Let’s Talk About How NaNoWriMo Is Going

I talked about how I’m doing NaNo earlier this month, and thought I’d actually do an update on how it’s going.

I started off really well, and was even ahead for the first few days.  Then Monday happened, and before I knew it, I was behind on my word count to varying degrees, then I got close to being caught up, then varying degrees of being behind again.

So, basically, to write 50,000 words in 30 days, you have to write 1,667 words per day.  There’s even a graph that tells you where you need to be, and how far off you are from that, and how much you need to write every day to reach the 50,000, plus a whole bunch of other stats.

I really thought I’d be caught up, or if not completely caught up, then not too far off.  I mean, I’m currently at 20,094, and today’s goal is 25,000, so I’m only 5000 behind where I should be.  I’ve done NaNo enough years that I know that a 5,000 word gap isn’t the worst gap ever, and I’ve totally been behind more than that and still reached 50,000, so I’m not too worried.

I sprained my ankle over a week ago, and couldn’t walk on it the first day, I could barely walk on it the second day, and while I can now walk (with a brace and limping around), you’d think that would be good for writing. Seriously, moving was really hard, and I tried to move as little as possible, and yet, I found myself distracted by catching up on shows on Hulu and watching stuff on Netflix.  Hence, not really writing.

This year, more than any other year, I’ve really struggled with writing at home.  In the past, I’ve had no problem writing at home, but this year?  I can barely get anything going, which is why there huge spikes on the weekends, when I’m at write-ins- and randomly, on Wednesdays, when I’m at a write-in.  Writing not at home, and with other people, has been super-helpful this year, because for some reason, it’s really working this year to write at other places.

Considering that I only went in with very vague ideas of plot and characters, I haven’t really struggled with the writing itself.  It, of course, would need a lot of work if I ever went back to edit but I’ve had no trouble coming up with anything relating to this world at all.  I kind of feel like I need some sort of chart or something to help me keep up with things I’ve learned, and a bunch of new characters I’ve come up with.  Every year, there are always scenes that I just don’t want to write so I always skip over those to the scenes I do want to write, and this year is no exception, but it does seem to be happening a lot less than normal this year.

This update is a bit short, but I think that’s all I have for now.  I’m definitely hoping to have an update next week!

I hope everyone has a great weekend!

The Insanity Of NaNoWriMo Has Begun!

Every year, I participate in NaNoWriMo, aka National Novel Writing Month, where tons of people all over the world try to write a 50,000 word book in 30 days.

Participant-2014-Twitter-Profile

I can’t believe it’s taken me so long to write about it!  Originally, my blog started out as my way of chronicling NaNo back in 2010, when I was crazy enough to write 3 50,000 word novels in one month.  Be sure to check out the October and November archives for those posts, plus my Writing Projects pages.

Random Tangent: I can’t believe I’ve been blogging for 4 years!  That seems like forever ago, it really does…and my blog has changed so much since then too.  It’s bizarre but also really cool.

Back to NaNo:

I have only a vague idea of what I’m writing.  This year, I’m writing a YA paranormal book, in which there’s this amulet that needs to be destroyed in a particular way or else the world as we know it will end, and a darker world emerge.

I have some notes and ideas, but I’ve had such a hard time coming up with more concrete details in terms of abilities and this world, so for now, I’m just going to write and see what happens.  Part of me wants to have more of an idea of this world and the characters, because I feel like it’s going to make it so much easier to write, but at the same time, I have no idea how to go about it.  I’ve struggled with fleshing out the details, so I guess I just need to come up with ideas and stick with them, but I kind of want to just write and see what happens too.  For some reason, just writing seems to work better to help me figure things out.

I’ll definitely be posting about NaNo throughout the month.  Maybe once a week, but I haven’t really settled on a set schedule.

I actually see it as a trilogy, but who knows if I’ll actually get to writing the other books?  For sure, I’ll wait to see how this one goes to see if I even want to continue with this story, because I want to write something I’m interested in.

