Friday 28 November 2014

Was NaNo a No-no?
This afternoon, I wrote my fifty thousand, two hundred and eighty fourth word for NaNo. Yeah! 

This was my very first experience of NaNoWriMo and because I have a busy weekend coming up, I've reached the target three days early. When I think back to the start on November 1st, I could not have envisaged doing that so no, NaNo was not a no-no for me! 

I realise that all the really hard work starts now but taking part in the project has proved to me that I can:

  • produce an extended piece of writing. Up until now, both my college dissertations were only 10,000 words each and my children's novel was around 13,000 words.
  • sustain an idea and work through a plot and sub-plots
  • get to know characters by immersing myself in their company. As I wrote, I found out things about them that I could never have imagined when I met them first.
  • keep to the target word count and even exceed it. On the few occasions when I couldn't write, I made sure I made up for it by writing more the next time I came back to writing.
Here is what my stats chart looks like today:

Your Average Per Day
Words Written Today
Target Word Count
Target Average Words Per Day
Total Words Written
50,284 WINNER!
Words Remaining
Current Day
Days Remaining
Goal Achieved On
November 28, 2014

What were the drawbacks?
  • a lot of my time has been taken up writing. I'm retired so have the luxury of doing what I want each day. I can imagine that writers with full time jobs or young children to look after would have to find the time from their already busy lives. 
  • I didn't edit. I just wrote....and wrote. I can see that I have most likely made the editing and redrafting of the novel much harder. 
  • I don't know if the writing is good enough. By concentrating on getting the words down and keeping to the word count target, I didn't reflect on what I had written.
  • I hadn't done enough research so there are gaps in the story where accurate details will need to be added to give the novel authenticity.
  • I've neglected my on-line critique group. I've managed to attend all the writing group meetings locally and sent the odd message of congratulations or encouragement but I haven't taken the time to actually download a story and critique it. Sorry!
Thanks to these people for their support:
What next?
  • Make and decorate a Man City football cake for Isaac, my grandson, who's going to be seven next Friday.
  • And maybe....start my Christmas shopping! 
All our circumstances will have been different and so will our goals. I hope that NaNoWriMo 2014 was a good experience for you. Please leave a comment and share your experience if you took part this year.
Thank you for reading my blog.
You may also follow me @JanBayLit on Twitter and on my Jan Baynham Writer Face Book page.

    Friday 21 November 2014

    NaNoWriMo Progress

    Your Average Per Day
    Words Written Today
    Target Word Count
    Target Average Words Per Day
    Total Words Written
    Words Remaining
    Current Day
    Days Remaining
    At This Rate You Will Finish On
    December 3, 2014
    These are my stats so far and as you can see I have some catching up to do. I'm hoping that today's writing will improve the situation so this is will be a short blog post. Good luck to fellow NaNo writers as we go into the last lap! 

    Thanks to CAFE LIT for publishing my WW2 story this week. The editor, Debz-Hobbs Wyatt said it was '..dedicated to all those who lost their lives fighting to give us the lives we have.' It was inspired by this photograph of my lovely Mum. I hope you will enjoy reading it.
    Photographs are often used by writers to inspire their stories. What picture has inspired you?

    Thank you for reading my blog.
    You may follow me @JanBayLit on Twitter and on my Jan Baynham Writer Facebook page.

    Monday 10 November 2014

    ** STOP PRESS**

    Have you ever wanted something so badly that you were tempted to do something drastic to get it? My story, 'I want' Gets Nothing, starts as a serial on Creative Frontiers today. Please click here for PART 1 if you'd like to read it. 

    Why not pop in each day to see what happens?

    PART 2
    PART 3
    PART 4

    Thanks to everyone who has followed the story all week. :-)

    Thursday 6 November 2014

    Just a Quick Update
    Six days into NaNoWriMo, how is everyone doing? 

    This is my first attempt at taking part so I didn't really know how it would be. However, I've managed to write every day but each day has been different as you would expect. I got off to a flying start at the weekend as there was a lot of football on the television (!!) but Monday wasn't so good. I had my usual writing group meeting in the afternoon and my first attendance at a new monthly critique group Write Fiction in the evening. I wasn't at the first meeting due to holidays so I didn't want to miss it. There, I met another NaNoWriMo newbie, Sue McDonagh, and she is now one of my NaNo writing buddies so that was good. It just meant that I had to make up by writing more words on the following days.

    Here are some facts about my week:

    • Total number of words written so far:                       10,994
    • Average number of words written per day:                1,832
    • Number of days left:                                                        25
    • If I keep up the same average daily average, I should complete my 50,000 words on November 28th - 2 days early!
    So, have I kept to my pledges that I posted last week? Let me remind you what they were:

    1. FB comments, Tweets and blog posts must be kept to an absolute minimum (...if at all!)
    2. I must just write and not edit.
    3. If I get stuck on one particular part of the story, I must move on and write another part.
    4. I must try to write every day.
    YES to 2. and 4. 
    • Not editing has been hard. I'm itching to get back in there and improve the writing but apart from correcting the odd word her and there, I haven't edited.
    • Writing every day has been good as I have immersed myself in the story and am getting to know my characters better.
    N/A to 3. as yet
    • At the moment, the story is flowing quite well but I know this will change as I get further into the novel. I'm concentrating on the 1965 story to start with. Having a rough plan was definitely as good idea.
    And then there's 1. - PARTLY
    • I don't think I have been on Facebook, Twitter or reading Blogs as much as usual but I have been on, especially when I have finished writing for the day and updated my NaNo word count.
    Thank you to everyone who has sent me encouraging comments to keep going. Writers are just the most supportive group, aren't they?

    Thank you for reading my blog. Please leave a comment especially if you are or have been a NaNoWriMo participant. How have you got on this week? What have been the stumbling blocks for you? What has helped you stay on track?