And, the winner is …

I made it through the camping experience and have burst through the 50,000 words barrier. I have a badge to prove it. Yeeeeehah.

I won NaNo!

The truth is it doesn’t feel like I’ve won anything yet. Sure, I’ve written over 50k words in one month, but the novel isn’t finished yet.

To be honest, I can’t quite believe that I’ve managed to keep writing and do this challenge. In late July I didn’t even want to take part, couldn’t focus on my writing and thought about deleting the participant picture off the blog and pretending I hadn’t signed up to take part.

But I didn’t do that. So, what have I learnt?

NaNo motivated me to embrace writing every day. I try to put a few words down on paper or screen every day. This year I manage to write on around 1 day out of every 3. Or 1 in 4.

This month I challenged myself to write every day and I did it!

Time for a chart. Notice the day when I only managed 200 words. They all count you know.

Always room for a graph

From a writing point of view, there are three types of day for me. Days when I’m on leave, weekends and the dreaded working day.

Days on leave

During the first two weeks in August I was on leave for SEVEN working days. Now, primarily this was to watch the Olympics and I did spend a lot of time watching television, cheering on #TeamGB. I also wanted to give CampNaNo a good head start.

I wrote 16,235 words on those 7 days, averaging 2,300 words a day.


I don’t work Mondays, hurrah! I changed my working pattern a few years ago to devote time for studying and after finishing my studies I kept that day for writing. My time.

I wrote 26,600 words on weekends, averaging 2,222 words a day.

Working Days

Booo, hisssss. These are the days where usually I find it hardest to write anything at all. I was determined to keep the word-count ticking over and managed to write over 7,000 words, averaging 910 on a working day. Amazing, but I watched less television so I could write. Read less so I could write.


NaNo is only two-thirds of the real goal.

I aim to keep writing everyday until I’ve finished the first draft of A Scream In The Woods. I’ve finished 20 of the 30 chapters and I think another two weeks and I should finish the first draft.

If you want to get into a writing habit and force yourself into hitting some challenging word-count targets then I recommend having a NaNo experiment. I will be having another go in the future. Not sure that it will be this November, but I will do it again.

If you are participating in Camp NaNo I hope you reach the target you set yourself. Party in my tent and remember to bring some snacks πŸ™‚

Happy writing!

About Pete Denton

I'm a writer working my way through the redrafts of a British crime novel. I also write short stories, flash fiction and some screen writing. Check out my blog for more.
This entry was posted in Camp Nano, Novel In Progress, Writing and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

34 Responses to And, the winner is …

  1. Congratulations and well done. It’s quite an achievement to take on and even more so to succeed at it.

    • Pete Denton says:

      Thanks, David. It was a useful exercise to get the first draft done. I need to keep at it to get the novel completed now. 50k in August and the target is another 25k in September. Should be easy πŸ˜‰

  2. Justin Bog says:

    Congratulations. That is a quick achievement. Love reading your posts (not commenting enough — sorry) and seeing your progress.

  3. oliviaboler says:

    Bravo, Pete! This is the inspiration I need for NaNoWriMo in November. Congratulations!

    • Pete Denton says:

      Thanks, Olivia.

      I didn’t think I had it in me, but I got caught up in the story and had to keep writing. Good luck in November. I’m looking forward to reading your next book, thought The Flower Bowl Spell was a really good read πŸ™‚

  4. EllaDee says:

    Good on you Pete. Great accomplishment. Never mind the 200 word day, what about the day you wrote over 4000 words πŸ™‚

  5. robincoyle says:

    I didn’t do Camp NaNo but can I still come to the party to drink a toast to the brave souls who did?

  6. howmyspiritsings says:

    Congratulations, I personally think writing every day and meeting the goal that you set for yourself if is the point of NaNoWriMo. 1667 words a day is like the 4 minute mile for many of us. Once we decide it is possible, we can do it.

  7. I changed my working pattern, too, Pete!! I don’t post my blog on weekends. More freedom!!

  8. Subtlekate says:

    I’m bringing the chocolate. Congratulations. Feels good huh!

  9. 4amWriter says:

    Woo hoo! This is awesome. I know what you mean about it not feeling like you’ve won anything because you haven’t finished. I had the same strange feeling when I did NaNo my first time. I guess we should look at it as winning the first leg of a very long race. πŸ™‚

    • Pete Denton says:

      Thank you. It drained everything out of me so much so that I haven’t been online for a week. A week. Unheard of for me. My ISP probably thought about sending someone round to check I was ok πŸ™‚

      I hope to finish the first draft over the next two weeks and it is winning the heat. Several more heats before the final πŸ™‚

  10. Julie says:

    Well done, Pete! And you’re right, as long as you wrote, got some new stuff in, it all counts. As far as winning, you have new words and you’ve started the habit of writing every day. That sounds like winning to me. πŸ™‚

  11. Sweet! as in “Wow!

  12. Kourtney Heintz says:

    Congrats! Those are all impressive stats. When I worked full time I used to aim for 500 words a day. When I’m not working 1k a day is absolutely doable. I’ve never done nano, but I have pounded out 30k in a month and I find that works well for me. Great job reaching and stretching and finding out what you can do! You might not have finished a novel but that’s only cause you weren’t writing YA. πŸ™‚ What you’ve done is a mega accomplishment!

  13. limebirdbeth says:

    Woo hoo! Congrats! πŸ™‚

  14. Pingback: Camp NaNo, starting soon | Pete Denton - Writer

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