Posts Tagged ‘NaNoWriMo’

Novel Fails and Holidays

Uncategorized | Posted by davidludwig
Nov 30 2012

So this is mostly a quick check in to affirm that it is my intention to resume thrice weekly postings (Monday, Wednesday and Friday–which may admittedly mean you should check on Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday). A little recap of November, I tried and failed miserably at National Novel Writing Month. Not really a huge shock, I strongly suspected going in that the NaNo approach to writing was incompatible with my own.

For National Novel Writing Month the goal is 50,000 words in 30 days, not because any body I know or could even possibly relate to would be able to construct a publishable manuscript under those circumstances–but because it gets the story written. However rough and likely even nauseating at parts the product is, it is still a product. The theory from there, as I understand it, is that further time spent refining the product and getting it up to publishable quality is easier both to do and to find motivation for. So NaNo’s big push is just to get that initial word splurge out there, the task of shaping it would come later.

That approach just doesn’t work for me, I like to shape, polish and refine as I go. I like to work in several short strokes, writing and refining according to whether the stroke is presently passing over text or blank page. I get into a rhythm and the more the story and characters make sense to me the deeper into I get, and consequently the deeper I can take my audience. Rushing headlong into larger word counts I find it too easy to make missteps, possibly injuring my self or my work in the process (not generally in a literal sense of course) and sacrificing a lot of efficiency and direction in the process. Writing without stopping to edit for me is like drawing without picking up the pencil. Some parts have to be done that way to be done well, but many benefit from stopping to look at your work and maybe even correcting it before moving on.

For me if I bog down in a story the easiest way to regain momentum is to go back and edit. The process of editing re-immerses me in the story and I can carry that momentum forward into new words. It takes a while, but with everything but novels the work does eventually get done.

Who knows what the holidays are going to look like or bring, somehow I found even Thanksgiving to consume far more time and energy than anticipated–and I don’t even remember where those expenditures went. One way or another my goal is to actually finish this novel though, but at a pace that works for me and allows me to take pride in my work. With NaNo officially lost though, I do think I will go back and finish the short-story I began in the same setting first and maybe pursue some early publishing with that while I grind away at the main novel.

That’s the forecast (and reflection) for this Friday. Thanks for all the recent poll votes by the way! It’s great to get some interaction from the internet.

NaNo News

Uncategorized | Posted by davidludwig
Nov 07 2012

Well… It would appear that taking on National Novel Writing Month was a mistake. Before starting NaNoWriMo my daily word average was around 500 words per day. Obviously for a writer that’s too low. So I do appreciate learning from NaNo that I can and should sustain 1,000 words per day. Unfortunately in order to “Win” NaNo I’d need to do 1667 words per day averaged over the entire month.

As Inigo would say, “At my best I could never defeat that many.” Only, in my case I could do that many at my best–I just can’t clear it by enough to compensate for all the days I weigh in at 1,300 some odd. So I’m not sure where to go from here. Seven days in I realize I’ve picked a fight I never had any chance to win. I still intend to finish the novel, but it’s become a much lower priority now that I don’t have any sort of meaningful deadline or benchmarks to work from. The month isn’t over yet, but I think I’ve already failed NaNo decisively enough it’s time to fail something else.

So that’s my sad news. Maybe I’ll be back with something else Friday.

National Novel Writing Month!

Uncategorized | Posted by davidludwig
Nov 02 2012

Okay, so National Novel Writing month is officially here AND I’m officially participating this year. Missed my word target for the first day, and am on track to miss again this second day–putting me further in the hole–but I see the weekend through Tuesday as my real opportunities to make up for scheduling conflicts Wednesday through Friday. With any luck that’ll be enough to get me through to the 50,000 words by the end of the month.

So no treats for you this week with me so far behind already–but my plan is by next Friday, maybe earlier, to have an excerpt from the novel to share with anyone who’s interested. Potentially following up with other excerpts as the month goes on. If I could get some discussion regarding what sort of excerpts you’d like to see from my work in progress, that’d be great information for me–right now I’m thinking character introductions for windows into the core cast.

Then, if anyone feels like helping develop the world of Niar, I’m realizing that having me come up with every single town and city in the world is unlikely to be ideal. So I’d like to open up the possibility for anyone who feels like flexing some creativity and then donating the effort to come up with town and city names for the World of Niar, so that when I’m referencing locations it doesn’t sound like the same individual came up with all of them–even if the story never goes to locations I didn’t come up with, having them in the world will still enhance it. Plus in the event that this novel, or Niar Saga from this site really take off it might be kind of cool to have your location on the official world map. Maybe? I’d like that sort of thing.

On the topic of reader interaction though, thank you everyone who has voted in the current poll! With all the spambots assailing the site and looking for a way in (there is NONE, they all have to go through ME) it’s hard to feel like the page-view counter is representing real traffic, but as of this posting I know there are four people who have looked at my site and cared enough to interact with me. That means a lot.

So thank you.