Date: November 2, 2010
Goal Word Count: 3334
Current Word Count: 2205
In what will probably become a regular occurrence this month, yesterday I found myself with an entire, delectable day at my disposal, but far too much to cram into it. Insult to injury: I began my impeccably planned day by failing to set my alarm properly AND once I woke, found that I’d set my clock 10 or 15 minutes slow. Who does that?
Anyway, for some reason I thought it would take me an hour to write 1667 words. It did not. I spent an hour in the morning and then another before bed, but after such a jam-packed day, I fell asleep before I could get to 1667.
Not the best start, but I did get up at 6:00 a.m. this morning and pushed it up to 2205 before breakfast. Hurrah!
A very brief history of Jessica vs. Nanowrimo:
2007: Finished, with a novel that I still think has potential, despite some MAJOR flaws that make me crazy just to think about them.
2008: Tried a new POV and an off-the-wall setting, but did not finish, mostly because I contracted a feverish illness THE DAY BEFORE THANKSGIVING and yes, I still went Black Friday shopping, because I am an idiot.
2009: Thought better of taking the plunge, but did it anyway, resolving to intentionally write the stupidest story ever committed to words for the sole purpose of greasing my rusty fingers. After 10,000 words or so, decided that I didn’t have enough for my character to do for a full 50,000 words, and decided to invite two more narrators to the party. Did not finish, again because of an impossible Thanksgiving weekend, this one packed with two 16 hour car rides, numerous family obligations, a paper due on Monday, and A BROKEN LAPTOP SCREEN.
Aside from all of those circumstantial excuses, the only real difference between my 2007 success and my 2008+2009 failures?
I went into 2007 with a plan. I had characters. I had plotlines for each character. I had little arcs for the relationships between each character. I had a structure. I’d tried out the voices of each narrator to make sure I could write them effectively.
So of course, I would try to write a novel in 2010 without much planning. I am awesome.
What I Do Have: two characters, a vague idea of an ending, an idea of their main conflict, competing plotlines (which one will win?), a setting, character sketches, and a brand new notebook in which to write all of this down.
What I Need: a solid narrative voice (yikes), a clear plan to get from beginning to end, ideas for scenes, an idea of what good writing actually amounts to.
So in addition to setting aside writing time, I’m setting aside planning time. Today, I spent 15 minutes typing up as much of a favorite novel as I could, into a Word Document (Try this! It’s kind of fun to look at whatever words you respect as they once looked to the author: Times New Romaned on a white background), spent 15 minutes analyzing what each sentence accomplished for the scene or the novel, and then spent 30 minutes brainstorming ideas to write about because… um… I’m already out and it’s DAY 2, PEOPLE!
Writing is really, really hard and really, really scary.
Moody Author Photo:
Stay tuned for more updates as the month FLIES by… and add me here!