1. A.S.Ford

    A.S.Ford Active Member

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    NaNoWriMo (November) 2018

    Discussion in 'NaNoWriMo' started by A.S.Ford, Sep 27, 2018.

    Hey all, usually NaNoWriMo doesn't work as well for me as the Camp NaNoWriMo events do, however, I wanted to give it another go this year since my (second) current work-in-progress needs around 50,000 more words (the word count goal for the NaNo event) or so before it can be called finished.

    The particular novel I will be working on, titled Once More, is a fantasy adventure novel that focuses on an older protagonist (around 62 years of age) who is a professor of the history and mythology of the world the novel is set in. The narrative follows this professor and one of his students as they try to track down the Hidden Kingdom that is rumoured to contain great power. It is a mystery that has alluded the professor throughout his youth and brought on adventures in his past that have ended in great tragedy. I wanted, with this novel, to focus more on the internal struggles the professor-protagonist will face throughout his journey (as well as those he has faced in his life so far) but there will be a lot of physical conflicts and dangers that he and his student will also have to overcome as well.

    Unfortunately, Once More has sat untouched in my drawer for 3 or 4 years so, this year, my NaNo prep will be all about reconnecting with the narrative and perhaps giving in to a little bit of cheeky editing in order to get the previously written first ten chapters in line with my current writing voice (since it was a little different now than it was 3 or 4 years ago) in time for November when I hope to start writing the new material.

    Who else is joining in the NaNoWriMo event this November? What novel, and prep for it, will you be doing this year?
     
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  2. Linz

    Linz Active Member

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    Meeee! I only resumed writing in April, after an 8 year hiatus and didn't know about NaNo before then, so this''ll be my first year. I'm extending a flash fiction piece which I originally wrote for a contest on this site, actually - The Trans-Atlantic Monorail, which will be a thriller, I imagine. I'm using NaNo prep to research the structural elements that I'm going to need to know (like how on Earth a monorail actually could span the Atlantic :D :rofl: :read2: ) and fine-tune the plot points.
     
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  3. Nariac

    Nariac Active Member

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    I write every month, so I'll certainly be writing in November! I'll be working on my novel, Dominion of Faith, as always. Sadly I can't write to deadlines until I get access to the medication I need, so all I can do is push out as many words as I can during the brief windows of focus my brain allows me. :( I'll probably be using NaNo to finish reworking a particularly annoying story arc which was never quite right, and then plough on with polishing the story as a whole. Up to chapter 24 now ... 120,000 words in.
     
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  4. Nariac

    Nariac Active Member

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    Not to be the bearer of bad news here, but I actually had to scrap the idea of having a trans-Atlantic bridge because it's impossible. Well, in the current age at least. The average depth of the Atlantic is 3,600m, and when you think of how many bridge supports you'd need to sink into that body of water, well ...

    I considered mounting the bridge on ship-sized floating supports which were simply anchored to the sea floor, but that would put stress on the bridge since it would be drifting back and forth, and if there was a storm ...

    I just abandoned the idea in the end.

    Why not try having a trans-Siberian monorail adventure instead? :)
     
  5. Linz

    Linz Active Member

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    You're not bearing any bad news at all because nothing in this post is anything I haven't already read. :)

    But. . . I'm not giving up.

    And I never said the monorail makes it. :bigwink::bigtongue:
     
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  6. Nariac

    Nariac Active Member

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    Hmm. I've been thinking about this idea for a bit longer. How about putting the monorail in a big tube that runs along the sea floor? Like a tunnel, but not buried. Most of the story ideas and arc and twists I can think of that might happen on a long bridge could happen in a long tube! Also it would be safer. There's not much movement on the seafloor, like storm surges or currents. It's kinda peaceful. It's also dark, surrounded by water with crushing pressure, and giant squid exist. All sorts of exciting things can go wrong!

    Anyway, let us know how you get along with it, either way. :)
     
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  7. A.S.Ford

    A.S.Ford Active Member

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    Post your NaNo username and I'll add you as a writing buddy on the site :) mine is A.S.Ford (same as on here) if you'd like to add me instead!
     
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  8. Linz

    Linz Active Member

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    I'm LMunro. I'm not sure how to add people yet. :confuzled:

    Edit: Done it!
     
