Monday, November 8, 2010

NaNoWriMo 2010

I'm finally getting a chance to blog! I decided to join NaNoWriMo this year for a number of reasons. I had a bit of time since I'm only taking one class this month. Also, I decided that using NaNoWriMo as a way to get my novel out. I have to write my novel for my thesis anyway, and since my thesis courses are starting in February, I'd like to give myself plenty of time to revise and rewrite as needed. By getting most of it, if not all of it, written during NaNoWriMo, I will have the time I need and I will have finally finished a novel.

I'm doing pretty well, I feel, even though I am a day behind (I was 2 days behind yesterday). As of right now, I'm at 10, 036 words. It's pretty exciting! I wrote just over 2,800 last night in a span of four hours. Also, when I say that I wrote 2,800 words, I don't mean that I used any little word count boosters or wrote too much description in order to make it seem like I was writing more. I wrote the same exact way as I always write. Sure, I ignored a couple of things that I really thought I should edit, but in order for this process to work, I had to shut off the editor.

I'm an edit as I go person, so it's been difficult. When I get the feeling like I want to edit something, I just move back to my current spot and stare at it until I decide on the next thing to write. There's no special trick used to keep me from editing. I pretty much just try not to think about it and keep moving forward.

Something that saved me last night were NaNoSprints. I know there is a twitter version (click here if you want to visit), but I have a difficult time focusing because twitter can be so distracting. Instead, I am a part of a Live Journal NaNoWriMo Community that runs sprints via AIM (I join them through Adium, but I don't think it matters). This way is the best for me, and I'm considering keeping up with the sister community AllYear_Sprints when NaNoWriMo is over because they are THAT helpful.

What is a sprint? For those of you who don't feel like clicking links and all that, Sprints are basically a times writing session. They range from 10-40 minutes or so, depending on what people want. (I prefer 20 minutes.) The group chat is completely silent for the entire time of the sprint, and once the sprint is over, everyone can talk and share their word count while they take a short break (usually 5-10 minutes long).

The funny thing is that I'd been seeing a lot of posts and comments about doing word wars or word sprints and thought "Meh, I don't think so" but I was desperate last night and for some reason, Word Sprints were the key to my motivation and, thus, my success. So, I highly recommend Word Sprints to anyone struggling.

Tonight when I get home from work, I want to write 3,000 words before bed. (That will give me from 8pm until 1am, with an hour in the middle knocked off to pick up Husband from work and any potential food or potty breaks.) I'm pretty sure I can do it. I'll be thinking about how I want the next chapter to start while I'm at work so I will be ready for when I get home.

[READER DISCUSSION] Have you joined in on the NaNoWriMo frenzy this year? What are your thoughts on the matter? How do you feel about published novelists participating in NaNoWriMo? And, if you have joined in on the fun, how is it going for you?


  1. My word count is a little over 8,000 but i'm not doing a novel, I'm doing short stories. I've looked up writing prompts until my eyes went cross and I post them on my blog for everyone to see and get inspiration. I have gotten about three story ideas so far that I wrote a first draft on. I'm actually in the middle of my third one.
    I don't expect to reach 50,000 words, but I'm already very proud of myself for the three new ideas I have so far.
    Sprints sound like they would be helpful. I'll check out the places you suggested.
    Thanks for posting.

  2. I'm not a word sprint kind of person. I need to stop and think.

    I'm not participating in Nano. Good luck with the month.