Today marks one full week of NaNoWriMo.
I’ve written 16,201 words worth of description, dialogue, exposition, technology, and other fun nonsense. I’m about ~5000 words ahead of the game, and don’t feel a slow down coming any time soon.
Some lessons learned so far:
1. Writing an outline was more important than I ever thought. All of those professors pounding the idea into my head for 4+ years were trying to help, after all. If I get lost or lose steam, I just pull up my outline (which I’ve color coded and added icons to) and suddenly my mind knows where to go next! Organization is actually helpful? I may need to revisit this notion later.
2. I love writing female characters. Who knew?
3. This whole writing-a-piece-of-substantive-length thing is 90% discipline. Imagination, art, and skill obviously count for something, but if you don’t force your fingers onto the keys to turn your insane story into words, all the creativity in the world won’t help you.
4. Painkillers (prescribed!) make for interesting metaphors.
5. I’m having a shitload of fun. Not only do I feel accomplished at the end of each day, but I get a stupid, giddy feeling when I talk about the plot and the characters, and how the plot is going to emotionally destroy the characters. Here’s to hoping I actually produce something worth reading.
To the first week of NaNoWriMo, I raise a Magner’s Irish Cider. Cheers!
Maybe I can do this whole writing for a living thing.
Tagged: accomplishment, humor, lessons learned, NaNoWriMo, Word Count, writing
How exciting! I have never tried to write fiction. I don’t think I know how to do it. Maybe I’m just too mired in reality. When I was a kid and then teenager, all my stories were loosely based on my life. Every main character was me – usually just thinner – and sometimes I was a cat, but that’s another story. I don’t know if I have the imagination for fiction. It’s cool to read about you writing a novel, though. Maybe eventually you’ll inspire me to just dive in and try.
I’m kind of the opposite: I find myself having to tone down my nonfiction because my rampant imagination and borderline insanity creep into the writing.
Don’t feel bad though; I too suffer from “the main character is me” syndrome. I think it’s only natural. The story is happening from your perspective, so it only makes sense that you’d write it how you would experience it. That being said, it can’t be a carbon copy of you, because this person has to do novel things, which at times are illegal and unethical and mean. And weird. I find myself actively writing my protag into situations and dialogue that I would NEVER do/say, just as exercise of breaking the habit.
Fiction is certainly it’s own beast. You have to suspend your own disbelief and then allow yourself to write crazy, nonsensical lies. It’s really bizarre and really fun.
I’d love to read your attempt at fiction. I’m sure, based on your ability to capture emotion in your words, you’d write something very, very interesting. Here’s to hoping you try it one year!
Congrats on how far you’ve gotten with NaNoWriMo. I’d love to do that someday, but for now, I’ll have to settle for crawling before running.
It’s been an aspiration of mine for a while, so this is the perfect catalyst. I hope you get to try it, sooner than later!