I’m currently at 2,347 words, so as of now, I’m fairly ahead, and close to where I need to be at the end of Day 2.  I’m actually glad NaNo starts off on weekend (and November has an astounding 5 weekends!) because I’m aiming to get a little bit ahead (at least a day ahead) and to stay ahead.  Having a cushion is good, and I really want to start off with that cushion, because it makes things so much easier when I know that have some extra words.  But I’m definitely hoping to write as much as I can this weekend.  I just really want to get off to a good start, you know?

As far as writing goes, my plan is to write what I can during the week, and write a ton on the weekends.  Which is something that works really well for me, because I obviously have more time on weekends.  And it’s also why I like having a buffer of some sort, even if it’s not that much of a buffer.

If anyone else is doing NaNo, you find me here!  Good luck to anyone who’s writing like crazy this month!

Guess Who’s A Winner?

I just realized that I’ve never talked about doing NaNo this year!  I know I’ve done it in years past, but for some reason, it just slipped my mind this year!

2013-Winner-Facebook-Cover

So, my idea was to write a YA contemporary novel set during the summer, at the beach.  The main character, Seraphina, and her family learn of an abandoned beach house in the town they’re staying in, and she and her dad try to solve the mystery of the abandoned house.

I only went in with a really vague idea of what I wanted to do and who my characters were, and of course, I got really bored and was pretty uninterested in my novel.

This is why I like having two novels, so I can go back and forth if one isn’t working.

Cue a pretty cool idea by way of Mike, in which I would write a medieval historical mystery about an investigator trying to figure out a line of succession, as the heir died in war.  The catch being that it couldn’t be YA, since that is totally my comfort zone.  I got about 400 or so words into that one before inspiration hit for the YA beach novel, and I stuck with that novel long enough to win.

This, however, was a lesson that I really need to write something I’m interested in.  Not that I wasn’t interested in writing a YA contemporary set during the summer, because I love the idea.  I just don’t think I found the right idea for that genre.  Still, I managed to stick with it, because not writing 50k…it’s not an option.  But I do have an idea that’s been fermenting for a while, and I’ve already done a little planning for it.  I have the feeling I may need to do some preliminary research, which may be fruitless if the random 5 minutes of googling I did earlier is any indication of useful info I need. However…this is actually a case where I think making up my own thing will prove to be useful.

Oh, my winning word count is 50,182!  But I’m hoping to get a little more writing done, and see if I can make it the teensiest bit higher.  Or maybe I’ll just do some planning for this idea in my head. Still, it was a great November, and I know I’ll miss it when it’s over.

And We Have A (Rebellious) Winner!

Guess who “won” NaNo with 50,099 words?

Me!

I actually won!

I actually won!

So…I feel the need to explain the rebellious part.  I started out with the one about the two kids who were going to save their parents jobs.  But I started to not feel that one, so I started to write a different novel, that started off with a girl at a party…and wrote a lot more for that one, until I started to get bored with that one.

Then I decided I was going to use the time to get ahead with blogging.  Top 10 Tuesdays?  December and most of January is done…as are the next few weeks of Gilmore Girls episodes.

And then I decided that I need to do some free writing so that I could get back to noveling.  But then…I realized…free-writing worked out much better than that noveling thing.  Considering the blog posts and the free-writing was a good chunk of my word count, I have decided that makes me a rebel!  I am happy that I just wrote, because really, that’s the spirit of NaNo.  Even when I didn’t want to write anything…I came through in the end, even if it was unconventional.

In some ways, it wasn’t a good month in terms of noveling.  But in terms of just writing, I am glad I did write.  The 50,000 words is nice, but…sometimes, it’s just about letting go and writing about what I need and want to write, instead of writing what I think I should be writing.  I definitely need to be better prepared next year…with an idea that I’ve actually worked on for more than a week!

And congrats to everyone who did NaNo, whether you won or not!

NaNo And Other Thoughts

So, NaNo has been interesting.

