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Can you write a 50.000-word novel in 30 days?

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Subdivisions Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-20-10 08:34 PM
Original message
Can you write a 50.000-word novel in 30 days?
If you think so, then join us for National Novel Writing Month - November 1st - 30th, 2010!

What: Write one 50,000-word novel from scratch in a month's time.

Who: You! We can't do this unless we have some other people trying it as well. Let's write laughably awful yet lengthy prose together.

Why: The reasons are endless! To actively participate in one of our era's most enchanting art forms! To write without having to obsess over quality. To be able to make obscure references to passages from our novels at parties. To be able to mock real novelists who dawdle on and on, taking far longer than 30 days to produce their work.

When: You can sign up anytime to add your name to the roster and browse the forums. Writing begins November 1. To be added to the official list of winners, you must reach the 50,000-word mark by November 30 at midnight. Once your novel has been verified by our web-based team of robotic word counters, the partying begins.

Learn more and sign up at http://www.nanowrimo.com !
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nuxvomica Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Oct-21-10 06:55 AM
Response to Original message
1. I did it last year and the novel has taken over my life
I'm still revising/submitting last year's novel so I probably won't do it this year. I strongly recommend it to anyone who's had that book idea kicking around in their head but hasn't gotten around to writing it. It's amazing how much you can get done with NaNoWriMo.
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SheilaT Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Oct-21-10 03:36 PM
Response to Original message
2. I just went ahead and signed up.
It feels a little scary, but I can probably write 1500 words each and every day if I simply do it. Especially if I don't worry too hard about whether or not what I'm writing is any good.

Now I just have to figure out what I'll write.

I'm an okay writer. Sometimes slightly better than okay. My biggest problem is actual plot. Ideas are a dime a dozen, in my opinion. It's an actual plot, which gets me from the beginning to the middle to the end that I'm exceptionally bad at. I can write fairly adequate short stories, because plotting isn't as crucial. But in a longer work plot strikes me as absolutely crucial. Have no idea what I'll do at this point, but I need the challenge.
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Subdivisions Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Oct-21-10 08:36 PM
Response to Reply #2
3. That's the spirit, SheilaT! You see, it's not about writing your best novel, it's
about the challenge of getting it done. You an always go back and polish it later. Indeed, many novels from NaNoWriMo have been published!

I am always obsessing when I write. This will be my first attempt at NaNoWriMo and I hope to use it as an exercise in writing with abandon, rather than obsessly trying to make every sentence perfect. Perhaps if I didn't obsess so much I could actually finish writing a novel. We shall see!

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SheilaT Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Oct-21-10 10:06 PM
Response to Reply #3
4. Yep. Just plow through and get
the words down.

I'm completely at a loss about what I'll write about. I might do a novel I thought about some years back and have a few notes for. Maybe something brand new would be a better idea. I'll think of something.
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orleans Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Oct-22-10 12:04 AM
Response to Original message
5. looks kinda fun but i'm not a big joiner--
maybe i'll see if i can do that anyway--just on my own. for "fun"
thanks for posting this.
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jotsy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Oct-22-10 02:31 PM
Response to Original message
6. I do believe I'm planning to try, famial pressure not withstanding!
Thanx for the link!
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supernova Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Oct-29-10 11:30 AM
Response to Original message
7. I signed up!
I will be writing in the mornings I think. If you're on FB, this note has some wonderful tips:

How To Prep Yourself and Your Schedule for NaNoWriMo http://www.facebook.com/note.php?note_id=16556303013997...

Tried it a couple of years ago and couldn't finish. This is my second attempt. Two things that make this time better:

1) I have a specific subject in mind.

2) I'm going to try to think of it as a month long freewrite.

3) With 2) in mind, I will not edit anything during the month. I will do that later. Nov. is all about invention. I have a tendency to start editing too soon before I get all my ideas out.

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jotsy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Oct-29-10 08:29 PM
Response to Reply #7
8. As did I.
Good luck.
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nuxvomica Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Oct-30-10 01:32 PM
Response to Original message
9. I signed up again
Amid all the sturm und drang of Authonomy's vercochte "upgrade" I got an idea for a sequel to last year's book and I'm looking forward to seeing how the characters made out.
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Ozymanithrax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Oct-31-10 07:57 PM
Response to Original message
10. I've decided to do this again this year.
Yes, I in the middle of a Masters Seminare on Creative Non-Ficiton, but it isn't as demanding as other classes in my Masters degree. So, what the hell.

This year, I am going to write Shard of Night.

