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National Novel Writing Month 
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Post National Novel Writing Month
http://www.nanowrimo.org

Anybody else doing it this year?


Fri Oct 28, 2011 3:54 am
Post Re: National Novel Writing Month
As a writer, there's issues I have with something this forced, but I also think it's incredibly important to finish something, and I support anything that does that.

I've never done it, but you know what? I could do it this year. Any chance people would want to create a Reelviews support forum, encourage & critique, etc? I'd be up for that.


Fri Oct 28, 2011 12:25 pm
Post Re: National Novel Writing Month
Shade, I like that idea. I don't think have the time to write anything of substance, but I'd be more than happy to read anything you choose to post on here. Same with anyone else.


Fri Oct 28, 2011 4:33 pm
Post Re: National Novel Writing Month
Pedro wrote:
Shade, I like that idea. I don't think have the time to write anything of substance, but I'd be more than happy to read anything you choose to post on here. Same with anyone else.


Sounds good. Question though: will massive posts bog things down? Would e-mailing Word docs be a better way?


Fri Oct 28, 2011 4:53 pm
Post Re: National Novel Writing Month
Shade wrote:
As a writer, there's issues I have with something this forced, but I also think it's incredibly important to finish something, and I support anything that does that.
I find it to be an interesting exercise. The idea isn't necessarily to force it, so much as to temper the instinct to revise/dwell upon every scrap of material, and just produce, produce, produce.

I tried it a few years ago and failed miserably, but I'm about ready for another go.


Fri Oct 28, 2011 11:17 pm
Post Re: National Novel Writing Month
Maybe it's cheating, but the official kickoff party in my town was yesterday afternoon (10/30), so I'm going to go ahead and get this shit started right now.

I know there's not a hope in hell of it happening, but I'm hoping to clear 2500 (or at least 2000) words per day. Best case scenario: I'm done by Thanksgiving weekend. And if the shit hits the fan, it allows several extra days to clean up.

(Now watch me get a few hundred for the first few days and collapse under the pressure, like when you're losing at Tetris.)

At any rate, I guess this thread can be considered an official diary for my NaNoWriMo adventure.

-----

Just a few lines in so far. I've already Googled a few things, looked at Wikipedia, and watched a video on YouTube. All related to my subject, rather than just procrastinating. Research!

I also pulled the lamest possible book synopsis out of my ass so I could post it on my NaNoWriMo profile page:

Quote:
He doesn't carry a gun. He doesn't throw punches. He cleans up messes.

Worm is a problem-solver-for-hire, a permanent name on the speed dial of every criminal and crooked bigshot in town. He forms a careful barrier of amorality between himself and the crimes committed by his employers, but he soon arrives at a crossroads where he must confront the ugly truth of what he does. Worm's story is supported by a cast of do-gooders and ne'er-do-wells who all have the potential to influence his life. And Worm himself may harbor secrets that make him more than he seems...


They need to hire me to put this kind of horseshit in the blurbs for shitty paperback novels.

I think I have a good character, but I don't really have a story. I'll just have to remember the Schrader maxim: "The plot is just the stuff that happens."


Mon Oct 31, 2011 4:52 am
Post Re: National Novel Writing Month
I'm in Pedro's camp. I wouldn't be able to participate, but I'd love to read and analyze anything you guys come up with. It's a great idea that I fully support.

Ken wrote:
Quote:
He doesn't carry a gun. He doesn't throw punches. He cleans up messes.

Worm is a problem-solver-for-hire, a permanent name on the speed dial of every criminal and crooked bigshot in town. He forms a careful barrier of amorality between himself and the crimes committed by his employers, but he soon arrives at a crossroads where he must confront the ugly truth of what he does. Worm's story is supported by a cast of do-gooders and ne'er-do-wells who all have the potential to influence his life. And Worm himself may harbor secrets that make him more than he seems...


They need to hire me to put this kind of horseshit in the blurbs for shitty paperback novels.

I think I have a good character, but I don't really have a story. I'll just have to remember the Schrader maxim: "The plot is just the stuff that happens."


I watched the last half of Pulp Fiction over the weekend, so maybe it's just that talking, but I couldn't help but think of Winston Wolf when I read your synopsis. That's a good thing, by the way. He's a fascinating guy for the 10 or so minutes he's on screen. I'd love read/watch a story about a character like that.


