Wednesday, October 14, 2009

NaNoWriMo and YOU

Due to getting my girls to bed miraculously early tonight because I was in a horrid mood (7pm early) I got more writing done, and vegged by watching a movie to shake me out of this mood. So, I haven't yet had kiddo record me drawing the winner of the contest. It will be up tomorrow!

But I did want to talk about this while it was on my mind. That's right, ladies and gentle-writers, the month of November is just around the corner, and what does that mean for us? National Novel Writing Month(Hence, eh, NaNoWriMo). What got me thinking was a post in the awesome AW Forums about how you plan on juggling the word count. The goal is 50K for the month. My response to this question?

I'm a mom of two young kids, one in which can't be left alone else she'd kill herself somehow by accident (eating electrical cords, choking on plant leaves, you get the picture), going to college part time, and running the household (with everything included--hint: husband is spoiled (gee, I hope he isn't reading...) it is hard to find time to sit down, shake away the distractions (especially when desk is in the middle of the house--the kitchen) and WRITE. And Write WELL.

But Novemeber, National Novel Writing Month, shall be the month of NO EXCUSES. That's right, people. I'm setting a weekly goal, not sure what yet, but probably a realistic goal. There's no way I am setting 50K as I'll just be setting myself up for failure, which will only result in discouragement and boycotting writing for a while. No, I will set a reasonable goal, like 7K a week, and have two days within that week I have to reach a certain word-count, like say, 2K, leaving the rest of the week to catch up to result in 7K or more (taking a math class, so let's put it to use! 2 days of a must 2K = 4K, leaving 3K to get to eventually by the end of the week, easy peasy, I say). This, in essence, leaves me at 28K the end of Novemeber, which is half of a book (or almost, depending), and not bad at all!

If I do more than 28K? Score! A boost to self-esteem, and probably good writing mojo. And though I will be writing my WIP, I'll be sure (no matter how tempted) not to include what I've already written (which, ahem, is now at a little over 5K) in Eternal Guardians (like the title? I'm still teetering for or against it).

What's YOUR plan for NanoWriMo? And for veterans, any advice?


  1. This will be my first ever NaNo. I just picked up writing again back in July, and I should be finished with the YA fantasy I started two months ago by the end of this month. My NaNo YA will be a space opera and my goal is 1.7k per day.

    It should be fun. I will be focused on characters and building the plot. I won't outline, but will instead just drop my characters into a situation they have to get out of (thanks Stephen King ;) )

  2. Gosh, I have no advice for you, I'm starting off there as a newbie too! But I've signed up! I'm jaekaebee on there, why not friend m,e?

    And it's no excuses for me too. :-)

  3. CupofDice, good luck! Space Operas are awesome. :) Thanks for stopping by!

    Yay Jen! I'm signing up today or, you know, this week sometime. I may be zombie today due to 4 hours of sleep. But maybe with our No Excuse policy we can keep each other motivated :D

  4. I'm not doing it (never have yet), but what about a goal of 1000K a day or so? Maybe that's more doable?

  5. Jenn, good idea. I'm not sure yet. Some days I can't write at all which is why I'm trying to go towards the flexible but not technique.

  6. This is my second year (GatorSarah - we can be writing buddies!) and I LOVE NaNoWriMo. It was exhilarating last year. I was even more motivated because I told EVERYONE that I was going to do it so there was external pressure for me to finish also.

    The way I did it was to write much more on the weekends and write what I could on the weekdays, though it turned out I could write much more than I thought I could on weekdays. I wrote during lunch. I'm hoping this year it will be easier because I got an eeePC for Christmas and it fits in my purse.

    We can all cheer each other on as the month winds down - because that's when it gets harder to find No Excuses. BTW, mine is going to be a YA urban fantasty. My first attempt at YA; should be fun. I don't outline. I just research before and write, knowing I can edit in December.

    PS: CupofDice, I <3 your avatar.

  7. It's hard writing with kids! I have 3, but luckily they are all past the "may die if I leave them alone" stage. Now they're in the "will destroy house if I leave them alone" stage, so it's a little better.

    I find that if I don't waste the time I have (before they wake up, nap time, late evenings) I can get a ton done. I usually do waste at least a little of it (or all of it some days) though. My goal for November is not to waste any time. I think I might just make 50,000 if I can stay very focused.

  8. Sarah, great plan, and yes, writing buddies!

    Natalie, the "will destroy house stage" is always tough. My other one is 4, but fairly clean, so I'm blessed. But, it is hard to put cleaning the house as last priority so writing can happen .Maybe we can all help keep each other prioritized.

  9. This will be my FIRST NaNo and I've decided to do it mainly to keep my mind off my the one novel that's on submission and the other that's awaiting agent feedback! Talk about an ulcer-inducer.

    So I have a new idea - fun, fluffy and should be an easy write. By the time Nov. 1 rolls around I should be about 8-10K in so if I "win" NaNo I'll have almost the full first draft.

    I'm Zerbinetta on NaNo!

  10. Gretch, awesome! Yes, it does keep your mind of things, doesn't it? You'll be having a whole new kind of ulcer for this lol. I'm going to search you all when I get a chance!

  11. Looking forward to my first year doing NaNo! I have a spoiled husband too (thank God I know he is not reading this)!

    But I am committing to the 50,000 and I can't wait.

    Happy writing!

  12. I did NaNoWriMo for the first time about 4 years ago, and it was actually what got me back into writing, after taking several years off. I finished the 50,000 words, and am very happy with the resulting manuscript (still needs some editing!)

    I was surprised at how FUN NaNoWriMo was, and my favorite part was just sitting down each day to see what would come through my fingers onto the laptop screen. The internal editor just couldn't keep up, so it was a very liberating experience!

    I learned that I was a pantser, and that I could get my daily writing done in a shorter time than I would have expected. It's actually how I write now, and I love it.

    So go for it! It's definitely a worthwhile experience.

  13. Tamika, go you and your 50K word-goal! That's awesome. Donna, I'm a panster too, and I as well have a horrible, OCD internal editor. I usually get stuck editing when I sit down to write instead of actually writing so NaNo should be could to deter this! Thank you both for stopping by. :)

  14. My goal is to not abandon the project I've already started, no matter how little I feel like writing. (Lack of) ambition be damned!

  15. I tried NaNo a few years ago, when I had only one child. Got about 15K in and had to stop. I don't really outline and I pretty much ran out of ideas. Plus the fam was feeling a bit neglected. Wonder if I should try again...

  16. Good luck with NaNo Christa! I think they should have a special award for mom's who enlist!

  17. Anissa, you should totally try! I'll admit, having a rough outline is way better than jumping in cold turkey. I may be a panster, but I'm also a planner, and while most of my extra written work is research and not outlining, I have a rough one in my head (and random makes-no-sense notes in my journal.

    Thanks, Lisa & Laura! Yes, maybe a special pin? But I have to admit, there are probably plenty other writers who have other crazy life schedules without kids, so I'm good keeping myself in the same boat!

  18. For anyone who wants be writing buddies, my user is uh...ChristaCarol (go figure). JKB and Zerbinetta, found you lovely ladies.


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