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View Full Version : It lurks in the darkness, only to return again: NaNoWriMo 2010!


spineshark
09-17-2010, 02:51 PM
I am excited for writing times! I didn't quite make it last year, so I'm trying to get focused a little earlier this time. At least I know what my premise is this year. Out of my three best, I've used two the past two years, so instead of trying to just take another crack at them (which would hardly be a waste, I've had a TON of new ideas for the one I used two years ago) I'm just going to go onto the last one.

I've really gotten stuck whenever I try to figure out what sort of plot and setting it's actually going to have, which makes me think I'm starting from the wrong angle. But I really, really like the thought of it, so I'm sure I can figure it out. Basically, the main character is a paranoid superhero(ine). I have a convenient little explanation for this loosely based on REAL LIFE, but I'll only use it if I end up deciding on something vaguely normal for the superpowers. I'm also thinking I'll go with an actual city for the setting since I don't really want to have to make one up. Finally, there's the obvious question of the villain. I obviously need one since it would be such an idiotic cop-out not to, but what sort of person do you put up against someone who's already kind of crazy?

Anyway, this is a place for everyone to talk about their ideas and hype. Let's writing a lot!

Falselogic
09-17-2010, 03:02 PM
I plan on doing this every year and Ive never got passed 1000 words on any of my nanowrimo (or any other projects). I'm going to save myself the pain this year.

Luana
09-17-2010, 05:25 PM
While I'm not into NaNoWriMo (I don't even like reading novels, and I know that even as an aspiring MFA student, I will maybe write a compilation of short stories or poetry for publication), I would be more than happy to act as an editor/proofreader/critical reader for anyone who wants one.

Aquadeo
09-17-2010, 10:15 PM
This'll be... what, novel #8 for me, I guess. I haven't written anything worth editing since #6, though, so this year I'm going to tackle the totally unpublishable pop-culture spy comedy I've always wanted. I think it's going to be a lot of fun to write!

Queen Possum
09-18-2010, 06:54 AM
I've actually got a electronic typing machine of my very own this year, so I think I will try it.

Stiv
09-18-2010, 09:57 AM
While I'm not into NaNoWriMo (I don't even like reading novels, and I know that even as an aspiring MFA student, I will maybe write a compilation of short stories or poetry for publication), I would be more than happy to act as an editor/proofreader/critical reader for anyone who wants one.

There are no rules that say it has to be a novel or novella. Collections of short stories are perfectly acceptable.

widdershins
09-18-2010, 10:05 AM
There are no rules that say it has to be a novel or novella. Collections of short stories are perfectly acceptable.

Well, in the official contest thingie, it is an explicit rule. From their info page:

Write a novel. We define a novel as a lengthy work of fiction. If you consider the book you're writing a novel, we consider it a novel too!

Granted, there's wiggle room there -- are a series of thematically related short stories a novel? Maybe! But yeah, there's that.

...I've been trying to get myself to write more, and this thing is tempting, but at the same time it's also like deciding you want to work out more, then signing up for a triathlon. AMBIVALENCE!

Aquadeo
09-18-2010, 10:45 AM
Well, in the official contest thingie, it is an explicit rule.

True, but they make it explicit only because it's completely unenforceable. Every year, there are plenty of people who write collections of short stories, rewrite existing novels, include the text of term papers they wrote last semester... the list goes on. But cracking down on any of that would make NaNo HQ seem like a bunch of jerks. So, they just state their position, and offer encouragement for those who do write novels. The only thing that is strictly enforced is that you can't proselytize the writing of non-novels in novel-writing forums. (At least, that's what I do in my region.)

...I've been trying to get myself to write more, and this thing is tempting, but at the same time it's also like deciding you want to work out more, then signing up for a triathlon. AMBIVALENCE!

Except: this is a triathlon that doesn't require you to know how to swim beforehand, won't result in injury if you push yourself too hard, and has a lot more little cups of water handed to you on the sidelines.

DO IT

THE WORLD NEEDS YOU

(the fictional world inside your head, that is. But it's not like the RL world would be a worse place for it!)

Aquadeo
09-18-2010, 02:51 PM
Finally, there's the obvious question of the villain. I obviously need one since it would be such an idiotic cop-out not to, but what sort of person do you put up against someone who's already kind of crazy?

That's a good question... if it's a villain that really *is* in control of everything, then the hero isn't actually paranoid. If the villain is simply a force of destruction, then it's hard to make an interesting character out of that.

What if the villain is also paranoid, though? Obviously, the government actually is out to get him, since he's a villain and all... but what if he thinks he's fighting against the Illuminati? He robs a bank because the money goes to the Secret Government, or he destroys a school because it's a brainwashing center, and so on.

Or, what if he thinks he's fighting *for* the Illuminati, and believes that his daily mission orders are scrambled in the stock market listings?

In either case, a villain like this might cause your hero a bit of confusion, seeing as how the hero would be more likely to believe these claims than the police would. Conversely, your hero might be able to clearly see the flaws in this villain's logic, but it would be apparent to the reader that she's unable to see such things in herself.

It's an interesting premise, though. I'm curious to hear what you decide upon!

widdershins
09-19-2010, 12:44 PM
My problem is that whenever I come up with a premise I like, I decide it's too similar to some other existing body of work, and lose interest. What I need to do is stop thinking about what makes for a good hook or a good twist and come up with something utterly ridiculous and stream of consciousness it from there.

Aquadeo
09-19-2010, 09:05 PM
What I need to do is stop thinking about what makes for a good hook or a good twist and come up with something utterly ridiculous and stream of consciousness it from there.

Man, NaNoWriMo is perfect for you! It's nothing *but* not thinking and going with the stream of consciousness! For instance, during November the @NaNoWordSprints (http://twitter.com/NaNoWordSprints) account on Twitter will pop up and announce a word sprint. There'll be enough advance notice to save your game and go to the bathroom, but not enough to plan out your thoughts. Once it starts, it's just "GO GO GO" until the time runs out (usually around twenty minutes). Afterwards, you'll have some more words written down, and a goal to beat for the next sprint. Simple!

As for needing a good hook - you're right. All stories resemble others to some extent, but it's the differences that make them worth reading. But don't worry too much about finding a "good" twist. If you decide that your characters shouldn't have been in the hospital at midnight, just find a reason for them to be at the arcade on Sunday, and keep on going. It can all be edited into a better product later on... but for November, just never look back, and keep on writing. Once it's all over, you'll amaze yourself with all the crazy ideas you came up with.

So, at the risk of repeating myself:

DO IT

THE WORLD NEEDS YOU

widdershins
09-19-2010, 09:08 PM
Heh, no need to worry, I signed up yesterday, and I'm fairly sure I'm going to take a stab at this.

As long as I'm listing my insecurities, though: I compulsively edit my work sentence by sentence until I get what I want. Sprinting is going to take a LOT of reflex inhibiting.

:-)

Aquadeo
09-19-2010, 09:42 PM
Excellent. : )

Hm. You'll be in Washington::Olympia, correct? Not a bad region, from the looks of it - a fairly active message board, and they placed 190th worldwide (http://graphing.teiru.net/regions/) last year. That's better than my region did!

(Yes, I know. It's not about collective wordcount, it's about personal goals. But those regional stats are still fun to look at.)

widdershins
09-19-2010, 09:55 PM
Seattle I can understand, but we placed lower than Spokane, Tacoma, and elsewhere?!

This is a wrong I need to WRITE! I figure I only need to personally contribute ~1 million words to beat Tacoma. That can't be too hard, right?

EDIT: Wait a minute, we're only 100,000 words behind Tacoma. I really COULD make a difference! Hurrah!

ThornGhost
09-20-2010, 07:19 AM
I've been jonesin' to do some writing lately anyway, but I haven't been able to break out of the routine to do it. Just last night, I was telling the wife we need to schedule an hour or so of uninterruptible "creative output" time for each of us, each day. That would be a good time to get writing in for sure.

I've got a couple of things on my plate I could tackle for Nanowrimo. I could pick back up my "current" novel, which I'm roughly 14k words in, but haven't spent any real time with in about a year. Alternatively, I could start writing this new idea I've had kicking around for a while that is wildly different from anything else I've ever written. I've also had an idea, more for a "world" than anything, that might be interesting to try and set a story in.

spineshark
09-20-2010, 06:21 PM
Seattle I can understand, but we placed lower than Spokane, Tacoma, and elsewhere?!
Even Denver loses to The Entirety of Kansas. (But if we were Denver-Boulder instead, which would TOTALLY make enough sense, we would be ahead of Boston!)
My problem is that whenever I come up with a premise I like, I decide it's too similar to some other existing body of work, and lose interest. What I need to do is stop thinking about what makes for a good hook or a good twist and come up with something utterly ridiculous and stream of consciousness it from there.
I had a short series of possible plot developments come into my head recently, and when I thought them through, I suddenly realized it was some strange twist on Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde: in this concept, the character's powers and paranoia would both be short-term effects coming from a medicine the character was taking. While they persisted, she would become intensely suspicious of the pills and decide not to take them again, causing the effects to wear off for a while before her next lucid dose. I don't think I'm going to stick with that take, but I thought it was completely awesome.

Lucas
09-24-2010, 12:06 AM
My friend questions the legitimacy of fanfiction as a subject for NaNoWriMo. I contend that words is words and it shouldn't matter what your subject is as long as you do the writing. Is there an official stance on this?

widdershins
09-24-2010, 12:48 AM
Official? Probably not. As has been said to me, there's a set of guidelines, but it's really there just to encourage you to write. It's not like there's a grand prize or guaranteed publication attached to the thing (unless I've really been reading the wrong parts of the site).

Lucas
09-24-2010, 01:06 AM
Well, as official as anything gets with the event; I know there's no Lord High WriMo handing down the November Commandments. "Generally accepted" probably would have been a better phrase to use. Really, now I'm just curious as to how, or I guess whether the NaNoWriMo community thinks about this kind of thing - whether there are actual arguements about the validity of different kinds of writing for the event and such. Though I guess this

it's really there just to encourage you to write.

is really all that needs to be said in answer to my original question.

