NaNoWriMo 2018 Build Up

Building up to this years NaNoWriMo has felt a little different to other years. Partly because I want to win again this year, last year got a little derailed by real world stuff. It’s also because I’ve decided to do NaNo differently this year. I was going to work on a military science fiction story I’ve got in mind. It would have been my third attempt at getting it off the ground but I’ve realised I’m not ready to write it yet. Aside from the fact I’ll need to do some extensive outlining I haven’t decided how I want to tell this story. There’s also the case that I don’t feel like I’ve got the experience and skill set to write it yet. I’d like to get a couple longer, completed stories under my belt before I tackle it.

Then I decided to rewrite my vampire story from a few years ago. This is a collection of ten stories that are all tied together, serialised I guess but they’re all in the first person perspective and for what I want to do with book two I need to change format. Now at one stage I was going to just rewrite it as a novel but then I thought I’d just write all the episodes in the third person point of view. That wasn’t sitting right with me though, some of these stories work really well as told from first person. So I spoke to my Beta readers and decided to do a massive edit, and keep some stories that are told from that first person point of view while I’ll adjust others so they’re told from the third person. I think this will work really well for this collection and give me a lot more freedom for future works in this universe.

With having changed my mind twice now, and not really having anything that I can get to 50k ready to go I’ve decided to work on short stories and novellas. If I try to run with an idea for a longer piece from one of my ideas I know it’s just going to crash and burn and I’ll spend the next five years faffing about with it to try and get it close to how I want it (PE3 is a prime example of this). This way I can be a lot more flexible. If I get stuck with one, I can move onto another one. If a story really isn’t working at all I can do the same. On the other side of that, if something catches fire I can just run with it and see where it takes me. It also works if I come across a submission call that takes my fancy as well (last year I wrote a story for Burdizzo Books second annual 12 Days of Christmas 2017 anthology during NaNo).

I’m hoping this way will help when I hit the mid-NaNo slump, and if life gets in the way it won’t be as difficult to keep putting words out because I won’t be having to think too much about bigger arcs and so forth.

There’s not long to go now, and I’ve got PE3 to be getting done before then. So I’m going to almost have a mini-NaNo before we kick off on the 1sr of November.

I hope all you other NaNoers out there are getting as excited as I am, and your preparation (however you do it) is going well.

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Writing Projects State Of Play

I’ve got a lot of projects that are kind of half done or will need a lot of editing or rewriting, and a few more which are in early stages. Here is a list of what I’ve got going on. This is listed in random order and is more of a demonstration of what I’ve got in the air at the moment. I won’t be putting story titles as many haven’t got them so will place holders, and with collaborations I’m going to leave a name out as it’s early days with that one.

  • PE3: This is the priority at that moment. I’m almost done with the rewriting/editing part and I’m getting near the stage where I’ll be writing fresh material and will be bringing it to an ending. I would like to have this one down by the end of October.
  • TPP: This is a short story that I’ve written, edited and have today (26-9-18) received beta notes back on. So I’ll be aiming to have this one done by the end of the month.
  • WC: I was going to write this one for NaNoWriMo this year, but I’m not ready to. Both in the sense I’ve got to get a lot more planning done but also I don’t think I’m there as a writer yet. I don’t feel I’ve got the chops for it yet.
  • Vampire novel: This one is going to be a big project for early next year. Some of it will be rewritten from a 1st person point of view to being in the 3rd person. I’m also going to change a few details and adjust characters and do a number of changes. This was also going to to be something I was going to do for NaNo, but when I was going to rewrite it. But I’ve decided not to rewrite it and just do this massive edit instead.
  • AEX: This one I’ve written a couple of scenes and done a little research and I’m really loving it, but I’m having to stop myself working on it as I don’t want to get pulled into another story while I’ve got so many others to wrap up, but I think this will be one that may get bumped up.
  • SKC: This one is going to be a very big project for me. It’s ambitious and something I really do not feel I’ve got the writing chops for yet. It will take a lot of research into some very dark places but it’s a story that I think if I plan, research and get my head into properly could be a standout novel for me. I am planning on writing a prequel short story to it as part of NaNoWriMo which will be a much more intimate story in one location most liekly.
  • Collaborations With Owen: These are on hiatus. I think Owen has moved away from writing. This is fair enough, and I fully respect his decision. I might look to do something with these properties in the future (with Owen’s full consent and done so legally, I’m not going to screw a friend over), but as of this moment I think there won’t be any movement on these for the foreseeable future.
  • Collaborations with Chrystalyn: These are also on hiatus. Chrystalyn hasn’t been in a position to write for a while, but hopefully that will change in the near future. We are still shooting ideas at each other and hopefully sooner than later we’ll get moving on them.
  • BBH: This is a collaboration with a new writer I’ve recently met that I’m not going to say much about. We’re in the early stages of brainstorming, although it’s on the back burner at the moment while we both work on over avenues.
  • MyGP: This is a short story that I wrote that I am planning on expanding into a bigger universe. I’ve got an idea of how but It’s not going to be worked on for a while outside of notes and planning.
  • NaNoWriMo 2018: This will essentially be a short story collection, with the odd one stretching into novella length territory. With a few novel ideas in mind but none nearly close to being where I want to work on them. I thought this might be the best course of action. If I get stuck on one then I can move onto another, and if one catches fire I’ll just run with it. I like this idea as it means I can be more flexible with what I’m working on.
  • WW2: This is a story set in the second world war, that I am not remotely ready to write. I need to do a lot of research before I can begin and is another story that I don’t feel like I have the ability to do yet.

