Bardic Circle

Laura Rainbow Dragon

Well-known member
Bard from Canada
Posts: 222
"Striving to be the change."
Slow start today, but on the board at least with 774 words. Going to call that it for drafting for today but maybe do a bit more work on figuring out where this story is going before bed. I'm happy with what I have so far at least--it's a much stronger start than my previous attempt at this story.

How goes the first day for my fellow NaNoers?
 

Sólveig

Well-known member
Pirate from Cabudare - Venezuela
Pronouns: She/Her
Posts: 257
"Ars longa, vita brevis"
732 Words for the day. It was a slow start, but I have to go to bed right now. I feel like I wrote a prologue that ended way sooner than I thought. The scene was supposed to go beyond what I wrote, but I don't know what happened. Could be time induced pressure. I'll... I'll leave it for someone else to read it and give me a suggestion, because I have no idea if I should carry on with it, or if I should go to the next part.

The characters are interesting, though. I think this is going to be a romance. It's been a while since the last time I made one of those.
 

TopNotch

Well-known member
Ranger from Australia
Posts: 379
"Motivation is temporary. Discipline is forever."
I'm about a chapter or so off finishing the novel I've been working on, so of course I'm dawdling. I used to do the same when writing essays at uni - come to the conclusion and find that the bathroom taps absolutely must be cleaned NOW! But day before yesterday, the first bit of the next book started forming in my head. I'm so definitely a pantser. I wrote most of the first chapter, just over 3,000 words today. Be interested to see where they are taking me, those characters of mine.
 

TopNotch

Well-known member
Ranger from Australia
Posts: 379
"Motivation is temporary. Discipline is forever."
3459 words and chapter 2 done. Then using my notebook, I scribbled out a page-and-a-half of ascene because that's what I do when bits of dialogue or scenes pop into my mind and I don't want to lose them. No idea where this will go, but I like it so I hope it gets to go somewhere. I really wonder where the characters are going. I'm not sure we trust the Colonel as much as once we did, and what happened to Hamish...?
 

Sólveig

Well-known member
Pirate from Cabudare - Venezuela
Pronouns: She/Her
Posts: 257
"Ars longa, vita brevis"
Nothing today. I took the day off to plot the story so I have an idea about what to do. It's not my best written plot, but now I do know what to do. I'll try to go for more than 1K tomorrow. It's my goal for NaNo to have the same rhythm as last year, in which I finished before Day 25, if I recall correctly...
 

Laura Rainbow Dragon

Well-known member
Bard from Canada
Posts: 222
"Striving to be the change."
608 words for me today.
I need to pick up my pace!
But I got a lot of non-writing things done today that needed to get done.
And I attended my region's first Virtual Write-In of the year this evening. That ended up being just the ML and myself. (We're a pretty sparsely-populated region.) She's a longtime NaNo buddy of mine, so we ended up spending most of the 90 minute session catching up with one another rather than actually writing. Which is fine. The month is young yet, and the fact that I wrote over 600 words in only about 30 minutes of actual writing time means my writing pace was actually decently good.
I'm off to bed now with the hope of getting an earlier start on things tomorrow.
 

Laura Rainbow Dragon

Well-known member
Bard from Canada
Posts: 222
"Striving to be the change."
I'm right there with you @Sólveig . I made daily par today for the first time this month, but am still far behind on the month-to-date.
November 5: 1753 words
Month-to-date: 4252

Most North Americans get an extra hour tonight. I'm going to make good use of mine to sleep!
 

TopNotch

Well-known member
Ranger from Australia
Posts: 379
"Motivation is temporary. Discipline is forever."
I am glad I decided to do NaNo this year. Went to my first Write-In today and managed to get over a bit of a block I had so now I think I know where the story is going. Sometimes I wish I were a plotter!
 

Laura Rainbow Dragon

Well-known member
Bard from Canada
Posts: 222
"Striving to be the change."
Certainly not flying like you are, @TopNotch -- Way to go!

My words are still feeling a bit like pulling teeth at the moment.
November 8: 1929 words
8597 words on the month-to-date.
Plodding along. Very messy NaNo-ish mush of word spew today. But words.
 