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  9. Nariac

    Nariac Active Member

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    Uhhhh ... I'd have to, like, register on yet another site? I'm too old and tired for these internet shenanigans. :p

    I'll probably just muddle along by myself.
     
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  10. A.S.Ford

    A.S.Ford Active Member

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    You won't be quite by yourself though as you'll have this thread/forum/site :)
     
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  11. Nariac

    Nariac Active Member

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    That's very true. :love:
     
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  12. Damien Loveshaft

    Damien Loveshaft Active Member

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    Hi! This'll be my second year, I'm continuing last year's novel, The Eldritch Society for Gentlemen, because well, somehow it's only 25,000 words now. I lost half my novel to the editing process(c'est la vie). So my prep is making a plan of attack to fill out the tattered remains of my story. At least it has much better artistic direction now. I realized it was a bit of a mess before.
     
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  13. Awz

    Awz Member

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    This will be my second year. Last year I worked on a project I've touched on off and on for about 25 years and never got more than 5-6 pages. I liked where it went but I'm stuck at the moment. The plan this year is to start something completely new, whether or not this happens is still up in the air, I've got a couple of stalled pieces I'd like to rework.

    Carmickael on nanowrimo if you want to add me.
     
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  14. Edward M. Grant

    Edward M. Grant Contributor Contributor

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    Probably the sequel to my military-SF novel from a couple of years ago.
     
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  15. 8Bit Bob

    8Bit Bob Dang ol' boo, man. Contributor

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    I don't think I'm going to do anything on the site or anything, but I've been formulating an idea for a novella length project over the last week or so, and I'm thinking I might set some goals for myself for it in November. I'll probably keep my goals and such updated in my progress journal ;)
     
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  16. A.S.Ford

    A.S.Ford Active Member

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    How is everyone's prep going? I've managed to edit 4 out of the 10.5 chapters I need to do in preparation for writing the rest of my novel for NaNo ... I'm happy to have made that much progress but I am concerned I won't manage to finish editing the other 6.5 chapters before 1st November :/
     
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  17. Quixote's Biographer

    Quixote's Biographer Active Member

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    Right now it feels like I'm stuck. It's like everything - the research I've done, the characters, the plot, the story ideas - is just a huge mess in my head and scattered across Scrivener, spreadsheets and a couple of notebooks. I've tried to get it into an outline, but I can't find the right outline or it's all just too much of a mess right now to fit neatly into one.

    10 days of prepping to go and getting stuck is so frustrating...
     
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  18. Linz

    Linz Active Member

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    I know what I want to happen in the middle of the story, but I've no idea how to get there. o_O
     
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  19. Carriage Return

    Carriage Return Member

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    Good luck you guys! I can't imagine putting down 50K+ in a month, holiday month or otherwise. I found it challenging to meet 10 pages a week consistently.
     
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  20. A.S.Ford

    A.S.Ford Active Member

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    @Linz and @Quixote's Biographer feel free to pick our brains if you need or would like any help/thoughts! :)

    @Quixote's Biographer ... depending on how quickly you work at/on things this might be a bit too close to Nano for you to do but, when I'm in the situation you described, I find the best thing to do to get the ball moving/ideas flowing is to organise all those notes (etc.) that you just said you have into one place, whether that's transfering them all onto Scrivener and then organising them on there or writing it all into a collection of notebooks (if one isn't enough) or any other medium you choose. The reason this can help is because it forces you to read your notes with a more neutral approach since you are just organising and transferring them. This process allows your brain to work subconsciously on any inconsistencies/plot points and how they connect/really awesome ideas that you might have forgotten or that your brain can now work out how to integrate into your story's narrative (etc.) ... I've even found from time to time that I've had to stop in the middle of this process in order to write because my brain has become overcome with the desire to write after becoming subconsciously inspired while I've been organising my notes. In fact, this happened to me while I was going through my notes for my current project. So many things came together or I realised need to be cut or changed and I really feel like my story will be a much better one which makes me very happy and encourages me to keep working on it :) I hope you will consider trying this technique - either now/before Nano or even afterwards if you don't have the time before - because at most I think it might help inspire you and at the very least it would mean you'd have all your notes in one place which can be quite helpful when writing any project :)

    @Linz ... who knows, this technique might work for your conundrum too, haha. If not though I think my advice would be to try and work backworks. I've experienced the same issue you just described quite a few times as well (usually my problem is I know how I want it to start and end but can never figure out the middle) and I've found the working backwards can really help open your creativity/mind back up to a problem that you might have spent a long time trying to solve by now. Start by asking: how could/would they get to this event that I want to happen (the one you mentioned that you don't know how to get to)? What is the immediate step they would they have to take to get there? And then keep asking that question at each stage until you get to where you are already at in the story.

