NaNoWriMo

The writing process, writing advice, and updates on your work in progress
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dementedtinkerbell
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NaNoWriMo

Post by dementedtinkerbell » February 26th, 2010, 8:14 pm

I saw someone else mention it in passing in another thread and I wondered how many people on this forum actually take part. I signed up for it for the first time this year and I'm already beginning to sketch out ideas for it. Who else is taking part and if you are, are you already beginning to sketch your ideas too?

Or, is it just me doing something completely random and living up to my username?

:)
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Holly
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Re: NaNoWriMo

Post by Holly » February 26th, 2010, 8:59 pm

You should have a blast. I still have my red good luck toy car (I won it at the welcome party).

I signed up last year, but didn't plan to write a 50,000 word draft. I went to the 2-6 hour "write-ins" at a local college and coffee shop and revised the novel I've been working on for several years. The other writers were great people and we're still in touch. The experience was well worth it.

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E McD
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Re: NaNoWriMo

Post by E McD » February 26th, 2010, 9:43 pm

Never participated, but up for it this year. We should start a thread in the Bransforums when it gets closer to time so that we can post updates/goals/completions. Great idea, Tink!
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Re: NaNoWriMo

Post by maybegenius » February 26th, 2010, 10:04 pm

I tried in 2007 and only got 8000 words in. I tried again last year and won! It's fun, and definitely doable as long as you schedule your time and push through your rough spots. You really have to check your inner editor at the door and just write write write write. I did some outlining beforehand, and it helped me a lot.
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Re: NaNoWriMo

Post by casnow » February 27th, 2010, 5:10 am

I personally blame Nanowrimo for many things:
1: Making writers feel like failures for not getting 50k words done in a month
2: Making writers put off something they want to write to November so they have something for Nanowrimo
3: Making writers flood agents inbox with queries for unpolished work - this is really a selfish thing on my part, as I would prefer to see agents getting 3500 queries a year instead of 35000

But, with that said, it does probably get some young writers interested in trying to finish a novel length work.

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Re: NaNoWriMo

Post by tameson » February 27th, 2010, 1:06 pm

I LOVED doing nano next year. I whipped out my first draft in November and have been rewriting and editing it like crazy. I think it showed me what works for me as a writer. When I get stuck, I head to write or die just to get words on the page. I used to obsess far too much. My first draft needed to be like perfect and so I had tons of partially completed works. Even now I use some of those techniques for the first draft of short stories and such. I come up with a general outline (a few words, ideas of where I am going) and then I blast through that first draft, with complete abandon. Then I go back and rewrite, using my first draft as a longer very detailed outline. My work has improved and I am getting stuff finished. And since I actually like editing, I am able to get good stuff. So, I am very glad I did nano.

I think one thing that is important for why it works for me- I know that what I am doing in that first draft is not yet done. I think a lot of nanoers doen't understand the importance of edits and rewrites. I would never dream of sending something out in December (it is almost March and I just started sending chapters to beta readers).

I also do not put stuff off until November, though I might backburner some things to get another draft out next November. However, my goal is to be submitting around October with this story, so hopefully the query and all that will be done, so I will be just ready to start my next project. I don't generally like short stories, but I have been doing them occasionally and during nov that won't happen. But if I am ready to start my next novel before nov, I will.

As far as feeling like failure, I think nano tries to be gentle. But I finished, so what do I know? :)

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dementedtinkerbell
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Re: NaNoWriMo

Post by dementedtinkerbell » February 27th, 2010, 2:24 pm

I'm glad I'm not the only one who has signed up for NaNoWriMo but after reading the forums, I can see what you mean about people feeling like failures casnow. I don't know that it would stop many people writing the story they want until November though, most people on there seem to have a couple of things on the go at the same time as trying to complete the 50k words.
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Re: NaNoWriMo

Post by Aimée » February 27th, 2010, 8:13 pm

The WIP I've been working on for about six months is only 35,000 words long, so I don't think I would be able to crank out 50,000 in just one month. It would be a great accomplishment for me if I could do that though. But I really don't think it's physically possible for the story to be any good. People who submit queries on December 1st really don't know what they're doing.

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E McD
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Re: NaNoWriMo

Post by E McD » February 28th, 2010, 1:00 am

I think there's two separate debates going on here....

1. If NaNoWriMo (or anything for that matter!) gets you to sit down at your computer, avoid your full-time day job, the Bransforums, People magazine, and your children long enough to actually flesh out that book you've been knocking around in your head for the last 18 months, then so be it. Who are we to judge or complain, you know? More power to you! Now spend the next six months waxing, buffing, and botoxing it.

