Monday, 26 November 2012

I'm not here...

I'm peering over the top of my NaNoWriMo project to say I'm over at Livia's blog - Leave it to Livia -today, talking about my love of films.

I'm still pretty much on target for 50k, although I've run out of words and the ending is rubbish. Maybe if I figured out the ending, I'd have enough words...

Hope you pop over and see me at Livia's.

Monday, 19 November 2012

Bang on target

Because I am deep in NaNoWriMo, this is another post about it. Feel free to stop reading now - normal service will be resumed in December...
Oh, you're still here - good!

Last night, for the first time, I hit the target. On day 18 the target was 30k. I sort of wanted to go a bit over, even an extra word or two would have be great - but the scene ended perfectly at 30k, so I saved the document and closed it down. It's waiting for me now, I can hear it calling.

As you know, I started November with a title "The Day Nothing Happened" and a first line "Yesterday something happened". Then it turned out, as I started writing, that quite a lot was happening, and I changed tense - half-way through - to past tense. So the first line no longer fits. Argh! I've never had to rewrite a first line before, it's usually the one fixed thing. Anyway, that's something to think about in December - I'm not going to bother changing the present tense at the moment, I need to push on and finish.

From the initial idea of having an explosion in a hotel, I've managed to get five separate story lines - the survivors of the incident all have their own stories to tell. One woman who was trapped has post-traumatic stress, another woman used the chaos to run away and pretend she was dead, another kidnapped a coma patient. Then I've also got a pregnant widow, and a man who's trolling Facebook - although that story line isn't fully fleshed out yet.

It's been fascinating seeing these stories coming to life, and my characters having their own thoughts about their situations. None of them are related at the moment, and I'm unsure whether to force them together, or to leave them separate and just passing each other randomly in the street. I know, as a novel, they should be connected by more than just the explosion because at the moment they read as intertwined short stories.

But again, that's a question I'll be able to answer in December. The first thing I plan to do is print out the MS and cut it up, putting all parts of the same story lines together to make sure they are complete and don't have huge gaps. Then I'll be able to see if they can slot together. There is a precedent of leaving them separate - eg. Haunted by Chuck Palahniuk, and probably lots of others I can't think of at the moment. But whatever happens, I'm definitely hoping this book will turn into something and not be left in a drawer.

Is your NaNo project something long term, or just a collection of words?

PS. I am still reading blogs, but commenting on all of them is too time consuming at the moment. I hope you understand. 

Sunday, 11 November 2012

Is it time for a chocolate break?

Despite my plans to buy myself a big box of Thornton's to bribe treat myself after a hard day's NaNo-ing, I haven't had any... Yep, 11 days without chocolate... I'm breaking out into a cold sweat just thinking about it. Tomorrow... I'll definitely be going out to buy myself something yummy, tomorrow.

I wasn't planning to post very much during November, but that goes hand-in-hand with not managing to visit many blogs - and the ones I have read, I haven't had time to comment on. Currently my blog post queue stands at 880!

Today I've reached another slump. I've got to about 13,000 words, and all my characters have started receiving the anonymous Facebook troll messages that they're supposed to - but I can't find an uncontrived way of getting all these characters together to talk about the fact they're receiving them.

Instead of staring at a blank page, I thought I'd say hello, and read lots of posts. I might not get around to commenting on many, but at least I'll have a fair idea of what's going on in bloggyland!

Tomorrow evening, after my huge box of chocolates, I'll start writing again... although by that time, I'll need to write about 7000 just to stay on track... No problem... easy peasy...

Today's question: what's your favourite Thornton's chocolate?
And if you haven't heard of Thornton's, what's your favourite luxury chocolate?

Wednesday, 7 November 2012

Insecure? Yes, yes I am...

Welcome to this month's Insecure Writer's Support Group. If you want to know more, click on the logo in the side-bar and you'll discover a world of people just as insecure as you!!

I think this month I'm going to just sit quietly in the corner and nibble on the Custard Creams. Not because I'm not feeling insecure, but because I'm not sure there are any new ways to express this month's insecurities - I'm taking part in NaNoWriMo, which explains everything (especially if you read my last post here)

So I'm eating Custard Creams which I'm dunking into my tea and making a sludgy mess in the bottom of my mug, and trying not to think about writing.

Sometimes I wonder what would have happened if I hadn't wanted to be a writer:

  • I'd have a super-clean house
  • I'd read more
  • I'd be able to sit down with a cup of tea and relax with a magazine, rather than feeling the need to check email, send email, keep my Facebook page updated
  • I'd have time to get hooked on soaps
  • I'd be able to watch any TV programme without my laptop on my lap
  • I'd be able to see my friends more often... and my parents!
  • I'd probably have a full-time job, and money
  • But I'm sure I'd feel like something was missing...

What would you do if you didn't write?

Saturday, 3 November 2012

Can you fail #NaNoWriMo on the third day?

Maybe, fail is too strong a word, after all, it is only the third day, but my mind has gone blank.

As a self-confessed pantser, it was always going to be a tough challenge, but I thought I had an idea - I had an explosion in the first scene (that's dramatic enough to last several thousand words, isn't it?) and I had an array of characters either trapped or watching the drama unfold.

I thought that after a few hours of writing random scenes the characters would take over and show me their stories.

Except, they haven't jumped off the page yet, They are staying resolutely flat and half of them don't even have names. They are the bride, the guy in a coma, the nurse, the housekeeper. 

So, after a moment of utter panic, here's my list of things to do:

  • Eat chocolate (of course! I haven't eaten any so far - that's obviously the reason!!)
  • Encourage my muse to appear - my muse is my three-year-old self, she likes to play hide-and-seek, and she doesn't eat her greens.
  • Relax and read something - I have a stack of books waiting.
  • Dress up as a witch! (Seems random, but I'm going to a Halloween party later!)
How are you doing so far? Any tips for a first-timer? How was your Halloween?