    For example: Event you want to get to = find and obtain the magic crystal

    What's the most immediate step before getting the crystal - defeat what guards it

    Immediate step before that - finding the location of where the crystal and it's guardian reside

    Immediate step before that - there is a wizard rumoured to know how to stop the guardian and where your characters might find the location. Your characters seek out the wizard and talk to him

    And so on and so forth.

    I hope this helps!
     
    Last edited: Oct 22, 2018 at 8:19 AM
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  21. Quixote's Biographer

    Quixote's Biographer Active Member

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    That's great advice and I will certainly try that. However, I may have an issue organizing it properly. I think that's why everything's scattered at the moment. I haven't found a good way to organise it. Any tips on that area from you or anyone else who wants to chime in? I have research on several topics, lots on each character plus ideas for the story.

    One problem I have creating the storyline is that it's a story that is very focused on the characters and their development so to create the chapters and scenes I always have to go back and read the character sheets (I'm unable to hold too many details in my head at any one time) and some of the research to make sure it makes sense. Maybe I should just try to write a short summary of each character's storyline without any restrictions and then make adjustments later... I might be doing things a bit too complicated for myself.
     
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  22. A.S.Ford

    A.S.Ford Active Member

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    I'm glad to hear my advice was helpful! I have the same complication with my own story so I know what you are experiencing :) I think a short summary of each character's storyline would be beneficial, especially if you can keep editing it to suit the growth and development of your story. I've also used timelines (for background information that occured before the start of my novel as well as for the novel plot itself) which only displays events that are important to me about the characters' journeys so that I can keep track of where the characters are in the story and what is going to happen next. As well as my Google Drive folder (for my novel) I also keep a copy of everything in a display folder (a cheap A4 ringbinder that I can insert plastic wallets filled with notes and chapters into) so that I can have everything either up on the screen while I write in my notebook (which I do from time to time) or so I can have everything spread out and visible to me on my desk or floor or just there in the folder where I can easily to get to it if I need to check anything (whether I am writing on my pc/laptop or in my notebook). That way I don't have to distract myself or get frustrated trying to find what I need as it is right there in front of me. That might help you as well or it is at least worth a try :) ... something else I just considered - if you don't want to have all those bits of paper spread out in from of you and don't want to clog your pc screen up then another option would be to make a cheat sheet or flashcards so that you have briefly described but full information on each character in a small space of paper to look at if you need a hint or a cue.

    I'm not really sure how to help with the actual organising as everyone has their own way of doing it but I believe Scrivener provides help for that in the sense that it has different groupings for characters, locations, etc. other than that though I would recommend just making your own grouping of things so that you have all your character sheets in one place, all your plot ideas in one place - for these as well I would suggest trying to look at them objectively; think of the plot as actually the plot to someone else's story and that they have asked you to look it over and to see what you think: do you like the structure? why? do you think there could be improvements? what are they? should one event happen much earlier or much later? what don't you like about it? why? are the events and reactions to them true to the characters and how they would react? etc. this mental/emotional separation and then analysis of your own story can be hard to do but I managed to do it with my current project and, as I mentioned before, I really feel like I improved the story so if you can manage to achieve that as well then I think it might help - I would also suggest putting all your backstory events and ideas in a separate folder/document to themselves and, finally, one other thing I did was put all the information I wrote about my story's world (its a fantasy setting but this step can apply to any genre) into another document which now mostly consists of just chunks of writing I copied and pasted from my current chapters, haha, but you could always just jot it down as a sentence or even a couple of words each time. This way you have all the information about the story's world and the locations your characters will visit which will help for when it comes to writing scenes and chapters in those locations. With all of these documents though I would suggest you make sure they are in a medium that allows you to constantly update them, an obvious observation I know, haha.

    Hope this helps too!
     
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