Showing posts with label Nano. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Nano. Show all posts

Wednesday, October 11, 2017

Nano by Bonnie Le Hamitlon

National Novel Writer’s month is fast approaching, and I don’t have any innovative ideas for a story. In fact, of late all the stories I seem to be formulating have the same basic premise. Maybe if I ever manage to finish one of these stories, I’ll get that idea out of my head and I can move on to other things.

And I can’t get over how fast this year has gone. It seems like one minute it was June and I had plenty of time to come up with a premise, and the next it was October. Of course, back in July and August I did do a lot of writing.

I did do Camp Nano this year for the first time, and I worked on the story I started last November (the Nano I didn’t complete because a speeding drunk didn’t see the red light.) I did get quite a bit done on that story during Camp Nano, and I even finished the challenge, big time. I just didn’t reach “The End”.

And I should have continued working on it during August, but well, even before I dove into that challenge, my mind kept going back to another story of mine. (I know I already mentioned this.) I liked the premise for the story, I didn’t like how I had it opening.

Anyway, come August, I started over from scratch on that story and beat my July totals in like two weeks! I was moving right along, then long before I finished that story (though making more headway then I had previously) I got to thinking about another one of my unfinished stories.

All through the month of September I tried to stick to the August story, but kept going back to my latest one.

Frankly, I’m beginning to wonder how I ever managed to get any stories to “The End” at all the way I keep coming up blank on the story I’m trying to work on while yet another story invades my imagination. I have so many unfinished stories you would think I never finish anything.

But I have. I have reached “The End” six times, though I then later lost the first six chapters of one of those and I’ve yet to recreate or fix that problem. And I have a few which are way over the preferred word count for my genre, but they aren’t anywhere near a stopping point. And frankly, I think that might just be why I’m blocked on those stories, which is rather dumb after all the times I told Konnie not to worry about her word count and to just get her story down.

Maybe it’s time I took my own advice.

Happy writing everyone. 😊

Wednesday, November 9, 2016

Ode To November by BonnieLe Hamilton

November is the busiest month of the year for me, as I stated in my last post, November is National Novel Writer’s month, it would also be the month of my anniversary, if Tom were still alive, and it is the month of Konnie’s anniversary (and no, not the same the day or even the same year). And, of course, there’s also Thanksgiving, and Christmas shopping. As I said, it is a busy month for me. Plus let’s not forget the National Election and just incidental things like trips to the pharmacy and grocery stores and just plain household chores.

It’s a wonder I’m able finish the Nano every year.

Okay, maybe not a wonder, because, I only have one person I chauffeur around on a regular basis (my sister-in-law, who doesn’t drive) and Konnie still has a Mom Taxi. And where I need to take my sister-in-law to appointments at most three times a week (and some weeks not at all), Konnie has to chauffeur kids around several times a day.

Frankly, it’s a wonder she managed to finish the rough on her colossal sci-fi with how much time she spends running kids around and just plain running errands. It also explains why she spent so much time while she was visiting me working on editing that sci-fi; she actually was able to work for hours straight without interruption. Too bad my place is so quiet; she resorted to putting videos in just for the noise!

Yeah, our lives are totally different. I really doubt the lives of any two writers are the same. We all have different living situations, and our families have different needs.

But anyway, for all those writers out there participating in Nano, I’d like to tell you my personal motto, “Slow and Steady wins the race.” 

And for all those who are not participating because a deadline or family obligations won’t let you, keep on writing. Each word you put on the page is one word closer to, “The End.” Or I could remind you of the old quote attributed to Nora Roberts about how you can’t fix a blank page, and tell you, if you have one word on it, it isn’t blank anymore. J

Happy writing everyone!

Wednesday, October 26, 2016

National Novel Writer’s Month by Bonnie Le Hamilton

National Novel Writer’s Month, or in other words Nano, is just days away meaning I’ve been trying to outline a story idea for it. Except this time, I’m not just running scenarios through my head, I’m actually writing something down. Though I admit it isn’t much of an outline, all I really have is a list of scene suggestions (unfinished) of what should happen in the story. Just a sentence or two for each scene, that’s all. More than I usually write.

Not that I really need the help, I generally don’t have a written outline, just ideas floating around in my head, and I always manage to reach the goal of 50 thousand words before the end of the month.

Nano is also another way Konnie and differ, but that difference goes back to how many people live in our homes.  

Konnie still has a houseful of people and pets to deal with and the only time she managed to write 50 thousand words in a month, her family nearly revolted. For me, when my husband was still alive, I’d barely manage to get 50 thousand words with only a little grumbling from Tom. Now, living alone, well, last year I managed well over 60 thousand words. There’s no longer someone begging me to turn the computer off, so I don’t have to stop once I reach my daily goal, or even 50 thousand, if I feel like it, I can keep going.

So anyway, as Nano fast approaches, I know there are writers like Konnie that can’t find that amount of time in a single month to write, and I even know there are writers with deadlines to finish some editing, but other than those, who’s up for the Nano this year?

Happy writing everyone! :)

Wednesday, November 25, 2015

Writing Challenges

It is now week three of Nano, and where am I? I’m at well over 58k though I’ve had some bumps on the way, I’ve also had one dozy of day where I managed over 6k words, that’s over 25 pages, in a single day. Okay, that’s fast, and a dang lot of typing, but you should have seen the day before, my third worst effort to that point. I know the problem the other two days was I was rather busy and wasn’t able to get more done, but the day before my banner day, I just couldn’t concentrate on the story I started, the story I had.