It also answers my question of a day or two ago of whether to write now or save it for NaNoWriMo. Better to get the words out now while I want to than to sit on the idea for a month and allow my ardor to cool.

widdershins
09-24-2010, 10:43 PM
I copied a snippet of the official rules up in post 7 that is pertinent to your concern. They're listed in their entirety here (http://www.nanowrimo.org/eng/hownanoworks).

Technically, they say you have to start your novel in November, but it's also very clear from comments on the site that people aren't really encouraged to take this too seriously. Again, there's no real "prize" except for a certificate of completion, so they don't really need to worry about people "cheating".

I'm in Aquadeo's camp here -- if you're even thinking about doing it, GO FOR IT. I plan to, and I've never even attempted to write anything that long and don't know if I can, but by gum I'm going to try.

bobbywatson
10-02-2010, 07:55 PM
I'm doing NaNoWriMo again this year for the... how many has it been... sixth time? Yeah, I think that's it.

I spent the first three re-writing the same novel (year three was a step in the right direction, but it needed a lot more work). I failed year four due to a minor car accident. Made it last year.

This year, I'm writing space opera. A young man wants to reconquer the financial empire that was stolen from him by his aunt. It has space pirates. And sex. Temporary title is "Blackmail, Inc.".

Should be fun!

spineshark
10-09-2010, 03:20 AM
Made a little progress on the planning end. I've nailed down a main character name! (Seriously, that's so huge for me, I always have so much trouble with that) I've also decided to just use some basic superpower stuff (rapid healing, superhuman strength and speed) since the powers themselves aren't really the point. Obviously if I end up in some situation where it would just be so AWESOME for her to shoot little black holes out of her hands or something that could change. And I've come up with a bunch of little character developing scenes, though I'm still trying to figure out if there's anything underneath all of them that will lead me to something of a central plotline.

Mightyblue
10-09-2010, 05:15 AM
Man, I just decided to do this again so I can really get back into writing and maybe try to actually get published.

My problem is that I'm much more of a world-building kind of guy, so I've something like three or four "universes" set up at the moment, and when I get bored I start plotting out novel outlines and almost never get much farther than that. I've literally got materials for at least a half dozen novels scattered around and enough teasers scribbled into the margins of my settings' timelines for a dozen more. It's ridiculous.

I'll probably attempt writing one of the novels in the first universe I set up (well, started to with a ton of revisions over the years) when I was fifteen. The general concept was a series of stand alone fantasy novels all revolving around a certain singular event and various members of a family. The collective narrative thrust of the series was supposed to be about changing the outcome of this event and how the actions of this family work to change this outcome. Individually, the stories are a lot more varied, especially with the novel "first" in the causality changes (as you might expect, this series also deals with a fair amount of time-traveling and paradoxes), since I wouldn't expect the reader to be aware of the wider plot or the MC's importance to it.

It's basically the single largest chunk of writing I've ever done just for the background work, and after ten years of working on the setting, I think I'm actually ready to start writing the novels in question.

Brickroad
10-30-2010, 01:18 PM
Two more days. Deep breaths, people.

I've decided to write a mystery starring this character (http://scibbe.com/index.php/2009/09/15/the-character-who-wont-leave-my-head/). I have never written a mystery before, and I have no idea how to do it, and I have no idea what the mystery is even going to be... but I'm doing it anyway.

widdershins
10-30-2010, 03:00 PM
Two more days. Deep breaths, people.

I've decided to write a mystery starring this character (http://scibbe.com/index.php/2009/09/15/the-character-who-wont-leave-my-head/). I have never written a mystery before, and I have no idea how to do it, and I have no idea what the mystery is even going to be... but I'm doing it anyway.

Dude, if your blog is any indication, you're a fantastic writer, and I think whatever you come up with will be worthwhile. Your daily updates are one of the highlights of my work day!

That said, I don't have so much as a single character or story idea yet, so I'm in full-on panic mode.

Aquadeo
10-30-2010, 06:53 PM
Okay. Feeling good now. For a while I didn't really understand why my novel was worth writing, even though it was already semi-plotted.

Now I know the main character will be performing a ventriloquist act with a Spanish-speaking parrot that lives in a guitar case, I feel much better about the whole thing.

Which is good, because apparently I'll be in San Francisco this year, taking part in the Night Of Writing Dangerously. It would've been kind of embarrassing, introducing myself to other writers and not having a parrot story.

(Also, I may possibly have someone point to the bird and proclaim that he just doesn't know. I try to keep in-jokes to a minimum, but that one I can't pass up.)

spineshark
10-30-2010, 10:34 PM
My villain's coming along nicely, thanks to Aquadeo's suggestions. There's a bit more to iron out (still haven't got a name or how old he should be), but he's an insanely wealthy tycoon who bankrolls and organizes terrorist attacks against the "New World Order." Of course, there's no need for such a man to get too involved himself-it's an unnecessary risk-so the actual dirty work is proxied, done by recruits culled from a conspiracy-themed internet message board. I already have a couple of his scenes in my head, and they are glorious. This story is going to be SO AWESOME.

Rascally Badger
10-30-2010, 11:20 PM
I think I'll try this out. I've been kind of down on my writing and unproductive lately, this may just be the thing to get me going again. I've got three ideas of what to write: the first is a rather negative look a small town life by way of the High School football team and local politics, the second is a detective story about a rich woman detective and her apprentice/chauffeur and the third is basically Final Fantasy meets Stephen King's Dark Tower with protagonists based loosely on Teddy Roosevelt and Napoleon. Which one should I choose?

Merus
10-31-2010, 12:49 AM
I am probably not going to write a novel, because I keep getting stuck polishing because it's not up to my standards. Instead, I'm going to do 50,000 words worth of short stories. Because I have a shallow reference pool, they're likely to be somewhat similar in tone. I have enough ideas for the first week, and I'm sure that as I write I'll have more. So far, I have:
* Two zombie hunters find love, but the rest of their crew wards them off getting too deeply involved.
* A young man wakes up in a white room with no door and a perfect girl beside him - which triggers a mental breakdown.
* Two unusually persuasive media executives meet with a cynical news editor to share their vision of a 'revolution in television', which turns out to be literal.
* A vampire story in a post-post-apocalyptic fantasy, where there's problems at the garlic farms and a band of newbie heroes go check it out. May devolve into a Twilight parody.
* Something with Black Lightning
* A story set in the Freakangels universe, exploring what about that setting disturbs me

Aquadeo
10-31-2010, 08:20 AM
I think I'll try this out. I've been kind of down on my writing and unproductive lately, this may just be the thing to get me going again. I've got three ideas of what to write: the first is a rather negative look a small town life by way of the High School football team and local politics, the second is a detective story about a rich woman detective and her apprentice/chauffeur and the third is basically Final Fantasy meets Stephen King's Dark Tower with protagonists based loosely on Teddy Roosevelt and Napoleon. Which one should I choose?

I'd caution against writing something purely negative, simply because catharsis is best when it isn't dragged out over a month. On the other hand, there's potential for a bit of black humor with high school football politics. Still, I'd recommend saving this for a short story later, so that you'll still be able to laugh once it's finished.

Detective stories are fun, and I like the "apprentice" idea. I don't know how much of that you already have plotted out, though - unless you're willing to tag a paragraph for later examination and jump to a completely different section in the meantime, you might get bogged down by the challenge of getting everything to line up. I think you're already set up to avoid those writer's blocks, though, since it seems like the focus here is really going to be about the characters, and not the "evil mastermind who must be foiled".

My own novels frequently take the "kitchen sink" approach to writing, and you know what? They're the least likely to get published, but they're also the most fun to talk about in public, and almost anyone you talk to has the potential for giving you an idea for the next chapter. Also... sometimes these novels have a few ideas within them that warrant a story of their own
later. And sometimes, they're genuinely good just as they are.

So, if you already like the characters of the detective novel, and don't mind rewriting in January, go for #2. If you just want a wild and crazy and energizing November, go for #3.

(Just my opinion, of course. You're going to be the best judge of the situation, after all.)

widdershins
10-31-2010, 09:27 AM
Yeah, of late I've been considering doing something more akin to a short story collection, since I haven't had any good ideas for a longer story, and it's more conducive to a "fling-shit-at-the-wall-and-see-what-sticks" approach. Of course, one worry is that it's a cop out because I'm scared of trying to write an honest to goodness novel. Conversely, I worry that seeing as I've not really written any fiction since high school, a proper novel may be biting off more than I can chew. I figure my options are:

1) Go with the original plan and write a goddamn novel. No one said it had to be good. Possibly start writing a character study and see if I can get a story to evolve out of it.

2) Take it in smaller chunks with short stories. Fewer opportunities to get bored with any ideas I end up not liking, but a little less in the spirit of NaNoWriMo

3) Take a completely different turn, and write the collection of non-fiction essays about my year living in Sapporo that I've been talking about writing for 5 years. A surprising number of stories came out of my time there (Random drinking with british royalty? Check. Fever Hallucinations in Tokyo? Check. Getting stranded in Nagoya? Check. Perminent injury due to all-you-can-drink whiskey shots? Double check.), and I've been curious to see if I could fill a book with 'em. Of course, this seems to be even less in the spirit of NaNoWriMo...

Oh kilted, dancing god of NaNoWriMo, what say you?

Queen Possum
10-31-2010, 09:36 AM
All signed up. Apparently I am a NaNolanta Panda, according to our regional forum. I see that we are the no. 26 region. Hopefully I do not fail in this and pull down our average.

Edit: Also we are at war with both Seattle and Dallas so BRING IT.

Aquadeo
10-31-2010, 11:24 AM
One worry is that it's a cop out because I'm scared of trying to write an honest to goodness novel. Conversely, I worry that seeing as I've not really written any fiction since high school, a proper novel may be biting off more than I can chew.

Oh kilted, dancing god of NaNoWriMo, what say you?

...?

Well, there are worse things to be called the day before Nov. 1st. : )

First of all, I'm not against the idea of a collection of short stories for NaNoWriMo. My 2008 novel was just that, within a framework of a bunch of people telling each other stories. Hey, it worked for Chaucer, right? And I like Merus' idea, because he's planned it out, and I like most of the concepts he's listed. (And also because I wouldn't be surprised if at least one of those stories will end up being longer than he expected, until he's almost written a novella anyway.)

