Nov 14, 2013

Fast Drafting success!

I did it! As of 11.34pm tonight, I reached 73,047 words, And all in 14 days!! *happy dance*

It was tough. It was very tough at times.

But it was the only way I was going to get this first draft done, once and for all.

I've learned a lot - not just about the techniques to use to fast draft, but also about my story and the plot points and plot elements.

I'm going to write a post about this experience, but not tonight. Tonight I'm going to collapse into bed with a smile on my face.

And tomorrow that smile will still be there, but I'm going to rest, catch up with my housework and spend time with my family.

For all the NaNoers still working on their novels, I wish you all the very, very best. Take good care of yourselves.

Goodnight. *Yawn*
Image courtesy of Jusben at

And goodnight! *Zzzzzzzzzzzz.........*

Nov 2, 2013

Fast Drafting - Day 2

I'm trying something new this year. Fast Drafting. Candace Havens is the creator of this writing method, and the goal is to have a 70,000 wordcount draft written in 2 weeks. That's 5,000 words per day.

Day 1 didn't get off to the start I'd hoped it would. Real Life, don't you know? But I did manage, after about three hours work, to handwrite 12 pages of foolscap to notch up a wordcount of around 3,408 words. That made me very happy once I got over the fact that I hadn't reached 5,000 words for the day.

Today I went to a Write-In at the Gosnells Knowledge Centre where I spewed out 4,501 words in under two hours. (The difference between last night's wordcount and today's is due to 1) writing earlier in the day, and 2) typing instead of handwriting.)

Another 500 words this evening after Little Guy is in bed will take me up to the 5K mark. And perhaps I'll do a bit more than 500 to make up for last night's deficit. By around Day 3 or 4 I hope to be on target, wordcount-wise.

There will be a lot of blog silence this year. Real Life and Fast Drafting are about as much as I can manage with any degree of committment. But I will post some tips and tricks once I've finished my first draft and I work out what's helped me the most.

Image courtesy of Jppi at

And to all the other NaNoers out there, keep those pens/fingers moving! Onwards!!

Apr 26, 2013

I did it!

This evening, I passed the 25K mark. Woo hoo! 25,065 is my estimate (I'm handwriting). I'm very pleased, but the writing doesn't stop here. Everything I've written so far has brought up some more ideas for scenes and plot points and I'll be writing my 4 pages of foolscaps per night for the foreseeable future. My intention is to write another 25K in May and the same again in June, by which time I should have a 75K first draft completed or very nearly.

I'll be updating my progress on my other blog: Stepping Stones (

Hope my fellow Campers are travelling along nicely to their own destinations. All the best!

Apr 18, 2013

My Writing Process

I said I would post something on the process I'm using with my WIP, so here it is!

The first part of my pre-planning involved fitting some key plot points into the W plot arc. (Do you know this? I read about it in Mary Caroll Moore's "Your Novel Starts Here".) My aim was to first of all find the pivotal scenes that fit into the arc - each of the five high and low points. This was easy enough as I already had an idea of some 'big' scenes, and I could see just how these scenes fit into the bigger picture and what order they would happen in.

Another technique I'm using from Moore's book is the idea of an island list. An island is a piece of writing that is written in isolation to any other piece, but which is part of the whole, although the link between the islands will only be recognised when they're all written. It's a wonderful way to discover the depths of the story - where theme and arc and motivations reside. I brainstormed a list of islands prior to Camp NaNo and started writing one each evening. Sometimes they inspired a follow up scene. Sometimes they inspired more islands where I could see the scene I was working on would have a mirror equivalent near the end of the novel.

I highly recommend Moore's book for anyone starting out with writing, for anyone that's more of a pantser than a full-blown plotter (but has enough writing experience under their belts to realise that there has to be some sort of destination in mind if they're ever to finish the novel), for anyone who is right-brained and a visual sort of person, or for anyone who's tried other processes and they just haven't worked as well as expected.

Happy writing!

Apr 2, 2013

Camp NaNo April 2013!

The April Camp NaNo has started and I'm aiming for 25K this time round. I'm working on a new incarnation of the stalled novel.

Catching up with the posts in my reader (I'm using Feedly now, btw, and it's great!), I came across an article on K.M. Weiland's site that gave me pause for thought. Perhaps all those years ago I was writing the story too soon. Let's hope now is the right time! I wonder how you know?

Then I read an article by Larry Brooks at about a writer needing a vision for the story before he or she starts working on it. Perhaps this is part of what's required for 'the right time to write'?

In any case, I wrote (longhand) 1204 words last night on April 1st. The daily goal is 834 words, so I'm pleased with my first day.

Bit by bit, I'll share the process I'm using this time round, but in the meantime, I'm wishing all the very best to my fellow Campers and hoping you're having fun!