ON WRITING

“It’s very easy to quit during the first ten years of writing. Nobody cares whether you write or not, and it’s very hard to write when nobody cares one way or the other. You can’t get fired if you don’t write, and most of the time you don’t get rewarded if you do. But don’t quit.” Andre Dubus

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Wednesday, 7 November 2012

Thirty Days and Thirty Nights of Literary Abandon

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Hello there!

Today is the day to post for Alex J Cavanaugh's Insecure Writers Support Group. This group consists of a ton of bloggers who blog about what they're struggling with, what they've learnt, what they'd like to share, or...what...ever.

I was going to miss posting today but decided to post about what I'm doing - NaNoWriMo. Not everyone agrees with the idea of whipping yourself into a writing frenzy for 30 days, and of course there are negatives as well as positives. I choose to paddle my own canoe and think it's a brilliant idea, gives me the excuse to say 'no' to many onerous commitments etc, so I'll be participating for the fifth time.

Like most things I do, I abide by my own rules. Last NaNo I spent most of the month researching the issues surrounding the Afghanistan Wars. I probably wouldn't have a fraction of that research completed except for the motivation of the month. By the end of November I had what was mainly a 50,000 word knowledge dump, but hey, that's important when you choose to write a novel with big issues that you need to get right, even if you'll never use most of it. I know Alex used a NaNo month in 2010 to work on his second Cassa novel and managed to get the words down on the page. 

And I probably never would have started my first novel, a Harlequin-style category romance, except for NaNo four years ago. I can't just concentrate on one thing at a time, so I have been busy finishing all my NaNo novels. Recently I decided to take the plunge and submit my first novel to HarlequinEscape. A few tweaks to go (which I will be doing in conjunction with writing my new novel, Fijian Princess, which I AM VERY EXCITED ABOUT!) This time I have outlined, researched (well, I had to do something writerly during my 6 weeks in Fiji, lol!) and am going to start with the final chapter, work backwards, (I know how it begins and ends, but the middle will be a surprise) and hope it all comes together.

So I won't be posting often during NaNoWriMo unless something comes up that just can't wait for December. I'll be displaying my Word Meter so you can check on my progress. Failing floods, famines or pestilence (whoops, I shouldn't say that. I live in Australia, the land of natural disasters!), I will write 50,000 words of Fijian Princess and finally complete my first NaNo novel, Ruby, because, you know what--it may not seem so, but I am one very determined cookie when it comes to my writing.

Here is a link to a great list of resources to help you write a novel, courtesy of Nathan Bransford. It'll take a month to get through if you follow all the excellent links, but well worth it, especially for a debut novelist.

As Donna Hole (my co-host) and many of our members are also participating in NaNoWriMo, RomanticFridayWriters will be on hiatus as always during November. We kick off December with a Holiday Spirit blogfest. I hope some of you will join us and tell us what the holiday period means to you - traditions, recipes, celebrations...Click on the badge to learn more...the Linky will be going up soon...


I wish all participants well. I'm 'parisden' if you want to buddy up. 

Now if you have time, click the IWSG badge and read some more posts...




28 comments:

  1. Sometimes NaNo is just the motivation we need. Keep writing, Denise!

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  2. Good luck with Nano! It sounds like you're motivated. One of these months, I will give it a try

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  3. Good luck with NaNo. Plenty of people make up their own rules and apply their own interpretations. I don't think it matters as long as it leads to words on the page!

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  4. I'm always doing my own NaNo thing. This year...we'll yesterday, I finished my first draft of my 8th MS...and like my subsequent manuscripts, this is my best one yet, so why on earth would I drop what I'm doing and start writing something I haven't outlined yet. *sucking in a deep breath* Well, maybe the timing will be right next year. :-) Go NaNo-ers! I'm rooting for you!

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  5. Fijian Princess sounds wonderful! I love that you are starting at the end. I really have to try that some time because I always get stuck at endings.

    Have a great and productive NaNo month. I'm too busy this year to take part :(

    Oh, oh!! Thank you for putting Make Believe on your sidebar. Thanks too for putting your name down for the launch. You're awesome!!!

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    1. You're welcome Lynda. I'm delighted to help out.

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  6. Hi Denise - sounds like you're organised and ready for that writerly break - have fun and enjoy .. I loved your Afghan posts - now you've reminded me .. I must go back and have another read ...

    Great you took that time in Fiji to research and dream ..

    Cheers for now and see you in December .. Hilary

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    1. I'm glad you enjoyed the Afghan posts. I really found the research a little daunting...well, a lot daunting! Thanks for popping by. :D

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  7. Hi Denise, glad your Nano is going well.

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  8. The Holiday Spirit Blogfest sounds like a lot of fun! I have it on a new tab I'm developing for upcoming events. Or maybe I'll bring my left side bar back.

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    1. Hi Stephen, thanks for adding the Holiday Spirit badge. It's a great idea for having a place for upcoming events. I've often thought of it but am just too busy...

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  9. Way to make NaNo your own. This is my 2nd year doing NaNo and I did like all that writer energy directed on one project and getting it on paper. Good luck!

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  10. Hi Denise
    You are soooooo busy! I look forward to reading more.
    Nancy

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  11. Have fun! Like you, I got some great stories out of NaNo. I'm revising instead of writing this time around.

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  12. Good luck with your NaNoWriMo project!

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  13. I'll be cheering you on! I think Fijian Princess will be amazing :)

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  14. Good luck with NaNo. Wish I could do it sometime :)

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  15. Good luck with NaNo! I'm all for whipping myself up into a frenzy when it comes to first drafts! :)

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  16. Hi, Denise,

    CONGRATS on the 12,000 words... I am sure more now. I am so amazed and proud of you. Writing for NaNo is quite a challenge and I wish I had the time, effort, urgency, to jump in and join the thousands of others. But, as you know, my commitments take precedence over my writing at times.

    Oh so soon my office will be ready to inhabit and I can pound out my novella. I am excited about it. I still am trying to rewrite Amber, but time seems to be slipping away so quickly these days.

    I am a creature of my home, and when it's in upheaval, it throws my creative muse out of whack. Today, shopping for pillow forms and fabric for the day bed. It must be COMFY for me to write and for guests to enjoy. Yes, my office will be dual purpose, BUT ... I don't have guests too often, so I will be draped on it often... It is MY office after all. LOL.

    Keep up the good work!

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  17. Oh I think you're a very determined cookie! No doubt about that.

    Sounds like you've made some solid plans for Nano. Good luck, I'm rooting for you.

    Jai

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  18. Good luck on your nano! I'm sure you'll come out a winner!
    Nutschell
    www.thewritingnut.com

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  19. All the best for your Nano -- you'll be a winner. I'm going on a hiatus this December, so I guess I'll see you in the new year!

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    1. I'll still be on semi hiatus then too. Many words to finish!

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  20. Hi Denise,
    All the best with NaNo and HarlequinEscape. I look forward to reading your novels.

    Doing NaNo sort of unofficially as I'm not writing the novel from scratch. It's great for focusing on a project. Not sure I'll write up to 50,000 words but I'll try.

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    1. Thanks for visiting Adura. All the best with your projects too!

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  21. I love that idea of starting with the last chapter and working backwards - gotta try that myself someday!
    Can't wait to read everyone's stories during the holiday blogfest. What a great idea :-)

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