Had you asked me last week whether I was going to win NaNoWriMo this year, I’d have laughed — most likely right in your face.

With two entries for the 2012 Golden Heart competition to polish, I’d pretty much written off finishing NaNo. When I popped my last GH entry in the mail on Monday, I had 15,000 words left to write and three days in which to do it.

And here’s where that old power of persistence kicked in. I didn’t want to fail. I had Monday off, so I spent most of it at Starbucks, writing away — and then did some late-night word sprints with the Power Writing Hour Facebook group I belong to. On Tuesday, I did as much writing as I could until it was time to go to work … And on Wednesday, after working until 11:30 p.m. Tuesday and then sprinting until 12:30 a.m. or so, I hauled myself out of bed at 8 a.m. so I could put in a full day at Starbucks before heading to work.

The persistence paid off. At about 3:15 p.m. Wednesday, I crossed the finish line with 50,094 words. (Yeah, I was supposed to be at work by 3 p.m. — but I was too close to give up. Lucky for me, my hours are somewhat flexible.) The NaNo validator came in slightly lower, at 50,016 … but still enough to declare me a winner.

Finishing something I wasn’t sure I’d be able to do felt great. I have to give shout-outs to Jamie Raintree and Anne Marie Becker, my writing buddies who wouldn’t let me give up. (They both hit 50K, too.) My new Power Writing Hour friends helped, too.

Another shout-out to the new CPs who helped me whip those GH entries into shape. I received confirmation just this morning that the second of two was received — so all that’s left is to wait …

And to keep writing, of course. I already have a new challenge in my sights: Harlequin’s So You Think You Can Write contest. Its mid-December deadline is creeping up fast.

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