I need to give my room a major tidy, it’s something I’ve been meaning to do for some time now but with work and writing I’ve not really had the time or the energy to do it, but with NaNoWriMo starting in just a couple of days I knew I needed to get my desk tidied up at least. So tonight I’ve spent half an hour just clearing the clutter and dusting everything off and I’m a lot happier with it all now.
This is just one small part of getting ready for NaNo. I’ve already got a fair bit of my story outlined, which is a first for me. I’ve got everything set up on my profile over at nanowrimo.org and I’m psychologically ready as well. I think that is a big part of it. I’m not worried about not hitting the 50k because I know that no matter what I’ll have at least a damn good start on another novel by the end of November. This year though I am aiming at hitting the 50k and I’m determined to hit the target. I think with the support of my local NaNo group, I’m in an even better position then I have been before. I’ve also had the last eight months of experience which seems to have put a lot of knowledge into my head about how to get words written and have them making sense.
I also smashed my personal best daily word count in that time too. It was about 4000 words but while sprinting on my local NaNo Facebook page I managed to smash out 7500 words in one day. If I could have a couple of days at half of that during NaNo I’ll be very happy.
Each of the three years I’ve done NaNo I’ve gotten halfway through the month and then run out of steam. Normally it’s after I’ve been away for a weekend (each year I’ve gone away with my two previous girlfriends). Last year I did manage to get some momentum going again but my story came to a natural end at about 42k, which was really annoying. This year I’ve not got any plans to go away, I’ve also booked a week off from work so I can focus on writing and getting a jump on the word count. That week is from the tenth of the month which has been about the time I loose some momentum in previous years. So I’m really hoping that being about to focus that week will help. I’m planning on getting to a few write-ins that week as well.
All I really need to do now is get some snacks to keep me going through the month, not sure what I’ll get just yet but I’ll have a look around on Saturday afternoon after I finish work.
I’ve spent most of today reading through Earth, After Liberation and making the notes I need to fill in the gaps which have been left after the huge amount of deleting I did last month and as I was doing this I realised that it’s the same thing I was doing when I was getting my vampire collection into shape. I’ve also started work on a story outline for NaNo this year. Using the same method as I did when I was working on Project Apollo this last week. It’s also something I’m planning on for The Residents too.
When doing an Outline I use Pages to bullet point all the important parts of the story I want to include in the story. With project Apollo this wasn’t in order, but with my NaNo book it has been in order today, although I haven’t got far in it yet. Over the next few days I think I’ll be jumping about a little with what order I’m putting plot points down on as I know a few of the scenes I want to include later on in the story. I’ve found this can help as it pushes me to find what to put into the gaps to fill the story in, this goes back to what I was saying earlier in the post.
This is what I should have been doing two years ago, learning things like this that are obvious but it’s only now that I’m realising that to write what I want to write means I’ve got to be more organised as well as being focused and disciplined.
For now though thats me done for the day. I’m going to finish watching Speed Racer and then watch another movie :)
Aside from Tuesday night when I went to the cinema I’ve done some writing work each night this week. Most of it was working out a plot outline for the first part of Project Apollo. I also tidied through the last of my hand written notes for The Residents, I also scanned through the emails Chrystalyn and I have swopped over the last year, 18 months and worked them into the one file. With The Residents I just need to work through and remove any repetition of the notes I copied and pasted into the overall file and add any other thoughts I have and so on before sending it off to Chrystalyn so she can add her notes and correct anything I’ve gotten wrong.
Back to Project Apollo, Owen has the outline for the first part of the novel and I’m looking forward to seeing what his thoughts are, although his first look gave him the impression that it’s all going in the right direction. On the outline alone Project Apollo is going to be a beast of a novel and I’m looking forward to getting stuck into it next year.
But back to today! I am going to spend a little more time on Earth, After Liberation and possibly a little more time on The Residents, depending on how I do with Earth, After Liberation. I’m not going to get Earth, After Liberation done by the start of NaNo, but that’s my fault as I did so-all during September, But I’ve been through the story recently so when I come to write its sequel in November its fresh in my mind.
Whatever you’re doing today, I hope you have a fun day :)
This last week, when I should have been planning for NaNoWriMo, I’ve been working on the outline for Project Apollo. Which is being re-written. It’s going to be easier to start again then it is to try and shoe-horn in all the bits we want to add. We have set a timeframe to get it done but that’s staying between Owen and I for the moment. I’ve so far got the first part of the book outlined and it’s with Owen now to make sure that I haven’t missed anything important. For the planning and writing process we’re planning on breaking it down into three parts so we can focus on one part at a time. In my head this seems like a logical course of action and hopefully it’ll work out well. Where we are now will probably be as far as we get till December now as NaNo does start in like eight days now, so I’ve got to get planning for it. Owen won’t get the chance to get through what I’ve sent him before NaNo starts anyway due to his work hours.
I desperately need to spend at least one more evening on The Resident’s before NaNo as well. I’ve got hand-written notes that need to be put into digital and I’d like to get all the data I’ve got cleaned up and sent over to Chrystalyn before NaNo starts so she can add her notes, and make sure I haven’t made any mistakes there.
Also, I’ve got a lot of work to do on Earth, After Liberation as I’ve gutted a lot of the middle out and need to write a fair bit to connect it all together.
