NaNoWriMo is officially over, and I managed to net 50,035 words for the month. I’m pretty proud of making that goal, because around 23K of them were fed into a project that is getting ever closer to completion.
My contemporary romance novel Drawn Together is my focus for the rest of December, and the rest of this ROW80 round. I would like to have the first draft of this novel complete by the end of the month so that I can work on edits in January and send it off to my crit partners in February. I feel pretty great about this project and really want to see it to publication in 2013, so I want to focus the next few months on getting it ready for submission…or even self-publication if I’m being really brave.
I have a few other things I need to accomplish for this book–like setting things up for the pen name I plan on publishing it under–but getting the draft done is priority #1. I’m pretty close to the ending and I think I’ve figured out how to tie off all the loose ends. I just need to go back after I write “the end” and fill in a few holes along the way, then I can put it to bed for a couple of weeks. Ideally I’d like to be done by Christmas, but we’ll see considering how busy a month December is likely to be. I have a lot of social engagements and family responsibilities, so I don’t want to overload myself…I want to enjoy the holidays!
This week, though, I am going to focus my efforts on finishing up the critique that languished during NaNo so I can get my words. Then I’ll be turning back to Drawn and finishing up the adventures of my comic artist heroine and comic book shop owner hero.
Hope everyone had a great end of NaNo and is excited for the week ahead. Happy December!
Just a few days to go until NaNoWriMo ends! I’m at just under 12K left
to hit the requisite 50,000, and that is a daunting task. I feel up to
the challenge, though, and I plan on knocking out at least 4K tonight!
Sprints are my best friend when I am trying to write a lot and write
quickly. I can get up to about 650 words per 15 minute sprint, and
that lets me knock out big chunks of writing in just a couple of
hours. That’s how I managed to get 3K in just an hour an a half on
I only got 306 words yesterday, but it was because my husband and I
put up our Christmas decorations. This is the first Christmas in our
house, and we have both been looking forward to making it look
festive. We decorated our mantel, put up hooks for our stockings, and
decorated the tree. I also hung a wreath on the back door…it’s nice
to see every time I leave or come home.
I will probably not get back to critiques before the weekend, but we
shall see…maybe I will have great luck on knocking out words and be
done sooner than I think!
Hope my fellow ROW80′ers are having a great week. Special thanks to
Jess Witkins (gotta love a fellow Jess and a fellow redhead!) for
her ROWmodel Award and kind words about my Sunday check-in. I appreciate the
encouragement. Now, to the finish line!
Well, I’ve already gone against my own advice. I know I said it’s important to keep going even when you hate your WIP, but mine got to be a little too much to handle. The more I write on it, the more holes that present themselves. At this point, I feel like if I continue to write it I am throwing away effort and words that could be put into another project. I don’t mind going back to edit, but if I’m going to do away with entire chapters because I need more worldbuilding, then it’s not worth it.
So, I’ve moved back to working on Drawn Together, my fun contemporary romance novel about an indie comic book artist and a lawyer-turned-comic book shop owner. It’s so much fun to write, and I really love the characters I created. That makes it an easy choice to see me through to the end of NaNoWriMo, and I might even make my 50K word count! I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again–I never thought I’d write a romance novel (instead of just a novel with romantic elements) and I don’t think I’ve ever had as much fun writing before.
I have about 20K more to write on it and planned to finish it in December, so I’m really just getting a head start. I was pretty easily able to write over 4,000 words on Saturday and plan on writing at least that many today. That leaves me writing about 2,800 words per day through Friday, which is tough after a long day in the office, but definitely doable.
As for my other goal, critiquing a novel for my wonderful CP, that is actually going really well. I got an app for my iPad that lets me edit and create Office documents and it features track changes, and that really makes a difference in my productivity. When I am not chained to my desk, I can edit in small portions here and there (and in a comfortable place!) rather than having to knock out 20+ pages per session in my desk chair. I should be done with that critique really soon.
I hope all my fellow American ROW80 participants had a wonderful Thanksgiving holiday, and good luck to everyone who is sweeping through this last week of NaNoWriMo!
I have a secret. I really hate my NaNoWriMo project at the moment. Somehow I am still managing to write over 1,500 words a day on it, and they’re flowing pretty easily, but part of the reason why is because I just don’t care right now.
