Joining the Winner’s Circle!

Hi everybody!

In my post Stories, Photographs and the Challenge to Write I stated I was going to step up to the National Novel Writing Month challenge to write a 50,000 word novel during the month of November.  Well, it’s December now…

So what happened?

Like everyone else I began to churn out phrases and paragraphs on the keyboard.  My evenings and weekends were occupied with smoking keys and faraway looks.

On November 21st I logged 51, 203 words!  It helped that I had a few days off work during Thanksgiving week!

Four days later I was able to officially validate my word count.  A little purple label with the word WINNER displayed on my page!  Not too shabby if I do say s myself!!


So what did I take from all this?  A number of things…

The creative process may surprise you.  It certainly surprised me!

As part of my profession I write everyday.  I’m accustomed to paring down content and being efficient.  Very different from a process where email pep talks tell you not to worry about editing at this point in time, and, to stretch your imagination as far as it will go!

At one point my husband said he wanted to talk to me about something but he decided against it when he saw that the keyboard was burning up.  I wonder if I had my eyes closed.  There were times when I’d reached a zone…I was picturing sentences in my mind long before I could physically typed them.

My book was based on a very personal topic.  It was a look at the my daughter’s world, the world of autism.  I was attempting to tell the story from her point of view.

So how did I do?


I didn’t realize how much I really needed to write about this.

I had to remind myself that I was writing fiction, even though I was injecting vastly personal viewpoints into the content.  Still, as my daughter can never validate what was written, I hope my writing represented a realistic view of what she may have seen or felt throughout the storyline.

There were days when I felt drained, exhausted and exhilarated.

There were chapters that were more like poetry and potential song lyrics.  That was a pleasant surprise.

So what next?

I have over 51,000 words to review and edit!  As I was constantly reminded, November was for writing, December and beyond is to continue editing, shaping and refining.

…and yes, I plan to continue doing just that.


Many thanks to those who gave encouragement!  Perhaps there will be another post when I will say that the editing has gone as far as it can go, and the story (or should I say book?) is ready to be published.

I hope so!

In the meantime I can definitely say, “I DID IT!”



I've always enjoyed writing and finally decided it was time to blog! As part of my profession I write every day, but I'm now trying to take the time to write creatively. My family and friends have been very encouraging as there is little that is written down in the way of a family chronicle. This is a favorite topic of mine! In addition to family history, I write about life, family, friends and faith. My husband is a full-time parent to our special needs daughter. I’ve explored this topic, too. I also enjoy music, crocheting, reading and relaxing with my family. I hope you enjoy what I have to offer!

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Posted in 2012, Autism, Personal, Uncategorized
32 comments on “Joining the Winner’s Circle!
  1. Lori says:

    Congratuations Cathy!!!

    • Cathy G says:

      Thanks, Lori! I just checked out your site and two things in particular caught my eye…blogging and crocheting! Two of my favorite topics. I look forward to seeing more!

  2. Gemma says:

    Cathy, I don’t know what’s going on. I haven’t seen any of these stories, photographs, and the challenge to write. Or am I getting senile? Knowing you and your talents. I’m sure you did a bang up job of it. Can you check to see if you’ve blocked me in some way (or if WordPress did)? I found two people that were marked as ‘never’ show me on my blog – I didn’t do that – and one person that all of a sudden is going to spam. What is going on? Ugh!

    • Cathy G says:

      Hi Gemma! I checked a few settings on my site and as best as I can tell you are not blocked. 🙂 This particular challenge wasn’t from WordPress. I’m not sure when I first heard of it, but came across it when reading other blogs. I will say that you may not have heard from me this month because I’d been really consumed by this particular challenge! I hope you’ve been able to see my other posts. BTW…since I had been in a bubble because of recent writing, I hadn’t been reading too many posts…but I saw one by you that was a real gem! I’ll be going back to your site to leave a comment. When I first saw it I was on a break from work…it sure put a smile on my face!

  3. Louie says:

    Cathy this is awesome and beautiful. Stay with it!!

    Louie Sent from my iPhone

  4. That is a huge accomplishment, Cathy! Congratulations!

  5. fgassette says:

    WOW, AMAZING! Congratulations! I hope you continue.


  6. dorannrule says:

    I am so jealous! What a wonderful accomplishment. Keep going. Keep going! 🙂 Congratulations!

  7. MEGA congratulations, Cathy! Speaking as someone who struggles with any kind of daily discipline….you have my heartfelt admiration. How wonderful to actually finish a book. Enjoy this glorious moment. I hope you also enjoy the sweet process of editing, with visions of holding that published book in your hands in the near future. (I’ll be ordering my own copy from Amazon as soon as it comes out.) 🙂

    • Cathy G says:

      Hi Isabella! I’m definitely one who often prefers structure…and I guess it helped with this particular task! I have to gather my wits to get to the editing portion. Thanks for your support! 🙂

  8. Northern Narratives says:

    Congratulatiosn to you. It will be a big job to edit but I know you can do it and I look forward to reading your book when finished 🙂 Judy

  9. Cee Neuner says:


  10. J. G. Burdette says:

    Congratulations! I reached 50,037 on the 29th.

  11. cobbies69 says:

    Very well done to you Cathy, it is a nice feeling isn’t it Winners we are, nice one and may it coninue..;)

  12. thoughtsfromanamericanwoman says:

    Congratulations – great job!

  13. Congratulations. You inspired us all with your gift to create amazing stories. Wishing you and your family all the wonderful blessings of the holidays.

  14. Congratulations my friend. Your passion and talent inspires me today. God bless.

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