Last month, I discussed the significance of National Novel Writing Month, or NaNoWriMo, to writers around the world. In just thirty short days, these writers challenged themselves to finish the bulk of a novel—approximately 50,000 words—for either a continuous record or a permanent win. It's a beloved tradition for writers and novelists of all levels, whether you like writing short stories for fun or are trying to meet a deadline for the next novel in a New York Times Bestselling Series. With writers united, it becomes a fun way to work on something you love while simultaneously accomplishing a goal.

This was my first year participating in National Novel Writing Month, and I am very glad that I did. While I did not end up reaching the target goal of 50,000 words, I got very close, finishing the month at 42,895 words and twenty chapters into my novel. Initially, I was a little upset with myself for not finishing, but I realized that it wasn't my fault. I'd started off strong, but I saw an influx of exams to study for and assignments to complete as the semester began to end. Regardless of not "winning," I feel as if I personally have won.

Writing has always been a passion of mine, and I aspire to make a career out of it someday. Participating in NaNoWriMo gave me a taste of that life I'm striving for, and I know now that I can do it, if not with a little more free time. Up until NaNoWrimo, I hadn't been able to write as often, leaving many of my stories as works in progress for weeks and months at a time as my school schedule became more demanding. However, NaNoWriMo brought me back to the roots of my favorite stories and characters, and I fell into the storyline with open arms.

As the month closed and writers everywhere are faced with the end of the year, as well as whatever they have left of their NaNo projects or others, we know that with hard work and imagination, there's nothing stopping us from reaching our dreams. Just a few words at a time, and soon enough, your story will be complete.

Here's to next year!