3 weeks done, done, and DONE!
It’s strange how I can sit here now and wonder at how the last three weeks blurred by…but honestly I remember every day. I remember just being super happy to be writing that first week (I didn’t care I hadn’t broken the 10K mark like I should have). And I remember how the 2nd week had me calculating like mad to see how much of a daily word count I would need to hit 50K on the 30th.
And then I remember how all of this week I was like “Eff that! I am not going to rob myself of my accomplishments regardless of whether I hit the NaNo goal or not”.
Back when I hadn’t ever completed something, I remember trying to create what it would feel like if I finished a story for the first time.
2014 gave me that feeling 3 times…and despite the state of those MSs (well, one was a fanfic), I felt Great. Fantastic. Really the same….in a totally good way.
What I’m babbling about is I felt the same despite the different paths I took to get to The End. I kinda figure it doesn’t matter how much you’re writing, or where or in what context (i.e. maybe November is a superbusy month for you?): writing consistently will get you to the end.
To close off, grad intern Emily S. from SwoonReads says* this WAY better:
As for this year, according to my stats page, at my current rate I will finish this book on January 18. Maybe it doesn’t say November 30, but you know what it also doesn’t say?
Okie-dokie. Enough of this memory lane stuff—my great excuse: all of these blogs are unscripted—and let’s get on with the rest!
No Plot? No Problem! Week 3:
So I’ve been doing a loose/sparse chapter-by-chapter review of the second half Chris Baty’s No Plot? No Problem! That’s the section of the book where readers/writers get a week-by-week breakdown of pep talks, advice, tips and motivational spiels.
Week 3 is the kite-sailing week, or the week after the previous Storm Week. At the NaNo HQ week two is to be feared. My week two didn’t have doubts…at this point I kinda know what my problem is in finishing stuff. I mean I still get stuck—hence why I jumped ship from my contemp romance idea to a fanfic. Ahh….
Still week two wasn’t full of doubting, or hating the story thus far, and/or self-loathing. I just had to make the decision to adjust my goals…or my viewpoint with my goals. It had me stepping back and looking at the bigger picture. If I want to finish this current project, shouldn’t the finishing be the important part? Chris Baty does say 50K is an arbitrary number—it started as a guesstimate for the length of a short novel…(of course that was a great guess because 50K is considered to be the cut-off for full-length material in the industry nowadays, or so I read).
I want to write everyday. And I want to write to finish this fanfic for me. And, although I hate to say this—and I would love to totally look back at this post on the 30thhaving proved myself wrong—but I had to face a reality this week: I accepted I wouldn’t reach 50K. Like the only chance equals a lot of craziness I personally feel I can’t handle. It took about 2 weeks for me to really just embrace a more reasonable >50K word count.
But for those of you who want to hit the 50K, that’s cool too! I’m not writing this to harp on you. And chapter 3 in No Plot? No Problem offers more great tips to nudge you towards the winner’s circle.
1) Stay ahead, get ahead is the goal for Week 3, NaNo-ing friends and fiends. If you’re already got 2 50K novels, then keep writing—or share your word count with a friend! (Maybe as an innovative and early Christmas gift…?) But if you’re behind—like me!—make this week the catch-up week. How?
Make the 49,999thand 50,000th word “The End”—other areas of fair word count game are: the table of contents, chapter titles, HECK! Write a purple prosed ode to your love interest’s speedo for another 2000 words. At this point anything and everything goes.
2) Feeling adventurous? Want to try a semi-warrior weekend?
6000-word days are your answer. What Baty calls the 3/30/10 rule: slotting off a morning hour and a half, and another 1 ½ in the afternoon and evening, write in blocks of 3 30-minutes for every session reward yourself with a 10-min stretch/snack break.
Make this Sunday count—although if you’re living in Japan or something you’re already heading into Monday, but maybe you’ll block of company time for a little writing time? (Be super sneaky about it though! Or honest…you could just let your boss know, particularly if you’re having a slow day/week.)
Be kind to yourself—and don’t let that Internal Editor move back in!
I don’t entirely agree with Baty when he mentions the difficulty of writing beyond November. Remember, a 50,000 word novel could be written in a month, but it could also be written in 100 days at 500/day.
Crazy number-crunching, right?
Which brings me to the motivational quote of the week. This comes from a five-time NaNo winner Michelle Breckon from Stow, Ohio: “The best part of the middle stretch is realizing that you do have enough ideas to write an entire novel.”
Even if some of those ideas should have you locked up…
So last week I talked the talk, and now I’ll let you know whether I’ve been walking the walk…
I promised an excerpt, and I’m giving as good as my word. Scroll down** for the short snippet. (REMEMBER: this fanfic is based off a visual novel game, so it might not make sense. But if you’re going to read it, do it for the sake of humoring yourself at my expense.
I also set myself up for a 10K run this week…err, that didn’t happen. In fact, I wrote even less this week than last. I broke the 50% mark today, but tbh story-wise I’m no where near that 50%. It’s funny because NaNo is designed to get 50,000 words out, not to actually get you to finish the story—some people start and end up finishing at 40ishK. Sucks, right?
So it got super cold this week! Also it snowed. Yeah, right around my last posting last Sunday. I completely forgot about the peppermint tea, but I’m drinking it now. As I post this…so you’re getting the review as I’m experiencing it (the other way I could have done this was to vlog my drinking the peppermint—too lazy for that).
It’s tastes peppermint-y. Lol. It’s got that springy minty~ness to it. I can’t say it’s good for a cold, because thankfully I don’t have one. But it feels like it’s opening my chest cavity. Like I have so much more air to suck in.
I still prefer my black tea–Orange Pekoe thank you very much–but I’m glad I tried it. And it isn’t like the other 19 bags will go to waste.
Of course I would rather try these forms of peppermint treats…
Week Four Goals:
1) Go to my first, official local write-in. I actually didn’t really enjoy the plan-in sessions with the local WriMos, not because I hated my companions but that I hated the atmosphere. It was difficult to write around other people. All those fingers on keyboards, coughing and sneezing, etc. = Annoying. But I’m going to be a trooper and go for the experience.
2) Try at least one 6000-word day…this one is a HUGE maybe. If I do this it will be probably on Thursday or Saturday. We’ll see how crazy I’m feeling.
3) Try to wrap up the NaNo event with 30K. So that I can at least say I wrote 1000 words on average. Haha. Yeah…
So here’s to the final 7 days of crazy.
May we all come out of this in a kite-flying mood.
*NOTE: Here’s the rest of Emily S.’s blog on SwoonReads! Check out this inspirational post HERE.
**Excerpt from Addicted to Sunlight, a DBL fanfic:
Or four as Subaru scoffed and stood abruptly, and then as if he didn’t want the attention he made a face. “What? I have better things to do then stick around with vermin.” No sooner had he insulted them, he clutched the banister and vaulted over the side. His boots made no noise when they should have given the racket he was making before; more so, it defied the law of gravity and any other physics.
Yui was almost curious enough to see if he was still there.
Ayato wasn’t. “Good riddance! Man, that guy bugs me.”
“Subaru has a long way to go before he learns how to treat a woman. If only he’d let me show him just what to do. Ne, Bitch-chan, you’d help me demonstrate?”
This set Ayato off again on his threats. Yui was almost relieved, save for the occasional namedropping and possessive insinuations in their conversation concerning her.
Maybe their fighting wouldn’t be a bad thing after all. Shuu thought differently and he made it known. “Ah! So loud. I’m off to a quiet place better suited for music.”