But you don't get off so easily, widdershins. If you want to accomplish something with this, don't settle for less before you even start. Besides, words are your main resource here - get as many of them on the page as possible. When December comes, if you really hate what you've done, you can edit it into a good short story at that point, and it'll be far easier than building a short story from up out of nothing.

Right now, you've got the tabula rasa at your disposal. Fill it up! It might be a meandering novel, but if you see what sticks here, it'll be easier to build the rest of the novel around that.

Your goal isn't to practice writing (that's the effect, not the cause). Your goal is to prove that yes, you can write a novel. So pick the barest outline of a main character, sit them down next to a person they like more than that person likes them, and open up a door to see what happens. Taking unexpected turns and revelations is one of the true pleasures of NaNoWriMo, and that doesn't happen as often when you're already planning to write a completely different story tomorrow.

Good luck!

widdershins
10-31-2010, 12:05 PM
Advice noted and appreciated!


Well, there are worse things to be called the day before Nov. 1st. : )


I'm sorry... I just can't unsee that video now that I've seen it. :-)

Brickroad
10-31-2010, 06:26 PM
Oh god oh god I have to start writing tonight and I still don't know what my mystery is going to be.

Hopefully something will come to me after I start writing.

PLEASE DON'T LET ME QUIT, YOU GUYS.

Lucas
10-31-2010, 07:02 PM
You will discover the mystery together with your characters.

Alternately, aliens.

Aquadeo
10-31-2010, 08:52 PM
I think I've said this before, but I send out pep talks for my region every week or so. If you want an extra morale boost, just affiliate yourself with my region, Canada::Alberta::Elsewhere in the "My Regions" tab of your profile, and you'll get them in your inbox, too!

They go a little something like this...

Greetings, everyone! This is your ML, Aquadeo, and I hope you're looking forward to this upcoming NaNoWriMo... because in a few short hours, it's going to be upon us, along with another month of creativity, energy, inspiration, and odds-defying deadlines.

Stories will be told this month, and believe it or not, you're going to be the one telling them. Some of you have already planned for this, and have an outline ready. That's great! And if you finish writing everything in your outline by Friday, or have a secondary character somehow become more interesting than your protagonist? That's great, too. After all, it wouldn't be NaNoWriMo if we didn't surprise ourselves somehow.

But what about those of you who haven't planned anything, who aren't quite sure if they're able to go by the seat of their pants? For you, my friends, I have a little story to tell. A little story about my journey... to Pants Mountain.

This autumn, I had the good fortune to travel to Iceland. Nice place. Kind of like New Zealand, but with dwarves instead of hobbits. I could have seen the geysers and lagoons, but instead I found myself in a tiny rental car, driving up a narrow gravel road etched into the side of the cliff by a thousand years of lichen. The dim green of the roadside moss gave way to the familiar hues of winter as I climbed higher. Puddles on the side of the road started to blossom with crystals of ice. The air, already chilled by the Atlantic Ocean, seemed to pick up speed as it crested over the peaks of snow. The road levelled off, and I saw that I was no longer driving on a road, but simply following a lone pair of tire tracks across a glacier.

I had arrived.

This was Mount Snaeffels, the peak immortalized in Jules Verne's Journey to the Centre of the Earth, as the starting point for his protagonists to begin their underground adventure. Indeed, there is a face on this mountain with a giant hole in it, dropping almost straight down, impossible to descend, or to see the bottom. But even so, you can still see everything fall into place inside Verne's head, when he saw this mountain for the first time.

What's down there? "A hidden passageway!"

To where? "The centre of the earth!"

Why would you want to go there? "For the thrill of discovery! Or maybe because the protagonist's uncle forced him to!"

But... wouldn't it be boring, down there in the dark? "Not if it's full of crystal caverns, giant mushrooms, cave-ins, lava flows, and subterranean oceans with dinosaurs living in them!"

...and so on, and so on. It's one of the most famous books written by the Grandfather of Science Fiction, and you can almost hear him stammering and waving his hands as he comes up with the next obstacle for his adventurers off the top of his head... and all he did to start things rolling was look in a giant hole, and wonder what was down there. After that, he did one more thing - and this is crucial to the whole process:

He trusted in the answer he gave himself, and he found a new question inside it.

That's all you have to do, too. That is the Secret of Pants Mountain.

So go forth, brave author, on a Journey of your own. Don't lose faith in yourself, and rather than fear your own questions, let them light the way ahead!

Is there anything else you have to do? Just one thing - and you can say it with me, if you’d like...

WRITE!

Go at it - tackle this first week with speed and momentum. Don’t think too long about your answers, just trust in yourself that you’ll make it work (and you will). Just put words down on the page, and you can catch your breath this weekend, okay? Until then, I'll see you on the forums, where I look forward to hearing about all your adventures, and where we’ll all discover the secrets of this crazy month together!

Your ML,

Aquadeo

(Oh, and later in the month, I'll be setting up a "nag list", too - a private e-mail where I'm not quite so cheery, more demanding, and less forgiving of people who think that it's okay to stop writing if your excuse is good enough. This'll be a new thing I'm trying, but you're welcome to sign up for that, too - just send me your e-mail address in a PM.)

Karzac
10-31-2010, 09:04 PM
I'm doing this again this year as well, after quitting after 8000 words last year. This year I'm going in with almost no plan and am just going to write 50000 stream of consciouness words that will hopefuly coalesce into a novel. It'll probably just devolve into a rip-off of The Catcher in the Rye, but I'm okay with that. I figure that if I have no respect for my idea in the first place then I'll be less precious with it and more willing to just write.

spineshark
11-01-2010, 03:01 AM
I've already reached pace for day 1! I...think! I'm writing by hand this year so I'll be less distracted, and I'm taking each page to be about 200 words, unless it has a ton of line breaks from dialogue. And the beginning was one of the parts I thought least about, so I should be really good to go for the first week. I can already tell all the things I thought of are probably not going to take me all the way though.

Brickroad
11-01-2010, 05:07 AM
Sitting at 2600 words so far.

Feeling like a big manly man.

eta: Whoops, I meant 3200. GUESS I GOT BRAIN PROBLEMS

widdershins
11-01-2010, 08:23 AM
I think I've got the fuzzy shape of an idea in my head. Let's see if I can turn that into a strong start tonight!

bobbywatson
11-01-2010, 10:32 AM
Had a few minutes during lunch today and I managed to write about 300 words. Not bad. One thing though: I had another idea for a novel this weekend (actually, it's an updated version of last year's NaNoWriMo novel) that I am really considering writing instead.

Rascally Badger
11-01-2010, 11:48 AM
I am about 600 words into the adventures of the slightly agoraphobic detective Isabelle Vray (I realized after I added the agoraphobia part hat it seems like I'm ripping off Monk, but it is a small part of the character and not the focus so I guess I should quit worrying about it) and her indefatigable aide Clare Reed and the mostly unwanted intrusions of nearly incompetent reporter Tom Saunders.(Yes I know the names are lame, but better lame names than no names.) So far I've learned that I need to know exactly how a reporter operates and should not base my characters actions on the movie Fletch and that writing a mystery when you have no idea what the mystery is is hard.

Karzac
11-01-2010, 12:12 PM
I've got 745 words, but keep getting interrupted. Still, I'm feeling good about this. We can make it together guys!

Brickroad
11-01-2010, 01:22 PM
If I can finagle Peanut's lappy away from her, I might check out one of these local NaNo meet-ups.

I guess writers love the shit out of some Panera Bread?

bobbywatson
11-01-2010, 01:31 PM
I guess writers love the shit out of some Panera Bread?

Their iced green tea is great! As is the tomato soup, actually.

Brickroad
11-01-2010, 02:10 PM
Their iced green tea is great! As is the tomato soup, actually.

I always get a brocolli & cheddar bread bowl.

One time I tried to order a sandwich, and the guy said "they're paninis", so I punched him in the jaw. I can't go back to that particular Panera anymore.

Karzac
11-01-2010, 02:38 PM
1820 is where I stop today. Those sprints have been quite helpful. Hopefully I'll be able to continue keeping pace.

Queen Possum
11-01-2010, 04:50 PM
Apparently Wordpad doesn't have word count. Hmph. This is going to be difficult.

Aquadeo
11-01-2010, 04:56 PM
You can try a text editor like Q10 (http://www.baara.com/q10/), perhaps. It's a small download, and it's freeware, too!

Epithet
11-01-2010, 05:41 PM
I got about 1666 for today, though I might do some more today. I guess I'll try to do a lot tomorrow, since I have the day off and all.

bobbywatson
11-01-2010, 07:19 PM
Got to 1742 today. That's good enough, especially considering that it took me about an hour to get there. I'm hoping to reach 4000 tomorrow.

Prinnydood
11-01-2010, 08:27 PM
Had I known about this earlier, I would have given it a try. Like many of you, I have a lot of ideas for stories, but nothing even remotely coherent or long enough. Oh well, there's always next year...

Queen Possum
11-01-2010, 09:11 PM
*sigh* Only 908 words for today. This stream of consciousness thing isn't working out quite as well as I'd hoped.

If anyone wishes to be my writing buddy, you can find me here. (http://www.nanowrimo.org/eng/user/402984)

kaisel
11-01-2010, 11:06 PM
Between mafia, work, and real life stuff I got just about nothing today. Hopefully tomorrow will be a more fulfilling day on the writing front, but honestly, I just signed up today on a lark. We'll see how this goes.

widdershins
11-01-2010, 11:12 PM
Ended up working 2 and a half hours past my shift, and had a long bus ride home... ended up with nothin' :-(

I did get a pretty good idea of how I'm starting my story, though. I have NO idea where it's going to go from there, but that's half the fun, right?

...right?

Brickroad
11-01-2010, 11:39 PM
Ended up working 2 and a half hours past my shift, and had a long bus ride home... ended up with nothin' :-(

I did get a pretty good idea of how I'm starting my story, though. I have NO idea where it's going to go from there, but that's half the fun, right?

