Sunday, November 20, 2011

NaNoWriMo Week 3

Hi all,

It’s the end of week three of National Novel Writing Month and I am feeling tired and of need of a break from writing. In the last two days in particular I have felt like just lying on the bed and dozing. Anyway, I forced myself to write past distractions until the writing eventually became easier. Here is how I went:

Day fifteen: Must have been an easy day’s writing because I can’t remember any issues. I finished chapter thirteen, or so I thought. I wrote 1837 words for a total of 27641.

Day sixteen: I was tired. I changed the ending of chapter thirteen and then wrote chapter fourteen which ended up feeling a bit like a fill in chapter. It might not survive an edit. But I need something to break chapter thirteen from chapter fifteen. I wrote 1947 words for the day. Total 29588.

Day seventeen: I realised that for consistency I better start making a plan of the interior of the spaceship much of the story is set on, which I did. Wrote 1839 words. Total 31427.

Day eighteen: Did some research on heart rates. I had written 900 words by lunch, but found distractions after eating. Eventually got back to the writing and wrote 2140 words. I am two-thirds of the way to the 50,000 mark with 33561 words in total.

Day nineteen: Another daily count in the 1830’s with 1833 words. Total of 35394

Day twenty: Really did not feel like writing. It was a real struggle to get the words out until a flash of insight near the end of the day. I wrote 2099 words for a total of 37493.

Day twenty-one: I felt just as tired as the previous day, which is not the way to start a week. I have decided to divide the novel into three parts. At the moment I am nearing the end of part one, so I reckon the novel will be around the 110,000 words. I wrote 1999 words for the day for a total of 39492.

I am averaging 1880 words a day. I am now 4492 words ahead of schedule. I am very much looking forward to a couple of days off writing.

In other news, Bravenet apologised for sending any email messages I sent the previous week to their spam account. They have given me a month’s free hosting.

I also finished critiquing a novel and reading Patrick White’s intriguing, over punctuated Voss. I will review it when I have finished NaNoWriMo.

Sunday, November 13, 2011

NaNoWriMo Week 2

Hi all,

It’s been a busy week of writing and frustrations about writing and technology. I have wondered if technology would intervene in my attempt to get to 50,000 words for National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo). Although I have had no computer mal-functions so far, trying to solve problems with my email (Bravenet) have taken time away from writing.

My email has probably been doing the worse thing it could possibly do: telling me it has sent messages when they haven’t been. I was debating edits to an article I had written for Divine, and suddenly he stopped receiving my emails. He ended up ringing me to find out if I still wanted the article published. I did.

I have contacted Bravenet to see if they care enough to actually fix the problem. They took months to fix a previous problem where my word attachments were being turned into a mess of symbols at the receiver’s end. Needless to say, once I have time, I will be moving my website and email hosting somewhere else.

New Article on DiVine.  

I have a new article up on DiVine today and it is about weight loss. It is particularly aimed at people with disabilities. One thing I knew, which was reaffirmed by my research, was that many weight loss programs have a physical exercise element. Physical exercise can be very difficult for people with certain disabilities. I found a very interesting site in Sparkpeople which is a bit like a Facebook for people who want to lose weight. It has groups for people with disabilities and groups for chair exercises. Because DiVine is a Victorian Government site, I had to severely reduce references I wanted to make to Sparkpeople.


My goal for the second week of NaNoWriMo was to write more words on each day of the week than I did for the previous week.

Day eight: I spent a while discussing (at least I thought) edits on the DiVine article so I did not get to writing to 2pm. I still managed to write 1788 words which was a fraction over the previous Tuesday’s total. I had written 14416 words in total.

Day nine: I was very angry when I started writing; not the greatest frame of mind to write in. I did some research and found a suitable point in space for the story to be set in. I finished chapter six and then wrote up a lot of notes. The novel’s plot is looking very good. I wrote 1740 words for a total of 16156.

Day ten: More quick research, this time on the brain and what parts of it do. There were no interruptions as I was blissfully unaware that my email wasn’t working. I wrote 1771 words for a total of 17927.