Mon Oct 31, 2011 10:10 am
Post Re: National Novel Writing Month
Yeah, Wolf is a cleaner, which is essentially the job that my guy does. Oddly, the only movie I could think of where someone actually uses the word "cleaner" in a crime context is Leon, which was referring to something else entirely. I suppose cleaners can be assassins, too, but in the most basic sense, they're really just the guys who come in and remove evidence from a crime scene.

It's hard to find info about cleaners in the criminal underworld, but there's some info floating around about legit cleaners. (The ones who work with the police, in other words.) They tend to be private contractors, and, depending on where they operate, they can make up to six figures per year. There was a soundbite from a professional cleaner in one of the articles I was reading, which basically said, "The coroner picks up the big pieces and we get everything else." Gross.


Mon Oct 31, 2011 3:24 pm
Post Re: National Novel Writing Month
Some of the articles I've read are pretty funny, in a gruesome sort of way. Here's an interview snippet from Time Magazine:

Quote:
What is the best way to die, in terms of leaving as little mess as possible?
Die with someone you know very close by, I guess. And tile floor, absolutely tile floor. A bathroom is definitely the easiest.


The person being interviewed is the author of a book called Mop Men: Inside the World of Crime Scene Cleaners.


Wed Nov 02, 2011 12:47 am
Post Re: National Novel Writing Month
Fuuuuuuck, I do not have it tonight. Last night was the first time in a little while that I didn't get much sleep, so my brain is working extra hard to do pretty much anything. By my count, I've written less than 1,280 words during this session and I'm already feeling tapped. It's well short of the 2,500 I'm supposed to be shooting for.

It's not that I don't know where it's supposed to go next. I know what the next one or two scenes are going to be. I'm just hoping that this is me being tired, and not me already beginning to wash out after just a few days.

And I keep telling myself I can always write more later in the day when I get up, but it hasn't happened yet.

[/bitching]


Thu Nov 03, 2011 1:53 am
Post Re: National Novel Writing Month
I'm almost to the end of my first chapter, and almost to my first action scene. Not a coincidence, for I am following the Ian Fleming rule: all the coolest scenes start at the end of the chapter and continue at the beginning of the next one. This will heighten the suspense, even though all the reader really has to do is turn the page.

Edit:

Meh. Another less than productive early morning writing session. Just slightly more words than yesterday. At least this time I was feeling decent, and only fell short because I got out of work late (as usual for early Friday morning) and got caught up reading up on homemade incendiaries.

To the U.S. gov't: it was for a novel. Please don't waterboard me.

On the bright side, I discovered that I can, in fact, squeeze some writing in during my free time at work, as long as I'm not too distracted and I'm making the story exciting enough for myself. And, even better, I'm into chapter two and got through the first action scene.


Fri Nov 04, 2011 4:03 am
Post Re: National Novel Writing Month
Wasn't as productive as I hoped this morning, but more than I thought. I wasn't feeling it at all and was prepared to accept defeat and turn in early. Instead, I went off and did other stuff for a while, until I'd had enough time to think up an angle that would get me writing again--a new direction that was different enough to get me interested again, but still relevant enough to be included in the story.

The way I'm seeing it: if it isn't interesting enough to keep writing it, think of something that would be interesting to write and find a way to get into it as quickly as possible. That's the procedure that I've had to follow, even if coming up with the idea did chew up some of my writing session.

On that note, if this month is NaNoWriMo, next month is going to have to be NaNoEdMo. I wouldn't be surprised if this first draft ends up as nothing more than the skeleton of the next one. The prose should be the thing that maximizes the effect of the content. Right now, it's just a blunt instrument that I'm using to bash my ideas into crude form. The majority of the text is begging to be rewritten.

I'm somewhere between 14,000 and 15,000 words, at last check. At my original planned daily rate, I'd be at around 20,000 today, but fuck it. I'm still on schedule to finish on time. Just won't have as much wiggle room (or as many fuck-off days) left over at the end.


Tue Nov 08, 2011 6:48 am
Post Re: National Novel Writing Month
Here's a c'n'p of something I posted in the official NaNoWriMo forum:

Quote:
I originally envisioned my main character as a hyper-competent yet strictly nonviolent criminal. He quickly morphed into a bumbling fool with an extremely narrow set of genius-level skills.

