I haven’t been on this blog since the beginning of this month because I wanted to focus all my writing effort on Nano. It’s paid off nicely. I’ve finished well ahead of schedule. 50,239 words as of today and more that three quarters of the story done. I can wrap up the end game at leisure now. Feeling good after last year’s debacle.
I must have a death wish. I’ve foolishly persuaded myself to try NaNoWriMo again next month, having not learned my lesson after crashing and burning last year. But, the allure of having a working story draft in 30 days is too irresistible to pass up.
So I’ll be taking a hiatus from the blog for a month while I drive myself crazy with frustration and worry through the month of November. Wish me luck, or better still, join yourself. Having done it three times now, I can say that it is a cathartic experience, no matter how the result turns out 🙂
Just nine more days to November frenzy, and I noticed an interesting article on the Writer’s Digest website that may provide some help and motivation to those who are sitting of the fence of this year’s NaNoWriMo (like I am). It’s a short take on outlining, and I know that many of you out there like to fly by the seat of your pants. Kudos to you. But speaking from experience, outlining, even in its most basic form, saved my life the last two years at NaNo and was hugely instrumental in enabling me to finish.
Its much better to have some idea about what you are going to write each day than simply sit down to a blank page or blank screen and wonder where your muse will take you that day. My advice, in addition to what Brian Klems provides in the article, is to make just 30 outline points or scenes, and write to those points each day.
It helped me to write the opening and closing scenes on day one and day two and then fill in the gaps as I went along. As you can see. I’m not advocating a rigid linear experience. Once you having your scenes, write them anyway, anyhow and anytime you want. Just do one a day for 30 days, making sure you put in about 1650 words per outline point and viola! Some will go longer and some will be shorter and others will feel as if they need to be broken down further. Resist the urge to do any further outlining. Just put in a chapter break (###) on your page and continue.