You see, when I started writing Touch, I had a pretty developed idea of the premise and I plotted out about 25 scenes in detail. They felt tight and crisp, paced evenly and broken up well. I also knew the end, including the twists that will happen, so I would know where I’m writing to once I finally get to the end of the currently plotted scenes. I also had a pretty good idea of the near-future dystopian Earth I have the book set in, including the technology–or so I thought, anyway. It turns out I didn’t do even close to enough world building, so I have some plot holes big enough to drive a giant manned robot through.
It’s really frustrating and it makes me feel angry with myself, but here’s the thing. This happens. You start writing a book you were really excited about and you realize you actually hate the premise. Or the main character. Or the love interest. You write a page and you hate the dialogue, or the twist you so painstakingly crafted in your mind comes out like a ham-fisted homage to M. Night Shyamalan. It happens all the time.
But unless you’ve figured out through your writing that there is absolutely no way that this premise is going to work for you anymore, you just have to keep pushing ahead. My friend Sasha Devlin says that you have to “Brokeback that book” and refuse to stop writing it even though you want to. I told her I needed that on a t-shirt. Touch, I wish I could quit you. No, really. I wish I could stop writing you right now. But I won’t.
Although I feel like my plot is being held together with duct tape and Jeff Goldblum’s hacking skills from Independence Day, I know that this premise is still solid. I love the twists I know will eventually come into the plot. I love my angry, plucky little heroine and her sassy AI friend. I even love that I have to really dig in and deeply develop this world once I get past NaNoWriMo. All is not lost on this draft, even. I have some great ideas from it, some golden dialogue, and I am sure I can just add on to some of the scenes once I beef up the world around them.
It’s okay to hate your book. You just have to keep on writing it.
This week is going really well so far–way better than last week, that’s for sure! I’m going into day 14 of NaNoWriMo ahead of the minimum by 570 words…not a lot, but I’ll take them. It’s feeling really easy to make my daily quota, and it’s because of the writing I’m doing in the mornings and evenings when I’m riding the train.
I have 28 minutes to do nothing but try to ignore the crazy people and block out the screaming children, so I just pop on my earbuds and fire up Writing Kit on my iPhone. I don’t really have the room to pull out my iPad and type most of the time, so I decided to try my phone instead and it works much better than I thought it would. Even though I’m typing with my thumbs, I’m able to get between 500-750 words per ride. My progress gets synced to Dropbox, which then syncs back up to Scrivener when I get home and open up my novel file. There is nothing more satisfying than seeing my session target bar almost complete and knowing that I can relax for the rest of the evening!
The struggle to write after a full day at work has always been tough for me, so I am more than pleased that this strategy is working for me so far. I’m going to keep it up throughout the month and seek to write on the train at least a few days a week after that (it’s also great reading time!) so that I can keep some great momentum going on my upcoming projects.
Hope you are having a fantastic week too, my ROW80 and NaNoWriMo friends!
So, my lovely ROW80 mistress and Writechat buddy Kait Nolan decided to tag me in a meme all about my current project. Since I can’t resist a good meme, I thought I’d comply and talk about my NaNoWriMo project.
- What is the working title of your book? The working title is Touch Me, I’m Alive. It actually doesn’t work for the incarnation of the story I am actually writing, but it will do until NaNoWriMo is over and this thing is edited.
- Where did the idea for the book come from? Well, it’s a well-documented fact that I love my technology. I never leave the house without at least one gadget on me. So the idea of technology becoming sentient has always been fascinating to me. I don’t think that all technology would necessarily want to just destroy humankind, because so many of us love and rely on it every day. So the idea that a girl and her personal assistant AI could be best friends was intriguing. Originally the story was supposed to be set during the “awakening” of the tech (thus the working title) but I was having trouble making that work plot-wise. So, I went a different route.
- What genre does your book fall under? I am excited to say that this is my first venture into science fiction!
- Which actors would you choose to play your characters in a movie rendition? I actually chose some pictures to represent my characters when I was doing my NaNoWriMo prep. I don’t always do that, but for some reason I kept seeing the Evan character as this certain actor, so I couldn’t just choose someone for him! Just mentally swap the hair color for Milla and Evan and we’re good.
