Wednesday, 25 November 2015

NaNoWriMo Update...

NaNoWriMo Update.....

NaNoWriMo ends in four days. I am not going to complete this year sadly. It has been very eye opening to me about my writing this year. I really did not enjoy writing this book at all... This year I thought I would do something different and write a contemporary mystery. The idea is still good. But I am not good at writing contemporary. And I learned that you need a lot longer than two weeks to plan a very complex mystery novel. I wrote about 26K of the novel. And that is about it. I am not going to ditch the idea. But I will be putting it to rest for a while. 

I feel absolutely horrible about myself for not being able to complete this year. But you can not force a story that is not going anywhere. 

So this is what I learned about myself as a writer. And things I could do differently. 

  • I am a planner. I was very busy finishing up my course and didn't have time to plan out this novel. I was already mentally drained from a whole year none stop of being creative. So I had nothing left in me. I need to have a good month in front of me for planning, I know my story will change over the writing stage. But I have to have something to stand on in order to get anywhere. 
  • I need to read a lot before I begin writing. This not only motivates me to write. But you really get a grip at character narration and how stories are constructed. I had not read anything for a while before this month. Not enough anyway. 
  • I am not very good at writing contemporary. It's not my strongest area writing simply about normal things. I can still do it. But it is not exactly what I personally enjoy writing. 

  • I enjoy a good world building. I love writing about worlds and societies I have created. It gives me a sense of control. Something I did not have in this novel. And I think that was my downfall. I love being in control, and in my own worlds there are boundaries I can break through. The only limit is my imagination. 
  • I like conflict. I know I'm a girl. But I love the aspect of war, and political power, etc. I love a good drama, a good mystery. Some times I just need to destroy something (like a building...I don't know.) I need there to be some action (thanks Dad for raising me on epic sci fi, action packed movies!) For my novel this year, there just was nothing happening. It was driving me insane. 
  • But I still like to have the balance of dramatic events and my characters normal life. 

Yeah. So the point of this post was to say that I am not going to win NaNo this year. And I am okay with that. And to everyone who is in the same boat as me. This does not make you a bad writer. You are not a failure. And just better luck next year. Things I am going to do better next year. Is plan before hand, write more during the year, read more books, and write in the genre I am comfortable, and confident in writing. (Still go outside your comfort zone... try new things. But don't hurt yourself.)

John Bender made every girl wish their life was an 80s movie. | 18 Reasons You Had A Crush On John Bender From The BreakfastClub
Stay awesome! 


Sunday, 15 November 2015

Tips For Catching Up in NaNoWriMo

Yesterday we hit the half way point in NaNoWriMo. For everyone who is up to date with their word count, that means you have already reached 25K! Congratulations! But for others, I know that is sadly not the case for countless reasons. I just happen to be one of those people this year. So I thought I would make a second guide to NaNoWriMo for those who are running behind and need some help. Have a look at my first NaNo Survival Guide.

Point One: Don't be afraid to use cliches. 

When you are having writers block, and you are over 10K behind, there does come a point where anything is better than nothing. Disclaimer: Remember that this is your first draft, you're not set in stone when this draft is done. And me being a hard core perfectionist, knows the struggle to try everything to avoid using cliches. 

But in this case; you might want to reconsider. If you know some sort of cliche scene, subplot, or character will help with enhance your word count and keep your story flowing, then go straight ahead and use it. It will be painful for the time being, but don't worry *whispers* first draft.
(you might even be able to put your very own twist on it.)

Point Two: Reap the Inspiration From Anywhere. 

Similar to point one. I have been doing this over the course of NaNoWriMo this year. Get inspiration from anything and everything. Watch movie trailers, Watch Music Videos, Read books in your genre, go on Tumblr, go on Pinterest, remember stories people have told you.

Point Three: See a Scene, Write a Scene. 

Anything that comes to mind; write the scene down. And if you are lucky, expand it. I have my novel's word count, and I have a document for story parts word count. I have to add them together ever time I had more words.

Point Four: Back Story.

When you don't know what to write going forward. Then why not write some back story to fill in the space. This is amazing for word count, and helps flesh out characters more.

Point Five: Participate in Word Wars, and Writing Sprints.

These are very good if you are into competition, and getting yourself writing for a good amount of time without stopping. (I have been doing this a lot this year. I need the help.)

Point Six: It's Alright to Take a Step Back.

Don't push it. Take a break, and try and not hate your story to much. Cause that never helped anyone.

So this post was random. But I'll live with it. I just wanted to share what has been working for me. I am very, very, very behind this year. I almost gave up on writing this story. But stuck with it... was a hard decision...


Friday, 13 November 2015

Beautiful Books: NaNoWriMo Progress

I am fairly behind in NaNoWriMo this year. I have been struggling a bit with my word count and story in general. I am catching up though. I am going to do part two of the Beautiful Books Link  Up series hosted by Cait and Sky.