I got bored with my original idea, so I started over with a new one.  I have remembered the importance of backing up…because Sunday morning, when I started writing, the file I had wouldn’t open, because the file was corrupt.  Thankfully, I didn’t lose everything, because I had saved a copy to dropbox, but unfortunately, everything I had written Saturday (which was few thousand words) all disappeared.

This is why you back up, and why I will have multiple copies from now until the end of the month, which is coming up soon.  That was a setback, but I am determined to get to 50,000 words.  Catching up is fun, and I’m still sure I can catch up.  Partly because I am word padding, but also because I don’t want this to be the first year I don’t complete 50,000 words.  50k or bust!

I’m currently at 31,879 words, and I’m hoping to be around 40,000 by the end of today.  That’s a little bit less than where I really need to be, but that’s close enough that I’ll be able to catch up if I write like I maniac the rest of the week.

In other news, I finished my goal of 200 books.  It’s weird that it started out as 115, which I kept changing until I finally left it at 200.  That review will be coming this week.  It’s so weird that I’ve read so much.  Like, do I want to do something more next year?  Keep it the same?  Or do I want to make it low, and see what happens?  I’m not sure, so I’ll have to think about it over the next few weeks.  Maybe I should see where I end up at before deciding anything.  It was definitely a fun year reading, but it won’t stop just because I reached the goal that would not stop changing.

I think that’s it for now, because I really to start writing!  Those words aren’t going to write themselves.

I’m So Behind!

Since it’s been a while since I’ve talked about NaNo, I thought I’d share my progress.

The problem is that I haven’t really written.  Only two days this month, and I know I have around 896 words typed up.  I have yet to finish typing everything I have written down, and once I do that, I’ll be able to get going with the story.  I’d say I have around 1,200 words, but I’m not completely sure.  That’s my best guess though.

I’m not worried about being so behind.  One, I’m only writing one novel, so catching up will be really easy.  Two, I’ve been behind in previous years, and caught up.  Three… I can’t come up with three, so two it is.  But I’m totally okay with being behind for now.  It’s still early, and it’s still possible to catch up.

It’s too bad I don’t have more of an update on NaNo.  The first few pages are absolutely hysterical, because I’m trying to get used to a different keyboard , and everything is horribly misspelled.  Re-reading it will be funny, I’m sure, and I doubt it will make a lot of sense.  Then again, it’s not like they make a lot of sense to begin with…

I really do think that’s it for today.  It’s time to get some writing done!

The Madness Begins Today

So, today is the start of NaNoWriMo!  It’ll be a fun but crazy month of writing, so I’ll be sharing that crazy part of my life for the next month!

Remember how I said I was going to figure out where the parents of the main characters worked?

That hasn’t happened.  It’s not a big deal, because it may be a while before I get to that part of the story.  Even then, I can just have a factory or whatever, and if the need to change it comes along, I can be all inconsistent and have them work at a bunch of different places.  And when December comes, I can laugh at my inconsistency.

With the lack of planning I’ve done, this novel should be as funny as the one I did a few years ago where I had no idea what the heck I was doing.  But that’s enough about December…I should probably focus on actually writing it first.

Yes, write first, laugh later.  That just may be the slogan for the month.

I have no word count update…mostly because I don’t know what it is yet.  I have words, but they’re hand-written, and there’s no way I’m counting them.  I still have no clue where I’m going with it, but at least I have a start.  And I do know more about the characters than I did yesterday.  Or even last week.

I hope everyone had a great Halloween, and have a fun November!

At Least I Have A Plot

So, it’s that time of year when I go completely insane.

It’s time for NaNoWriMo, which means I’ll be writing a 50,000 word novel next month.

I am quite relieved to have a plot and 2 characters who are named, which is a big improvement.  A week ago, I only had a genre…and now I know the names of 2 characters and a plot!  It’s quite exciting, and I have the feeling I’ll be pantsing it more than normal this year.

I knew I wanted to write something YA, and I decided contemporary was what I wanted to go with.  Something paranormal would be cool, but I honestly don’t have the energy for it this year.  Maybe next year.