Day eleven: I felt like crap all day, with a sore back of the head, sore hands, even a splinter – which I removed – in the tip of a finger. If I was going to concede defeat on writing my daily quota, this would have been the day. Instead, I wrote until I finished chapter nine. With lots of small chapters, this novel is different from the other two I have written. I wrote 2100 words to scrape over the 20,000 words.

Day twelve: I was distracted by finding my email wasn’t working. Again I didn’t start writing until after 2pm. But I still made the quota and I still bettered last Saturday’s word count. I wrote 1839 words for a total of 21866.

Day thirteen: And I failed to better last Sunday’s word count. I finished chapter eleven and thought that would be a good place to stop for the day. I figured out I am writing at about 500 words an hour, but I am not going back past the current sentence I am writing to edit. I also spend about half an hour a day sorting my notes out. And many hours thinking about the novel. I wrote 2059 words for the day and a total of 23925.

Day fourteen: Again I was distracted by my stupid email. I am fed up with Bravenet and I sent them an email telling them so. I would not recommend Bravenet to anyone, their customer support is probably the worst I have encountered – and I have dealt with Amazon to get a Kindle replaced. I managed to settle the mind and do some writing. I wrote 1879 words and passed the halfway mark for a total of 25804 words. 

I only missed bettering the previous week’s daily word counts on one day. I am now 2471 words ahead of schedule.

Sunday, November 6, 2011

My NaNoWriMo week.

Hi all,

I have just finished the first week of National Novel Writing Month or NaNoWriMo. The idea is to write a 50,000 word novel in the month of November. This is how I faired:

Day one: I started a brand new novel. The ideas for the novel had only been pulled together over the previous few days. I was not sure whether I would get anywhere near the 1667 words required on average per day.

The first chapter was to introduce the main character, his predicament and his somewhat drastic reaction. I wrote this chapter in first person. I finished the chapter and then thought about stopping for the day as my word count was at 1630, just below the average of 1667. But I was reminded by a friend that it’s easier to begin writing the next day if you have a scene set and started, so I wrote the first 70 words of chapter two. I wrote 1700 words for the first day.

Day two: When walking back from the pool, I thought up a better way to open chapter two, so I scrapped the start and began again. I then had to stop and walk to the dentist and then spend a lovely hour and twenty minutes getting a root canal finished.

Chapter two is written in third person and the story is told from three different POV. I felt like I was creating distinct voices for each of them. I wrote 1710 words for a total of 3410.

Day three:  I went back and did some editing (naughty Graham) and deleted about 100 words. The writing for chapter two became more technical as characters followed step by step procedures. I finished chapter two and started chapter three. I wrote 1647 words for the day, so I did not make the average daily quota. 5057 words in total.

Day four: On the way back from the pool I found myself stopping to write a lot of notes and, once again, I thought of a better beginning to a chapter I had started, so I scrapped some more words. Chapter three, like chapter one, is one long scene, and when you don’t need to stop and think about setting a scene it is a lot easier to punch out the words. After I finished writing, I spent some time sorting out my notes for the novel. I wrote 1760 words for a total of 6817.

Day five:  I woke up a few times during the night to write down ideas for the novel. When I got up the next morning, I immediately snatched up my notebook to write more notes.  When I finally began writing, I finished chapter three and was well into chapter four before stopping.

I am finding that writing at this pace certainly helps with remembering what is happening and keeping a character’s voice consistent. I wrote 1760 words for the second day in a row, for a total of 8577 words.

Day six: Writing seemed very easy. I finished chapter four and was well into chapter five when I stopped, rushing to 2197 words and a total of 10774. I am finding the more I write, the more I want to write.

Day seven: A few things interfered with my writing time, like the editor for Divine sending me an edited version of my next article with changes, some of which I did not agree with. I spent a lot of time composing an email that explained why I thought some of his changes diminished the article. Then the house insurance bill arrived and a long discussion broke out about whether we are under or overinsured. Did yet another online insurance contents estimate – came out much the same as the previous ones. Just as well I had written around 800 words before I checked my email and mail. I then managed to write another 1000 words or so for a total of 1854 and a week one total of 12628.

After week one I am 959 words ahead of schedule. I have amazed myself with my output. I have written more in seven days than I usually write in seven weeks.