...right?

Not for me. It is driving me crazy not having any direction.

On the plus side, I did some research from my phone. What a handy little tool!

bobbywatson
11-02-2010, 05:15 AM
Had I known about this earlier, I would have given it a try. Like many of you, I have a lot of ideas for stories, but nothing even remotely coherent or long enough. Oh well, there's always next year...

It is still very early, and definitely not too late to start.

Wrote some this morning, 15 minutes, 600 words. Not a bad start.

Brickroad
11-02-2010, 07:58 AM
Okay guys, I am for real in this for the long haul. I just called my grandma and gave her permission to nag me about my word count all month long.

Prinnydood
11-02-2010, 09:45 AM
On the way to class today, I started thinking about NaNoWriMo and convinced myself to take part in it... sort of. I'll be joining you guys, but I won't be going all out with 50000 words. I just don't have that kind of time if I want to get through this semester. So, I'll cut it in half. That should be manageable, right?

So, I figured I'd bounce an idea I came up with off of you guys for no reason other than the fact that strangers are practically entitled to be brutally honest.

I was thinking about developing all of these small ideas I had into one large "compilation" of sorts. More likely they'd be little vignettes that a group of main characters would take part in in the same vein as a typical Dragon Quest game, I guess. This would allow me to keep things fresh and avoid the burn out of writing one long main story for so many words. I think coming up with interesting, yet ungimmicky main characters would be the hardest part.

Thoughts?

bobbywatson
11-02-2010, 10:16 AM
On the way to class today, I started thinking about NaNoWriMo and convinced myself to take part in it... sort of. I'll be joining you guys, but I won't be going all out with 50000 words. I just don't have that kind of time if I want to get through this semester. So, I'll cut it in half. That should be manageable, right?

So, I figured I'd bounce an idea I came up with off of you guys for no reason other than the fact that strangers are practically entitled to be brutally honest.

I was thinking about developing all of these small ideas I had into one large "compilation" of sorts. More likely they'd be little vignettes that a group of main characters would take part in in the same vein as a typical Dragon Quest game, I guess. This would allow me to keep things fresh and avoid the burn out of writing one long main story for so many words. I think coming up with interesting, yet ungimmicky main characters would be the hardest part.

Thoughts?

Sounds like the movie Magnolia. That movie was awesome. In the movie, there is usually a link to go from one character to another, and it might not be obvious, but I thought the result was quite interesting.

And: 50000 words may seem like a lot, but it's not. I've been doing that stuff for a while now, and if you find good strategies, it can be done in a relatively short amount of time. The best I found: set a time to 20 minutes and just write, no phone, no email, no internet, nothing. I was able to do nearly 1000 words like that last night.

Luana
11-02-2010, 10:30 AM
I wrote for about twenty minutes last night and got about 700 words in. Unfortunately, I forgot to put the file in my Dropbox and now will have to start on my second story.

I can't bring myself to write a novel -- it's pretty much against my code of writing -- so what I've decided to do is write a collection of short stories and sudden/flash fiction. I'm actually getting my prompts from Big Huge Labs' plot/logline generator (http://words.bighugelabs.com/plot.php) and putting my own spin on them. For example, I got one about a brilliant engineer who attends his friend's funeral in San Francisco, and I'm making it so that way his friend (also a structural engineer) actually killed himself in one of the buildings that he planned and built, and he pretty much agonizes over what he could have done to prevent this, both from an engineering standpoint and from a personal one.

(Oh, and if you're looking for a good way to write on the go, Big Huge Labs' Writer (http://writer.bighugelabs.com/) is nice and you can even see the word count on the bottom!)

This'll be really good for me, because my worst habit is that I tend to edit while I'm writing, and I haven't really let myself do that so far. It's like pulling teeth, I'm telling you. Especially if I plan on pursuing my MFA, it'll be good to start beefing up my portfolio now, and hopefully one of the gazillion things I write this month will be a good candidate for editing down into something actually good for once.

Aquadeo
11-02-2010, 10:31 AM
Brickroad: That is awesome, and so is your grandma.

On the way to class today, I started thinking about NaNoWriMo and convinced myself to take part in it... sort of. I'll be joining you guys, but I won't be going all out with 50000 words. I just don't have that kind of time if I want to get through this semester. So, I'll cut it in half. That should be manageable, right?

Like Bobby said, it's not as big a number as it sounds, and the month's only started. You haven't even missed a weekend yet! Once you've had a few days to gauge your speed, try going for a one-day record, and see what you're capable of. You might find that at that rate, 25,000 is too low a goal!

Prinnydood
11-02-2010, 10:37 AM
Like Bobby said, it's not as big a number as it sounds, and the month's only started. You haven't even missed a weekend yet! Once you've had a few days to gauge your speed, try going for a one-day record, and see what you're capable of. You might find that at that rate, 25,000 is too low a goal!

Setting the bar low is how I roll. In the past I had a habit of expecting too much out of myself and getting disappointed when I couldn't live up to it. Setting a 25,000 word limit allows me to keep a steady, bite-sized pace so I don't feel too overwhelmed. I've structured the story to pretty much be never-ending so who knows, once I hit that limit, if I can still think of new material, I'll keep going to one million words.

Okay, not really, but that would be totally awesome, wouldn't it?

Karzac
11-02-2010, 11:49 AM
Does anybody know why MS Word tells me that I've written 3414 words, and yet NaNoWriMo's only counting 3405? The same thing happened to me last year. I know it's only nine words, but still, it's weird. Do they have some algorithm that makes it not count titles or something?

Prinnydood
11-02-2010, 12:54 PM
Does anybody know why MS Word tells me that I've written 3414 words, and yet NaNoWriMo's only counting 3405? The same thing happened to me last year. I know it's only nine words, but still, it's weird. Do they have some algorithm that makes it not count titles or something?

I have this same question. I can't make any sense out of what Word considers a word or not.

Comb Stranger
11-02-2010, 02:23 PM
Short Stories

Just use a framing narrative. A bunch of travellers telling their stories at a bar, or what have you. The first and last chapters would be one story, with small intermission chapters setting up each short story. You can have reappearing settings or characters, or go completely off the rails. And using the storyteller format, you can abuse the unreliable narrator (http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Main/UnreliableNarrator)trope to have some fun with plotholes and inconsistencies. Then you get to have ADD AND call it a novel. It's win-win.

Does anybody know why MS Word tells me that I've written 3414 words, and yet NaNoWriMo's only counting 3405? The same thing happened to me last year. I know it's only nine words, but still, it's weird. Do they have some algorithm that makes it not count titles or something?

Do you use ampersands? Maybe NaNoWriMo doesn't consider '&' a word. Or did you include title/author/etc in the document, that might get clipped off? Otherwise, I am stumped.

Aquadeo
11-02-2010, 02:29 PM
Do they have some algorithm that makes it not count titles or something?

I think it's a disagreement on spaced punctuation - this sentence might have eighteen or nineteen words, for example.

Lucas
11-02-2010, 02:29 PM
Does anybody know why MS Word tells me that I've written 3414 words, and yet NaNoWriMo's only counting 3405? The same thing happened to me last year. I know it's only nine words, but still, it's weird. Do they have some algorithm that makes it not count titles or something?

I have this same question. I can't make any sense out of what Word considers a word or not.

Maybe Word counts hyphenated words as two and the NaNoWriMo algorithm counts them as one?

I use a lot of hyphenated terms, don't know if you do.

Karzac
11-02-2010, 02:42 PM
No, Word definitely doesn't count hyphenated words as two, I checked. I might be the punctuation thing though. Thanks.

Queen Possum
11-02-2010, 03:23 PM
Kinda mused up some plot points at work today. Not sure if I'll reach them all tonight but I guess we'll see.

Prinnydood
11-02-2010, 03:24 PM
I sat down for an hour today and just stream-of-conscioussed something out. I managed about 900 words which is... okay, I guess. I didn't put too much thought into what I was writing, but that's what editing's for. I definitely want to get that up over 1000 words by next week.

Luana
11-02-2010, 06:55 PM
Just use a framing narrative. A bunch of travellers telling their stories at a bar, or what have you. The first and last chapters would be one story, with small intermission chapters setting up each short story. You can have reappearing settings or characters, or go completely off the rails. And using the storyteller format, you can abuse the unreliable narrator (http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Main/UnreliableNarrator)trope to have some fun with plotholes and inconsistencies. Then you get to have ADD AND call it a novel. It's win-win.

I could do that, but nah. I mean, I'm not breaking the rules (which really are just "write 50,000 words of fiction"), and this way I get to be true to myself and use some of these as jumping off points for actual pieces I intend to keep. I feel like trying to create this common thread between them would be forcing the stories into something they're not and then I'd start to overthink and them BLAM! It's all over.

I hate reading novels, so it would make sense that I'm practically allergic to the idea of writing one. I figure 10-20 short stories' worth of writing may not be as challenging as a novel, but honestly? It'll be a hell of a lot more salvageable than one, and I probably won't hate it by the end of the month.

Queen Possum
11-02-2010, 08:29 PM
2131 words. Not great, but it's an improvement on last night, and my average is sneaking closer to 1667. I've reached the beginning of an action sequence, so hopefully I'll be able to bang out a good chunk tomorrow night.

Stiv
11-02-2010, 09:06 PM
Something like 3000 words today, which places me squarely between "I didn't do this yesterday" and "I need to be caught up today." Another 3k tomorrow will put me in a better position.

So far I am not totally embarrassed by what is written, but it will not be good. This is okay.

Paul le Fou
11-02-2010, 11:51 PM
I'm not doing this officially, but I'm going to get some work done on this story and now's as good a time as any to do it! It's from an old group project at school, and since no one else was touching it I thought i'd take a stab at it.

A young art teacher shows up at a school as a replacement where other teachers have been going missing. Of course, soon enough she too finds herself trapped in the massive paper diorama city the art class has been working on - as a paper cutout. Save the other teachers, solve the mystery, escape! And so on.


