It had been an exhausting experience, up to a point where I felt I had to take a break from writing.
I know, I know, it is not a very professional thing to say. Pro writers write despite what they feel. I may not be “Pro” level, but having a professional mindset to what you are doing helps get things done. However, writing, as a creative process makes use of energy and emotions that far surpasses a professional mindset for fuel and motivation. I felt spent, empty and exhausted. I had to step back and take a break.
So, I failed the writing challenge. Big deal.
However, this year’s journey has been meaningful. This year’s NANOWRIMO has been my most successful, despite its appearances.
Here are why my 2019 NANOWRIMO was the best (so far)
There are only four days left until the end of NANOWRIMO. The challenge is ending, and so is my motivation to completing a “really awesome story.”
My excitement and enthusiasm for this fantasy-adventure story I have been writing for NANOWRIMO is dangerously low. So low that it might break the habit I have built up of slowly writing in words to complete it.
I think my inner editor is slowly breaking free of his bonds. That, or he is yelling at me from the cell in which I have tossed him in.
Either way, it is eating at me and making me doubt myself.
I am at approximate 16,600 words as of writing this post, and with the month ending by next week, I doubt I will be able to make the cut.
It would be nice if I could find a way to advance the story. Now, normally, I would skip a part I do not know what to do in the story. I can assume that it may be not that necessary or probably can be resolved by a nice flashback… However, it is another story when you arrive at the potential climax of the story and realize that you are stuck.
How am I stuck? Well, let’s just say that I placed my main characters in such a dire situation, that even I, as the writer, could not potentially see a way for them to live through that said situation. I want to save them, but I can’t just do it without making use of “plot armor” or some “deus ex machina”.
Have you ever had such a situation? What did you do? Go back in the draft and “made it a bit easier”? Or did you push on with what you had?
Actually, I might have an idea now that I am typing this up. The details may not make much sense, the way I get them out of the mess I put my characters might be bordering plot armor… but I will fix that in editing.
“I will fix that in editing.” This has been my mantra for getting through with my NANOWRIMO draft this year. I am close to exceeding my story words compared to last year, but compared to last year, I lost focus and direction. That was the result of me pantsing away at a novel. It was fun, it was creative, but in the end, I got lost and dropped the project. Whoops.
Now, it’s different. It may suck, it may not be the best for now, but whether it takes me until December, or whenever, I will finish the first draft.
So, this is me, just working out a writer’s block. 😀
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I stumbled upon a great writing tip on reddit yesterday. It’s an old tip to most writers, but to novices like me, it is an eye-opener. It was a subtle reminder that what I am currently working on is a draft, and it does not matter what it looks like. You know what the tip was?
National Novel Writing Month is only days away! Make sure you’re prepared for what’s coming, so you can start this challenge strong. NaNo Checklist Schedule Reschedule non-essential tasks, events, and responsibilitiesMake sure your family, roommates, friends, etc. are aware of the challenge—the necessity for you to stay on track, and for them to give you…
As a short story writer, one of my biggest problem is how to pace a longer story. It is very tempting for me to immediately jump to the ending once I know how it will go.
For example, if I am writing an adventure story, I more often than not find myself rushing to get the story to the point where things get interesting. That would be fine for short stories that are probably in a thousand words or even less, but for novels, we got to take our time. However, if we slow things down too much, it gets boring.
My NANOWRIMO Journey has been a path to improvement. In the past two years that I have tried, I ended up with two partially finished novels. The first got me 9,000 words, while my second attempt allowed me to finish in 16,000 words.
I guess novel writing is really that challenging, specially if one has to get 50,000 words in a single month.
This year, I’m trying to do a re-write of my first year novel. As early as now, I am organizing stuff and figuring thing out.
Why I fell Short
I guess improper planning and lack of experience is to blame. In my first year of writing, I just pants’d it. I dove into writing without much of an outline. I just thought of a character, a setting, and a mystery. As I started writing, I realized difficulties with the plot. And when I hit around 8,000 words, I realized that I must be doing something wrong and attempted a re-write. Wrong move. Hence my novel was left unfinished.
Year two was better. Although I tried a different setting, new characters and an entirely new story, I still ended up short of stuff to write. At 16,000 words I was near finishing the story. I tried padding it with more plot but I ran out of time.
This year will be different.
I have a rough story. I just need to sow in more sub plots to make it interesting, I guess. I just need to put more meat into the bones so I can hit that 50,000 word mark. This is not an entirely new story – it is a rewrite. My main characters are not new to me. I know them already. I just placed them in a different setting.
Sometimes, I’m tempted to start penning this novel down… hahaha… But I will have to stick with the challenge. Hopefully, I complete it this year, and it will help me into writing more novels in the future.
Writing 50,000 words in a month is not that difficult. However, it’s writing something that makes sense, something interesting, something good that is composed of 50,000 words is a challenge.
Are you going to write something for NANOWRIMO this year? What kind of novel is it? How was your own NANOWRIMO journey these past few years?