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Writing Tip: Happy Nanowrimo!


Trebs

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It's November - so you know what that means! Yes, it's National Beard Month!

 

Well, ok, but it IS National Beard month too - as many of my co-workers annually remind me (I have never nor will never take that plunge but many of them do).

 

But it is also National Novel Writing Month, or as it is so more familiarly known, NaNoWriMo. Started just over thirteen years ago, if you've never heard about it, check out their website or the wiki page on them. - I'm still amazed at the rapid growth of the organization and participants.

 

The "rules" are simple - write either a complete novel of 50K words, or the first 50K words of a novel to be completed later. You can do some preparation, just a brief sketch of the main characters, or a one sentence describing the initial conflict, or a list of the main characters and their backgrounds. But actual "writing" can't start until November.

 

Creating an account and periodically uploading what you've written helps - especially in seeing what you've completed so far, and how your friends are doing. Or instead you could just hole up somewhere and just start writing, hit 50K way before November 30 and know that you are done. But in doing do - you lose out on the best aspects of NaNoWriMo - the community.

 

Just like here - they encourage, they cajole, they share their experience (and current word count), etc. And sharing here is always a good thing, We'll likewise help out any one taking the plunge with encouragement being abut to bounce story ideas off of, etc.

 

The one thing that I've suggested in the past - do NOT think about editing, or an editor. Or looking back for more than to remember a quick detail. Just - sit and see where your fingers take you for that day. And - a week in, don't start despair of "On, I'm 500 words per day behind my schedule - I must push myself more."

 

This is especially true of those what are just thinking about starting Now - this starts TODAY.

 

Oh noes?!? I can't do it... I haven't prepared... I'm already behind...

 

<COUGH> Um, Bull pucky! You CAN do it if you want to. To prepare, take 20 minutes, think of three quick plots and run with one (who knows, the other two may weave themselves in on their own). As to being behind - You'll have times where you are 5K ahead or behind. It all depends. I know writers who all of a sudden get into the groove and four hours later come out of it, not realize how much they just created;

 

SO my GayAuthors.org community - will you take the NaNoWriMo challenge? Let us know in the comments, especially if you have done it before and what your experience was.

 

Trebs

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I am taking it up!! :D

Took this challenge in the year 2009 and won it! So hopefully I can do it again. I am gonna write a story in Horror/Supernatural Genre

Good luck and happy writing to all the others who are gonna write with me <3

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I'm not. I just don't have the time to devote to it :(

 

If it had been next month then I would have, but I've got several tight deadlines this month at work, plus working on my anthology stories, plus getting my next portfolio of writing done for my creative writing course.

 

I started once in 2008, but about a week into it I was rushed into hospital with obstructive jaundice and gallstones. Then I tried again in 2010, but family stuff and work stuff conspired against me.

 

Good luck to everyone who is participating.

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I've had success with NaNoWriMo several times in the past, but lately it just doesn't seem to work for me anymore. Not sure why :(

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Come on Cassie! I'd love to have you as my writing buddy there :D Just this one last time, try it!!!

 

P.S. Decided to name my story - "To hell with you" :lol:

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(I have never nor will never take that plunge but many of them do).

 

So you're saying you will take that plunge then? :gikkle:

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I've thought about doing it in past years but I always have too many other projects going on...so no! :(

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One day I will. Probably next year. This year is all about finishing up my current YA stories. Next year we'll see if my adult story will become a reality and that'll be my NaNoWriMo challenge. :)

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http://updates.gawker.com/post/34759402826/national-novel-writing-month-begins-today-and

 

 

National Novel Writing Month begins today, and with it, the celebration of internet culture known as #NaNoWriMoOpeners:

NaNoWriMo is something of an online tradition, when people who may not do much reading and certainly even less writing agree to put inexperience behind them and create an entire novel in 30 days. Like looking at a schematic an eight-year-old has drawn up for a treehouse, most NaNoWriMo works focus on wish-fulfillment at odds with basic rules, helpful guidelines, good taste or reality. NaNoWriMo also doesn’t seem to impart many lessons — or at least heeded lessons. An unstructured exercise only works as a learning tool if you have willing readers with a critical eye or the kind of self-awareness that allows you to discover the errors in style and structure you missed while writing. Mostly, it relies on the familiar non-writer’s fallacy that writing is like talking, and anyone can do it. You already tell funny stories out loud, so the essential difference between that and a novel is time: novels are longer, and writing is slower because there’s typing involved. NaNoWriMo is a game of endurance, and nothing makes that more obvious than reading its output. Which is why, thankfully, nobody here has written one. Like last year, a group of Twitter wags have instead written only the opening lines to masterpieces that the universe, in its wisdom, will one day complete via random chance.

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I'm excited for this year. Especially since my NaNo project from last year will be released this November. That's some serious inspiration. And the community experience is vital. NaNo isn't just online. There are regular meet-ups all over the world--in bookstores, coffee houses, libraries... all through the month of November. And since everyone who shows up shares the same crazy goal, it's great fun.

 

Read a blog today from another writer and really liked her advice. Thought I'd pass some of it on here:

 

So for those of you who have leaped into NaNo 2012, I give you two bits of advice.

 

1) Always ask "What happens next?" It will keep your story moving forward, and you just might be shocked what happens next in real life.

 

2) This is supposed to be fun. Really. While it's hard, hard work being a writer, it's also full of win. Looking back at those early days, there is so much more on my plate now that occupies my time than the sheer joy of putting words down and telling the story. But I'm determined to hang onto the fun. It's a part of every day, even if I have to force it to happen.

 

For those of you who are readers and wonder why on earth someone would do such a thing to themselves? Or you who are married to writers who have taken the NaNo pledge, and are about to disappear from sight for the next 30 days, or worse, shuffle into sight looking like escapees from The Walking Dead …

 

We do it because it's worth it. Making the attempt, or reaching the goal. We learn, and we keep moving.

 

Because we want to know what comes next

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I've been participating since 2003, but have only had 2 wins - 2004 and 2011. I was planning on trying this year, too. However, I have yet to get started. That's always the hardest part for me.

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