So far I have one issue I'm not really sure about (besides having little more than a skeleton for characters and plot). This would basically be a YA fantasy/adventure in tone... but it doesn't star a kid as a main character. In my (admittedly limited) experience with YA stuff, isn't that kind of a no-no? Is there much precedent/need to worry about it? She's already going to be particularly sympathetic as a teacher - young, nice, gets along well with the students, laughs at their jokes about other teachers, etc. Maybe I'm thinking too hard about this, but I also don't want to do something that the target audience couldn't/won't relate to.

Mightyblue
11-03-2010, 02:38 AM
Yeah, I forgot completely about this! So, uh, won't be officially doing this either, but I've needed an excuse to get back into writing anyway.

Merus
11-03-2010, 08:18 AM
I am a little behind at 3328 (I'm doing A Revolution in Television first) but I have tomorrow to catch up and I'm more or less at the story's climax, so it's going to be easy to write. It was also really fun - I had a lot of fun working out callbacks, subplots, arc words, it'll only be 4500 words or so but there's a lot going on there. I'm probably going to do one of the fantasy pieces next, either Stops Vampires Dead or Veronica Roper Meets The Skyreach.

There are a couple of things:

* The station it's set at is called UBN. Is this a plausible name? (It stands for United Broadcasters Network, probably a bunch of radio broadcasters that went national and invested in a TV antenna.)
* I have no idea how an American television station, or a newsroom. It's not pertinent to the plot, but it'd be nice to get right. (For starters, my main character is editor-in-chief of the newsroom at the station. I don't even know if this position exists.)
* One of my characters starts the story taking pills for his heart. By the end of the story, his heart is fine but I don't want to break up the flow of the story by having him go to a doctor. Can anyone think of a punchier way?

Also, advice: try and avoid political pundits as characters.

Lucas
11-03-2010, 10:47 AM
UBN is a totally plausible name for a broadcast channel. We were getting a station called UPN while I was growing. (There was also a channel that was a radio station that invested in a TV antenna as well.)

bobbywatson
11-03-2010, 11:35 AM
I'm ahead of schedule with 5400 words (hoping to get to 7500 words tonight). It probably won't last (I don't expect to have much time to write this weekend).

UBN sounds very plausible to me. In fact, every 3-letter combination, as long as it has some meaning behind it, can be a TV network as far as I'm concerned.

Karzac
11-03-2010, 12:08 PM
Bam! 5048! I'm keeping pace quite well so far and it's been a lot easier that I thought it would be. Now, that will probably change once I get a job and don't have all the time in the world to do whatever I want, but right now it's working.

Rascally Badger
11-03-2010, 12:33 PM
This has been sort of a disaster so far. I'm at just short of 1000 words. In my defense I have had to work both days and read the new Wheel of Time book. But I've finished that and have the next 2 days off, so I'll try to get caught up. I did manage to make some notes and plot out the most generic murder mystery ever.

Brickroad
11-03-2010, 04:36 PM
Sitting on 6700... not that you'd know that, since the website runs like ass and it's a pain to ever update anything.

If anyone wants to add me as a writing buddy (and you can arm wrestle the site into cooperating) I'm signed up as rscibbe.

Aquadeo
11-03-2010, 05:20 PM
* One of my characters starts the story taking pills for his heart. By the end of the story, his heart is fine but I don't want to break up the flow of the story by having him go to a doctor. Can anyone think of a punchier way?

You want a better way for him to find out his heart is fine? Well, aside from putting some fanfare into the "moment of healing", three ideas:

- foreshadowing removed. He takes pills for his heart, but there's a secondary symptom/side effect that plagues him throughout the story. A chronic rattle in his breath, a numbness in his toes, frequent nosebleeds, something like that. Then, when he notices that disappear, he can infer that his heart might be better as well. (The numb toes actually work pretty well here, since he can stub them or step on a Lego brick or something. He cries once in pain, then cries again in surprise.)

- the pills disappear. This can be a bit cliché, like "the magic was in him along", but perhaps someone tries to replace his pills with placebos, and he never notices. Or his pills drop out of the airplane, but by the time he gets to civilization, he still doesn't need them.

- have him go to the hospital for a completely different, and more dramatic, reason. The new doctor checks his chart...

"You're a lucky man, Mr. Eus. If it wasn't for your healthy heart, that alien parasite would have spawned for certain."

"What do you mean?"

"Well, when you ate that tapioca pudding, it was actually--"

"No, I mean, what do you mean about my heart?"

Something like that. I kind of like the toe-stubbing idea, myself, but it's your novel!

bobbywatson
11-03-2010, 07:35 PM
I was hoping to reach 7.5k today, but I made it to 8.2k. Looks like my goal of reaching 10k tomorrow is not as out-of-reach as I thought it was.

It's going well now, but I know I will hit a wall at some point next week: I have not plotted my novel to the end. I'm only doing the exposition, and I know that part of my story pretty well, but as soon as I am done with it... Well, let's just say things are going to get interesting. Or not. Who knows.

Luana
11-03-2010, 11:27 PM
I'm at about 1000 words, but as long as I get all of my homework done today and tomorrow, then I'll have pretty much the entirety of Friday to write, so I figure at about 2100 wph, I could have at least 10k done by the end of the evening, easy...

... if Sam & Max or Phoenix Wright don't distract me, that is. (Note to self: pick up "writing juice" for Friday.)

Rascally Badger
11-03-2010, 11:44 PM
(Note to self: pick up "writing juice" for Friday.)

Whiskey?

widdershins
11-04-2010, 01:36 AM
Finally got myself to start writing as well. I'm already two days behind, but I managed to churn out just under 1000 words, and have a decent amount of momentum for where I'm going to go from here.

My achilles heel at this point is that I stop way to often to think about how I want to phrase my next sentence, and spend far too much time back tracking and editing sections I don't think are worded quite right. I'm never going to hit 50K by the 30th if I keep that up, so I'm going to make a concerted effort tomorrow to just start writing and not look back. Here's to making up for lost time!

Brickroad
11-04-2010, 02:28 AM
Widdy, take a knife and pop the delete and backspace keys off your key board.

I bet your mafia game gets more interesting as a result, as well!

Aquadeo
11-04-2010, 06:44 AM
I've got a friend who just hit 50,000 words last night.

With pen and paper.

I don't understand it either.

For my part, I'm at 3800 words. I'm not going very fast, but a) the weekend's coming up, and b) I'm enjoying where this story is going.

bobbywatson
11-04-2010, 07:23 AM
To hit 50k in three or four days, I would need to be on vacation and have NOTHING else to do. In other words, it's not happening any time soon.

Still going forward. I'm at 8.9k as of this morning (woke up early and had some time to sit down and write before the shower). Yesterday I was thinking of hitting 10k tonight, but I think I'll raise my objective to 11k.

I'm BobbyWatson on the NaNoWriMo website, so if anybody wants to add me as a writing buddy, feel free.

Merus
11-04-2010, 07:47 AM
I really want to share this bit from Veronica Roper Meets The Skyreach, but maybe I should finish the story and then post it. But man, I'm really happy with it.

Karzac
11-04-2010, 07:52 AM
My achilles heel at this point is that I stop way to often to think about how I want to phrase my next sentence, and spend far too much time back tracking and editing sections I don't think are worded quite right. I'm never going to hit 50K by the 30th if I keep that up, so I'm going to make a concerted effort tomorrow to just start writing and not look back. Here's to making up for lost time!

Yeah, I had that same problem last year, but now I just keep thinking to myself "I'll edit when it's finished." So far it's helping.

Aquadeo
11-04-2010, 08:09 AM
Widders: Momentum! That's a very good thing!

Bobby: Now that the site's back to semi-functionality again, I might just take you up on that offer. Not that there's a lot of benefit to being NaNo writing buddies: it's a quick link to their account and an update on their progress, and that's about it. Probably not such a bad thing, I suppose... there's no real benefit for them to try doing Facebook's job.

Merus: I'm looking forward to such time as you see fit to post an excerpt here!

spineshark
11-04-2010, 12:35 PM
I've got a friend who just hit 50,000 words last night.

With pen and paper.
I'm using pen and paper. Not counting everything by hand (at least, not until I have time for such luxuries), but when I went back and resampled it turns out I was writing about 10% more per page than I thought. ALL RIGHT

Seriously though, this is such a huge advantage for me, because it basically kills all my urges to go cross out and rewrite stuff every 30 seconds. As soon as I turn the page it's just another 430 words I probably won't be thinking much about until December 1. Only problem is that I was shortsighted enough to not realize I'd need at least two more notebooks.

Rascally Badger
11-04-2010, 02:09 PM
I wish I was using pen and paper. I think much faster than I type and only a little faster than I write. Reading over anything I type is sad because there are often words I skipped.

Prinnydood
11-04-2010, 04:28 PM
I was only able to manage about 500 words today. At this rate, I'll never make it to 25,000 let alone 50,000.

Rascally Badger
11-05-2010, 12:13 AM
I got to 1700 words total today. So after 4 days I've done the work of 1. Not a good start. I may switch to writing this by hand, but I really wanted to try to type a story for once. I have tons of notebooks full of half finished novels and shorts stories and world building notes, but so far I only ever managed to type about 10 chapters of my first completed rough draft.

With The Wheel of Time out of the way and the horrible start to my novel done, I think I can work on catching up over the next several days. Especially if I write it our by hand.

Merus
11-05-2010, 01:40 AM
You will find that it gets easier as time goes on. You know when you're reading a novel and it finally hooks you and you can't wait to find out what happens next? That's happened to me, with the exception that when writing I have to occasionally stop and go, "shit, what does come next?"

Karzac
11-05-2010, 09:28 AM
Guys, I made a big mistake yesterday: I bought the first volume of The Walking Dead. Then I finished it and bought the second volume. Now I've finished that and really want to buy the third volume. But I'm already starting to fallbehind on writing. Nooooo!

Brickroad
11-05-2010, 09:35 AM
I spent all my NaNo time yesterday on Mafia. Only 400 words written.

I am a bad person, and I feel bad.

bobbywatson
11-05-2010, 09:45 AM
Guys, I made a big mistake yesterday: I bought the first volume of The Walking Dead. Then I finished it and bought the second volume. Now I've finished that and really want to buy the third volume. But I'm already starting to fallbehind on writing. Nooooo!

