Tag Archives: NaNoWriMo

NaNoWriMo 2015 Recap

Well, that was illuminating.

In the end –which is to say when NaNoWriMo ended on November 30th– I completed 50 script pages: half of the 100 I had set out to do.

Pros:

  • Having all the blog posts finished by October meant I could focus on the script writing.
  • I’m very happy with what I have written — and it’s work I’ll continue and should finish in the new year.

Cons:

  • Hey, I didn’t reach my goal. I didn’t set the goal to not reach it. Bother.
  • I’m not sure when I’ll be able to write as much as 50 pages per month in the near future, let alone 100. Also: bother.

Rather self-evident improvements for next time:

  • Carve out more time in my schedule ahead of time

I relied too much on finding “some time during the day.” This approach is fine to get my 20 minutes a day which has been my hallmark method of writing for about six years or so. I’ve used it because it gets results: maybe one or two pages a day adds up over the course of a year. But to get 100 pages in a month, I need more dedicated time.

  • Have detailed outlines of what I want to write during the month.

In fairness, I did have outlines for the stories, but they varied in their level of detail. And I wasn’t sure how fast I was going to go through the stories. When filmmaker and all-around nice guy Barry Gribble mentioned that he had finished his outlines in October in preparation to write two pilots in this November, I knew he was onto something. He had specific writing goals and had set himself up to best complete them. I do this sort of project management in other realms all the time. And although you want to keep storytelling ‘organic,’ this makes sense in order to move from ‘wanting to write’ to ‘having written.’ A lot of the ‘organic’ for me will come in the planning and outlining. At some point, I need to write that draft. Barry had set the stage so November was writing the dang drafts.

So, I’ll certainly compare notes with Barry and others, but it sounds like next September, I’ll be identifying the story or stories I want to tackle in November. Then, I need to make sure I have a detailed enough outline by the end of October: detailed enough to appropriately rock and roll on a draft in November (whether that draft is any good or not is, naturally, immaterial).

 

NaNoWriMo Break: Neil Gaiman on Writing

Part of a month-long series of inspirational or informational posts during NaNoWriMo.

Man, we’ve all been going about this whole writing thing the wrong way.

Sorry I’m only stumbling across this now, but Neil Gaiman reveals the true method for becoming a writer here.

Gonna be a long wait ’til April 30th…

NaNoWriMo Break: How to Write

Part of a month-long series of inspirational or informational posts during NaNoWriMo.

Why am  I saving Heather Havrilesky’s rather profanity-laden-yet-detailed explanation of exactly how to write at this, the penultimate NaNoWriMo post?

  1. Because it’s actually rather long — and I’m hoping you’re catching this as part of an extended post-Thanksgiving break.
  2. You probably need a laugh at this point.

Home stretch people. See you again on Monday!

NaNoWriMo Break: Stephen King on Writing

Part of a month-long series of inspirational or informational posts during NaNoWriMo.

If you haven’t had a chance to check out Stephen King’s On Writing, it’s well worth a read.

As you might imagine, there are many good quotes from it. Here’s a collection of many quotes, as well as some Stephen King facts, which don’t necessarily connect to one another, but are equally interesting.

Happy Thanksgiving Eve!

NaNoWriMo Break: Author John Scalsi on how he works

Part of a month-long series of inspirational or informational posts during NaNoWriMo.

At the beginning of the month, I posted a link to the daily routines of many well-known writers, many from decades earlier. But what about those of us who use those pale electric boxes all the cool kids have these days? Author John Scalsi explains his methods.

NaNoWriMo Break: Words of [a given] Year

Part of a month-long series of inspirational or informational posts during NaNoWriMo.

Like the snowclones and phrases people would like to banish before them, you may find this list of winning words to be intriguing… and possibly to be avoided in your work.

NaNoWriMo Break: Dorothy Parker on Writing… and other things

Part of a month-long series of inspirational or informational posts during NaNoWriMo.

I was originally going to just list the “I hate writing, I love having written.” quote, but then I found Mental Floss’s page of Dorothy Parker quotes and I thought many of you could use a dose of snark at this point.

Don’t quote ’em all in one place.

NaNoWriMo Break: Tolkien’s Tips for Writers

Part of a month-long series of inspirational or informational posts during NaNoWriMo.

Okay, I did sci-fi last week, so this week, why not 10 tips from one of the world’s most well-known fantasy authors?

NaNoWriMo Break: Writing 20 Minutes a Day

Part of a month-long series of inspirational or informational posts during NaNoWriMo.

Yeah, I already mentioned this article in a longer post earlier this year, but I love this method, so I’m going to link Cory Doctorow’s article about writing in the “age of distraction” again.

Oh, and happy Friday the Thirteenth.

Quote

“There is nothing to writing. All you do is sit down at a typewriter and bleed.”

A little quote from Ernest Hemingway to validate what you may be going through.

Okay: band-aids on. Back to work!

Part of a month-long series of inspirational or informational posts during NaNoWriMo.