Basically, my whole book is turning into something way different than I intended. And I may be unintentionally revealing something about my own neuroses in the process.


Currently at a little over 20,000 words, barely above par for this point in the month.


Sat Nov 12, 2011 5:03 am
Post Re: National Novel Writing Month
Today's par is 23,333. I'm currently at about 22,000, so I have a bit of work to do if I'm going to do more than just stay afloat. EDIT: It's worth mentioning that a NaNoWriMo member in my region (mid-MI) just passed the 50K word goal today.

Unintentionally, a big element of my novel is the subversion of the trope where the loner meets a sympathetic soul that draws him out of his shell. (Recently played straight to good effect in the film Drive, and infamously subverted in my Favorite Movie Ever.) I've noticed that happening a few times. I'll be zeroing in on a fairly tried-and-true plot, then I'll notice it and veer away at the last second. I didn't set out to write a story that sends up the conventional storytelling norms, but it's kind of turning into that.

The plus is that when I think I know where it's going, it does something else. The drawback is that every plot has been done at some point. If I swerve away every time I start to see a plot, the book will end up plotless. Cue the TV Tropes maxim: tropes are not bad.

But that's also a sign that I'm thinking too much, when the whole point of NaNoWriMo is not to think about what you're writing and just let it spill out.

EDIT:

I know we're not supposed to do this, but my task for this morning is to rewrite a section that I somewhat underwrote. I know I can get a lot more words out of it by expanding it, and it's what I feel like doing right now, so fuck it. In the end, it's going to be a lot more words to my word count, so it counts as more writing.

EDIT #2:

It is possible that I am a little too hammered to be doing this right now. Nevertheless, I am in the middle of a chapter that has already introduced one incidental character, and I'm already introducing a second. Maybe that's the theme of this chapter.

The issue I'm dealing with is that I'm now writing the section in which my main guy is out of the picture, so I need other characters for my secondary characters to deal with. So I need to cook up a couple inconsequential fucksticks just to keep things moving.

It's worth mentioning that one of my secondary characters is kinda sorta an unofficial expy of Superman.

(He's what you would call a "non-powered normal", but he is exceptionally strong, somewhat in the vein of the 1930s anti-establishment Superman.)

(I am going to feel really retarded when I read this after I wake up later today.)

EDIT $3: (Yes, I'm aware that is a dollar sign and not a pound sign.)

I just named one of my characters "Keyster". I must be stopped.

EDIT #4:

Pausing to go to bed this morning in the middle of Keyster's first scene. That ought to leave a good hook to resume writing later today. Probably a good strategy, which I haven't used before.

Hahaha. "Keyster."


Mon Nov 14, 2011 6:47 am
Post Re: National Novel Writing Month
I'm sure it will turn out excellently.


Mon Nov 14, 2011 7:02 pm
Post Re: National Novel Writing Month
Some stats I've rounded up on Wikipedia to entertain myself during moments of procrastination:

* NaNoWriMo's target word count is 50K. This is roughly the length of Brave New World, The Great Gatsby, and The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy.
* According to the Nebula Awards, the minimum word count that distinguishes a novel from shorter forms of fiction is 40K.
* A work of fiction from 17.5K to 40K words is a novella, from 7.5K to 17.5K is a novelette, and shorter than that is simply a short story.

Good to know that if I fall 10,000 words short, the Nebulas will still have my back.


Wed Nov 16, 2011 4:02 am
Post Re: National Novel Writing Month
I finally put up an excerpt on my NaNoWriMo profile page.

Excuse the lameness of the prose. For the most part, I'm just shitting out as much as I can manage, with the intention of going back and rewriting everything later.


Thu Nov 17, 2011 5:16 am
Post Re: National Novel Writing Month
Just broke 30,000. According to the official graphy statistical thingy (jesus, I need a break), I should be at 31,666, but I've been bad the last couple nights.

Actually, following the pace I originally intended to go at, I'd be done right around today. Oops.


Sat Nov 19, 2011 10:20 pm
Post Re: National Novel Writing Month
Boom boom, baby.


Tue Nov 29, 2011 3:32 am
Post Re: National Novel Writing Month
Good shit, man. I meant to say this a long time ago, but I really dug your excerpt. There was a nice layer of atmosphere that was able to sneak in despite the small amount of passage that was given.


Tue Nov 29, 2011 3:36 am
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