This is a quick, five sentence synopsis of what I will attempt.
On their thirteenth birthday, the foundling Dyvant and an Aphras Nobels son Sijal D'Or, two young men who could be twins, meet for testing before the Crg Cabal on Ylle Isle for entry into the prestigious Dun Crg and battle to a draw, which convinces the Cabal admit two students at one time for the first time in over a thousand years. Dyvant and Sijal learn that their uncanny resemblance is no accident when the Librum Eternoi reveals that they are reincarnated from two fragments of the shattered soul of a Cabal Master Night who attempted to wall up The Devourer but was killed and broken when he bound his own eternal soul to lock the gates of night, and they have reincarnated since that time, though never together. Sent into the forest of Gloom root to find familiars, Cartophylus and Dyvant refuse to work together and narrowly escape murdered by shadows that they suspect Cabal Veil Master sent by the to follow and stop them from achieving symbiosis with their familiar spirits that take the form of a Crow and a Raven. Sent as part of their training upon the great rafts to work under Cabal Storm Master, they witness a vast gaunt creature hidden within the storm feeding upon the moon, a magical process that drains the source of magical power for the world itself and weakens the bond upon the gates of night. The set out to stop Cabal Veil Master from opening the first seal upon the Gates of night, only to face the first avatar of the Devourer himself.


I will be making daily comment on my blog, and here.

http://frankdarbe.com/EclecticWriter/
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Hong Kong Cavalier Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Nov-01-10 11:38 AM
Response to Original message
11. Year 4 for me.
Ended up with a trilogy of bad epic fantasy.
But something happens every year, and I'm so looking forward to it this year. About 2-3 days into writing, the characters say to me "Oh, you think the story's going in this direction. We think it should go this way."

It's a total blast for me. Can't wait to see what happens this year.
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MorningGlow Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-02-10 12:08 PM
Response to Reply #11
14. I love when the characters do that!
It's great being surprised--reminds me I am so not in control of a world I created! :P
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SheilaT Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Nov-01-10 03:56 PM
Response to Original message
12. Well, I got off to a pretty decent
start. 3200 words this morning. It just flowed!

And I have a couple of days coming up later on this month during which it will be not possible to write, so I want to get well ahead.
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MorningGlow Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-02-10 12:06 PM
Response to Original message
13. Did it last year, doing it again this year
But I'm cheating a little--I'm using this year's 50,000-word count to finish the novel I started last year. I was planning on finishing it before NaNo 2010 and starting a new one (that's percolating in the back of my mind), but I just didn't have the time. So this is better than nothing. And it'll get my first novel done--finally!

Started today (11/2) and I have to admit that NaNo still has some kinks to work out. Their Flash progress chart just does NOT load for me (and I have a high-speed cable connection)--might be Firefox it doesn't like (which is no excuse).

But mostly I do NOT like the breakdown of how many UNSUCCESSFUL days you've had. I don't think that's very supportive at all. Very negative. x(
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SheilaT Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Nov-03-10 12:49 PM
Response to Reply #13
15. It helps to post every single day
what your current word count is.

I forgot to post my very first day, even though I wrote over 3000 words, and so it counts as an unsuccessful day. So far, I'm just flying along.
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MorningGlow Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Nov-03-10 01:35 PM
Response to Reply #15
16. Oh hell I post my word count every 10 minutes!
:rofl:

It's just that they didn't have those negative breakdowns last year, and I liked it better that way!
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SheilaT Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-11-10 10:25 PM
Response to Original message
17. I cannot get over how well this is going.
I'm up to over 21,000 words. I have to kind of fight myself about not going back and editing what I've already written, which is what I would have done in the past. Instead, I'm just moving ahead, writing, writing, writing. Since I didn't have anything beyond a story idea -- which came to me when I got out of bed on the 1st -- and so exactly what happens keeps on changing, I have a section which is for notes, and reminders to myself about what to fix in the revision.

For me, at least, this is turning out to be a MUCH BETTER way to write a novel. Just start more or less at the beginning and go through to the end.

It would be nice if in the end (after much more work) this turns out to be publishable, but what I now know is that I can actually write an entire novel.

Boy, am I glad I signed up for this.
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MorningGlow Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Nov-12-10 09:11 AM
Response to Reply #17
18. Congrats!
It is cool, isn't it?

I'm lagging behind this year (only got 10K down so far) because my son was sick and I've spent most of the week nursing him. Hoping to catch up, though. I don't need all 50K words to finish the novel I started during last year's NaNo, but it would be fun to "win" again--and then have plenty of content to tighten up afterward.

If you want to be my NaNo friend, just let me know and I'll send you my NaNo name! I've got three DU friends there. :hi:
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SheilaT Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Nov-27-10 03:27 AM
Response to Original message
19. Wow, almost at the end of the month and I'm
almost there.

