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Thread: Did someone say MarNoWriMo?

  1. #126
    practical experience, FTW eternalised's Avatar
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    Silver-Midnight, I completely understand about writing a novel sounding as a much harder task than writing a novella. I personally think the first 20k of a novel is easy - it just flows out - but it's the middle part that's terrible, like biting through a sour apple really. Plus, when a novella you sit down and say "okay, let's write 20k". With a novel, you sit down and say "okay, let's write 80k".

    Quote Originally Posted by FoamyRules View Post
    So, I actually got some writing in and am now working on my outline for Camp Nano. I tried using yWriter, and it's a great tool, but I got to write it down on notebook paper first.
    I've never heard of yWriter before, but I checked it out and it looks interesting and useful. My entire room is usually filled with notes while I'm writing a novel, and I have a notebook as well, but still it could be useful to keep everything in order.

    I'm also thinking of signing up for Camp NaNo. I've never done Camp NaNo before, but now might be the time.

    I'm now at 20k words in my Ghostslayer MS. I think I'm good to go for another 1-2k, but then the first tough part comes.
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  2. #127
    "We're all mad here" - Cheshire Cat Silver-Midnight's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cliff Face View Post
    I see.

    To be honest, I've written a novel to a specific word count before, and yes, it did become novel-length. That's not to say it's any good (it was my first novel, long before I found AW)...

    I think perhaps it's okay to aim for a word count, so long as you don't fall prey to "chapter padding". That's an error I made - "Oh, this chapter's supposed to be 4000 words, and it's only 3000 right now... I better add 1000 words!"

    While it is second-hand advice (from a published author to me to you) I do think that my writing has gotten a lot better by simply trying to write only what is necessary (even if it's not specifically necessary to the plot, and is more a character-development thing - if it's necessary in one way, it goes in).

    And I hear you about novels being daunting!

    Do you use an outline? They've really helped me in the past.
    Thanks for that.

    I don't think I'm doing chapter-padding. I tend to think "Okay, so the next X amount of words will go in this chapter then I'll be at X word count and I'll start a new a chapter." However, maybe that is chapter padding. But I usually tend to do 2000 words per chapter anyway; usually, I do end up a bit over, but it's still roughly around that. But still maybe I should stop thinking that way then; maybe that is an alternate form of chapter padding. What do you think?

    I mean I think setting a certain chapter word count for me does help, but at the same time, I could be severely complicating things. I mean I am happy that this is working out, the trying to meet 2K per chapter thing, but at the same time, I don't want to really hurt my writing either. The reasons why it's working out is because I am writing more within a piece; Usually, I get to anywhere between 2K- 3K, and that's the whole story. I do want to increase the quantity of my work, but I don't want to sacrifice quality either. Hmm, now I'm worried.

    I mean I have deviated from what I originally saw in my head some, but I think it would've made more sense to make that deviation than to stick with what I was originally thinking about doing.

    See, I want to write what's necessary, but I don't want too little or start showing more than I tell. But at the same time, I don't want to overfill it with a bunch of random stuff either. I mean so far my characters haven't done the "go-to-bed-wake-up-it's-a-new-day" thing too much. If anything, I'm just a bit worried that one character isn't coming off as in love with another character as I want/need her to be, and some stuff like that. However, I do plan to rewrite this after I finish it, and take a small break from it.



    No, I don't really use an outline; I may write down some stuff that sets the story up or some events I know will have to stay in the story. Other than that, I don't think so.

    Quote Originally Posted by eternalised View Post
    Silver-Midnight, I completely understand about writing a novel sounding as a much harder task than writing a novella. I personally think the first 20k of a novel is easy - it just flows out - but it's the middle part that's terrible, like biting through a sour apple really. Plus, when a novella you sit down and say "okay, let's write 20k". With a novel, you sit down and say "okay, let's write 80k".



    I've never heard of yWriter before, but I checked it out and it looks interesting and useful. My entire room is usually filled with notes while I'm writing a novel, and I have a notebook as well, but still it could be useful to keep everything in order.
    Yeah. I mean it is possible for me to write one, but I just don't know if I want to. I mean I'm well aware that I'm picking a genre that mostly has novels or novellas. However, if I'm going to write a novel, I think I should either start off with a novella, or try to write a novella and end up with a novel, which I think starts at 40K for Fantasy. But that's just me.



    yWriter is a good program. I use it too. It could be another contributing factor my longer word counts now. I don't know for sure though. Just an idea. I like it. I was going to use it for my first draft, but Word for all of the others. I felt that made a lot of sense to do.
    Last edited by Silver-Midnight; 03-17-2012 at 08:42 PM.

