Unwise writer, week 2: NaNoWriMo, snowflakes and writing sat-nav

This week, I’ve done three practical things to help my crazy novel-to-be challenge:

  1. Written an ending, as I touched upon in last week’s unwise writer post. It’s terrible, and unsurprisingly vague, but it does give me a tentative destination on the writing sat-nav. Provided I don’t get sidetracked by too many interesting looking cul-de-sacs.
  2. I’ve been trying out the popular Snowflake Method for planning a novel, though I’m not sure what to think of it. I don’t know about you, but a number of new novels I’ve read in recent years have felt formulaic and predictable, and it’s possibly down to applying formulas like this. But my usual ‘wing it, be grand’ method has resulted in very little, so what is there to lose by trying a different approach? And I can ignore the bits I disagree with. I wasn’t even aware of it this time last week, but it was mentioned in a helpful Writing.ie guest blog by author Alison Wells entitled ‘Is NaNoWriMo for You?’ Which leads me on to…
  3. I signed up for NaNoWriMo. For anyone not familiar with it, National Novel Writing Month is a global initiative to get people writing. Basically, the challenge is to write 50,000 words during the month of November. That’s 1,667 words a day, if you write religiously every day. People take different tacks, some writing less, some writing more, some sticking to the daily goal, others binge writing at the weekend when they have more time. No doubt some participants spend a very pleasant month discussing writing on the extensive forum boards, ending up with no words but an improved social life. It’s up to you to set your own pace, with the word count merely a hypothetical finishing line, spurred on by the encouragement and camaraderie of a writing community. It’s free to create an account and there’s an abundance of advice, support and chat. Or you can – as I intend to – remain solitary and just use it as a place to upload your daily word count and watch the total climb closer to your goal. I haven’t done this before, but it always looks like fun, and for once I have a solid project to leap into.

In the name of honesty, here’s my word count going into the NaNoWriMo challenge. Hopefully by the end of November, there will be 50,000 words – give or take a chapter – added to it.

Pre-NaNoWriMo word count. This will hopefully have 50,000 words added to in by December
Pre-NaNoWriMo word count. Now all I have to do is add 50,000 words in 30 days. Piece of cake

This week’s word count: not telling. It’s all been snowflake/snowball building in preparation for the big writing month ahead. I’m not stressed about it. Nope.

Read Week 3: the 1667 and Christmas lists here


5 thoughts on “Unwise writer, week 2: NaNoWriMo, snowflakes and writing sat-nav

  1. Thank, Tara. I’m enjoying the discipline of it so far, didn’t think I would. I don’t know that I’d have the willpower for three in a row, though, so major respect. What became of what you wrote, if I may ask?


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