NaNoWriNot!

Hello again!

It’s good to be back. If you’re wondering where I’ve been… Well nowhere really, nowhere but inside my head, working on a new project.

At the end of October, I blogged about taking time out from to really get going on my novel, which I started at the beginning of October and initially, did very little about! As some of you may be aware, November was National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo), and many writers have been dedicated to completing a 50,000 word novel within the 30 days. If you are one of these writers, and you managed this, I salute you! That takes some dedication and I look forward to reading your  novels some day soon.

I have been using most of my blog reading/writing time to work on my novel, but have still kept up with all of my other commitments and so haven’t been able to dedicate as much time as I would have liked. However, over the course of the month, despite starting two new big work-related projects and having a very sick toddler for part of the month, I have managed to write just over 10,000 words. It’s not NaNoWriMo but it’s not bad going either!

At first, I kept wanting to go back and edit my work, which really slowed me down but I have now managed to let go of that and I haven’t even been stopping to break my work up into chapters yet. I also looked at my word count every time I sat down to begin with, and would feel annoyed if I didn’t manage to write at least 500 words each time I sat down. Once I let go of this, I found I could write much more without even realising it. I guess my biggest learning curve this month has been letting go of things. Here’s what else I’ve learned:

  • Writing when I really don’t feel like it/have other things on my mind just doesn’t work for me. I’ve been told time and again that ‘good’ writers must write despite this. Well, every time I’ve tried this I’ve written badly. Very badly. It’s just not worth it. The book is in me and it comes out when it’s ready. I give it a certain amount of hours each week and if nothing comes out, then I do some research or refer back to my plot outline instead – that way I’m still working on it even if I’m not writing it
  • Reading fiction on the days that I’m writing is not a good idea. I often find myself taking on the style of that particular writer. So I have been reading some interesting non-fiction this month!
  • Not blogging, or reading blogs, for a month has freed up a few  hours a week, which I have been able to use to focus on the novel. Now that I’ve got the momentum going I am back to blogging (I’ve missed it!), but think I will reduce the number of posts to once a fortnight to ensure I don’t slow down too much on the novel
  • I’m making mistakes, but that’s ok. I can fix them later. As a friend recently said, ‘you can’t edit what you haven’t written!’
  • I’m not scared any more.

So, I will post updates here from time to time but there’s no timetable for that because I’m taking the slow and steady approach to this novel and the way I see it, it takes as long as it takes. Even if I don’t post any updates, I will talk about it on twitter with the #amwriting hashtag and I’ll definitely let you know when it’s finished!

Thanks for your support!

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15 responses to “NaNoWriNot!

  1. Reblogged this on Mothering Mushroom and commented:

    Here’s what I’ve been up to during my ‘blogging break’ [Reblogged from my Honest Speaks blog].

  2. Well done, Rachael! I didn’t reach 50,000, but I feel as if I “won” anyway.

    • Thanks Miriam! I read about your write-in with interest, I always feel I would be distracted by group writing sessions but yours sounded good… Glad you made some good progress, feel great doesn’t it? Now I just hope I can keep the momentum going and still keep up with everything :-/

  3. I have very similar writing experiences to you but I don’t have a toddler, so have even more respect for the problems you face getting time to write.

    Even more of a problem when you do find some time but can’t get in the mood! I keep promising myself I will get more disciplined but life invariably gets in the way. Keep working at it though because that novel will get completed one day and it will be the best feeling ever. 🙂

    • Thanks Petra! I’ve stalled a bit in the past week – life has been getting in the way more than usual – but hopefully I will be able to find a good block of time soon to get going again. Thanks for your support as always.

  4. Wishing you all the best on your book Rachael!

  5. Hallo there,

    I’ve a christmas card for you! : ) You can pick it up here http://summer4soul.wordpress.com/2012/12/11/1022/
    Have a nice day

    Sweet greetings, Summer

  6. Congrats on those 10k words 🙂 Practice makes perfect, as they say, so it’s good you were still able to churn it out!

  7. Hallo,

    I’ve nominate you for The Very Inspirer Award. You can see it here, http://summer4soul.wordpress.com/2012/12/15/blog-nominations-its-like-giving-a-christmas-present/

    Congratulations!

    Sweet greetings, Summer

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