  3. #128
    Now available (see sig for link)! Cliff Face's Avatar
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    Hmm. I would say that forcing a chapter to be a certain length counts as word-padding.

    Of course, I can't say too much about it, simply because that's actually how I learned to write novels... Like, I forced myself to write something longer than usual, so in the process I discovered techniques and the such that should be in a novel.

    So perhaps this is just what you need to do? Once you've got a 60-80k novel sitting on your hard drive, then you will probably learn more about novel-writing than otherwise, just by editing it.

    One thing I can say from experience: I've gotten better as a writer the more I've written. I'm slowly homing in on a saleable novel.

    So perhaps the question is how long you're prepared to wait before feeling comfortable with novel-writing? I mean, in theory you could read up on techniques and rules and the such and apply it directly to your first novel, and be a step ahead of the curve... But that has the pitfall that it might suck all the fun out of writing for you. Or you could resign yourself to learning at your own pace and from your own heart, but run the risk of getting despondent that you're not making enough progress quick enough.

    That's not to say you're not a good writer already... Just that a lot of people's first efforts don't ever get published.
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  4. #129
    Bah Humbug K. Taylor's Avatar
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    Silver, you're writing the first draft? Just write the story. Period.

    You can work on structure and chapter size and word count and everything else once you start editing. Don't worry about the size of the book until it's hit "the end".

  5. #130
    Now available (see sig for link)! Cliff Face's Avatar
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    Essay is written, edited, referenced, and now just needs to be printed. *breathes sigh of relief*

    Not sure what I'll do for the rest of the day.
    Buy my comedic urban fantasy novel on Kindle today!
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  6. #131
    "We're all mad here" - Cheshire Cat Silver-Midnight's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by K. Taylor View Post
    Silver, you're writing the first draft? Just write the story. Period.

    You can work on structure and chapter size and word count and everything else once you start editing. Don't worry about the size of the book until it's hit "the end".
    Yes, this is my first draft.

    Yeah, but I don't want to hit "The End" too quickly or at small/low word count. I really want to try to increase my story length if I could. Again, I'd be satisfied if I didn't end up with a novel, but at the same time, I don't want end up with just a little under 3K like I was writing before.

    I mean the reason I try to do 2K is because a lot of my stories end up at 2K so, someone suggested I start out making my chapters that length at first. That's the only reason why I am for 2K.

    Quote Originally Posted by Cliff Face View Post
    Hmm. I would say that forcing a chapter to be a certain length counts as word-padding.

    Of course, I can't say too much about it, simply because that's actually how I learned to write novels... Like, I forced myself to write something longer than usual, so in the process I discovered techniques and the such that should be in a novel.

    So perhaps this is just what you need to do? Once you've got a 60-80k novel sitting on your hard drive, then you will probably learn more about novel-writing than otherwise, just by editing it.

    One thing I can say from experience: I've gotten better as a writer the more I've written. I'm slowly homing in on a saleable novel.

    So perhaps the question is how long you're prepared to wait before feeling comfortable with novel-writing? I mean, in theory you could read up on techniques and rules and the such and apply it directly to your first novel, and be a step ahead of the curve... But that has the pitfall that it might suck all the fun out of writing for you. Or you could resign yourself to learning at your own pace and from your own heart, but run the risk of getting despondent that you're not making enough progress quick enough.

    That's not to say you're not a good writer already... Just that a lot of people's first efforts don't ever get published.

    I was kind of afraid it was chapter padding.

    Wow. Well, it's alright; this is just my second attempt at long original piece. So, I think it's okay for me to make some rookie mistakes. At the very least, I can trunk it, and consider it great practice, right? So, that'll be good.

    I just have to make sure that I at least finish this one. My first attempt I didn't finish, but this one I'm going to really try to finish i

  7. #132
    You don't have coffee? Go away. WordCount's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Silver-Midnight View Post
    Yes, this is my first draft.

    Yeah, but I don't want to hit "The End" too quickly or at small/low word count. I really want to try to increase my story length if I could. Again, I'd be satisfied if I didn't end up with a novel, but at the same time, I don't want end up with just a little under 3K like I was writing before.

    I mean the reason I try to do 2K is because a lot of my stories end up at 2K so, someone suggested I start out making my chapters that length at first. That's the only reason why I am for 2K.




    I was kind of afraid it was chapter padding.