Jennifer Lawrence as Milla
Josh Dallas as Evan
Michael Hogan as Victor
Emma Watson as Lucy, changed last minute from Cassia
- What is the one-sentence synopsis of your book? A gifted young woman and her best friend, a sentient AI computer, must join forces with a band of rebels to save mankind from power hungry robots and their loyal human servants. (Wow, it sounds pretty boring when I boil it down to brass tacks.)
- Will your book be self-published or represented by an agency? It needs to be finished first! LOL But actually, I am leaning towards the possibility of self-publishing this.
- How long did it take you to write the first draft of your manuscript? It’s in the process of being written.
- What other books would you compare this story to within your genre? Oh, that’s really hard. I don’t know. I’d like to think my heroine is smart and spunky, but also vulnerable. Those traits make me think of my first and forever favorite sci-fi heroine, Killashandra Ree from Anne McCaffrey’s Crystal Singer series. This book is absolutely NOT comparable to those, but it’s definitely an inspiration. So is Ann Aguirre’s Sirantha Jax series, but again not even close to comparable.
- Who or what inspired you to write this book? I’ve always wanted to write a sci-fi book, since they are one of my first literary loves, so the idea of trying my hand was very appealing to me. It is really hard though! I didn’t research or prepare quite as much as I normally would, since this was a quickly plotted NaNo project, so I will need to go back and research quite a few things. I would say my love of technology also spurred me to write the book. I named the AI Sara in my original notes on the project, before Apple even introduced Siri. I thought that was kind of a cool coincidence.
- What else about your book might pique the reader’s interest? This is the first book in a planned trilogy. This is what happens when all your writer friends write series books and you claim to have never written a series before. Your brain will betray you. Also, there is a pretty cool twist (I think at least) that leads into the next book. I can’t wait to write that part!
Now, apparently I have to tag 5 other writers to talk about their works in progress. So, I am going to tag some of my favorite writer peeps!
Well, I missed a few check-ins here and there, but I have a very good reason…I was writing! Let’s check in on my goals:
- Keep my momentum going on NaNoWriMo. NaNoWriMo is almost halfway over, but I’m doing pretty well with my word count. Right now, I’m sitting at a few hundred words over the daily minimum. I had a couple of days last week that were absolutely not productive at all, and some where I could only squeeze a few hundred words out before my brain refused to cooperate anymore. I ate into the margin from last weekend and entered the weekend a little behind, but I was able to easily make up the difference. I was stuck on a scene and I let it get to me far longer than it should have, but after the prolific weekend I had, it was frustrating to have the story grind to a halt. I’m not super happy with the plot right now, but I’m pushing ahead and it is proving to work well.
- Continue to work on finishing my last critique. I’ve been bad about keeping up with this daily, but I’m getting back to it this week so I can turn it in. It’s been hard to do both NaNo and critiquing at the same time, but I need to buck up and do it.
One of the things that is really proving to help me in NaNo is writing on my way to and from work. I take the light rail and it gives me 28 minutes of uninterrupted time in the morning and early evening. This morning I was able to knock out over 750 words, and then on the way home I got almost 700. That was almost my entire daily quota! I think if I can keep that up, it will not be hard at all for me to stay on track. My problem is that I’m usually exhausted by the time I get home, have dinner, and sit down at the computer. Getting my writing done early means that my evenings can be mine to relax.
Hope you are all doing well on your goals, fellow ROW’ers!
So I missed out on checking in for ROW80 last week. It was a busy one, with a weekend guest for my college reunion, lots going on at work, guests on Halloween, and then me feeling under the weather starting Thursday night (leading to an abysmal start to my NaNoWriMo novel). These weeks happen, but I am pretty proud of how I am pushing through.
Here were my goals:
- Finishing up critiques for my crit partners. My goal was to finish the critique I had left to work on before NaNoWriMo started. Well, I am still going on it. That was a pretty lofty goal, considering this is a long book and I have a lot to do for myself. But I plan on getting it finished just as soon as I can.
- Planning out my NaNoWriMo project. I am actually pretty proud of the planning I did for my project. I didn’t get to the very end, though I know what that ending is going to be…and it actually sets me up for two more books, which I am pretty sure might make me crazy. I have the first 25 scenes planned out in decent depth, and that crazy ending to shoot for. I doubt I will get to the end during NaNoWriMo anyway, so that is OK.
