I won't make the 50k, and I won't be finished with a novel. However, I count the whole experience a victory. I learned far more than I thought I would, and I think I've got a viable novel concept hashed out for the first time, ever. Vast chunks of this won't be reusable, but the things I learned about the characters in doing them, and the things I learned about myself in writing them, are invaluable. What started out as a list of stick figure characters and a vague notion is coming into focus, and I am very happy with it.
Doing NNWM was good for me in many ways, but I was on target to assume that expecting an actual draft of a novel was way too ambitious for a month in which I'm changing jobs, writing a book proposal, preparing for holidays, and generally attending to home and hearth. I'm planning to let this sit for about six weeks and work on some other things, then return in February to it and see if I want to start rewriting or keep going forward and hold the rewrites for later. If I decide to keep moving forward, I think I *will* try to use the NNWM 'word count' technique until I finally hit the end of the story -- probably more on the order of 90k words, based on what I'm seeing so far.
How do others feel about their NNWM experiences? Would you do it again? What did you get out of it?
And about characters and suchlike
There are two tons of folks out there who truly despise the idea of Wesley with Fred. If I'd done an AtS specific "unpopular opinion" meme, I think I'd have been safe in putting my fondness for that particular plotline on the list. Somebody tell me what bugs you about it? I am a sucker for the unrequited love underdog storyline (cf S/B), and although I found the Lilah storyline highly engaging (read: hot as hell), I *truly* wouldn't mind seeing the W/F journey on screen if Stephanie Romanov is gone forever... I'm not saying it has to end pretty, but I sure wouldn't mind seeing it play out a bit.