NaNoWriMo Updates

12045447_10153099432277595_9141775052828923733_oWell, we are one week into November and it’s time for an update.

I have to say that things are going well at this moment. I don’t want to be overly optimistic and say that it won’t be a problem to finish this challenge, but things are going well at this moment.

I am nearly halfway to 50,000 words and my story is moving along. There have been some surprises along the way.

One thing I will say is that I couldn’t have done this without planning. I’m just not a pantser. I have to have an idea of where I am going, otherwise things are a mess.

There is a ton of information out there about planning. I’ve seen blog after blog that focused on planning your NaNo novel. There are books, I’ve even got one that I was reading up until November began.

The method I chose to work with this year is from Jennifer Blanchard. She has several products that can help organized your thoughts starting from the idea.

I still keep a notebook handy. New people keep popping up in my stories and I have to write them down so I don’t forget. It has all been so very interesting.

I hope those of you who are participating in this year’s NaNoWriMo are having success. Even if you aren’t where you’d like to be, no words are wasted. NaNoWriMo is a great exercise in your writing process if nothing else. It’s one way to learn more about yourself.

I’m off to add words to my word count. Stay tuned for the next update.

Ready, Set, Go…

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Today I outlined the last two novels in my trilogy that I never thought I would write as I originally thought it would be a stand alone novel. Its interesting the things that evolve when you write everyday.

I am gearing up for April’s Camp NaNoWriMo. At this point I am ready to write even though it doesn’t start for several more days. I have built worlds and even done some research. Not a lot but definitely more than I did for my original novel.

Before November I discovered an interesting way to outline to get started. I was anxious about attempting something as big as a novel, never having done it before. Generally, I write flash fiction and there is little need to plan out a story like that so this was big for me and I kept looking for all of those “secrets” to writing a novel. I wanted to be prepared. Somehow I stumbled onto Dan Wells through his youtube video’s. You can find them here: Dan Wells on Story Structure https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KcmiqQ9NpPE

Through watching these (more than once) I was able to give myself a general outline or at least a direction to go in. It wasn’t hindering in the least, though my story has busted out of my original plan for it.

His basic premise is that you should have at least an idea for your story and always begin at the end. He states that you need to know where you are going in order to write how you get there. There is also a midpoint, a couple of plot turns and a couple of pinches on your MC that turn up the heat. I would recommend that you watch the entire series of five videos. I plan on watching them again before April gets here just to help get things moving again.

Whether you are a planner or a pantser (writing by the seat of your pants), having a good idea to begin with is probably a good place to start. If you are wondering where to go from there, check out Dan’s talks on Story Structure. It may help bring some of those thoughts that have been floating through your mind to order and the writing will flow from it.