NaNoWriMo reflections

by Intermittent Rain ~ December 1st, 2010. Filed under: NaNoWriMo, Thoughts about Writing.


* Modified January 25th, 2011 *

I want to take a few moments to reflect on this year’s NaNoWriMo event before I put it to bed for a while. I plan to come back and revise and edit, but I want some distance before I try.

btw, the opening is published on Smashwords if you’re interested.

  1. This was much more difficult and time consuming than the first novel. I think that is a function of a complex plot and multiple primary characters that needed time to be introduced. In comparison for the previous novel I had three predefined primary characters and their connection to the main protagonist (who, oddly, had no specific predefined characteristics. She became just a blank canvas that the other characters interacted with). So, I just let the personalities interact, let then talk, let them have adventures. Character writing as opposed to plot writing.
  2. Again I wrote using WordPress and private blog posts. It works because it makes the writing available to me at any time and I can revise, reorder, and word count. Originally each chapter was a separate post, but toward the end I merged them into the three books that it naturally breaks down into.
  3. I had massive computer problems that I just ignored in an effort to get done. My new laptop decided that it was going to periodically freeze or just reboot, pretty much whenever it felt like it. I lost a lot of stuff this way and had to do a lot of quick rewrites before I forgot what I had just written. WordPress didn’t save often enough to help me here. Now that the novel is done I’ve flattened the new computer and have re-installed. My suspicion is that the new version of AVG anti-virus software was the culprit, but I’ll wait to see.
  4. It’s a good experience. Lots of battles with quality versus quantity. I held back from just writing to write ’cause I don’t want to write crap. If I fill with crap then the structure is weak and I can’t build on it in the future. Still, it’s good to push yourself.
  5. I go into another world when I’m focused on writing. It became the primary activity of my month.
  6. One of the reasons that the story is told at 45,000 words is because I saw this almost as a movie all the way through. That means that the scenes are limited in length and that the quantity of scenes is restricted. The story does not unfold on some grand scale but rather is painted in small tableaus.

I think that this novel is a lot stronger than the first one. The plot is more dynamic. The writing is better due to more practice plus the writing class that I took. It remains to be seen if I can turn it into into something worth publishing.

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