2. Rushed crap invented off the cuff and barely edited or thought through sent to an agent as the magnum opus? EPIC. FAILURE. Whether it was written in November or May.

--polite curtsy--

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dementedtinkerbell
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Re: NaNoWriMo

Post by dementedtinkerbell » February 28th, 2010, 4:02 am

Aimée wrote:The WIP I've been working on for about six months is only 35,000 words long, so I don't think I would be able to crank out 50,000 in just one month. It would be a great accomplishment for me if I could do that though. But I really don't think it's physically possible for the story to be any good. People who submit queries on December 1st really don't know what they're doing.
As far as I can tell, the work doesn't have to be good and nobody will see how truly terrifying it is. At least, that's what the site says!

Do people honestly try and submit their work on December 1st? There's no way that people can have a polished MS ready to be sent in such a short space of time, is there?
Me to my girl: You're grounded until you're dead
Her: You mean 'til you're dead right?
Me: No, I'll enforce it from beyond the grave
Her: *gulp*

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dementedtinkerbell
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Re: NaNoWriMo

Post by dementedtinkerbell » February 28th, 2010, 4:09 am

E McD wrote:I think there's two separate debates going on here....

1. If NaNoWriMo (or anything for that matter!) gets you to sit down at your computer, avoid your full-time day job, the Bransforums, People magazine, and your children long enough to actually flesh out that book you've been knocking around in your head for the last 18 months, then so be it. Who are we to judge or complain, you know? More power to you! Now spend the next six months waxing, buffing, and botoxing it.

2. Rushed crap invented off the cuff and barely edited or thought through sent to an agent as the magnum opus? EPIC. FAILURE. Whether it was written in November or May.

--polite curtsy--

Hugs, em
That's what I was thinking Em. I work better when I've got deadlines that have to be met, I always have done, so NaNo seemed like a brilliant idea for me.

I agree with you about EPIC FAIL. If anyone is silly enough to send out an unedited MS, they deserve any rejections they get. Saying that, I looked up everything I could find about sorting out plot mistakes and holes, editing, revising, fleshing out characters and more before I even started writing. I'm sure most of us here did the same thing, making sure we knew what to do.

I wonder how many people don't bother to look it up and believe that all you have to do is get your MS out there to an agent and they will magically be published?
Me to my girl: You're grounded until you're dead
Her: You mean 'til you're dead right?
Me: No, I'll enforce it from beyond the grave
Her: *gulp*

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Re: NaNoWriMo

Post by victoria » February 28th, 2010, 4:39 am

I signed up two years ago with great intentions but November seems to be such a busy work month I can't seem to clear enough time - for me I know that I'd rather take my time and write rather than push through to write 50, 000 words in one month that I know i'll either be very unhappy with and wouldn't want to read or re-writing the whole thing afterwards

:( I'm a very persnickety writer and even deadlines don't seem to motivate me!
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Re: NaNoWriMo

Post by Kniki » February 28th, 2010, 7:27 am

I did Nano last year, that was how I managed to get my novel finished! I am extremely busy all the time with work, family, etc, and though I had started many, many novels in the past ten years, I had never pushed through and got them finished. The deadline gave me the impetus to push on through the difficult parts, and I also found it was brilliant having the support of friends nearby who were doing it as well as all the people on Twitter who were sending out motivational messages. The great thing is that I am now in the habit of writing/editing/thinking like a writer in a way that I wasn't before, plus I got a free proof of my novel, and I still have access to all the support on the internet that I never realised was out there! So I think Nanowrimo is great, but at the same time I hope that agents aren't being overwhelmed with loads of unedited manuscripts!

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Re: NaNoWriMo

Post by charlotte49ers » February 28th, 2010, 10:55 pm

I did it last year to jump start what I'm writing now. I knew I wouldn't finish, but I was stuck in the write, edit, rewrite, edit, rewrite AGAIN loop and I needed something ot propel me forward. I probably won't do it again, but I think it serves a purpose for sure!

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Re: NaNoWriMo

Post by casnow » March 1st, 2010, 12:20 am

I honestly think I would support NanoWrimo more if it was designed for people 18 & under, b/c I think that is the age group that is in need of an outlet, has enough time to write 50k words, and is in dire need of a deadline if they are ever going to produce something novel length.

Either way, it works for some, so why not let them have fun.

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