My, time flies when you’re novelling or rather dragging your feet as your fingers make futile efforts to type. On the up side, though I fell behind in word count, though I sank into a lull, though I wanted to chuck the whole thing, I only ever missed one day of writing. And I’m pretty much on Camp NaNo word count goal too, as you can see through my Google+ posts I reproduce for you below. Now, if only I could get myself motivated to paste the Camp’s badge on my website …
Waking up is hard to do. Waking up on a cold June morning to write another chapter, one you have no idea what you’re going to say in, is groaningly difficult. But a blanket around me and a CES device (cranioelectrical stimulation) clipped to my ears, and I’m good to go. Now all I need is content.
No matter how often it happens, it amazes me always that though my mind be blank of ideas, once my fingers are on keyboard, the words start flowing in and flowing out onto the screen. It helps to put myself into the story, not just to think of it as an aloof storyteller, but to be right in there, sitting next to my characters in the canoe or at the kitchen table eating French Toast. Yup, descriptions of food and cooking appear in this novel too. I can’t help it. A character’s gotta eat. 1,692 words today
I like the target board with an arrow on it, showing where you are on the word count, on the Camp NaNo website. The arrow is finally starting to visibly move on my board. It’s a tiny little bit on the way to pointing to the bull’s eye. A tiny bit is better than no bit, though I thought it’d be more. I think I forgot to enter my word count yesterday. I’m going to have to add it up again. I haven’t been using a spreadsheet like I have in past Novembers. Maybe I should. It’s not so difficult keeping track in the early days, but it’s not even a week, and already I don’t know where I am in the total word count. One of these days, I hope the NaNoWriMo folks will allow you to enter a daily word count and they’d add up the total for you. But then maybe most people type one massive document, while I open a new document for each new chapter or day of writing. 1,892 words today. Don’t know the total!
Update: I put all my documents together and redid the word count. Up to 10,330 words total! I’m past the big 10k hurdle. Woot!
Well, I quit.
Actually, I quit yesterday.
Quit writing a novel on my iPad first thing in the morning, that is. It’s not that I couldn’t write — well, ok, it was getting harder and harder to get the ideas to flow — it’s that I’d tire quickly and it was becoming like the end of a torturous race after you’ve hit the wall to finish a chapter. It was also not that fun. I want to enjoy writing this novel. I want to engross myself in these characters. They’re nice characters. Interesting characters. And I wasn’t involving myself enough in them because of my fatigue. It’s hard enough after breakfast and with a cup of coffee at hand; it was becoming impossible before I’d had even a bite.
I suppose writing screenplays on my iPad right after I’ve woken up is easier because they’re shorter, don’t involve internal dialogue, and are all about the visuals (though the radio play I wrote in April was all about the audio). Whereas, books involve every sense. And well, I’m more serious about my books. Screenplays are strictly a creative exercise — plus it’s easier to reach the 100-page mark than the 50,000-word goal of NaNoWriMo.
So today, I filled my demanding stomach, pumped up my brain in caffeine (the coffee and chocolate kinds), and sat down at my computer. It was much easier and faster typing on a solid keyboard than on the iPad, even on the iPad’s Bluetooth keyboard, which is what I usually use when writing a blog post or longer piece. I am still fatigued but more ready. So I guess readiness and sitting up properly, my body telling my brain, pay attention, write and continue to write to the end, is better.
As Ben from Camp NaNoWriMo said in his pep talk, “Take this week to figure out how you write best, and then use those rituals to get yourself moving.” I did, by accident, and I think I’ve figured out how I write novels best. On my computer!
I wrote 2,891 words today. Not enough to get back on track, but a good haul nevertheless!
I can type more words and type for longer on the computer than on the iPad … or maybe it’s not because of what I’m typing on but when. Being fuelled up with breakfast and coffee makes for a more productive writer, methinks.
I’m caught up to the word count, and I do believe hitting the 16,670-words-by-Sunday-night goal is totally doable now.
After an initial hello from a couple of them, my Camp NaNo cabin mates are pretty silent on the message board, though not in their novelling pursuit, if word counts are anything to go by. Still, one seems to have stopped, and one seems to have not started at all. But such is the NaNoWriMo life. You start, you stop, you don’t start at all, you get going in a hail of words raining down on your keyboard in a mad dash to beat the deadline. I’m hoping, though, that for once, I’ll finish my novel before the last day. I have completed the word count goal before the end, but not the novel itself. I shall need to step up the pace if I’m to do that.
I’d hit a lull in my novel over the weekend. I thought by spending my Sunday writing time reviewing and fixing some of the character interactions in previous chapters — something I usually do as things change from what I’d envisioned originally the deeper I get into the novel — that that would “reset” me and get me enthused again, get the novel underway again.
As I was moping about this morning, I suddenly remembered the NaNoWriMo motto: toss something unexpected in. That’ll work for Camp NaNo too, I thought. Now their suggestions are usually along the lines of flying monkeys and pink possums, but I decided on introducing a couple of characters in a little differently from the usual “Hi! I’m Susie!” variety. I am setting the novel in cottage country after all; there are all sorts of drowning possibilities. It’s amazing how that one little NaNo piece of advice got my fingers flying over the keys. From zero to 2,284 words in less than an hour. Awesome!