Well, that’s it. Those are all the pieces I’m thinking about, if not working on directly. With a couple, namely the collaborations with Chrystalyn and Owen there are multiple pieces that I’ve put under one umbrella because otherwise this list would be three times the length.

In the near future I am going to sit down and figure out a schedule for all of these.

State of Play (24-9-2018)

I’ve been a bit hit and miss with a lot of writing related stuff recently. I’ve been up and down with word counts. I’ve not been able to really get into a rhythm too much, but I have recently written two short stories and trying to get PE3 wrapped up.

I can’t really explain why I’ve been so all over the place. I think part of it is I get a little disheartened when I get stuck, but also I think some of it was a hangover from writing two short stories in just a couple of weeks. I really don’t know but I’m trying to suss it out.

I’ve had a big idea for another story as well, which I have knocked out some words on, but I’ve had to force myself to stop that as I don’t want to get stuck into it without some research and planning.

NaNoWriMo is just around the corner, I know what I’m doing for it this year but that will be a different post. For now I’m focussing on getting PE3 done before then.

I have began putting a list of my ongoing projects that I’m working on and I’m going to prioritise the most important.

13th August 2018

Just a really quick little post before I get off to sleep. I’ve written 540 words today. A few words here, a few there and boom! A decent word count for a busy day.

If you scroll down my feed you’ll see a post I reblogged from The Horror Show With Brian Keene where the guest was Matt Hayward. Hearing his story was really fucking eye opening and inspiring. It really got me thinking and I really need to up my game. I need more determination and focus. I do get these things but I loose them easily so I’m going to focus on keeping them. The way I’m going to start is with a simple and small list of five things I want to do this week. I won’t list them here, simply because it’s late and I’ve not got it to hand, but these five things are very achievable if I keep my head.

So that’s what I’m doing.

19th July 2018

Today I’ve knocked out 696 words on WC2 despite being pretty darn tired after a bad nights sleep. On Tuesday I had my first zero word day of the month. It felt crappy to be honest, but I have been cracking on. The problem I’ve got at the moment is I feel like I’m very fragmented with PE3 and WC2. I’ve jumped forward and did a few scenes that I know would be coming and have lost my flow on both stories. So come this Sunday I think I’m going to trying to get back on track with them both.

On Sunday I’ll hopefully get a short sorry I’ve been working on done as well. I think I would have finished it on Monday but I knew I was getting near an ending to it and decided to sit back and come at it much fresher.

12th July 2018

Only 149 words recorded today, but I deleted a fair few that I’ll be rewriting. So in truth I probably clocked three or four hundred today.

Yesterday a company that ran most of the UKs horror conventions went tits up. This has hurt a lot of people, including those I know and consider friends. I’ll focus on the writers just here but what I’m saying can be said for all traders at these cons. This is a big part of their incomes and more importantly it’s a great chance to meet fans and make more fans. It’s a great chance to meet up with other writers and people in the genre. A lot of people feel at home at these cons, I know I did. A lot of writers and other traders have probably lost their money from booking their tables, along with hotel bookings. They’ve also lost the chance to earn income while at the cons.

It’s really easy for something like this to happen. So if there are writers whose work you enjoy then please spread the word about their work. It doesn’t cost anything to post a review or share a post on social media. A lot of writers will share the links on their social media profiles, hit the likes and the shares. It all helps.

11th July 2018

Today I’ve wrote 802 words on WC2 which is my Camp NaNo project. some good stuff as well, it felt like I hit the note just right with that scene. Most of what I wrote was at work during my lunch break, with a few more at this months Bluewater Write-In.

Not much to say tonight really. I found some good focus today that I’d love to be able to tap a little more often.