I’ve written two novels during NaNoWriMo: Gift of Blood, my very first novel, in 2009, and The Warden, in 2010. I was confident that the first draft of The Warden was solid enough and sufficiently well-written that I wouldn’t make a complete fool of myself if I posted it on my Live Journal blog. And now that Boundaries (Hidden Boundaries) is complete, I’m about to launch into a rewrite of Gift of Blood. Two thirds of the way through an initial reread, and I have to say that I learned a hell of a lot about writing fiction in between those two novels.
Gift of Blood, as it is right now, is a good story badly written. POV wobbles from character to character; critical issues go unexplained; sentence structure, while grammatically correct, is often wordy and clumsy. I’m still far from being an accomplished writer, but a year of hard work and honest self-critiquing, plus input from readers of Boundaries, has made all the difference between work that’s amateur enough to be embarrassing and work that I can be fairly proud of.