Funny, I ordered the compendium from Amazon this week and it showed up in my mailbox today. I probably won't read it yet (leaving tomorrow on a business trip and don't want to carry a book this heavy in my suitcase or laptop bad), but will likely do so when I get back. I don't think I'll be able to read this before going to bed though, looks like it has way, way too much gore for that. The thing is more than a thousand pages long, so that should last me for a while. (It collects issues 1 to 48, I believe).

I reached 11.5k last night, and I'm hoping to reach 14 tonight. Tomorrow, as I won't be home at all, things will probably settle down to a more moderate rate. Unlike previous years, however, I would like it if I could just keep writing the daily 1667 words without taking a day off.

Dizzy
11-05-2010, 10:51 AM
Oh geez. I didn't know this was a writing contest, I thought it was a Nintendo Mario game.

I wanna do this! 50,000 words? Blather-of-conscious, here we go!

EDIT: 132 word! I'm getting there. Slowly.

Epithet
11-06-2010, 07:15 PM
10,000 words! Or 10,021, to be more exact. I'm actually doing really well; it's been way easier than I thought it would be.

Karzac
11-06-2010, 08:47 PM
I'm at about 8300, so only one day behind. I'm going to start trying to write 2000 words a day in order to catch up. This is further than I got last year though, and I'm really proud of myself for it.

Merus
11-06-2010, 08:48 PM
You learn unpleasant things about yourself while writing. For instance, the only people I've killed in my stories have been Tea Partiers.

widdershins
11-06-2010, 10:35 PM
Looks like I singlehandedly lost M7, so on the bright side that's one less excuse for not writing.

bobbywatson
11-07-2010, 05:18 PM
You learn unpleasant things about yourself while writing. For instance, the only people I've killed in my stories have been Tea Partiers.

My stories usually end up being about father/son relationships and issues. I should probably talk to a shrink about that if I ever want to get out of that pattern.

Status update: sitting at 18345. Will get back to it as soon as I am done reading the forum.

Merus
11-07-2010, 06:40 PM
My stories usually end up being about father/son relationships and issues.

Other themes that appear to be coming through are secret societies looking to induct the protagonist that the protagonist wants no part of, and characters with supernatural perception.

Rascally Badger
11-07-2010, 09:34 PM
My stories usually end up being about father/son relationships and issues. I should probably talk to a shrink about that if I ever want to get out of that pattern.

Mine are all about brothers.

And I suck at stream of consciousness writing. I need a nice 10 page plot outline to write anything resembling a coherent story. I've had one scene change location 3 times because I realized it could not happen where it was happening. I have managed to get get my self through my introduction and my characters are in a place for the rest of my bare bones ideas to start to happen.

This has been a complete failure so far. I've managed only 5174 words so far, but I'm not going to give up yet. Too bad prior commitments and work are keeping me from writing more so far, though I have started bringing a few sheets of notebook paper to work to write on just to make some progress.

Merus
11-07-2010, 10:00 PM
I was going to post the entire story, but it requires a fair bit of work to move around and disguise the exposition, so I'm just posting this bit. Here's what you need to know: Veronica Roper, known to most as Black Lightning, is a young but very experienced heroine, who first appeared in the city of Laogai but wasn't born there. There are Gods in this world, that drive men mad and force them to embrace their ideological positions. (Two appear in the full story; the God of Fear, that makes men believe that cowardice is bravery and leaves them shivering in a room somewhere, afraid of everything; and the God of Objects, which makes men believe that only things that are physical and can be measured are real, and thus emotions like compassion and mercy do not exist, and concepts like honour and teamwork and cooperation are lies told by weak people - or its opposite, that things that are physical are not real and only things that can't be measured are.) Veronica has killed a God, an impossible feat. Her ship, the Horizon of Truth, was sabotaged in order to bring her to Skyreach, a secret city dedicated to discovering how to kill Gods, and with a big hard-on for dragons and the colour azure. Unfortunately, they didn't see eye to eye and they had a big fight, which they've resolved just as this piece opens...

The Horizon of Truth was clear. Veronica cheered, and the crew cheered with her. They had no captain, they were short-staffed, and parts of the deck had chunks torn out of it, but they weren't dead yet. She leapt up onto a box, and Antony called out, “Speech!” The crew turned to listen.

“Fuckin' great work, crew.” Veronica tended to get salty when she figured crew morale had taken a hit. “We're sailing to Kriton to pick up a new captain and recruit back up, and if you're game, in a week we're back on to our original destination, Carthane.” They'd been game for eighteen months, some of them, but in those eighteen months they hadn't lost crew midtrip before either. “Now we've been through a lot this evening, and I want you all to be sure in your soles that I'd take a sword for any one of my crew, but, but, if you put another master before me, then that means you're not my crew. I know some of you are still on the Skyreach's paybooks, so let me assure you that if you come to me and make amends by sunup this morning, I'll forget it ever happened.

“I know many of you were fond of Dalson, and so was I. But he put another master before me. I don't know why, I don't know what he gained from it, and I'm sorry he did it. You all know he was a good man, and I'm sure he thought he was doing the right thing. But I know, more than anyone, that you can do the wrong thing for the right reasons. It's what you do, not what your reasons are, that make you truly good – and Dalson led us into a trap, and we only escaped because you are all the finest sons of bitches alive!

“Now let's set a course for Kriton, and then we'll crack open some cider and toast our good fortune. Whaddya say?!”

Normally the call of “let's all have an cider instead of working” gets instant approval, but the crew was too busy gaping at something behind Veronica. She whirled around, drawing her sword and dagger, and faced what turned out to be an blue abdomen, rippling with muscles.
She glanced up. That very attractive abdomen was attached to a handsome blue torso, which in turn was attached to a stern-looking blue head that was looking directly at her. Apparently there was a tail attached to something, because she could see it swishing forwards and backwards behind the gigantic blue figure. And oh look, it had gigantic wings too, which solved the mystery of how a gigantic blue dragon-man had appeared behind her on her airship. He (it was clearly a he) had very large claws, as well, which raised a fresh mystery; why wasn't she dead already?

At least he was wearing pants.

Veronica's eloquence escaped her, so she went for the silent strategy, staring him dead in the eyes and waiting for him to make the first move.
“This was unnecessary,” he eventually said.
Veronica nodded, keeping her eyes firmly fixed in his and adjusting her grip slightly. It sounded stern and threatening enough, but most of the evening's events were unnecessary, so it was hardly a meaningful statement.
After another long silence, he spoke again.
“Your actions were not appreciated, but I am tolerant, to a point. I will permit you a chance to explain yourself,” he rumbled.
Veronica thought quickly. He implied he'd been wronged, which ruled out it acting independently. Could it be a Herald of the Gods, or a demon? Perhaps. A sudden, desperate notion sparked across her train of thought: he's not blue, he's azure.
“The Lord of Skyreach, I assume.”
“I am addressed as simply the Skyreach, but, yes. And you are Black Lightning, the Godkiller, the Crusader of Truth. Your reputation is whispered in the four corners of the world. We seek the same end, which is why I sought an audience with you. Your actions, and your colourful refusal, were disappointing, and I desire an explanation.” There was little courtesy in his words.
Veronica continued to fix her eyes in his. “Did you only listen to the 'fuck'? I felt I was clear.”
“Your tedious rantings were not sufficient, no. Am I to presume-”
“And so you flew all the way out here, past the cannonfire and storms, to get an explanation?”
“I came for your heart, child. Figuratively or literally.”
“Yet all you've done is loom and threaten and demand. I didn't want an audience with you, that much is clear to both of us, and yet you desperately want an audience with me.”
The Skyreach snarled. “You presume too m-”
“Because,” Veronica pressed on, “you turned Antony, who I've known since the beginning, which means you recruited specifically to get to me; you expended vast amounts of effort to even get me to Skyreach, and in a way that left me no doubt where your fortress is, which implies a gesture of trust; and, after I made my refusal to see you clear, you fly out here personally. Meeting anyone in your chambers is apparently rare enough, I can't imagine you'd get personally involved unless you were desperate.
“I'm not an idiot. You said yourself, we're in the same business, except I'm the only one in the world that's got hands-on experience. So if I'm not on your side, your entire operation hits a massive snag. Am I presuming too much, or do I have that more or less right?”
Veronica fell silent. She hadn't broken eye contact the entire time.
The airship creaked. It was the loudest sound for miles.
“My operation, as you put it, is decades old. I did not build my city, and recruit my agents, simply to wait for you to appear. Your lack of cooperation is unfortunate, but your death means only that we return to our original plan, bolstered by the knowledge that a child could do the deed if she was sufficiently motivated. With your death, it would be a simple matter to take Laogai and install cooperative rulers, and we would have all the time necessary to learn how you defeated the God of Deceit.”
Veronica paused, and smiled. That was the best argument he had. “And there you go again. You think your agents are going to be happy if I'm dead? They'll know who killed me, and they definitely know that you've been beating your head against this for decades and I leapfrogged you in six months. You don't get to go back to your original plan, because half your agents are going to decide that you're too busy manipulating people instead of killing Gods.
“You want an explanation of why I knocked you back? They're right. You're so caught up in your veils of secrecy and your demands of fealty that your little fortress is choking to death. You send your agents out to act in secret, and for what? To avoid anyone wanting to help you? You want to kill the Gods, and so you lock yourself away so that they can whisper to you while you sleep. You might build laboratories and artificer's shops, but in the end you're still a tyrant. You'll never kill the Gods like this, but you're so addicted to being the spider in the web that you'll never try. And I'm not going to be your latest snack. So--”

Veronica had blinked, and that was all the opening the Skyreach needed. He tackled her off the box, one massive hand around her head, his body pinning hers down. Her head cracked as it hit the deck, and she was too dazed to move, to do anything except listen:

“Imbecilic wretch! You question my motives and my methods to my face, and you understand nothing. Did it cross your mind for even a heartbeat that I have been forced onto this path? I have lived for centuries, stupid child, and those centuries have been filled with chains and pain. Humans do not see me as an ally; to them, I am a threat, or a weapon, or a beast. Skyreach is my sanctuary, and yet I use it to save a world that rejects me. And you call me a tyrant for this. Do you think me unaware that the Gods are trying to twist my mind? Do you think my agents are only fit to lurk in shadows and cause political intrigue? They bring us stories, to keep Skyreach a part of the world, to keep the Gods at bay. I thought you'd be wiser, a valued ally, but now I see you're merely a contemptible child who got lucky. You have nothing to offer except contempt and fear, like the rest of your kind.”
Veronica mumbled, “An' lumus.”