TopNotch

Well-known member
Ranger from Australia
Posts: 379
"Motivation is temporary. Discipline is forever."
Tragedy! The programme I use normally does an auto save about every ten minutes. And if you don't save it and it shuts down, it always, always presents you with a recovered file. So how come today, after I finished the chapter (adding 3445 words) and saved it, how come when I opened it up, it gave me a version that was without most of those words?!!! :sadness: I did everything I could but it was nowhere to be found. On a positive note, at least I knew what happened in that chapter, but there was some really good dialogue - actually a soliloquy if you want to be particular - that is gone forever. I rewrote as best I could (that's the problem with being a pantser, I suppose!) and finished the chapter with exactly 3500 words (added to the 1013 I'd done yesterday). Man, what a way to lose motivation!! So what have I written today? 6945 words, or just 3500? :gotq:
 

Laura Rainbow Dragon

Well-known member
Bard from Canada
Posts: 222
"Striving to be the change."
Ooph! That is harsh @TopNotch .

Are you backing up your work to an external source? I make a backup copy of my project onto a USB stick every two or three days. (Although, with the health of my computer I would probably be wise to do it every day.)
 
Last edited:

Sólveig

Well-known member
Pirate from Cabudare - Venezuela
Pronouns: She/Her
Posts: 257
"Ars longa, vita brevis"
Tragedy! The programme I use normally does an auto save about every ten minutes. And if you don't save it and it shuts down, it always, always presents you with a recovered file. So how come today, after I finished the chapter (adding 3445 words) and saved it, how come when I opened it up, it gave me a version that was without most of those words?!!! :sadness: I did everything I could but it was nowhere to be found. On a positive note, at least I knew what happened in that chapter, but there was some really good dialogue - actually a soliloquy if you want to be particular - that is gone forever. I rewrote as best I could (that's the problem with being a pantser, I suppose!) and finished the chapter with exactly 3500 words (added to the 1013 I'd done yesterday). Man, what a way to lose motivation!! So what have I written today? 6945 words, or just 3500? :gotq:

Sadly, some programs with autosave only wish to be as effective as Google Docs's. Obsidian has corrupted me entire files because of a sudden powercut while I was writing, thus any progress is lost.

A good habit of mine is to always duplicate the file before opening, just in case it glitches out.
 

TopNotch

Well-known member
Ranger from Australia
Posts: 379
"Motivation is temporary. Discipline is forever."
I'd saved the doc but not even closed out because I hadn't finished using it. I just took a brief break! It was entirely bizarre, a freak of un-nature.
And yes, @Laura Rainbow Dragon I save it not only on the programme but also somewhere else on my device AND on a stick. I also print out each chapter as I finish it but unfortunately, we got a new modem on Wednesday morning, were supposed to be reconnected to internet by noon but, as you can expect, STILL NOTHING! So that means I can't print from my device either. A series of unfortunate events compounded by the total failure of the internet provider to do what they are being paid to do.
 
Last edited:

Laura Rainbow Dragon

Well-known member
Bard from Canada
Posts: 222
"Striving to be the change."
Welcome @Storm !

I too am lagging at NaNo this year. I have officially declared myself a rebel so I can work on multiple projects because I am so not ready to write anything decent for the project I had initially hoped to tackle this month.
 

TopNotch

Well-known member
Ranger from Australia
Posts: 379
"Motivation is temporary. Discipline is forever."
Hello, @Storm I used NaNo (for the first time) to get myself back into some solid writing. I left gaps with square-backetted things like [insert (whatever) here] for when I could spare the time to do some research. I used it as a discipline, really making myself write every day, and that forced me to think of something to write every day. For me, going out on hikes allowed my mind to wander (just as my body did, especially once when I missed the turn-off and went further than intended!) and when I got back home, there was generally something to write. All the best with your endeavours.
 

Laura Rainbow Dragon

Well-known member
Bard from Canada
Posts: 222
"Striving to be the change."
Well... I am officially desperately far behind on my NaNoWriMo wordcount. I've just squeaked past 30K, and November 25 is almost over for me.
4K words per day is doable for me when I know what I want to write. But I so do not know right now. I've been floundering all month.
I should be able to set aside enough time this weekend to really dig in. Try to get to 41K by Sunday night at least. The end of the month will feel a lot more manageable if I can get my required wordcount for the final three days down to 3K per day.

@Storm @Haleth @LizardFriend95 how are you all doing?
Anyone else still battling it out with me to try to pull a NaNo victory out of the hat during the final days of the challenge?
 