    Wow. Well, it's alright; this is just my second attempt at long original piece. So, I think it's okay for me to make some rookie mistakes. At the very least, I can trunk it, and consider it great practice, right? So, that'll be good.

    I just have to make sure that I at least finish this one. My first attempt I didn't finish, but this one I'm going to really try to finish i
    Certain people do different things. When I wrote my novel (which was about 12 chapters), I was writing about 3-4 thousand words per average chapter, and then adding in the longer chapters (5-8K) I had a 50K Word Contemp. Fantasy.

    Also, another thing. I only had one plot. The main one, with about 15 characters, nine of which were dead by the end.

  8. #133
    Now available (see sig for link)! Cliff Face's Avatar
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    And I should stress that my opinion is just that: opinion.

    Every writer is different, so there's nothing to say anything in most cases of advice.

    And while it is perfectly fine to trunk your first novel, I think you'll learn the most from it when writing the first draft with the assumption that it might be published.
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  9. #134
    Bah Humbug K. Taylor's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Silver-Midnight View Post
    Yes, this is my first draft.

    Yeah, but I don't want to hit "The End" too quickly or at small/low word count. I really want to try to increase my story length if I could. Again, I'd be satisfied if I didn't end up with a novel, but at the same time, I don't want end up with just a little under 3K like I was writing before.

    I mean the reason I try to do 2K is because a lot of my stories end up at 2K so, someone suggested I start out making my chapters that length at first. That's the only reason why I am for 2K.
    It's a first draft - you won't. It isn't word count you should worry about. Focus on craft. If you're writing dialogue, make it mean something. If it's description, paint a clear picture in the reader's head. Etc etc. But the important thing is to finish the bones of the draft.

    Think of it like building a house. You start with a good foundation and then you frame the walls. You go through all the steps until you have a closed-up and sturdy shell of bare walls and empty rooms. Then what do you need to do with those rooms? Decorate. Add all the touches that turn it from a building to a home.

    So make sure you give your story good bones before you worry about anything else. You'll find in editing that there will be scenes you'll have to clarify, thoughts you have to further express, transitions you have to smooth out, etc.

    You never have to stress about a draft unless it's under a contracted deadline.

  10. #135
    Wordswift Penmonkey Contrarian
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    586 words so far today. 700+ yesterday. I am going in fits and starts here. Inconsistency is my name.

    Well done to everyone else.

  11. #136
    likes a colorful font xXVampyrePrincessXx's Avatar
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    *sigh* I'm going to have to finish the book I'm reading and then swear off reading for a while... I'm not doing ANYTHING else! >.<

    ~Amber~

  12. #137
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    624 words for today, plus most of a plot outline for a story I had started previously that wasn't going anywhere.

    i know what you mean about reading getting in the way of the writing and vice versa Amber. it can be hard to find a balance.

  13. #138
    Now available (see sig for link)! Cliff Face's Avatar
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    Submitted essay and read 4 chapters of Jane Eyre. Over halfway through that massive book, though I'm really quite nervous right now about my essay... and the philosophy test results I should get back tomorrow.

    Eep! Grading is starting to come in! *faints*
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  14. #139
    "We're all mad here" - Cheshire Cat Silver-Midnight's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by K. Taylor View Post
    It's a first draft - you won't. It isn't word count you should worry about. Focus on craft. If you're writing dialogue, make it mean something. If it's description, paint a clear picture in the reader's head. Etc etc. But the important thing is to finish the bones of the draft.

    Think of it like building a house. You start with a good foundation and then you frame the walls. You go through all the steps until you have a closed-up and sturdy shell of bare walls and empty rooms. Then what do you need to do with those rooms? Decorate. Add all the touches that turn it from a building to a home.

    So make sure you give your story good bones before you worry about anything else. You'll find in editing that there will be scenes you'll have to clarify, thoughts you have to further express, transitions you have to smooth out, etc.

    You never have to stress about a draft unless it's under a contracted deadline.
    Thanks!



    Well, I'm at a little over 9K right now. That's good. I don't know if I'll have this story finished by the time my break is over with, but I hope so. It would be ideal if I did.

    I'm still having trouble deciding what POV I want to use. So, I keep switching between 3rd POV and 1st POV. I'm pretty sure it's going to be a slight pain when I start working on my second draft and I'm editing.

  15. #140
    Wordswift Penmonkey Contrarian
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    463 words written, 331 deleted.

    Actually I did the deleting first, it's not quite as awful as it looks.

