I am back from a refreshing break at the Christmas Markets in Germany. It was nice to have a break booked directly afterwards and it has given me a chance to reflect on #NaNoWriMo - so here we have it, an interview with myself! It's the effects of #NaNoWriMo!
Now it's finished, would you do it again?
Definitely! For me it has pushed an idea forward and put some real momentum into it. I have enjoyed it much more than I ever thought I would at the start.
You enjoyed it? Surely not, writing 50,000 words must be tough going?
It was tough and certainly isn't my usual style of writing. It's a more visceral style and there is no time for editing or any such luxuries. The benefit of this is you don't stop writing. Whereas normally I might try and perfect a segment of work there is no room to indulge yourself and you just move on to the next part. It meant the story moved on much quicker than it normally would and I didn't waste any time in making decisions. There were times when I struggled but I was fortunate to have some days off work. I'm not sure I would have managed it without them.
Where you ever in danger of not finishing?
Fortunately no. Although I did have to finish early as I was going on holiday and hadn't really thought about that when I signed up. I got a bit stuck at one point but with some tips from Fiona Kendall I moved on quickly. I think my main difficulty was not having time for research. There were points when I would normally double-check stuff but wasn't able to. I'll have to fill in those blanks later.
So is your novel finished now?
No. Far from it. I still have approx another 50,000 to get the first draft finished. It is a very rough first draft and then the real work of editing/re-writing will start. I plan to finish the first draft by the end of January. This may be quicker as now I've got into a momentum I want to carry on with that.
So what tips would you give anyone wanting to do it in the future?
Well from my first time experience these would be my best tips:
1) Let everyone know you are taking part.
This way you get support even though you are being anti-social to your friends and family.
2) Scrap all the excuses.
There are always reasons not to write. Okay so there may be some excuses that are acceptable but I think they are in the minority. The excuses that stop us writing tend to be the more mundane ones.
3) Get in contact with others taking part.
Their support will prove vital.
4) Treat yourself at regular intervals.
Set an amount (more than 3 words) and when you get to that point treat yourself. I had two-finger kit-kats stored in the fridge and rewarded myself with tea! Not very exciting but I am slimming world!
5) Don't give up too soon and don't dismiss your ideas.
What are you up to next?
I will be finishing this project but at a slower pace. I have some admin and competitions I want to enter and I will spend some time on them alongside the first draft of 'The Shortlist.' I will also be back blogging! There have been several posts I would have completed over November but had no time to do them so have some catching up to do!