Julie's Quest

Hello, and welcome to my blog. My blog is about the trials and tribulations of writing, where we celebrate successes and commiserate our near misses. We tell it like it is here and will do our very best to help you on the road to being published and pick you up after the rejections (they will come!) Whether you are a professional or amateur writer you will find something useful here.

I hope you enjoy reading my posts and will visit again soon.

Happy Writing

Julie Phillips - freelance writer - member of the Association of Freelance Writers - member of the Society of Authors

Saturday, 12 November 2011

NaNo - not just for November ......

As a lot of you know I am once again partaking of the annual madness that is NaNoWrimo. From a bit of slow start due to me starting a new job which meant a reduction in my writing time, I am catching up at a satisfying rate. At the moment, if I carry in with my current word count per day, I will finish the 50,000 goal on 2nd of December! So I am close to the 50,000 word goal by November 30th and with a big push I'm sure I will get there on time.

There's a lot of controversy over writing like you have to for NaNo: no going back to edit until you've finished the 50,000 words, writing fast with no time to plan, plot or polish. It's a numbers game which puts quantity over quality and a lot of writers feel that by writing part of a novel in this way means you have one hell of a mess to sort out after. There are grammatical and spelling mistakes galore, dreadful plot mistakes and problems with continuation, the characters change names half way through and you don't have time to go back to chapter one to check the name of a character who's name you've forgotten by the time you want to give her an airing in chapter four!

But I have to say, no matter how flawed writing a NaNo novel may be, it's so toe curlingly (is that even a word?) addictive! I said to myself, after two years of doing NaNo that this year, I'd spend the time editing one of my previous NaNo novels. Did I? Did I heck.  I decided, on a whim, with no previous experience or yearning to write in this genre, to attempt to write a crime novel. Now, I read lots of crime novels and watch a lot of crime programmes on the TV - more than is probably good and healthy for me if I'm honest, but I'd never considered writing one. That's what NaNo does to you - it opens your eyes to new possibilities. Some one I know has decided to use NaNo as an opportunity to write a 50,000 word pocket novel for either My Weekly or People's Friend I think it was and they have never done that before. I think that's admirable.

So, by the end of November I will have three NaNo novels waiting to be edited and polished. And in the rest or 2011 and into 2012 I will be doing just that. When you consider that pre-NaNo the thought to write a novel had not crossed my mind and here I am with almost three to play with. Funny how life turns out isn't it.

I just wanted to say good luck to all the other NaNos out there and I hope you're having great experience with it. Don't give up and don't worry that what your writing is a load of rubbish because it's supposed to be! I quite like fact that what I'm left with at the end of November is utter chaos - it'll give me something to do over the dark, cold winter months.

Keep going! And if you couldn't face doing the complete NaNo challenge this year then why not have a go at a smaller one of your own - do a short story over a weekend or 10,000 words a fortnight - whatever fits in to your schedule. NaNo is not just for November - use its philosophy to set your own target and enjoy the process of working towards it.

Keep writing

Julie xx


Carole Anne Carr said...

Thanks, Julie, good luck with your novel. I hope you do work on those three novels and send them out. I was going to write my next Indie novel, it's mapped out so fairly easy, but decided to work on my novel for grown-ups, I get so many people coming to look at my books and perk up when I say I'm writing an adult book. So fingers crossed. :0)

Julie P said...

Hi, Carole,

I must apologise as I posted this on your blog instead of mine yesterday! I think I'm going cross eyed! Hope you are feeling better today and good luck with your novel for 'grown ups,' can't wait to read it when it's published.

Julie xx