Finally, I decided to, without starting a new file, or deleting what I had so far, write what I could of the story bothering me, then return to the story I had started. To date I’ve written over 31k on the new story and only around 27k on the one I’d planned to write this month! And at this rate, I may never finish the original story. But then I can’t predict the future, and I still like the other story, just at the moment, this one is compelling me forward to the end.

And I don’t know about anybody else, but that sometimes happens to me, just usually when the story I’m writing gets bogged down some way, and I’m not finding a solution to fix it, that just wasn’t the case this time, but oh well, eventually I’ll have two new stories! It just takes time, which is something I don’t have, since tomorrow is Thanksgiving and boy am I not ready for it! Sort of usual for me to, but I’m cutting this short so I can get some work done.

So, happy Thanksgiving everyone! J

Wednesday, November 11, 2015

The Tortoise And The Hare

I am now well into the second week of National Novel Writer’s Month, more commonly known as NaNo, which is a challenge to write 50,000 new words of a novel during November.

This will be my thirteenth year of doing this, and if you think the outcome is in question, I can tell you, not where I’m concerned. In all the years I’ve done this, there is only once when I didn’t get my word count verified as a win, and that year I had technical issues with my phone line which didn’t get solved until after the first of December. Back then, I had a dial-up, so that was a hindrance.

At any rate, I always manage to finish this challenge.

How I manage is another issue. And I will admit I do have tons of time to write, since I don’t work, but let’s face it, I need it. A good illustration of why I need so much spare time is what happened this Saturday at a local write-in.

For starters, write-ins are when local people who all signed up for the NaNo get together at some designated time and place and write. I am aware that there are not “in real world” meetings and groups for NaNo everywhere, but they do exist, and my local group is pretty cool.

At any rate, I did attend a write-in on Saturday, and other than writing, and a bit of chatting, one thing we do at these events is have what is termed either word wars or word sprints. These are timed events, usually for anything from five minutes to as much as a half hour, but in our group, we usually go for fifteen minutes.
The goal of these word wars is to type as many words as you can during that time. Obviously, the person with the highest number wins.

Saturday we did this twice, and just before we started the second one, I predicted I’d lose again. The fact is I usually lose these things, and Saturday was no exception. Everyone else managed to get at least twice as many words as I did, but you see, of all the people in attendance Saturday, I was the one with the highest overall word count.

In the end of the second sprint, one person in our group got nearly nine hundred words, an impressive total for just fifteen minutes, while I didn’t even manage four hundred. And yet, each year this lady usually ends up typing like a mad woman on the last day of month, frantically trying to finish before the time is up, and generally making it at the last minute, last year she didn’t even manage that much.

Now, I admit she has a lot of other things she’s doing during the month. She’s one busy woman. She honestly would never finish this challenge in time if she couldn’t type at the speed she does.
I, on the other hand, don’t have anywhere near as much on my calendar, and I can manage to write nearly every day for several hours straight, each time. And I finish the challenge long before the month is out. Last year I actually managed just over 63k words total for the month and at the rate I’m going I may well do the same this year.

After all, today is only the 11th of the month, and in order to make 50k words by the last day of month, you will need to have written 18,333 words by the end of today. I made that last Saturday, and then some. At this moment, I’m set to exceed 25k today, and that is the number you’d need to reach by this coming Sunday.

In other words, I’m the Tortoise, and my friend is the Hare. Slow and steady wins the race. Aesop knew what he was talking about.

Happy writing everyone. J

Wednesday, October 21, 2015

The Challenge

Last week, as Bonnie said, I challenged her to a race to the end, see which one of us could finish writing our current work in progress by the end of the month. Her main goal was to get it finished so she’d have a clean slate to start a new story for Nano next month.
My motivation is finally getting my mega opus finished. Today I started writing chapter 137 of these epic story, which is really several stories in one. There are so many characters in it and even the non-POV characters have a story line. But I’m oh so much closer. Since at least part of the last few scenes are already written (I do know how the opus ends) I know I’m almost there. I just need a few more scenes to wrap up some story lines and set up that final event.
As I look at what I have now, and the scenes I still need to write, I’m sure I won’t finish at 140 chapters, in fact, because that last event is so big, I’m pretty sure I’ll make at least 150.
Which means I could have 14 more chapters to write in just over a week.
I have ten days to write about 14 chapters.
Scratch that.
Due to plans I have this weekend, I doubt I’ll have any writing time on Saturday.
And then there’s the paperwork, bills and so forth I have to deal with. The grocery shopping. My husband’s car is down, at least until we can fix it, which won’t be until after the first, so guess who gets to do a lot of chauffeuring for the next ten days to two weeks?
But having a goal is a good thing.
Both of us are trying hard to complete our stories.

Most days we both spend time on our stories either adding to them or editing, tweaking, what we already had.
One word at a time we are both getting closer.
She doesn’t think she’ll make any more than I do, but we’re not giving up.
Although I don’t do Nano, I rarely have the time to do that much typing, I can see the value of such challenges. Setting goals with friends, people who will not only keep you on track, but race you to the finish line.
So for all those writers who are doing Nano, I support you. Keep fighting to ‘the end’, and when you reach it, go back and edit, edit, edit, until it’s the best you can offer.
I’d write more now, but I’ve got an alarm going off, I need breakfast, and my opus really wants me to finish that scene I left in the middle of so I could get this written. And I’m sorry this is late, but I really was trying to write that scene.
Smile. Make the day a brighter day.