U.S. Election and NaNoWriMo

Today, I am compelled to speak briefly about the presidential election here in the United States of America. I know many people are disappointed with this year’s choices (some of us are still salty over Bernie losing), but if you are eligible and able to do so, then please get out there and vote! I won’t tell you who to vote for; I just ask that you look at the facts and vote your conscience.


Alright, I promised an update on my progress with NaNoWriMo. Due to the beginning of the month starting on a weekday, I had already known that I was in for a rough start. I only wrote 1,200 of my 2,000 words goal on the first day. On the second day, I managed to write a measly 200 words, then nothing more for the following three days. I wasn’t so concerned at this point because I knew that I would have five whole days dedicated entirely for purpose of working on my story. However, sometimes plans get interrupted. Late last week I was gifted with a cold, so my head has been cloudy in these past few days. I am already a chronic daydreamer and get easily distracted from my writing, so my natural shortcomings and the challenge of managing a cold left me with the inability to focus on any task for more than a few minutes. By the end of Saturday, I had only written about 2,000 words.

Coming into Sunday morning, I was starting to lose my drive. I mean, I had spent my ENTIRE Saturday sitting in bed, staring at my laptop screen, with only 600 words to show for it. I was desperate to pump out more words, but I didn’t want to spit out a bunch of meaningless drivel. So, I went to the NaNoWriMo website and tried a couple of word sprints. I hadn’t tried them before, as I was afraid that they would take me too far away from the path that I thought I was on. I was completely wrong about word sprints. I am now a firm believer in them, as I had managed to write over 6,000 words that day AND improved my plot.

After so much productivity on Sunday, I gave myself a little bit of a break yesterday. I still wrote 1,400 words, but I took a lot of breaks. I also took a lot of time to listen to what my characters have been trying to tell me, rather than force them into a particular direction. Part of my problem was that a couple of my characters have been terribly weak, so my story has been stagnant. Now that I’m finally figuring this out, I’m starting to find my rhythm and what works for me.

I’m currently sitting at 9,466 words. I still have a long way to go, and I may not meet the overall goal of 50,000 words by the end of November, but I am more confident that I have a better story than when I started this journey.

How about any of you? How has your NaNoventure been so far?

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NaNoWriMo Eve

For some wrimos across the world, the clock has struck midnight. Writers have heard the call to action, and their fingers click feverishly across their keyboards as they begin the race toward the 50,000 words finish line. Where I’m located, it’s still October 31st, the magical night of Halloween, but in just a few short hours, writers in my area will be joining forces with the rest of the world for NaNoWriMo. Unfortunately for myself, I will have to wait until after I get home from work tomorrow before I can participate. As anxious as I am to start working on my novel, I definitely need my sleep.

Last night, I opened up a new Scrivener document and tinkered around with character and setting ideas, but didn’t really add anything new. Aside from that and my endless daydreaming, the only other thing I’ve done to prepare was skim through the first 5 chapters of my NaNo project from last year. I can’t help but feel nervous about how little it seems I’ve prepared, but I have also learned over the years that my brain is sharper and more focused under pressure, so blindly into the madness I’ll go.

If you have any writer friends or family members participating in NaNoWriMo, please be especially patient and supportive this month. This is a huge endeavor, and speaking from my own experience, the hardest thing for a writer is in fact writing.

I have some dedicated time off of work next week to work on my novel, and I’m going to carve out a section of time to post a more detailed update here about how NaNoWriMo is going.

Happy Halloween, and good luck fellow writers!

NaNoWriMo Prep 2016

National Novel Writing Month is almost upon us! For the entire month of November, I will be participating alongside thousands of writers across the country (it’s actually intercontinental now) to write a 50,000 words novel. This challenge is for aspiring writers of all ages, so go to http://www.nanowrimo.org to sign up if you’re interested.

I jumped in headfirst last year with an idea I’d been brewing for over year, and I somehow managed to make my word count goal; I wrote 50,785 words in 30 days. That was a huge milestone for me. I committed to writing nearly every single day. Only a few of those days were easy; most days I came home from work and spent hours trying just to get my brain to focus. I am not a quick writer, and my perfectionism prevents me from getting words on a page until I have tired myself out from trying so hard and desperation kicks in. The few words I end up with are often ones I am not proud of, but  I keep telling myself that’s what editing is for. Editing is a necessary part of the process, and it’s totally okay if my first draft is terrible. I can always fix it later.

This year, I am doing a rewrite of last year’s novel. In preparation for November, I am reading through my story and all of my notes. The reason I am doing a rewrite is because I need to make a lot of changes and polish it up so I can prepare for the publishing process. That’s my goal, anyway.

If you don’t want to participate, but would like to support NaNoWriMo, check out their donation and merchandise page. They have a new scarf in their store (pictured below) and some other awesome things like notebooks, coffee mugs, t-shirts and more.

Good luck to my fellow wrimos out there, and happy writing!