This is part of my NaNoWriMo Series.
Hello, week three of NaNoWriMo! By now a lot of writers are over the halfway point of 25,000 words and have reached the point that I keep hearing is known as the saggy middle. As of 10 am this morning I have a word count of 17,935 which by no means suggest that I can’t finish this novel but November 30th. This week has been more of a race against time. Time to sit at the laptop, time to think and re-plan my chapters, time to think about moving the story along from point to point without losing the stream of things.
All of this while trying to finish the cottage, order fixtures and fittings and oh yeah, decorate every room. EVERY ROOM. I have learned that I do not like to decorate under pressure and if you have a picture of me, half asleep scrolling through Pinterest at 7 am with a coffee in hand, half dressed while sending images to my partner with the caption “just do this” you would be pretty bang on.
I managed to keep writing through the house chaos, yes we ARE still in one room but that will change as of this evening. I’m typing this post from our new office which is currently a shell but it has a desk (ok a gable end of a kitchen held up by two vintage bedside cabinets but it works) and painted walls so that’s something. At least nothing can distract from writing in here apart from a neighbour’s enthusiastic whistling floating through my open window and the birds daily antics. It has taught me to write as soon as I open my laptop and that outlining the night before what I plan to write in the morning is the fastest way to increase my word count and get my chapters written. This is mostly due to using a bullet journal so I definitely see me keeping a bujo just for creative writing projects.
Sprints and 4 the Words
The other amazing way that I have managed to write almost eighteen thousand words in only eight days of actual writing is down to word sprints on Twitter and the website 4 the Words. When I reached a difficult point in my novel I would log into 4 the words and write while battling monsters. The site was fun and somehow managed to keep me laughing even though what I’m writing about was difficult and brought tears to my eyes. It is a fantastic way to increase your word count and keep you grounded and laughing so I’m a definite fan and see myself using this long after NaNo is finished.
Is it Working?
In short yes, NaNoWriMo is working for me and it is forcing me to hold myself accountable to friends and other writers online. It’s taken a profession that is solitary and made it fun. I doubt very much if I would ever have written what I have if it wasn’t for the support of NaNo and my region. I have met some wonderful people (big shout out to Grace our ML and Ciara) who are supportive and full of advice and experience. Yes, there are days when I just can’t write due to life at the moment but here I am entering the third week with 13 chapters saved in various locations.
NaNo has taught me so many things from outlining, character development but mostly how to tackle a piece of work this big. I’m still not sure if this novel will be one that I want to share with the world or keep just for me but by going through the process, it has allowed me to realise that a novel really isn’t as daunting as I once thought. I have been sketching plans and ideas in my bullet journal for future plans too, usually at 3 am while being kicked in the side by a two-year-old. It made me realise how much I enjoy writing and the subtlety of language. I never considered myself a writer until last week when I sat back and looked at everything that I do and have achieved in the last year. I do at last consider myself a writer. Thank you NaNo for re-kindling my love of writing.
Best of luck to all my fellow WriMo’s out there. I’m wishing you all a wonderful November.
I hope you enjoy this November series based on ‘M’.
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