It’s NaNoWriMo Eve! Am I ready for a month of writing abandon (as in my family and work obligations?)
I voted early
I bought my husband’s November birthday gifts
I dressed my dog in a humiliating bee costume
Martin the Mystery Dog
“Do these stripes make me look fat?”
…and for my work in progress?
Characters have been sketched out-inner and outer conflicts, pictures, mannerisms
Killer/Victim Profiles completed
Settings sketched out
Plots and subplots mostly ready and broken into scenes to write
…and yet I’m not sure if I’m ready.
I’m over at Cindy Vine’s Blog today talking about my Crazy Days With NaNoWriMo. Are you thinking about writing a novel in a month this year? It is truly crazy, but a wonderful way to get in writing shape (I see those flabby adverbs). Here is an excerpt or you can read the entire article at Cindy Vine’s Blog.
Don’t Give Up: So there I was, on the last night of NaNoWriMo with 47,000 words and an important choir rehearsal to go to at my church. Did I mention the end of November also coincides with the beginning of all the Christmas crazy scheduling? It does. I was ready to give up. I could cling to the fact that I had done so much in one month, and I just felt like I was out of story to tell. Other writers write books that are hundreds of thousands words long and someday I hope to be one, but for right now I am what I am. I was trying to write but ~BLOCK~. Then it hit me, probably as I drove to choir. Let’s hit somebody in the head with a frying pan!….
Read entire article
I did it. At 9:45 pm on the last possible night to complete National Novel Writing Month I finished at 50,003 words. Talk about cutting it close. I had every intention of reaching 50,000 words last week, but life happens. A relative ended up in the hospital and my priorities shifted. I’m happy to say my loved one is doing better and will hopefully be home soon.
I was at the end of my plot with no where to go. I had put the characters through all the ups and downs of the character arcs but still wasn’t where I needed to be with the word count. Then today, as I sat at the hospital I realized where I had gone wrong. Once I knew what to write, the actual act of writing it went quickly! I’m very pleased to have met the challenge and even more pleased that December comes without my required 1667 words per day. Jingle bells, jingle bells, jingle all the way!!
I have been trying to keep up with my daily word count on NaNoWriMo and still have a ways to go. I hope to be finished in the next week or so and really like the book I have created. Here are some things I’ve learned so far in my first year of NaNoWriMo
1. I can write more than 500 words a day, even though I thought that was my average before starting all of this.
2. I can’t write so well when surrounded by teenagers, barking dogs, and family issues. I also write lousy when under the influence of cold medicine.
3. If I fall behind, and I have a couple of times, I can catch back up again with a little extra work.
4. For me at least, organization is the key. I took the week before NaNoWriMo and completely outlined my plot, subplots, character sketches, and some of the settings. Even doing all of this, in the flow of ideas in writing a book I often find myself having to create new characters and settings to fit what direction the story is taking. I am still following my basic plan but have included at least five extra scenes and couple of settings in the third act of my story.
5. I love characters! This book is brimming full of colorful people who are the six suspects. Some days I control them and some days they control me!
So here I am at Day Nine of National Novel Writing Month. I’ve been reading many of the experienced Nano writer’s blogs talking about how the second week is rough for many writers to keep going. Characters and plots are not working right and getting the time to write every day can be difficult. I ran into that this weekend when I went out of town with my family and found I could really only write about half of what I was doing at home. Sorry, Grandma, got to write now.
I am writing along though, and my working title for my novel is The “Quiet Please” Murder. It is now officially my second novel in the Pecan Bayou Series. My “Blueberry” book will have to bump to number three. The good part of that is, once I finish Quiet Please, I’m quite a bit along in the third book. I had to do this because according to the rules of NaNoWriMo you can’t have written a single word on your novel so I had to start on an entirely new book.
The “Quiet Please” Murder takes place in…what else…a library. I’m finding there are many novels that take place in this setting,
The "Quiet Please" Murder
probably because so many writers find themselves writing and researching in libraries. But don’t fear, this is the Pecan Bayou Library which means there will be plenty of colorful characters. Also, I was asked to bring Betsy’s love interest back in the second book. I was going to bring a new man in, but “Stormy Weather” will return.
Betsy is asked to speak at an author’s night at the library. There are six presenters. One will die. That’s the synopsis in a nutshell(Official Pecan Bayou Joke).
What's that you say? Come back in a month?
As I prepare for my very first National Novel Writing Month, here is a quick poem.
The Night Before NaNoWriMo
Twas the night before NaNoWriMo
And all through my home
the plotlines were bubbling
I thought about my tone
The trick or treaters they rang
For the candy they sang
But I couldn’t leave my laptop
Not for feathers or fang
On the porch was some candy in a bowl with a note
Come back in December and read the novel I wrote!
After having my first reviewer point out my spelling and grammar errors in A Dash of Murder I am pleased to announce a corrected version has been uploaded to Amazon and Smashwords. The Amazon edition is available now and the Smashwords edition which will be in Barnes and Noble, I Tunes, Sony Reader and other formats will take up to two weeks.
One of the questions my reviewer wondered was whether there will be more books in the Pecan Bayou Series. Yes!! I have been working on one book that seems to keep centering around….blueberries. A definite work in progress kind of thing!
I am going to participate in National Novel Writing Month this year. If you are unfamiliar with this event, it is a worldwide write together where authors try to complete a 50,000 word novel from start to finish during the month of November. One of the rules is you have to start with a zero word count and “blueberries” is almost at it’s halfway mark. This means I am busily outlining, plotting and researching for the NaNoWriMo book right now. I’m not sure if I will actually achieve this goal with kids home on Thanksgiving vacation, but it is worth trying! It works out to 1667 words a day of writing and when I’m working I probably average 500 to 1000. I read one article written by a past participant that advised cooking casseroles and freezing them for my family all month. Happy Thanksgiving kids–more Hamburger Helper? It’s Cheesy Mac!!!