TopNotch

Well-known member
Ranger from Australia
Posts: 379
"Motivation is temporary. Discipline is forever."
You can do it, @Laura Rainbow Dragon ! Are you a plotter or a pantser? I averaged 3,500 words, and I know a lot of it is rubbish words, but the story's still there. Just work on getting that story down, don't worry about making it pretty or perfect - do that on the edit.
One YouTube video I watched recently talked about the first draft and how it was 'supposed' to be rubbish. The first attempt at everything, she said, is always rubbish; that's why God made men first. ;)
 

Haleth

Well-known member
Mage Posts: 71
I'm even more behind than you, @Laura Rainbow Dragon ! This month has been unexpectedly busy and I'm currently sitting at around 16500 words for the month. I'd have to write a ridiculous amount to catch up.

However, this has inspired me to get back into writing properly, and I'm determined I'll finish this book, no matter how long it takes. So NaNo has been a victory for me in that sense, at least!
 

Laura Rainbow Dragon

Well-known member
Bard from Canada
Posts: 222
"Striving to be the change."
Welp! I finished with 3 hours and 10 minutes to spare. This was lucky #13 for me with NaNo's main event. I've also done Camp NaNo five times and Script Frenzy I think twice. I don't think I've ever cut things quite this close before!

Thank you @TopNotch @PetiteSheWolf @Storm for the encouragement!

@TopNotch I am definitely a planner! I don't always write down an outline before beginning drafting a writing project, but I definitely like to have one mapped out in my head. I'd meant to have a solid outline going into NaNo this year. But the project I chose to work on is an ambitious one for me. I was already behind in my planning work when Trudy took sick, and then I got close to nothing done on my writing during her final days. I'm not sorry about this in the slightest. I am very grateful I was able to spend that time with Trudy. But it did mean I hit November 1st not at all ready to work on the project I had declared and also with no backup project in mind.

I considered cancelling my plans to participate in NaNo at all this year. But I'd already declared a project and told people I was doing it, and I didn't have any other plans lined up writing-wise for the month. So I decided to give it a go. I'd fallen away from my writing entirely for three years and just got back into it earlier this year and was still working on getting back into a regular writing habit. I figured doing NaNo would help with that, even if the words I got out of it were a total mess (which they were) so I stayed in.

I didn't finish the project I started the month with, however. I'm really not a discovery writer. I like to know my route in advance, and I absolutely edit my work as I go, right down to carefully deliberating over word choice in my first draft. It's a slow writing process. I participate in NaNo in part to see if I can find ways to speed up. But I like the results I get out of my process. I don't like spending an entire month writing gibberish that's such a mess I don't even know how to begin editing it.

When I write using my usual, tried and true, edit-as-I-go method, my revision of my first draft is nothing more for me than tightening up my prose a bit and fixing typos. I like working this way! I took a writing craft course my senior year of high school in which we were required to hand in both our first draft and final revision for each assignment. But my writing process was the same back then as the one I use now: map out the entire story in my head in advance and edit it, word-for-word as I go while writing it. I completed every assignment in the course that way and then, on the day the assignment was due, I would copy out my "final" printed draft by hand, intentionally making mistakes and crossing things out, and then hand in the handwritten, intentionally messy copy as my "first draft". (I think I even told the teacher up front that I was going to have to do that if she wanted to see two different drafts of the same piece of writing out of me. Perhaps she did not believe me?)

For this year's NaNo, I did write a few scenes at the beginning of the month on my original project idea that I thought might work well. But things went downhill from there. After I wrote a scene in which my protagonist participated in a virtual game of squash against an unknown opponent while holed up on a space station in quarantine as a means to trying to find out if her nemesis was on the station with her I knew I was in trouble. (This story isn't meant to have anything at all to do with the game of squash or with VR games in general or with life on a space station, and the person she ended up playing squash against turned out not to be her nemesis, and the whole "you have to go through quarantine before being allowed to immigrate to the planet's surface" bit should have been summed up in one sentence.) So mid-month I officially declared myself a NaNo rebel so I could work on multiple different projects instead of continuing to struggle for words like pulling teeth on a project I just am not ready to write yet.

So I wrote 50K words this month, but not all on the same project, and I cannot exactly say that I developed a "regular" writing habit either since I had to push so hard at the end of the month and work at a rate that is definitely not sustainable long-term for me. But I do feel ready to get back into writing tomorrow at a sustainable pace using a structured approach (as opposed to this month's scattershot "oh look! here's a story seed I can spew out a couple thousand words about quickly!" mayhem). And my writing muscles do feel warmed up now and better conditioned than they were at the start of the month. So I'll call this year's NaNo a success in these regards.

@TopNotch @Haleth @Storm I'm glad NaNo was also a success for each of you (even if not in the "traditional" sense for some of us). At the end of the day (month!) I think if NaNo enhanced your creativity, it was a worthwhile endeavour, regardless of one's final wordcount.
 

