Posted in: #amrevising, #amwriting, #fiction, #NaNoWriMo 2017, Uncategorized, women's fiction, writing schedule, writing tips

10 Days of National Novel Writing Month – #NaNoWriMo Survival

It was the best of days, it was the worst of days on Day 10 of National Novel Writing Month. Because I wrote for an hour first thing, it was the best. But actually, mostly it was the worst of days. Consider having:

  1. Your heating installed over a 3-day period of mistakes, confusion, and changing personnel.
  2. Three of your 4 website disappearing for no reason — all paid for and not hacked.
  3. The world’s stiffest neck from writing all week.

And yet, I wrote. And so am happy. What is it that makes writers have to write to achieve the peculiar bliss we know in our imaginative worlds? What makes you write? I’m almost sure most of you reading this do write. Please let me know in the comments what propels you to do this crazy cantilevering out into the unknown that is the act of creating something.

And Yet, I Wrote – Day 10 of National Novel Writing Month

I committed my month of November to #NaNoWriMo, as it’s affectionately called by its participants. My goal is to revise a (mostly) complete draft of a new novel, The Ro30-daymantics. I knew from last year’s writing marathon that forcing myself to write every day is a little like forcing myself to have cherry pie every day. There are days when I’d rather not — but most days, I’d definitely rather.

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Posted in: #amrevising, #amwriting, #fiction, #NaNoWriMo 2017, Uncategorized

Day 8 of #NaNoWriMo — and I’m Still Here

On Day 8 of #NaNoWriMo — National Novel Writing Month — I’m still fulfilling my commitment to spend two hours every day working on my new novel, The Romantics. NaNoWriMo is a marathon, an endurance test for writers. The official goal of participating is to draft a new novel of at least 50,000 words. Yes, 50,000 words. That divides up into more than 1,600 words a day. Remember having to write essays in school? This is an essay every single day.

My self-determined goal is not to count words this time, but hours, in order to finish last year’s NaNoWriMo creation.ehemoth of a story that needs to be tamed. As you can imagine, it sags in the middle. No, actually, it gets amnesia in the middle — why did I take a day trip to Portofino, and what is that castle doing in my story, and just how is it going to improve my terrible relationship with my only sister?

My primary way is to write for two hours first thing every morning. Just showing up — or #buttinchair as some call it — is my way of courting my¬† muse. I can only hope by just showing up, the muse will really steer me and help me kill my (pointless) darlings to get that middle as lean as if it had been doing 50 situps every day in those two hours.

5 Ways to Make Your Daily Goal — Word- or Hour-Count

If you’re doing a #NaNoWriMo project this year, you may, like me, need some ideas to keep going, especially as we head toward the middle of the month. Here are 6 tools and writing tip for keeping at it:

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Posted in: #amrevising, #NaNoWriMo 2017, revising, Writing, writing time, writing tips

Thriving in National Novel Writing Month

I never thought I’d be writing about thriving in National Novel Writing Month, but November 2016 changed my perspective on what I could do in my writing life. I learned the discipline of trying to write an entire¬† novel in one month. I had had nothing but challenges trying to find a publisher for my first novel, The Renaissance Club (forthcoming January 16, 2018 from Fiery Seas Publishing). They say the best thing you can do to sell your book is write a new one. So on a reckless whim, I signed up for my first #NaNoWriMo.

How did I find a way to thrive? By plunging into a daily word goal of 1,600+ words. What I learned is that I love s challenge, and word count made me compete with myself, I was not only reckless to enter #NaNoWriMo, I wrote recklessly. Thirty days later, I found the partial novel draft full of life, and for the last year I’ve fleshed it out.

NaNoWriMo for Pantsers

If you’re an outline-averse writer like me, the idea of entering a force writing march with a precise outline of who, what, when, where, why feels like closing the door to inspiration. Charts like that shoo away any muse I have wooed close. So what can I use as a guide, other than my vague idea that my sisters would be like those in Sense and Sensibility (did I mention that I have two complete sets of Jane Austen novels, one for upstairs, and one for downstairs?).

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Posted in: #NaNoWriMo 2017, DIY writer's retreat, fantasy novel, ghost, ghost storty, ghost story, National Novel Writing Month, novel, novel writing

A 30-day, Part-Time DIY Writing Retreat

I’m beginning a new DIY writing retreat! Heading down a new path of revising my draft of Novel #2 – better known as The Romantics, a story of two half-sisters and the cottage they inherit in Italy, along with its resident ghost.

It was drafted last year during National Novel Writing Month, (NaNoWriMo) a month-long writing marathon in which you commit to write 50,000 words of a new book. Are you jumping into this national writing craze too? I rashly signed up and plan to revise last year’s book.

Did you know you can use NaNoWriMo as a rebel? You don’t have to make your goal 50k words. This time, I’m committing to two hours of revision every day, for 30 consecutive–my part-time DIY writing retreat.

If you’re venturing down the #NaNoWriMo path with me — maybe your first-time? — here are some ideas to keep yourself going. Take your courage in both (typing) hands, and tell yourself every day, “I’m now going to do my beautiful writing!” Also, make yourself a structure. Here’s mine.

Structuring a 30-Day Writing Sprint

You need some sort of promise to yourself — that’s the structure. It could be “I’ll write every day” or “I’ll think about my book every day.” My goal is to give myself a month of part-time StayWriCation (as I call my stay-at-home writing retreat) and revise my 353-page novel. NowI’m not counting words, but chapters — 48 chapters to revise. Read More “A 30-day, Part-Time DIY Writing Retreat”

Posted in: #amrevising, #amwriting, #fiction, #NaNoWriMo 2017, novel novel writing, Uncategorized

Preparing for National Novel Writing Month – 4 Writing Tips

Preparing for National Novel Writing Month can be hard if you’re allergic to plot outlines. And with any method, it’s a steep climb to write 50,000 words in a month. But if you have the urge to join the 34,000 people who last year completed a novel in 30 days, and your pen is poised […]