedding.

Friday – 18th November 2016

Great news today: we received the estimate for our wedding venue πŸ˜€ But the best news is… my best friend is a daddy πŸŽ‰ I’m so happy for him and his wonderful partner πŸ˜€

But I also realised I had to come back to Belgium to be with my family. Nothing had happened yet, but I want to be there and be supportive. Love helped me on that realisation, I think I would have waited longer. But it will do good to my family.

I wrote 177 words today, just before going to bed. Not my best day but at least I tried.

Saturday – 19th November 2016

I booked my Eurostar tickets to be in Belgium as soon as possible. I will be there from the 23rd to the 30th November, that’s all I can do.

Love and I went walking in the morning, and I played Skyrim all the afternoon. I didn’t think it would last that long. At first, I thought I would play about an hour πŸ˜… It was so weird to come back to reality after the gaming session that I couldn’t do anything else. I managed to get 608 words done between 10 and 11 pm, I don’t know how.

Sunday – 20th November 2016

That wasn’t a lazy Sunday. Okay I got up late, but I did the hoover in all the flat and changed the bedsheets πŸ˜ Okay, nothing extraordinary. But I did write 575 words between noon and 1 pm. I think it’s better to write before playing video games because your mind isn’t taken by the game’s story.

Overall, I would say my week wasn’t as good as week 2. I haven’t been to a write-in, I received good news but also bad news. There were a lot of thinking about what I can possibly do to earn a living while working on my novel. And I’ve been able to write a total of 3,111 words, which is less than the two previous weeks. I fear that the next couple of days will be hectic ones, but I’ll try to keep up with my schedule.

Week 4

Monday – 21st November 2016

I got 552 words done in the late evening. I’ve no excuse whatsoever, I’ve been procrastinating all day long πŸ˜… I organised my Belgian stay, I called some of my friends, I cooked a bit and watched lots of episodes on Netflix. It’s not that my story doesn’t interest me anymore, it’s that I have difficulties to actually sit at my desk and work. I should definitely come back to the library or some place else, but it was raining today. How can you be brave enough to go out when it rains, it’s cold and it’s not mandatory for you to go outside? I should kick my own ass and go out anyway, whatever the weather. If you encounter the same dilemma, how do you manage to do it?

Tuesday β€“ 22nd November 2016

I had a drop in blood pressure in the morning, so I spent a couple of hours more in bed. I think I was really stressed because of a lot of things, regarding my family but also my job hunting (even if I have a job, but I would like more).

I’ve worked in the afternoon and I prepared my suitcase for my travel. I’m taking the Eurostar tomorrow, to Belgium. Can’t wait to see my family, it will be good for them and myself. When I just moved in the UK, we used to go back once every three months. But this year, the gap between two visits has grown. It’s been nearly 6 months since my last visit.

Wednesday β€“ 23rd November 2016

I wrote 508 words during my travel. I arrived in Belgium at 3.30 pm, been picked up by my Mum and little Sis’.

Oh, and I got my grades! I graduate from my Creative Writing MA, with merit! πŸŽ‰ The wait was finally over, I’m so relieved. I didn’t know what to expect and, even if I had lots of Bs over the past year, I still think my dissertation could have been better.
But hey! I got a merit πŸ˜€

Thursday β€“ 24th November 2016

I worked a bit in the morning, unfortunately not on my writing πŸ™ I don’t know if I’ll be able to keep up on it this week. I’ve lots of visits planned but hopefully I’ll find some time to sit somewhere and write.

I met my best friend’s newborn son β€ The baby is so cute, calm and easy-going. He was only six days old, but already so much charisma πŸ™‚

Friday β€“ 25th November 2016

Too tired to do anything in the morning. There is only one hour difference with the UK, it’s already too much, hahaha. I’ve called the priest from the church in which we want to marry. Even if we were baptised in Belgium, we need to get the authorization from the English Church to marry in Belgium because our domicile is in the UK. Ah, why is it so complicated? We’re both Belgians, isn’t it enough? 😩 I’m sure it will be the same, if not worse, with the town hall. Can’t wait to call the administration *irony*

Saturday β€“ 26th November 2016

I wrote 540 words today, hooray πŸŽ‰ I took advantage of the hour spent by car (I wasn’t driving, don’t worry), and it was so good to continue my draft! If I keep up like that, I’m gonna be right on time with my schedule πŸ™‚

I went to a family member’s dinner in the evening. I was at the “children” table instead of the “adults” one. In fact, there’s no real problem because the children are in their twenties. But as I’m the eldest, I couldn’t keep up with their conversations. At the “adults” table, they had better talks but they were complaining about their parents who complained themselves about their fading health. I think there is an age (mine) when you’re too old but too young at the same time πŸ˜…

Sunday β€“ 27th November 2016

My grandparents came for our family reunion, that was nice πŸ™‚ Then I watched the first two episodes of the Gilmore Girls revival. I don’t know what to think about it because even if I was team Logan before, I’m not that happy with the situation.

Overall, I had a bad week for my writing: 1,600 words only. However, there’re 500 words left to reach my monthly goal, and 3 days left to achieve it. I hope I’ll find the time.

Final days

Monday – 28th November 2016

I’ve finished Gilmore Girls new episodes. I don’t know how to feel about them, because I didn’t enjoy them that much. I mean, okay that’s great to see how the characters are after nine years. But I didn’t like Rory at all and, even if I’ll be team Logan forever, I didn’t like their story. To be honest, the only episode I liked was the last one. The other three were too long, too uninteresting. Twenty minutes of a creepy musical, really? Please guys, why on earth would you do that? πŸ˜’

I think the only character who got out of this boring season was Emily Gilmore. Seeing her, struggling after Richard’s death, was refreshing and funny. I mean, of course, dealing with the death of a beloved one is everything but funny. However, her character managed to win her pain over. She realised she didn’t need all that luxury around her, all that insincerity. Like a phoenix, she came back from her bereavement with even more strength. Emily Gilmore is definitely somebody πŸ™‚

Tuesday β€“ 29th November 2016

I’ve watched a great video by Lucy The Reader on Youtube, answering questions about writing πŸ™‚

I visited our wedding venue, which I think is beautiful. I’ll post an article about it soon, but I thought it has all the characteristics we’re looking for a venue. It’s original and looks good. Okay, it will need some decorations but every venue needs some, right? πŸ™‚

Wednesday β€“ 30th November 2016

Last day of NaNoWriMo, but also of my Belgian stay. I was a bit sad that I couldn’t enjoy the month that much because I went to three events only. Those write-ins helped me to boost my word count and to know some writers in my area.

I wrote 341 words in the Eurostar back to London. I couldn’t write more, because I had stopped three days in a row and my story kind of got away from me. Even if I was happy to see my family, I have to admit that it did harm to my writing as I’ve been out of my routine.

Overall, I wrote 13,452 words during NaNoWriMo. Of course, I didn’t write 50,000 words but it had to be expected, as I explained in a previous post. My novel is not finished yet, I’m going to continue it in December πŸ™‚ Let’s do this!

How was your NaNo 2016? How many words have you written?
Tell me in the comments down below