“What?”

Veronica winced, and focused. “And Lumus. I met a dragon-woman named Lumus once. Did you know her?”
The Skyreach took his hand from Veronica's face, his weight keeping her firmly pinned to the deck. He'd drawn blood from his claws, and the boards underneath Veronica's head were stained from where she'd cracked it. “Lumus? Tell me, child. What do you know of Lumus?”

Veronica closed her eyes. It was an unpleasant memory, but she'd seen a blue dragon-man once before, and her Luck had given her an opening. She could almost believe again that God was smiling on her; before she'd come to this world, when she was a child, she would have.

“Child! Wake!”

Veronica spoke, her eyes still closed, remembering where the God of Deceit, Ver-Nakash, had twisted her mind, where she'd confronted Ver-Nakash's Herald. She'd told no-one of what she'd seen and experienced in that ancient prison, other than the basics. Killed the Herald, came back out again. No need to talk about the visions of a hospital in Florida; of cultists, her family, keeping a prayer vigil to undo the damage of an eight-story drop that should have killed her; no-one needed to know that the Herald had praised the darkness she'd carried with her, had ceded to her so she could preach of a God that was vengeful and hateful, that cursed sinners and homosexuals and blamed their existence on the pious.

“I met Lumus before Ver-Nakash took her, in an ancient prison deep under Laogai. The warlords Ver-Nakash had twisted sent people there to die or become demons. She was locked away at the very bottom, where Ver-Nakash was closest, and she had resisted its call for so long.”
The crew saw the Skyreach, weeping. Veronica's eyes were closed. Looking was too hard right now.

“They'd bound her with chains because they thought her a demon. She wanted to help them, but the prisoners of Deephole would not listen to anyone. She was not one of them, and so she was a demon. That was the way they thought. Her chains were brittle and the locks were weak, but so was she. As I freed her, she told me of her kind, who were strong and brave and moral, but not accepted; and she told me of Ver-Nakash, and how she'd fought against the warlords and very nearly defeated them. She told me of the God, and how it feeds, and what she knew of how it could be killed. But Ver-Nakash finished its work, and she started telling me of the glory of deception, and of the lies we tell to fool ourselves into living, and then of how she'd wear my skin.”
Veronica did not mention the other things Lumus had told her once Ver-Nakash had twisted her mind.
“She begged me to kill her even as she clawed at me. I had no choice. I am sorry, Skyreach. She was a hero in dark days, and she fought well. I buried her where she fell: at the lowest part of the Deephole, the first line of defence between Ver-Nakash and the world outside, as she had been in life.”

Veronica opened her eyes, the Deephole retreating into memory once again, to the sight of Lumus' mate mourning her death in a forgotten corner of the world. He howled in the agony of heartbreak, knowing that he'd never see her face or feel her warmth, that he could not protect her, that his hope had been in vain. He held his head in his hands, tears dripping between his fingers, when Veronica spoke again.

“As I was leaving the Deephole, I saw her once more. Her spirit directed me to a small cave, covered with crystals. There was something there she wanted me to have, but I think now she wanted to show me something as well. She had made a mosaic out of crystal down there, of her and her mate, and underneath it were two eggs.”

The Skyreach stiffened, and leaned down carefully, his eyes puffy from the tears. “I hope this is no deception, child,” he said, leaning in very close to her face. His breath smelled vaguely of cheese.

“It's not the best look for the Crusader of Truth to be lying to save her skin, is it.”
“I suppose it is not.” The Skyreach leaned back, and considered her anew. “We may have misjudged each other, Black Lightning. Certainly I find you overly headstrong, and you do not approve of my methods; but perhaps, we can still be of use to each other.
“I shall release Dalson from my service, along with those among your crew that I have recruited. There is no need to seek another captain at Kriton. I shall also replenish your supplies from Skyreach's stock. In return, however, I require passage to Laogai, and you will show me this cave of which you speak.”
Veronica remembered the contraband that they needed to unload in a friendly port. A trip to Laogai would be prudent, and the odds of Carthane's port authority finding and confiscating their ill-gotten goods was much higher than a noble who didn't need an airship to fly. Carthane would wait. “Agreed, Skyreach.”
“Then it is decided.” The Skyreach stood up, taking his weight off her torso, and helped her up. She held the back of her head and whispered a healing spell, which stretched her capacity but closed the wound on the back of her head. Everything else would heal with time. Once she had her wits back, she climbed back on the box and addressed the crew.
“Right, crew, change of plans: we're heading back to Skyreach for supplies and crew, then onto Obsidian. If you're game, we'll try again for Carthane a week from then.
“But tonight, tonight we're going to give Skyreach a party it won't ever forget!”
The Skyreach frowned slightly, then nodded, and stepped off the ship.

Brickroad
11-08-2010, 05:00 AM
Argh, I'm not doing so hot. I had a rough couple days between bloggin and Mafia and family stuff and werewolf ranching, so now I'm actually behind by a couple days.

However, I have a better sense of where I'm going in the story now, and I just introduced the ROMANTIC SUBPLOT (!!), so it's time to re-up my commitment to 2000 words per night.

Honestly, the hardest part is writing on my days off. It's like, why write about some stupid mystery lady when my Xbox is, like, right there? Of course, I knew that going in.

Now I'm going to read Merus's thing.

Dizzy
11-08-2010, 08:26 AM
Okay, I don't think 50,000 words is going to be possible even if I copy and paste HAHAHAHA over and over again.

I'll have to wait until I'm unemployed and living off the handsome taxes of libertarians to tackle this project.

ThornGhost
11-08-2010, 09:19 AM
I guess it's not really for NaNoWriMo, but it is some writing I've been doing in November so maybe it counts? Either way, I was hoping to have some eyes look at it if anyone was interested.

I've started a new blog. It's a story, told in parts, about trying to uncover the lost history of a band through articles, interviews, reviews and journals. The Introduction (http://www.fatriker.com/?p=11) post is part of the tale, and explains the whole thing, but isn't necessarily indicative of the types of future posts on the blog.

The first "real" post (http://www.fatriker.com/?p=18), which I put up as well to help people understand where this is all going, is much more in line of what I plan to post in the future.

Merus
11-08-2010, 10:23 AM
Honestly, the hardest part is writing on my days off. It's like, why write about some stupid mystery lady when my Xbox is, like, right there? Of course, I knew that going in.

Because Merus wants to read about your plucky dame? Veronica's been fairly fun to write because she's absurdly competent but very hard on herself, so basically my writing process is "Veronica does something awesome! It goes wrong! Oh shit what now!"

ThornGhost
11-09-2010, 09:10 AM
Merus, read your post here and decided I would offer some thoughts. I assume you want feedback?

I'm just going to guess that within the overall scope of the larger work that this piece represents a fairly typical slice of theme and tone. I'm guessing this is a very "high magic" world, what with airships and healing spells and dragon men and the like.

Internally, I found it very consistent with itself. The bravado of Veronica, dragons out to kill gods - these things felt like they could exist within the same universe. That's good. Maybe be a bit careful of making magic and the like too rote. I bugged out a bit when I read "healing spell"; it feels a kind of video gamey. Most fantasy authors these days try to give their magic system some unique details and qualities to make it feel special. What's more exciting?

"Rand cast a fireball spell at the trolloc."

or

"Rand drew deep from the One Power, lacing fire and air into a intricate weave that exploded as a streaking ball of fire at the trolloc."

Again, if this is truly pulpy and all, maybe you want magic to sort of be generic and fast so you can get on with the action. Just my thoughts.

Additionally, be careful with longer, exposition filled speeches. They can be a bit tough to chew through for readers. Consider breaking them up a bit with some action or other dialogue.

Here's an example:

“Imbecilic wretch! You question my motives and my methods to my face, and you understand nothing. Did it cross your mind for even a heartbeat that I have been forced onto this path?"

Feeling was beginning to leak back into Veronica's limbs. If she could keep the brute talking for another minute, she might be able to force her way out of his grip.

"I have lived for centuries stupid child," he continued, "and those centuries have been filled with chains and pain. Humans do not see me as an ally; to them, I am a threat, or a weapon, or a beast."

In any case, it's obvious you've done a lot of world building and have a good story to tell. Just keep it up, and since this is NaNoWriMo, if you consider any of my suggestions, just apply them to what're you're writing now, and don't bother going back to revise until the end. The secret is to get something done and then revise later. Good luck!

Merus
11-09-2010, 04:31 PM
Again, if this is truly pulpy and all, maybe you want magic to sort of be generic and fast so you can get on with the action. Just my thoughts.

Yeah, the healing spell Veronica uses is supposed to be fairly common, which is why it's treated so casually in the text. There are other kinds of magic in this setting which are treated more seriously; the Luck Veronica refers to briefly is one, but it probably should be explicitly called out.

Thanks for the crits - I'll need to be careful about blocks of exposition.

spineshark
11-09-2010, 06:18 PM
"Rand drew deep from the One Power, lacing fire and air into a intricate weave that exploded as a streaking ball of fire at the trolloc."
Heh, this is why in the only story I wrote in a "magical" world the magic didn't exactly do anything. It was more just a different branch of technology. I suck at actually making stuff up.

Aquadeo
11-09-2010, 06:33 PM
I actually wouldn't mind reading the rest of that story in December; it was really good! I like ThornGhost's suggestion about the exposition (and will be remembering that in my own work), but I did indeed get the impression that there was a high-level, "woe be unto those who play in the realm of gods" type of magic, and the sort of bog-standard healing spell that anyone can learn.

