The Elusive Novel Is Not Make Believe

I’ve been writing for a little while now; blogs, short stories, poetry but what is elusive to me is the longer story such as a novel or novelette. I’ve had a few decent ideas but my follow thru hasn’t really been there to reach the completed first draft. All kinds of excuses, I’m sure you can relate and if you can’t – Seriously? Agh, I’m jealous and may hate you just a little bit.

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I had this original idea and I wrote a quick little ditty about Jack and Diane, I think John Cougar-Mellencamp would disagree that Jack and Diane was original to me. Actually my little ditty is Willow and her family dynamics along with a secret or two about being a royal. Throw in a little magic; okay a lot of magic, and my little story is taking shape. Maybe it’s the line manager in me or the fact I have a teen in the house; but all of the sudden I had this book theme that was screaming Young Adult (YA) of imposed expectations or perceived ones. Yeah, I totally love YA’s as I’m a forever teenager underneath it all.

What really is helping me this year is, Fiction Unboxed 1.5. What’s been great about it, is I get to visually peak in, like a fly on a wall as these guys – Sean, Johnny and Dave work on their 30 day quest of producing a novel for the second time. I love it! I don’t watch everyday only when I can. However it’s clicking and its carrying me through my story. Also their book Write.Publish.Repeat is really good too, expect a review here soon. I’m finally feeling confident to get this follow thru done so that elusive novel will no longer be make believe. It’s happening!

The key piece and take away is pre-production. This isn’t a new concept really, but I realized in this process so far – I wasn’t going far enough. Get your characters down and know them (all of them), really know them. What was helpful was putting myself in the casting director role as they proposed. Lastly, get a good foundation on location and your world. But seriously, check these fellas out and they have a podcast to.

What prompted me toward these guys was The Scrivener Coach. If you don’t have Scrivener for writing – get it, it will make your life so much easier. If I could use it in my day job, I would; okay I see an improvement suggestion coming. Check out my post on Scrivener to get more information.

NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month) occurs every November and is also a great community to support and help writers get those first drafts written. It’s free and guess what, it’s not to late to join and it’s free. Lots of tools and great advice, get involved as you can.

Writing makes me think of golf. It’s the game that is played solo and your improvement and skill set is to improve your game, no one else’s. I hope this blog gives you some options to improve your writing (aka your game).

I’d be happy to gain any further insights you’d like to add to get us writers from A to B – please feel free to leave a Comment below. Let me know if you enjoyed this blog post with the Like and/or Share button.

One Month in Counting NaNoWrimo

Can you believe it’s October?

Bring on NaNoWrimo

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Who is ready for NaNoWrimo this year?  It’s one month in counting! This is usually when all the buzz gets started and everyone is like…bring it on!

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NaNoWrimo stands for National Novel Writing Month.  This gives you an instant writing community (all levels), the opportunity to come together for support and planning to get your novel going and reach word count goals all in the month of November!

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Easy enough, write? Ahem… right?

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Possibly, but it can get frustrating if you’re not ready with a piece you’ve been thinking about or working on.  It’s best to use October and start jotting down some ideas and thoughts.  The idea is to write and get something accomplished before the end of the year, think of it as a Christmas Gift to yourself.

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So get your groove on and get to work, don’t wait until November 1st.

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Seize the moment and sign up at the NaNoWrimo web site, if you’re not already a member, it’s free!  I’ll see you there!

NANO You, NANO Me, 1 Month in Counting!

In just a few short weeks it will be the start of National Novel Writing Month (NANO).  Are you ready? I’m there.  I am going to finish my 1st draft this year, this November; the gauntlet is thrown (hopefully it won’t boomerang back at my head!).  This is my first go at NANO and I’m totally pumped.

Many people say that they want to write, but really the satisfaction is to those who finish.  You may have heard of the novel made into a movie, ‘Water for Elephants’ by Sara Gruen – yep NANO.

Alrighty then, what do you need to do, to get your writing on?  And why am I already talking about this in October? Well, for me, I’m getting my butt in gear to mentally prep and plot.  My goal is butt in chair, write and finish this stinking 1st draft that haunts me – recent deadline passed, argh!  I might write before the actual start, hooray me if I get a little ahead, as that doesn’t happen too often.

NANO (www.nanowrimo.org) starts November 1-30 and the challenge is to write your novel and/or complete 50,000 words.  The best part it’s free!  You create an account and connect with a community of like-minded individuals who are working on their stories that have been in progress or those first timers who are taking a dip in the pool to flex their writing muscles.  It’s a great opportunity to meet others and connect.

It’s a built-in deadline and contest for all ages globally, with the prize of self-satisfaction of completing your novel.  It started in 1999 and last year there where over 340,000 participants and over 38,000 winners (i.e., completing the word count goal)! Lots of success to be found, many of these novels found publishers and have been self-published.

Comment below – Will you be joining NANO this year? Have you participated in NANO before, if so what’s your experience? Will you complete your writing goals this year?  I sure hope so, I love to read and it would be a shame not to have your story out there because you didn’t finish it.

In the words of Wayne Gretzky “You miss 100% of the shots you don’t take.”

If you enjoyed this blog, please like and share below! Walk the talk, or write as it were.  I’ll see you at NANO 🙂