TopNotch

Well-known member
Ranger from Australia
Posts: 379
"Motivation is temporary. Discipline is forever."
I think, @Laura Rainbow Dragon that I'll try planning. Or at least plantsing! I screwed myself a bit when I was at 40K because I wasn't sure that I had 10K left in me. So I kind of planned it and then had horrible trouble the next day writing the planned chapter. Once I got over that bump, however (basically ignoring my plan!) I was okay, and I got my 50K. But it's a first draft and is so totally rubbish, but that's okay - the story is there, start to finish. I've got a fair bit of research to do and I'm considering CampNaNo for a second draft - and I'm even getting things nicely set up in Scrivener so that should help with plans and such. Had great fun doing MBTI tests for my protagonist and antagonist. :) And noticed odd things. At one point in the story, my protagonist yells to the antagonist "You stole my integrity!" and when I did the test some weeks later, my protagonist turned out to be a logistician with a 'life of integrity' - "The core of Logisticians' self-respect comes from a sense of personal integrity." Think I know this character pretty well! I'd recommend anyone doing MBTI (you can do them free) tests for their main characters at least - check out how well you really know them.
@Storm It's not doing much good in your brain!
 

Laura Rainbow Dragon

Well-known member
Bard from Canada
Posts: 222
"Striving to be the change."
Thank you @Montserrat @Storm @Haleth

@Storm now that NaNo is over I am going back to Writing Excuses Season 10 which the crew designed to be like a writing masterclass in podcast form. I had started working through it back in October as prep for my NaNo project, but did not have nearly enough time. Now I can work through it without an externally-imposed timeline. I have a number of projects still in early planning stages at the moment. I plan to do more prep work on each until I get at least one to a stage where it's screaming at me, "Write me now!" (I also have a number of past NaNo projects still in various stages of disarray. But I plan to work through some newer, most likely shorter projects first before going back to them.)

@TopNotch we tend to talk about planning/plotting/outlining versus "pantsing"/discovery writing as if they are opposite sides of a coin. But in reality, it's a spectrum, and few people, if any, truly work at either extreme. I definitely prefer to create a plan for a project before I begin drafting it. But this doesn't mean I don't insert twists and turns and additions into that plan as new and perhaps better ideas come to me during the drafting process. Similarly, the person who likes to write by the seat of their pants is still planning ahead somewhat, at least in their head. It's just a question of finding where on the spectrum is most optimal for each individual writer and project.

I have heard discovery writers say they cannot outline because by the time they get to the end of the outline they feel that they have already done the work of discovering their story and they then don't feel motivated to write it. But if you're writing a super messy first draft, doesn't that essentially become the plan for your story, which then needs to be re-written in any case? For me, planning a project is fun. The writing stage is also fun if I have a plan. If I don't have a plan, the writing stage is definitely not fun, and at the end of it I have a mess which needs to be re-written, and I definitely don't relish the idea of having to write again something that already was gruesome to write in the first place. I think preferences for plotting v. pansting have a lot to do with this perspective re: which parts of the writing process are fun for a given writer versus which parts are a chore.

Did you get Scrivener with your sweet NaNoWriMo winner discount? I got Scrivener through NaNo a bunch of years back, and I love it.
What resource do you like for free MBTI tests? Are you doing them online?
 

TopNotch

Well-known member
Ranger from Australia
Posts: 379
"Motivation is temporary. Discipline is forever."
@Laura Rainbow Dragon I used 16personalities.com for the MBTI. I know there are others but the (free) reports from this one looked pretty good so I didn't bother using any other. As a sort of control, I did myself. I was 'done' years ago and 'properly' and when the result was pretty similar, I thought 16personalities was okay to use. I've also looked at Enneagrams for more emotional responses, but just once and, as they are new to me, I have no experience of them. Interesting, though.
Gotta love that Scrivener discount! Way too pricey for me otherwise. I'd heard a lot about Scrivener and went through the trial, so ... :)
My novel wasn't at all planned. In fact, when NaNo started, I hadn't finished the first book and only had a germ of an idea as to how the first chapter of book 2 would open. But a story? Well, totally discovered that! I couldn't have done NaNo this year if I had worked on an outline first - unless I had really been prepared and done it in October! And it's not such a mess, but it's pointed out some things I'll have to foreshadow in the first book perhaps. The first book is a bit messy, though, because things really did change there so I'm actually going to break things down into scenes on that lovely corkboard and have some more fun!
 
Top