Tucker and Holly don’t like each other, and have to work together to keep the local factory from closing because their don’t want their parents to lose their jobs.  Along the way, they become friends.

I really like this idea, and while it doesn’t have to be a factory, I like the idea of their parents losing their jobs because of something closing down.  They really will have to set their differences aside, because of what will happen if the factory does get closed down.  I’m hoping I can work out the details a little more, but if I don’t, that’s totally okay.  I definitely need to get the job thing figured out, since that’s kind of important.  But of that’s all I get figured out, cool.  If I work out more than that, that’s also cool.

This brings me to the ever-important playlist.  I think it’ll be heavy on Taylor Swift, but I’ll definitely be looking through my music collection and see what seems to fit.

It is weird writing one novel- it’s been quite a few years since I’ve written one novel, and I’m so used to writing 2, that one novel is really strange.  But honestly?  One novel seems right.  Besides, I’m having enough trouble working on one idea, so two just seems weird.

This year, more than any other year, I’m really okay with just going with it.  Whatever happens, happens.

Well, I say that now.  Who knows how I’ll really feel when I actually start writing on Thursday?  I’m sure this year will go a lot better than last year, but either way, NaNo is always interesting, and I’m sure this year will be no exception.

How’s Camp Going?

So, June is almost over and I haven’t talked about Camp since I blogged about how I was going to do Camp NaNo.  There is a reason why I haven’t talked about it.

And that’s because I only wrote a few hundred words earlier this month.  So…Camp hasn’t been happening.  Perhaps I’ll give it a go in August, which should give me some time to come up with an idea and characters in everything.  Which reminds me…I should probably figure out what I’m going to write in November.  Before October would be preferable.  But with the way I procrastinate, I’ll probably figure it out in October.

I know I want to try my mermaid idea again, but I’ll definitely have to change it a bit from last year.  Especially now that I’ve read a lot more YA, and feel more comfortable actually writing something YA and paranormal.

Maybe I could work on NaNo during Camp NaNo?  Like work on a different character every or specific thing every day?  Oh, who am I kidding, I’m more of a pantser than anything else.  But maybe it’s worth a try…for once.

It should be fun, and I’ll definitely be talking about any progress I make.

It’s Really Over, Isn’t It?

This was certainly the hardest NaNo I’ve ever done. 

I had thoughts of quitting, but I just couldn’t bring myself to do it.  For one thing, how can I inspire people to keep writing if I quit?  But I have yet to lose a NaNo, and I certainly was not going to let this year be the year that I quit.  My heart wasn’t completely in it, but by the end, I managed to get some energy and heart. 

I liked my original 2 ideas but after attempting to write them, I made the decision to abandon them.  They just weren’t working, and so I decided to start over with a new idea.  The new idea worked out only slightly better, but I decided to shelve the roller derby idea for another time.  And so I found myself in need of another idea.  What did I switch to?  Harry Potter, of course! 

The Harry Potter idea worked out the best, but considering that I’m a huge Harry Potter fan, it’s not a big surprise.  It all worked out, and I’m glad I kept with it.  Plus, the time I took off seemed to help, and I got a a breather. 

It’s not really a surprise that I had trouble though.  With a ridiculous 3 novels/150k a year ago, and 2 straight months of Camp NaNo, I was feeling slightly burned out.  Plus, writing isn’t always easy, I’m not always going to want to write, and my heart isn’t always going to be in it.  It happens, and last month, I really felt the burn!  Hopefully next year will be better and I’ll be back to my super-duper NaNo is awesome self!

So where do I go from here? 

I definitely realized that I like writing everyday.  Actually, reminded is a better word.  Because I realized that a year ago, so reminded is definitely more accurate.  And I probably won’t be writing everyday, but at least 2 or 3 days a week.  I certainly have more than enough projects to be working on something everyday. 

So, for the rest of the month, I’ll be going back to posting 5 days a week.  Have a great day!