- Getting the house clean. This was a win! The husband and I tackled the place and got it looking nice for guests (and ourselves). I still need to tackle Mount Laundry and the Secret Spare Room Closet of Doom, but otherwise things are nice and neat.
- Blogging at least once a week outside of ROW80 check-in posts. I am failing on this for now. I am okay with that. I have a few things I want to type up for this week and beyond, but I am going to take the pressure off myself and just roll with my NaNo writing.
So, my goals for the coming week are a little bit shorter:
- Continue to work on finishing my last critique. I want to at least tackle 20ish pages a day on this. I will try that today and see what happens.
- Keep my momentum going on NaNoWriMo. One of the beautiful things about feeling under the weather this weekend is that I have been resting a lot. That rest has consisted of periods of writing interspersed by naps when my head started to hurt too much. My writing post in the bed has been quite productive. Thursday night I tried to write after work but I was running a fever, so I only clocked 548 words for the first day of NaNo. Friday I did some work from home, slept a bit, and eventually felt better enough that evening to do some writing. I ended up catching up and slightly exceeding where I needed to be on Day 2. Saturday, well, that was a good writing day. I slept in pretty late, got up, met my daily goal pretty quickly, and then kept going throughout the day. By the time I went to sleep I had clocked over 6,000 words for the day and bumped my word count up to 9501. I would like to get up to 12K before Sunday is over, but we will see what happens.
That’s it! Those are my goals. November is going to be pretty focused on NaNoWriMo, as well as the things in my real life like work and family events (I have two Thanksgivings). How did your week go, fellow ROW80ers? Hope those of you participating in NaNo are having a great time!
I can’t believe it’s Wednesday already…this week is going fast! That’s probably because I have a lot to do. This weekend will be really fun–I’ll get to see friends from college, go to a football game, go to a cocktail party, and go to a CD release party–but incredibly busy, and I am in the thick of preparing for it.
Here were my goals for the week:
- Finishing up critiques for my crit partners. I got one big crit and another small read-through knocked out this weekend, which felt great. I’m working on a much bigger project to critique and I’m about 50 pages in. I’ve made great progress but I need to step up the speed a bit if I’m going to be done by the time NaNo starts.
- Planning out my NaNoWriMo project. I’ve done a little bit of planning so far this week, and I plan on really hitting it tonight. Generally it will only take me an evening or two to really outline and solidify my plot, so I’m pretty sure I’ll get to cross this off my list by the end of the week.
- Getting the house clean. I’ve been working on one thing per night and we’re almost there. The house wasn’t terribly dirty or cluttered to begin with, so that helps. Oh, the joy of living in a place where I have enough space to put everything away!
- Blogging at least once a week outside of ROW80 check-in posts. I have a post ready to go up all about my writing space tomorrow, so I’m doing well on that for the week!
How are you doing so far, fellow ROW80 writers? Hope you’re having a good week!
I’m jumping in on ROW80 this week so I can get back in the swing of my weekly/monthly goals! Things are pretty simple for me for the next couple weeks until NaNoWriMo starts, but I do have a few key things I am concentrating on:
- Finishing up critiques for my crit partners. I have one that is just about wrapped up, and then another one due back on November 4. I want to get that one done prior to November 1 so that I can start on NaNo free and clear.
- Planning out my NaNoWriMo project. I have figured out that my process starts with about 25% plotting, then I pants about 50% of the book while plotting the other 25% as I go. For this one, the plot is a bit complicated and technical, so I want to do a little more plotting ahead of time and planning out some of the backstory that gets things to the point where the novel starts.
- Getting the house clean! I have company coming this weekend for my 10-year college reunion (yikes!) and then people coming over on Halloween night, so this week I want to clean the things that need a deeper scrubbing so that we can just do a quick pick up here and there before guests arrive.
- Blogging at least once a week outside of ROW80 check-in posts. I want to do more than this, but I’m going to have to work up to it and make myself an editorial calendar. I’m lost without one.
Hope everyone is gearing up to have a fantastic week! If you’re going to participate in NaNoWriMo, leave me a comment with your NaNo user name and we can be author friends on the site. I’m divajess.