Still, for the important magic, I always eat up the colourful prose with a spoon. My ideal spellcaster probably talks like a cross between the mighty Thor and the PS1 translation of Final Fantasy Tactics. : )

Brickroad
11-10-2010, 04:59 AM
Woot, 15k6! My little bar is touching the purple line again!

And I just started a scene that I am so excited to finish I might actually pee myself! Urine might happen! That's how good I feel about this scene!

ThornGhost
11-15-2010, 07:48 AM
I made another Fat Riker blog post. These things roll out of my mind disturbingly quickly. I think I just like making stuff up about terrible bands and people.

Milwaukee Arts & Times - September 7, 1991: An Interview with Fat Riker (http://www.fatriker.com/?p=21)

Karzac
11-15-2010, 08:52 AM
I've fallen so far behind on this. I'm going to try to catch up a bit today.

Merus
11-16-2010, 06:02 AM
I have no idea where this perky lesbian spymaster came from, but she is so much fun to write.

Aquadeo
11-16-2010, 09:53 AM
I feel the same way about my scarecrow in a blood-covered blue tuxedo!

(Also, yahoo - I'm back ahead of the pace again! Last weekend really saved my bacon!)

bobbywatson
11-16-2010, 03:54 PM
I have no idea of where my novel is going. Or how I'm going to end it. I think I'll take a night off (I'm about 8 days ahead anyway and I'm on vacation next week) or two to think about it. Or to ignore it completely.

ThornGhost
11-19-2010, 09:26 AM
Your every hope has been answered*! I have written a new Fat Riker blog post (http://www.fatriker.com/?p=26)!

*Your every hope has likely not been answered, but you should read it anyway.

Brickroad
11-19-2010, 11:26 AM
There's no way I'm going to make up the 7000-ish words I've fallen behind.

Karzac
11-19-2010, 11:37 AM
There's no way I'm going to make up the 15000-ish words I've fallen behind.

bobbywatson
11-19-2010, 03:50 PM
There's no way I'm going to make up the 7000-ish words I've fallen behind.

I've been there before, and it is possible to catch up. You just need a very, very productive weekend. Mine is not going to be, but I'm ahead, so that's not really a problem. (Yeah, I know, you are allowed to hate me.)

Prinnydood
11-22-2010, 07:18 PM
Hey, I got 200 words done today making a grand total of about 1300 words.

At this rate, I'll be done by Oct 22 next year!

I procrastinated so hard with this it isn't even funny...

Aquadeo
11-22-2010, 08:02 PM
Okay, that's yet another unproductive weekend down the tubes, and now I'm 7,000 words behind, myself.

*rolls up sleeves*

Gentlemen... this is when things get interesting.

spineshark
11-22-2010, 08:41 PM
I finished my first notebook last weekend (about 2/3 of the requirement) and am pulling into the home stretch.

I'm kinda surprised at how dark it's gotten, considering my original conception was pretty farcical. But I guess it's hard to do a big superhero story without putting at least a significant city on the line...or just blowing it up.

Karzac
11-22-2010, 09:03 PM
I pretty much have to write 4000 words a day for the next week. Let's do this!

ThornGhost
11-23-2010, 08:38 AM
I'm definitely not making 50,000 words, but we've got a new Fat Riker blog (http://www.fatriker.com/?p=30) up. That's roughly 6,000 words total so far. But I think they're good words, so I'm happy!

bobbywatson
11-23-2010, 06:34 PM
I am now officially done, at 50085 words.

This means I can grab my file, put it somewhere I will never look at on my hard drive and forget everything about it. Yay!

Now it's time to start writing something more serious.

Aquadeo
11-23-2010, 10:45 PM
3,000 words today, and I managed to surprise myself with an interesting question which I couldn't quite answer. Turning it over in my head, it became the method by which my hero redeems himself... I'm not sure if it'll be factually accurate, but I think I'll enjoy writing the dialogues that come out of it, just as an experiment.

Prinnydood
11-24-2010, 08:00 AM
Question: How are you guys able to write so many words in a day? I can never get even half the amount you all can manage before I realize I've been at the computer for two hours already. I swear, you're all machines or something.

Epithet
11-24-2010, 09:22 AM
Question: How are you guys able to write so many words in a day? I can never get even half the amount you all can manage before I realize I've been at the computer for two hours already. I swear, you're all machines or something.

Don't obsess over what you've already written. You're probably going to think it sucks, but that doesn't mean you should spend ages staring at it and trying to make it better, especially since finding a briefer way of saying something will lower your word count. Just add something, and try to think at least a bit about where you're going. Thinking about what you're going to write next when you're doing something else can really help.

There's no big secret to it, really. I just tried it, and managed to pump out a good 1667 to 2000 words a day, even though I've never written anything particularly substantial before.

bobbywatson
11-24-2010, 04:50 PM
Question: How are you guys able to write so many words in a day? I can never get even half the amount you all can manage before I realize I've been at the computer for two hours already. I swear, you're all machines or something.

One thing I've learned is that it's important to write every day during NaNo (though I will admit I do not follow this advice myself, having taken three days off last week). But basically, it's just a matter of sitting down in front of a computer and typing away. Sometimes it's easy, sometimes it's not.

One thing I have found that really helps: set a time limit and write. No emails, no IM, no Talking Time, no phone. Just me and the computer. 15 to 20 minutes work great for me. I used to sit in front of my computer for hours during NaNoWriMo. Not so much anymore, though it does happen sometimes.

Brickroad
11-27-2010, 10:21 AM
I'm not going to make it. I just can't marathon like some of you folks can.

I'll probably write all night tonight and tomorrow night at work, but it's not going to be enough.

I'm a failure and I feel bad. =(

Alpha Werewolf
11-28-2010, 12:39 AM
I'm not going to make it. I just can't marathon like some of you folks can.

I'll probably write all night tonight and tomorrow night at work, but it's not going to be enough.

I'm a failure and I feel bad. =(

Finish the story anyway. Next year, you'll do better.

Brickroad
11-28-2010, 07:50 AM
5000+ words last night. I cranked that bitch out.

Two more nights like that, and I'll make it.

BUT I DON'T KNOW IF I HAVE IT IN ME.

Aquadeo
11-28-2010, 08:48 AM
Pull out the stops, man. Get crazy. Get dangerous. You can do this!

I feel like such a poser, telling the guy with 10x my post count to write more...

Karzac
11-28-2010, 02:53 PM
I'm out at 18 300. I just don't have the time over the next couple of days to finish this. I did 10 000 more words than last year though, so I don't feel too bad.

Brickroad
11-29-2010, 05:20 AM
46k1, with one more night left to write.

Last night I wrote until my fingers fell off. I'm typing this post with my feet.

bobbywatson
11-29-2010, 06:36 AM
46k1, with one more night left to write.

Last night I wrote until my fingers fell off. I'm typing this post with my feet.

3.9k between now and tomorrow, that's perfectly feasible. Good luck! And congratulations for making it this far!

Brickroad
11-30-2010, 02:40 AM
50,003 words, with one or two more scenes to write.

I AM WINNAR

Loki
11-30-2010, 03:43 AM
Congratulations Brick. You going to get that free copy of your novel from CreateSpace? Could you even stand such a thing?

Brickroad
11-30-2010, 05:04 AM
Congratulations Brick. You going to get that free copy of your novel from CreateSpace? Could you even stand such a thing?

I think I'll probably pass on that, since 1) it's not done yet and 2) it sucks ass in its current state.

I'm still excited!

spineshark
11-30-2010, 07:06 AM
I'm also done as of last night, unless my estimates are way off! Chinese class got canceled so I ended up just hanging out at school anyway instead of going home for a few hours. But 260 pages of ~200 words (and I think I'm closer to 210 on an average page) should totally do it.

I'm probably going to give the last few scenes another shot before doing anything else with it though. Really, my ending was totally anticlimatic and stupid, by far the most deus ex machina crap I could've ever pulled with a character who's sorta invincible hahahahaha

Prinnydood
11-30-2010, 11:49 AM
Congratulations to all of you that got to 50,000 words. I only got 2500 this year, but believe it or not, I'm going to give it another go next year. Hopefully a year of planning will save me from falling spectacularly short.

Aquadeo
11-30-2010, 04:59 PM
I hit 50,000 this weekend. Tonight: Internet Dance Party.

Epithet
11-30-2010, 05:19 PM
I hit 50,000 on my word processor's word counter earlier today, but the word count validator said I was still below! I had to write about 150 more words just to convince it that I had, in fact, won. I guess I could've said "Hey, Pages says I have 50,000" and dumped a 150 word Lorem Ipsum at the bottom, but I decided to win legitimately. Either way, I'm kinda proud of myself, even though my novel is so godawful that not even editing and redrafting could possibly save it. Still feels good to see the little purple WINNER bar.

Alex Scott
11-30-2010, 05:50 PM
I haven't done this since college, but I did just figure out how to rewrite one novel I did for NaNoWriMo... in 2001.

It's about a kid running into alchemists at an anime convention, and his father turns out to be the Count de Saint-Germaine.

Congrats, all y'all, even just for participating. I really should do this again next year.

spineshark
12-01-2010, 02:06 PM
Actually, looking back on my ending again, I remembered what I was thinking (aside from "oh I'm so clever!"). If I ever continue the story, it's a really obvious jumping-off point, because it sets up my favorite thing: having victory be worse than the struggle to win in the first place.

Basically, I wrote the whole thing as a diary, with the driving event being a drug trial (like I'd originally thought of...this is also why I put "science fiction" for lack of a better idea). So near the end there's no more pills to take, causing the heroine to lose her powers, but also sober up and read the diary. She figures out what's happened, then contacts the authorities, who manage to save the day (and this is the part where I started to go "ugh" because in retrospect I realized "hero loses powers/faith and is saved by someone/thing completely ordinary" is EVERY SUPERHERO MOVIE), but ends up getting recognition and fame as A Hero...and since I'm writing the story that's totally not a good thing. I might try and see if that leads anywhere, but I'm also thinking instead of trying to use my plot from two years ago for next years NaNoWriMo, I'll start working on it really soon and assume I'll eventually stumble on something else. I've had so many ideas in that time that I'm really not sure it's a good idea to let it stagnate any longer.