Monday, November 30, 2009

Nano Aftermath!!

Links to my fellow bloggers that left comments for me this weekend. If you did not leave a comment, I'm not offended, it was after all holiday and well, combine holiday with weekend, and I wouldn't blog if I had better things to do either.
Angelia (Horse Schools)
Just Jemi
Melane (Chasing the Dream)
Erin (Coloring outside the Lines)
Tricia O'Brien (Talespinning)
Corey Schwartz (Thing 1 and Thing 2)
Amy Tate (The Virginia Scribe Reflections)

Pets, children, BFF's, family members and long lost projects are jumping for joy. Their writer person is finally unburied from their computer/notebook/laptop/other strange word processing devices and joining the real world. Be gentle folks, we now have a LOT to do in December...all the stuff we didn't do in November. Oy!

I've read a lot of different posts about various different bloggers' Nano experience. Most of them all felt triumphant, even if they did not go for the 50K mark, but a different goal, and accomplished it. I also noticed a lot of varying opinions between the newbies. The common thread that I have noticed through everyone's that everyone learned something. Everyone walked away from Nano with something, even if that something was the knowledge that they will never do Nano again. It's a live and learn type of thing.

Personally, I loved Nano. Not for writing fast, or for writing crappy work...but for writing something from beginning to end. This is the first novel I can say with confidence that I love the story, I can't wait to revise and edit and rewrite and cut and paste and all that stuff!! And I can do that, because I finished it. These are some other things I learned:
  1. I could have ADD. One month of one story was terribly difficult for me to do. At any time I have three different WIP's going and usually a few more swirling in my head. Not all of them feasible, writeable, but they're there anyway. Nano really taught me to focus, and showed me that I could focus with great results.
  2. Flexibility is more than doing the splits. I learned to be much more flexible with my writing time. Where I would wait until things were 'calm' or 'quiet', during November, I pretty much wrote whenever I could. During commercials, while the kids ate lunch at the table (I know, bad mom-I didn't do it at dinnertime, okay?), well, you get the idea. Even though sometimes all I got in before the kids' end of the day was 500-800, or less, it was a step closer to the 1667 goal each day. And then after they went to bed, the rest of it flew like crazy from my fingers.
  3. Too much of anything is a bad thing. I couldn't do the entire, detailed or even outline resembling type of outline. That's TOO orderly for my left brain. Or..something. I can't go completely without plan though, or I forget who was supposed to do what where and what was their name again??  So, I improvised. I decided to use my normal pantster attitude, but sort of jot down skeleton ideas of the scenes or how I thought things would progress. I did this with colored pens on notecards that eventually covered my wall. That was a good balance between organized and not organized.
  4. Consistency. Honestly, this word is like, the bane of my existence. I SUCK (with great vacuum) at consistency. It's a horrible trait, I know. In the world of parenting-well, my kids will go to therapy. Why? Well, because one month mom decided to let us kind of do whatever the hell we wanted to do, and then all of a sudden it was December and we had to do chores and homework and blah blah blah. I can live with that. In writing, well, I guess my books may need therapy when I'm done with them. I found that even if I didn't want to, I had to sit down and write at least for "X" minutes a day. Then, before I knew it, those minutes were over and I didn't want them to be. Which is good. Slow and steady really does win the race. If we wait for our fickle muses, well, we could be waiting a long time. They flirt with the people that flirt with them....
  5. I really can write a novel and I really can do it well. Thank you very much, Ms. Inner Critic and Ms. Too Grown Up for Dreams.
So, what did you learn?


  1. I love that. "They flirt with people that flirt with them." So cool. Congrats my friend. Celebrate. Woohoo

  2. Congratulations! Even though I didn't do NaNo, I got a ton of revising done during the month of November. I'm pleased with the results, and I feel like I accomplished something, so I'm celebrating with you!

  3. Congratulations!

    I get 2.5 hours of uninterrupted writing/editing time when my youngest is at preschool, and then it's stealing moments when I can. But, like you said, even 500 words here or 500 words there is 500 words closer to THE END.

  4. Congratulations Kristi! Big pat on the back!

    This was quite the experience, and I wouldn't trade anything for my journey.

  5. Congrats on winning NaNo! Looks like you got a lot more than 50,000 words out of the whole experience.

  6. I'm a little late on catching up on my blog reading. I'm a newbie here. And I was a newbie on NaNo. OMG. It was challenging. I did finish 50,000 words and then some. But it is a hodge podge and I would never let anyone read it as it is. I'm not ready for a real story yet. But, I am inspired and have now written a 5500 word short story that I actually like. I'm glad you listed what you learned. I'm keeping a copy of that. Also gonna use the notecard idea. Thanks! and Congratulations!

  7. Elizabeth: No problem, I'm glad I could help you out. Thanks for going back through and reading older posts :0) That's so cool of you. Have a great weekend!


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