Officially, I'm behind on the writing statistics. I was greatly hampered by some things that came up and kept me from writing at all. But I'm back on track, and I honestly think I'll make it to the 50,000 word goal by the end of the month.

I've learned some very important things, mainly that just plowing ahead and getting the first draft finished is all important. What I've done so far is very much a first draft, no where near publishable quality. But I've learned the most important thing, as far as I'm concerned, which is to just plow ahead with the first draft. Don't worry about the quality of the prose, just charge on ahead and get the story done. There is a lot of work to be done. I've got to get he narrative in a coherent order, which will be a lot harder than jus writing the first draft was. And that's completely aside from whether or not it will be publishable in the end. At the moment I'm not worrying about publication. I"m still, at this point focussed on getting to the 40,000 word goal, which I think I can do. The I'll make sure I have the entire narrative arc figured out. And then I'll do the hard work of editing, and pulling it into shape.

But without NaNo, I'd never have gotten this far.
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MorningGlow Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Nov-28-10 09:10 AM
Response to Reply #19
20. Me too! It's a come-from-behind victory
because I didn't write a word for an entire week when my son was sick. Here it is Sunday morning and I've only got a little more than 3,000 words to go.

Congrats on getting to the end, Sheila--it is a GREAT feeling when you've validated your manuscript on the NaNo site and have earned the right to sport the "NaNo Winner" jpg wherever you might want to put it. :)

As for this year's NaNo, I've made two discoveries: 1) that 100,000 words (50K from last year's NaNo and 50K from this year's) is not enough to finish the story. I am glad that I can see all the way to the end--details and all--but when I reach 50K either today or tomorrow, I'm not going to be near the end of the story. Well, that just shows I've got plenty to cut; romantic comedies usually clock in around 80K.

And 2) I never knew that when an author musters up every ounce of energy and nerve that she has to steel herself to write a "romantic" (ahem) scene, it can get totally derailed when the characters start LAUGHING in the middle of it. Totally unplanned, but at the same time totally correct, and all the better for it. Go figger. :D
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SheilaT Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Nov-28-10 02:44 PM
Response to Reply #20
21. I will easily make the
50,000 word mark either later today or tomorrow. And I will need many more words to actually complete this, get it to anything that resembles publishable. I'm actually missing at present a large section of plot, and at the moment have no idea exactly what's going to be happening at those points. But I do have the beginning, I have some of the middle, and I pretty much have the end. What an accomplishment!

I have also learned from this that this kind of just plowing through is probably the very best way for me to write a novel. Just get everything possible down in a first draft, and worry about editing later.

I have any number of inconsistencies in my work right now, and I thought I was going to kill off one character, but whose continued story is more important than I realized. I'd also planned on introducing two new characters, but they turn out to be almost completely irrelevant or not necessary. I will probably actually make use of them as very minor background characters as I revise.

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MorningGlow Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Nov-28-10 06:06 PM
Response to Reply #21
22. Amazing the kinds of things you discover, isn't it?
I had my main character live in a wonderful little house that she loved (had renovated quite a bit of it all by herself) in a lovely old neighborhood...but then I realized it gave her no reason to become enamored of the house her love interest had bought and was gutting, as well as was something that would prevent her from fully wanting to move in with him at the end. So now I have to go back and put it in a mixed-zoning area so she can like the area less (commercial encroaching on her special place) and also so she and her SO can switch it to their office when they go into business together at the end (so she won't have to sell it). I had no idea up till about 2,000 words ago, though! :D

Oh--and I finished! 50,896 words at around 3:00 this afternoon. W00t! :woohoo:
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SheilaT Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Nov-28-10 06:52 PM
Response to Reply #22
23. Congratulations!
I'm at 49,470 at the present. I'll finish tomorrow.

I really want to fill in some middle stuff so that I have the entire narrative arc in place, even though I know lots and lots of changes need to be made.
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Hong Kong Cavalier Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Nov-29-10 10:45 AM
Response to Original message
24. Why, yes. Yes I can.
Edited on Mon Nov-29-10 10:57 AM by Hong Kong Cavalier
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MorningGlow Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Nov-29-10 12:50 PM
Response to Reply #24
25. Congrats!
:applause:

Exhausting, innit?
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Hong Kong Cavalier Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Dec-01-10 09:40 AM
Response to Reply #25
26. This one was more difficult than the other three I did.
Mainly because I've been holding this story in my head since 1986 or so. And I finally decided to try to get it on paper.
It's nowhere near done, though, so I have to continue writing it. :D
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