Last year was my first shot at National Novel Writing Month. I didn’t get very far at 11,654 words, but I still found NaNo a valuable experience. As I mentioned in a previous post, last year’s NaNoWriMo really pushed me to look at my writing process and figure out this whole outlining of the novel business. (more…)
As another National Novel Writing Month wraps up, and NaNoWriMo participants around the globe rush to validate their completed novels, it is time for me to admit the fact there will be no NaNoWriMo “win” in my near future. But while my current 11,654 words do not a novel make, I am not quite ready to concede defeat.
Regardless of the fact that I will not have 50,000 words of a novel written within the next 2 days, I still view this year’s NaNoWriMo event as a success. In fact, I’m quite certain I got far more from the event this year than I have put into it.
For example, NaNoWriMo inspired me to get organized and create a complete novel outline, something I have never before managed to accomplish. So even though my novel is nowhere near complete, I have a solid outline to work with in the coming months. What I got out of NaNoWriMo this year is the knowledge that I do have what it takes to sit down and plan a full and complete novel, including a beginning, middle, and end. I also feel like I have worked out a process that I can use again and again for future novels. (more…)
Wow, two posts in one day. This is totally not me! But anyway, Day One of NaNoWriMo is going swimmingly. I’m up to 2,492 words. But it is bothering me that my characters don’t have names. In fact, it’s not just bothering me, it’s slowing me down. (more…)
Isn’t it just like me to change my mind at the last minute and start over from scratch? Well, that’s exactly what I am looking at, Day 1 of NaNoWriMo. After all the preparation I did, planning for my original novel, I was having a very hard time being passionate about the story. I think I had some good ideas, but I really wasn’t happy with where the story was going. I was dreading getting up this morning to start working that outline into a novel. (more…)
Happy Halloween! This is your last day of relative sanity before the frenzy of NaNoWriMo. Are you taking a deep breath and relaxing today or rushing to get your loose ends tied up before jumping into your NaNoWriMo novel tomorrow?
I have a huge pot of chili bubbling on the stove already this morning, so I at least have my meals planned out for the week. Otherwise, I’m just now remembering all of the little details I meant to take care of the past few weeks so I could concentrate on NaNoWriMo… the KTG blog posts I meant to write in advance and schedule to post on their own while I’m busily typing away at my novel… the lesson plans and PowerPoint presentations I meant to throw together for my classes, the poems I meant to write in advance for my poetry class… you get the picture, right? Are all writers this discombobulated or is it just me? (more…)
For the first time ever in my writing career, I have developed a full and complete outline for a novel (shocking, I know.) How many times have I just sat down and started writing without giving much thought to where I am taking my characters? At least as many times as I have abandoned manuscripts in drawers and on hard drives, that’s for sure! But I want to be really prepared for NaNoWriMo, so I decided yesterday to do a little research and remind myself of the story structure lessons I learned when I took my novel writing class a few semesters ago.
In my research, I found the following video on storyboarding from Mary Carroll Moore, an award-winning author and master writing instructor:
The “W Storyboard structure” Moore details in her video was tremendously helpful. I had already decided on the characters I wanted to use for my NaNoWriMo novel, and even had a short story written about them. But I need to decide on an appropriate conflict to set my story in motion and then determine the trajectory of the story. (more…)
Last spring, I wrote a short story for a course I was taking on literature and humor. It’s the story of a girl who is told by a boy that he spray painted something on a train trestle; something she would be very interested in seeing. So this girl and her best friend decide to ride their bikes out to see what he wrote and, as with any good work of humor, hilarity ensues. (more…)
It’s that time of year again. Time to sign up for National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo) if you haven’t already done so. What is NaNoWriMo? Well, the purpose of NaNoWriMo is to kick yourself in the behind and write! To be precise, when you sign up for NaNoWriMo, you officially commit yourself to writing 50,000 words of your novel in the month of November.
So, I’m sitting here reading your mind, and I can hear you thinking, “Damn, 50,000 words… that’s a LOT!” and “What happens if I don’t make it to 50,000?” “Is this going to cost me some money?”
Don’t worry. (more…)