Saturday, November 01, 2008

Nanowrimo 2008

Well, it's that time again - the time when insane aspiring writers conspire to churn out 50,000 words in just 30 days. For my sins, I've got caught up in the adventure again this year - despite failing dismally last time.

But why listen to me tell you about Nanowrimo. Let's hear it from another aspiring writer - my friend, fellow blogger and legendary (at least to me) radio presenter Laura Parish:

Laura! For the uninitiated, what is Nanowrimo all about?

Nanowrimo runs from 1st November - 30th November. The challenge is to write 50,000 words in 30 days.

It can be any genre and any subject you like, provided it's not pre-prepared prose, so a completely new idea and no, it can't be the same word 50,000 times over. Planning is allowed though, thank goodness.

What I love about it, is that it encourages you to just write and not focus so much on the quality, but just on the enjoyment of writing.

What have you got planned for Nanowrimo 2008? Romance? Adventure? Science fiction?

My plan at the moment is Romance, but the exciting thing is that it could turn into something completely different.

What do you think the secret of ‘winning’ NaNoWriMo will be?

The secret is to try to write a little bit every day. If you divide the words over the month then it works out at about 1,667 words per day, which doesn't seem so daunting. My vice will be to waste time reading what I have written. If I can stop myself from doing that, I am half way there.

What might be a reason you’d fail?

Trying to over think the writing instead of just going for it. Life also has a habit of getting in the way but if I find I don't finish then its not the end of the world. I've done what many people only talk about doing. I've started.

When you’re on good form, how do you make sure you get your 1,667 words per day?

I just write. If I go over 1,667 words then I see it as a bonus. I just write when I can.

What ‘aids’ do you use (i.e. coffee, chocolate, drip-feed caffeine?)

Tea on a constant flow seems to work for me and chocolate is always a winner!

I also tend to have a film I have seem a million times or music I know really well on in the background as I prefer noise to silence, but I know other writers prefer peace and quiet.

Sometimes a change of scene helps me. If I can't concentrate at home (the internet is very distracting), then I go out, a cafe, the park. This helps shift my focus back. I know it's a cliche but it seems to do the trick.

Do you do any ‘pre-game’ planning, like plot charts or anything like that?

Last year I didn't plan, I just had an idea of the story in my head.

This year I have written bullet points regarding the plot and a character list to see if this method will benefit. I think it depends on what kind of writer you are. The thought of planning scares me a little as I never quite know how much to do, but I think you've just got to find what works for you.

Husband: Help or Hindrance?

When I want a distraction he's brilliant. When I need to focus and he wants to do other things, he's a pain. Most of the time though he is great.

What the hell is a ‘plot bunny?’

Google is a wonderful thing. However, there were a few definitions so who knows!

One definition told me that its a 'tempting idea that hares off into strange territory upon pursuit. Another told me that it was an idea for a story, usually referring to an author having more ideas than he/she can use.

Or it could be an idea that gnaws away at you until it's written or could simply refer to an idea for a story.

Take your pick.

Once Nanowrimo’s finished, what are you going to do with your masterpiece?

First I am going to get very excited about the fact that I've finished and then maybe gain some time on it, then maybe re-draft.

A final message from Laura?

Good Luck everyone! Here's to 50,000 words. :)

3 comments:

The Chemist said...

Oooh, I'm in!

I hesitated for a second, I have a lot to do this month, finals are coming up- but screw it- my classes this semester are easy to the point I'm bored to tears and I checked, I write about that much for my blog. I may as well, especially since I've has this sci-fi idea kicking around my head for a while now.

Wonderful World of Weiners said...

50,000 words? I can't even imagine that clearly in my mind. SOmeone needs to give me some idea of what that looks like...like how many pages typed would that actually be?

Maybe because it's Monday, I'm just too stupid to figure this out on my own.

I bet I speak over 50,000 words per day so how hard can this be? Wonder if that's why my Dad is always telling me to STOP TALKING SO MUCH!!!

Hallie :)

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