  16. #141
    blanket fort afficianado wishflower's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by FoamyRules View Post
    So, I actually got some writing in and am now working on my outline for Camp Nano. I tried using yWriter, and it's a great tool, but I got to write it down on notebook paper first.
    Outlining already for Camp?? I can't get past my WIP. I'm pretty jealous.

    I tried yWriter, but I've found what works best for me is to just keep all my notes in OneNote, and then have one Word document. I like how yWriter is set up, but it just doesn't mesh with my brain. OneNote, however, is the love of my life.
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  17. #142
    Just a regular Fairy Princess bettielee's Avatar
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    well, I have finished the first pass of edits on my Urban Fantasy ms. It needs more editing, but the first major pass is done.


    Currently NaNoing: The Heroine from Hampshire - gothic romance maybe... kinda

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  18. #143
    "We're all mad here" - Cheshire Cat Silver-Midnight's Avatar
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    Well, I finally hit my 10K word mark today. I feel good. I know that I'm still in the novelette range though.

  19. #144
    You don't have coffee? Go away. WordCount's Avatar
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    I wrote an outline for an upcoming novel today, and received a personal rejection from The Washington Pastime for my short-story.

    I love them, they really do give good reviews!

  20. #145
    Hamtaro Rules FoamyRules's Avatar
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    Well, I went back to school today, plus my hard drive crashed on me so I lost everything I'm on my mom's computer now, and well at least I have a pen and plenty of notebook paper

  21. #146
    "We're all mad here" - Cheshire Cat Silver-Midnight's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by FoamyRules View Post
    Well, I went back to school today, plus my hard drive crashed on me so I lost everything I'm on my mom's computer now, and well at least I have a pen and plenty of notebook paper
    Oh no! That's horrible. I'm so sorry that happened to you. Will you be to get it fixed and get your stuff back?

  22. #147
    Now available (see sig for link)! Cliff Face's Avatar
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    Always back up your work! I too learned that the hard way...

    Okay, so I have (almost) read a 50-page chapter for Critical Reasoning, and got the test back for the same class. 10/12. Not bad, I think. I've already celebrated with a Mars bar, though I have a hunch that we're going out to dinner tonight... It was the grandparents' anniversary last night, but we didn't go out because mum was feeling a bit blech. I think she's fine now, as she's out of the house (presumably at work) so yeah... I may get a free meal at a restaurant on the same day I got 10/12 on my first graded piece at Uni this year.

    Haven't done a whole lot else today, but it's only 4pm.
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  23. #148
    Now available (see sig for link)! Cliff Face's Avatar
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    And I should add that I have made the acquaintance of 3 people doing some of my subjects, and all 4 of us got 10/12.

    We're all in that class, 2 of them are in my other Philosophy class, and the other 1 is in my English class (who I see around ALL the time).

    Unfortunately, I have not made the acquaintance of any women at Uni... There's one in Mind And World who always has a comment relevant to the subject matter, but what strikes me about her is how vivid and expressive her face is, and how she's not shy about looking about the lecture theatre... If someone in the back asks a question, she'll turn to look at them, and seems to speak volumes with her face. I envy that quality.

    No other girls have really made a big impression on me yet. Although today I sat behind a girl wearing an adorable black shirt with red vampire bats on it and the words (in red) "You suck". LOL.
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  24. #149
    Hamtaro Rules FoamyRules's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Silver-Midnight View Post
    Oh no! That's horrible. I'm so sorry that happened to you. Will you be to get it fixed and get your stuff back?
    Hey Silver, uh maybe if I pay like 300 or 400 dollars but other than that, the stuff's gone .

    You are so right, Cliff Face, I used to have all of my files backed up on an external hard drive but that got shot too, and I was saving to buy another. Sigh, so now I got to buy 2 hard drives.

  25. #150
    Now available (see sig for link)! Cliff Face's Avatar
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    It might be an idea to buy a thumb drive, too.

    I have a 1GB one purely for writing stuff. 1GB is more than enough for "just writing stuff", and it cost me about $6. I also have an external hard drive with ALL my important files backed up onto it, which has been a godsend, but yeah - thumb drives for the win.

    (Actually, I have 3 thumb drives... a 4GB one has music on it, and one is still in its packaging, which I got free at some point or another.) Even with a 4GB thumb drive, I probably only spent about $12.
    Buy my comedic urban fantasy novel on Kindle today!
    I now have a blog.
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    From De-cluttering To Minimalism: A Journey (is it finished yet?)
    The Little House of Flames (writing)

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