Jaya wrote:JESSA - I am not interested in meetups either. I think I do better on my own. So is Nanowrimo still something I should consider, just for the word count? Or am I better off not registering, but "thinking" I am and committing to the month of words. I'm a private person.
I found it worthwhile for helping me learn to get out of my own way and just get the first draft done. I have a tendency to speed through (see below), and writing 50k words in one story was huge for me. Turning it from that into a near-total rewrite of 83k was a triumph. I guess it all depends on what you hope to get out of it. I needed the proof of a daily wordcount that wasn't invisible. No one cares if I make my own personal wordcount on a day-to-day basis, no one sees, no one knows. But there was something about that chart and graph that kept me going.
Mind you, thanks to one 10k day at the beginning, and a 12.5k day at the end, I finished in two weeks, but it was still good for me. To do it, to learn how to do it. I needed it. But I didn't need the meetups.
You guys all aiming for novels: In your writing lives thus far, have you always attacked ideas as novels? Or have you completed short stories for the practice and skills building, etc. I find short story so difficult to tackle. But it would make sense for such an amateur like me who needs to sharpen her skills and who also lacks the "outline", i.e., I have a few thoughts and nothing more. (I don't even know my "voice", my preferred target - adult youth or middle grade or adult fiction, etc).
I should probably shut up, stop worrying and just write whatever comes in my head. Very disorganized and frazzled.
I naturally write novellas. 20-30k, that's about the length I tend to think in. I've written short stories for years and years. I know how to get to a plot, tell the good bits, and wrap it all up in a hurry. Learning to take my time but keep the pace up? That was a year of toiling and only one book to show for it so far. I don't mean to say that I feel like I should've produced more in that time, I just mean that I don't know yet if I've actually learned what I think I have. I won't know until I've done it four or five times, is my guess.
I never outline, I'll say that. And it bit me in the ass, bigtime. The whole reason my NaNo needed a massive rewrite was because in focusing on each day's output with NO re-reading and NO editing, I turned out a bunch of scenes that were cool in and of themselves, but once strung together they lost something. Like, say, a bad guy who actually did anything. In other words, with no plot planned out, I had no plot. Normally, the things I write are short enough that I can keep the whole arc in my head. And I'm willing to say that given a slower pace than "50k in two weeks", I might be able to take the time to keep the arc in mind for something longer, too.
My current WIP has more of an arc but I'm still missing some key ingredient; not in the story, but in the planning. I've tried to Snowflake it and that just led rapidly to frustration and annoyance for me. I'm just not that kind of writer. I'm still looking for the method that works for me, but outlining and in-depth plotting will never be a part of my process, I don't think.