Deb asked me about NanoWrimo:
Can you guys believe I'm abandoning my editing responsibilities to just write during the entire month of November? I feel very irresponsible about it, but can't seem to help it. I need to write and not think about my major WIP for right now. And NanoWrimo seems daunting, but it's not! Okay, well, it is. But still fun. And as I told my sister, I promise the Nano Police will not come knocking at your door if you don't get 50,000 words. I managed to get 50k for two years now, although some of it has been truly horrendous writing. :) In fact, I have Nano to thank for what I consider my best novel so far. Let's have a flashback together--
I first discovered NanoWrimo in 2006 and decided pretty quickly it was about the coolest thing I'd ever discovered. You mean there are actually other writers out there who aren't published yet...weird. :D Well, unfortunately at the time my husband and I were both still in school and had a barely-year-old little boy! Although I started Nano, I barely got 20k and felt pretty discouraged because of the small amount of time I'd been able to spend on it. However, I actually finished the story I began that month. during the year to come.
In 2007 I didn't even attempt Nano. Only a month from graduating, I had far too many papers due to even pretend like I could write even 20 words a day on a novel, let alone the 1500 pace it takes to complete a novel in a month (and had I known about ANWA Write and BIAM then, I wouldn't have felt so sad about it!) Finally in 2008 I made time, despite having a six month old and a three year old. Because I still had ideas swimming in my head about the 1st Nano novel I had began, I decided to write a sort of sequel. Not only did I finish the 50k, but during the following year also wrote another sequel. I now had four novels (two finished, two partly written) for the series, but something felt wrong, so I went back and changed the entire perspective. Now two years later I'm in the final edit (gosh, hopefully!) of the totally revamped first book.
So, it goes without saying that I totally believe in Nano. Before I discovered ANWA, Nano taught me my first important lesson about writing and that is, keep writing no matter what. Even when you feel like the plot sucks, even when you read through what you have and think that there's never going to be a chance for it. Just. Finish. It. You'd be surprised what can happen. ;)
Chris Baty, expect a big check from me when I'm rich and famous.
P.S. Originally I titled this post "comments," but I changed it because I rambled about Nano. Kristin and Tracy--I love, love, LOVED your critique comments about your favorite books. I'm so glad I'm not the only one!
And now I'm off to change the settings so I get these comments in my email. ;)