My failure and success in NaNoWriMo so far

For the first time, I decided to take part in NaNoWriMo.  For anyone who doesn’t know what NaNoWriMo is, it is National Novel Writing Month and it has taken place every November since 1999.  The aim is to write 50,000 words in a month and then the editing can follow at your leisure in December or whenever.  I have flirted with the idea of writing a novel before but I haven’t made it past the planning stage.  Some of my previous planning is still saved and I may revisit for a future novel or novels but in the meantime, I thought I would take up the challenge of just writing and getting my first novel underway.

Three weeks into the challenge and I have written just short of 10,000 words.  It works out at an average of 500 words a day.  While I could see this as a failure because I am 9 days and 40,000 words away from the target, I see it as a success.

Let me explain why.

I enjoy writing but I find that life often gets in the way.  I know real writers are supposed to find their way around obstacles but sometimes it just isn’t possible.  I don’t want to make excuses but for a variety of reasons my writing was sporadic.  To have written a few hundred words most days (I have written for 19 days out of 21) is a success.  It is a success because I have been writing regularly.  I have been writing regularly and enjoying it.  And, because I am writing most days, I know where I am going with the story.  I won’t have to remind myself at a later date what I had previously written.  My plot and characters will stay with me on a daily basis until the story is told in full.

I had not previously achieved this without the goal of NaNoWriMo.

With 9 days to go, I don’t expect to have 50,000 words written but what I do expect is to have a fully formed skeleton; the skeleton being the plot outline.  I can then work on putting flesh on the bones.

I’m happy with my progress on my practice novel.  I’m glad I took up the challenge and I would do it again.

I would love to hear about other people’s experiences in NaNoWriMo.

Maybe you’re just like me, a newbie to novel-writing.  Maybe you find it easy to knock out 50,000 words.

Feel free to leave a comment below.

Di 🙂

What comes easier to you…………

…………dialogue or description?  I am currently participating in NaNoWriMo and I have found that so far, the bulk of my work has been made up by dialogue.  Until now, I didn’t realise that I felt so comfortable writing it.  The aim is, by the end of November I will have written around 50,000 words towards a novel.  I know it will be very rough.  In fact, I am itching to edit but know that I can’t.  The method of just writing and not editing has been good for me.  I am working through the story quicker.  I know I will have to add flesh to the bones but I have enjoyed not picking it apart because I now realise that it was debilitating in the past.  By the end of this month, I could have written my first novel.  What an exciting prospect!

Is anyone else doing NaNoWriMo?

If not, what are your thoughts on writing dialogue? Do you find it easier than descriptive writing?

What do you think about writing without editing?

I’d love to hear from you.

Diane 🙂

It helps to READ THINGS PROPERLY!

I have previously mentioned that I was taking up a challenge to write a 5000 word short story within 4 weeks for a competition.  I started off with 1500 words and I have been adding to it, with the target word count of 5000 words in mind.  Tonight, I realised I was wrong.  Reading the rules on the Bridport Prize webpage, I discovered that it is a MAXIMUM of 5000 words.  I’m not going to lie, I could have bulked up my story to 5000 words but I doubt it would be the best version of the story.  The version I have now is better than it was at 1500 words but I think that with a little bit of editing, I can make my story the best version yet.

I don’t know why I didn’t read the competition rules before I began but I have learned a lesson tonight – read and read thoroughly!

I’m just glad I realised it with a week to spare 🙂