Is the book turning out how you thought it would be, or is it defying your expectations?

It has changed a lot. But I am happy with it for the time being... I know that there is going to be a lot of stuff I will need to fix. over the course of writing, I have had to go back and kill a couple of characters, then merge two characters. (all the dirty work if you know what I'm saying.) But I have loved watching my characters grow closer cause of the changes being made.

I have also began writing it on TABLO, which is an online word processor where you can publish your books. I am not publishing mine, I'm just keeping it on private. But like how it I can preview my pages in a clean and easy way to read. And you can separate your story into chapters, so it is easier to find where you are writing from, and you can go back. Also it keeps track of your word count, and how far you have to go to reach your goal. 

What’s your first sentence (or paragraph)?

So I thought I would be cool and wrote a Prologue. So here is the prologue. 

All the greats fell in the end, suffering more of the most tragic deaths than the ones of more average people. But I guess that is the cost one must pay for being special.  And in the end, we are all just humans, drunk on the idea that love, only love, could heal our brokenness. But we are wrong, cause nothing but death can really tear us from the cruel reality of what we call life.  

A Lot of things happened last summer. It’s a summer I both don’t want to, and can’t remember. That summer I woke up in a hospital, my mother gone. And I couldn’t remember anything. Even that part I have tried to forget.

Are you a plotter or a pantser? Have you ever tried both methods and how did it turn out?

Ummm yeah. I am kind of both to an extent. And I went into this year with out a proper outline... *grimaces* 

This happened; One. Cause I didn't have any time. Two. Cause I thought I could wing it... Guys. I made a big mistake. Lucky for me, just the other day I came up with the thread that tied my novel together. And last night I made a proper timeline to follow. And I am happy with it... 

What do you reward yourself with after meeting a goal?

28 Problems All Coffee Addicts Will Understand

Coffee obviously... (I've started drinking it black) Ohhh and red liquorice!!! 

What do you look for in a name? Do you have themes and where do you find your names?

I like to find my names in things relevant to my story. Metophors, quotes, words that have a meaning to the over all plot and theme...

What is your favourite to write: beginning, middle, or end — and why?

The end or close to the end. I hate writing the start. Getting into the middle and the climax is always so much fun. Cause I know what I am writing about. And stuff really starts to happen! 

Who’s your current favourite character in your novel?

I like the way Kenna thinks. So Kenna. But I also love Miller (Kenna's cousin) he is so much fun, and such a good friends to Kenna. He doesn't judge her for who she is. He looks through the bad stuff. He is also a very different character to what I have written before. 

What kind of things have you researched for this project, and how do you go about researching? (What’s the weirdest thing you’ve researched?!)

I have researched sooo much for this project. And I feel I need to voice some of my findings...
  • I have looked into to just about every romance and summery movie and book there is. (I have covered nothing. Before I started writing it all seemed to be swarming about me, and when I go to look it up I have nothing!? But still. I have been trying to pick apart other stories for the slightest of inspiration. 
  • I researched/ing PTSD, Post Traumatic Stress Disorder and Amnesia.. (If you read my prologue you will have gotten why) 
  • I researched how to write a mystery. And elements of a mystery. All that stuff. 
  • I researched how to write a bitchy character. (know... it's weird... but I'm serious) I researched and read about the characteristics of a mean girl/bitch. And taken into consideration a lot of the information. Trust me, it is an interesting thing to have knowledge on. 
  • I looked into small coast towns. And beach types. And things you can do over a summer vacation. (If you have any ideas for cool summer activities. That would be cool :)) 

Do you write better alone or with others? Do you share your work or prefer to keep it to yourself?

I do like being on my own. I could write so much faster and more efficient if there was no one around. Cause it is in those moments where I come up with my best ideas. And my characters speak to me. (Also I get very distracted.)

I prefer to keep it to myself. Though I am always very exited about other people reading my work. It took me almost a whole year till I gave my first draft to some people to read. My writing always ends up very personal. And I would feel better knowing that no one had to read it.

What are your writing habits? Is there a specific snack you eat? Do you listen to music? What time of day do you write best? Feel free to show us a picture of your writing space!

  • I don't know whether I have a habit. I mostly just open up google docs, Pinterest, and sit on my bed. 
  • I drink coffee. I don't really eat when I'm in a very busy mode. So I will think about it, then be like Na, I'll have something later. But the thing is I get very distracted by food. So No. No snacks. 
  • I listen to a lot of music when I write. It depends on the scene. Some times I need music, and other times I have to have nothing playing. 
  • I write best at night, but that is only because it is more quiet. 
  • I don't have a picture... Sorry

I'm working on another NaNoWriMo related post. I just want to share more about my characters, the setting and the family. Look forward to it! I am still 10,000 words behind. So I am trying my best to catch up.