I’ve had a bit of tired/disrupted week this week so I’ve not been half as crafty as I was last week – hope to return to making next week but there is something else that needs some attention before too long — NaNoWriMo >> National Novel Writing Month.
I completed my first NaNoWriMo last year and loved the experience. The goal is to write 50,000 words of fiction but I hit that target on Day 11 last year, and managed more than 100,000 before the month’s end. My personal goal though had been to finish the story (because I’m quite good at waffling on but not very good at finishing things) and that didn’t happen during November – I largely put it on hold until July this year, when I cranked out another 50,000 words and finally brought it to an end. I have a huge pile of edits to make to it but overall, I’m pleased with it – and after such a positive experience, I’m keen to NaNoWriMo again next month.
Last year’s project was pretty straightforward – a chronological telling of a life story, written in the first person and while it was historical, it was comparatively recent (1957-1982) and set in an area I know well, so it was easy (and fun!) to research. I very much enjoyed finding as much accurate data as I could – down to monthly weather reports and snooping on Rightmove to get an idea of house layouts ;)
I’ve decided to go the completely opposite way this year though. As I mentioned above, cranking out words isn’t really a challenge for me so I’ve decided to play with form rather than writing a this-then-this-then-this story. That’s where the little pieces of paper in the photo come in – over the next few weeks, I’m going to use them to plan the order. There are a lot of different threads that will need pulling together, and no set order to any of it – I’m anticipating a lot of shuffling! I also have to do some other planning exercises, most critically drawing a map. To be frank, the whole idea sprung from me wanting an excuse to have to draw a map. I heart maps ;)
If you think you might have a story inside you, I’d recommend giving NaNoWriMo a go. My new mantra is to not let perfectionism get in the way of productivity and that’s what NaNoWriMo is all about. You get a huge community of cheerleaders keeping you going at it too – forums galore and local meet-ups too.
If anyone wants to be my NaNoWriMo writing buddy, my profile is at http://www.nanowrimo.org/en/participants/louisa_/