So I’ve got a busy eight days coming up :D
Irene Aprile was very kind to invite me over to her blog to carry out an interview with one of my characters and here it is. Please pop over to Irene’s site and say hi :)
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I’ve been really brutal with Earth, After Liberation today and cut out about 3000 words, which takes it up to about 5000 all-in-all thats been cut. I’ve still got a lot to do on it, from connecting pieces up which are now a little more disjointed then they were and re-mapping all of the chapters so it actually makes sense.
Once I’d finished carving that up I read through a short story I wrote in March/April time and made some alterations before printing it off and red-penning it. It’s now with my grammar checker and once she’s done with it I’m correct any mistakes and get it off to a Beta reader or two :)
Now, I’m going to chill out and play some Xbox :)
There are more then a few writers who adore doing NaNoWriMo which means there are writers who think its the dumbest idea on the planet. But there are also those writers who are in the middle ground who don’t do it and don’t hate it. For me I love it, but something that is always in the back of my head is that NaNoWriMo should be every month. That’s the sort of work rate that I need to be having to get all these stories in my head out into the world (okay maybe not 50k each month but I should still be working on it at the same pace throughout the year).
I’ve heard many writers talking about what they try to write in a day and the golden number for many seems to be about the 2000 word mark, which is only 300 or so words above the minimum word count to hit the 50k to ‘Win’ NaNo. Now, I know theres a lot more to writing then just hitting a word count a day. I’m reluctant to say that I will be hitting 2k words a day on a first draft, for me I think it’s more realistic to be aiming at the 1k mark for that first draft.
I’m kind of hoping that NaNo will get me in the habit of sitting down of an evening again and getting the words down on the screen again, but also so I’m in the habit of sitting at my desk and working. I’ve got to finish editing Earth, After Liberation by January and I’ve come to the conclusion that the first half of the middle of the novel will need re-writing, but if I haven’t wrapped up this years NaNo story then I’ll get that done first and then get the second draft of Earth, After Liberation done. Well thats the plan anyway.
Speaking of editing, I’d better go and do some :)
I was going to give a quick summery of the start of this story but if I did that then it would be a spoiler for the previous book. This is book five of Scott Sigler’s Galactic Football League series and it follows the life of Quentin Barnes as he tries to lead the Ionaith Krakens to a Galactic Bowl title, and deal with his family, team mates, his coach, team owner, Gods and the various people who want to kill him.
It’s been two years since book four came out and I’ve got the limited edition hardback and I’ve been listening to the podcast as Sigler is, like pretty much all of his work, is giving it away for free but after this weeks episode I realised I couldn’t wait each week for the story to continue. So I used my Audible credit this month to download the audiobook (I would’ve started reading it but I’m reading The Waste Lands by Stephen King). In two days I blitzed through this audiobook, getting through till about 10pm on Wednesday night as there was no way I could wait till the next day at work to finish it off.
I’ve been consuming Sigler’s work since about 2007/2008 and most of his work takes place in the one universe and theres a part in this book early on that almost knocked me off my feet, you’ll know it if you know Sigler’s work. That is something that I admire, writers being able to tie this stories together in this way, and it’s something that I’d love to be able to do myself one day.
This book had me laughing, it had me crying, it had me on the edge of my seat and it had me cheering on the Krakens.
The ending left a lot up in the air, but it didn’t leave me feeling short changed, not by a long way. Scott Sigler has said this is a seven book series and those last two books are going to be epic!
(over the next few months I’m going to be getting the previous four novels in the Galactic Football League series on audio because they are stories which get richer with each listen and from a writing point of view they are a great way to look at world building and character development and building a long term story.)
I’d set aside tonight to work on putting together all my electronic and handwritten notes that I have on The Residents, and I’ve got to say how much easier it is putting all of the data together. Chrystalyn and I have spent many hours brainstorming (a quick ten minute brainstorming on Skype often turns into at least an hour conversation) and we’ve got a lot of the world building and character work done. The story is pretty well thought out as well and I think the next big part of that is working out a timeline for the story. That’s not something I’ve done so I need to look into it a little and see what tips I can pick up.
I still need to get the handwritten notes added to the file and work my way through the files to clear out any repetition that there is bound to be in all the copy and pasting I’ve done tonight. A lot of the notes I’ve got are a little cluttered so there is some repetition that I need to work through. But I’ll do that once I’ve been through and added all my hand written notes, and then it’s off to Chrystalyn so she can add anything I’ve missed :)
Over the last week i’ve managed to make some decent progress on Earth, After Liberation and at times I even think I might be able to get this draft done before NaNoWriMo starts but we’ll see what the next few weeks bring.
Tonight I have spent a little time getting prepped for NaNo over at the site and reading through a few notes I’ve already got for my story this year. What I’m planning to do is write the sequel to Earth, After Liberation (which I wrote during NaNo2013) and then next year I’ll write the third part of the trilogy during NaNo2015. I know the tone I’d like to set for this years novel and I know how it’ll start and what the final scene is going to be. I know the rough course of the story between these two points but until I start writing I can’t say how it’s going to go.
Today didn’t go quite as planned though, I was hoping to get a good early start today but I was out celebrating a dear friends birthday last night and didn’t get home till close to 2am, and then laid in till almost 11am. I didn’t get started till gone 12 but still managed to get a fair bit done.
Now I’m off to play some Deadpool on me Xbox.