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Old 10-18-2016, 04:36 PM
Spice Weasel Spice Weasel is offline
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NaNoNaNoNaNo... WriMo!

Please tell me I'm not the only one gearing up for NaNoWriMo.

I'm still revising the first NaNo book I wrote in 2014 but I figured I'd work on a new idea I have: The Burning. Kind of a declining civilization fantasy, a team of folks discover their weird powers under the control and manipulation of a sociopathic Professor X. I've got it all figured out thematically (this is a trauma narrative - each character is representative of some symptom of prolonged trauma and the story arc is essentially about them going from survival mode to manipulation/abuse by their leader to healing/thriving independently.)

It's dark and gritty because that's how I do. The female protag is an indentured servant drug addict about to be pushed into prostitution, the male protag is a former prostitute and addict, charged by their abusive leader to help her get clean. Her power is to wield strange blue fire that destroys organic matter and his is the ability to summon an evil presence that controls with fear. I've got a telepath who can break down mental barriers between other people, including shared memories and feelings, a healer who refuses to heal trauma out of principle, and some other team members. And some secret society trying to harvest mutant energy & intelligence to get themselves off planet earth.

I was trying to be a good girl and get this all plotted out but I'm kinda spinning my wheels at this point. I have the gist of the first half nailed down but beyond that I'm kinda lost. I'm hoping it comes to me by the time I get there.

Anybody else? Got any preparation rituals? Let's get fired up, people, we're running out of time!
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  #2  
Old 10-18-2016, 05:15 PM
Lancia Lancia is offline
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Originally Posted by Spice Weasel View Post
I'm kinda spinning my wheels at this point. I have the gist of the first half nailed down but beyond that I'm kinda lost. I'm hoping it comes to me by the time I get there.
This is where I'm at, too. It's frustrating as hell as I've been rolling an idea around in my head for years about a character and have decided to finally put the story onto paper.

My biggest concern is the fact that my lead character is a female, and I am not female. I fear that I'll be writing about a person I can't connect with and that it will plainly obvious to anyone that reads it. I'm also writing a crime novel, and the lead characters in crime novels (usually) have some unbelievable resume of skills, education, contacts, and funds with which to do good... Kay Scarpetta is a good example. This will not be the case in my book, and I don't know if that's a problem or not.

I have the first half or so of the plot figured out but past that... I just don't know where to take it. Perhaps I can take the Michael Crichton approach and have the novel just fizzle out 2/3 of the way through the book?

I'm really looking forward to writing the book, but I want to have a decent product when I'm done. Right now that won't happen if I can't get the damn plot moving.
  #3  
Old 10-18-2016, 05:28 PM
Spice Weasel Spice Weasel is offline
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The secret to writing a woman is that we're basically just like men, only treated differently. Ironically, it took me a long time to get good at writing women, because I myself had all these ideas in my head about what a 'stereotypical' woman was like. This will be a good opportunity to stretch yourself to write from a different POV. Just let her be who she is, and don't worry so much about whether she's ''womanly'' enough. We come in all varieties.

For right now, try not to think about whether your book fits perfectly into a genre. Just do your own unique thing and you can figure all that out later.

Of course I'm always here if you wanna run anything by me.

Last edited by Spice Weasel; 10-18-2016 at 05:28 PM.
  #4  
Old 10-18-2016, 05:51 PM
chrisk chrisk is offline
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Hey, greetings! Of course, I'll be writing this year, and volunteering as ML for my city. I'm actually going back to the same basic story idea I did in 2009, after having revised and workshopped the heck out of the old version. This time, I'm determined to write it as a high-stakes thriller, by the seat of my pants all month. It'll be an interesting experiment!
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Old 10-18-2016, 07:27 PM
Sunny Daze Sunny Daze is offline
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Yes, I'm doing this. I am encouraging my daughter, who writes all the time to give it a try as well.

I'm writing fantasy/urban fantasy as well. It's more on the fantasy side, involving changelings. People from Earth who are brought over to a side world because they can handle magic, which isn't present on Earth. If they aren't brought over early, they develop mental health issues back on Earth. They're normally taken early, but my protag is brought over around 6 or so, which is late.

This book is set entirely in this side world (one of many), and deal entirely with who can wield power (magic is one aspect of this, but not the only one), and the impact this has on geo-politics (with some romance thrown in there, 'cause). Ideally future books will deal with other worlds, including Earth, and how the realms relate to each other.

Where do I get stuck - normally in really stupid places, like names. Protag is currently "Protag" in outline, and may be so called in the manuscript or the ever elegant "heroine".:roll eyes:

If anyone would like to link up via the NaNo site, I would love to be buddies. I failed miserably last year. Hoping to do a little better this year.
  #6  
Old 10-18-2016, 07:57 PM
Spice Weasel Spice Weasel is offline
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My name is SquidScribe if anyone wants to add me.
  #7  
Old 10-18-2016, 09:23 PM
Lamia Lamia is offline
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I'm a slow and methodical writer and could never really get into the "full steam ahead!" mindset required for NaNo, but I've been participating for the past four years. (I don't just write in November, although I have tended to make more progress thanks to all the NaNo excitement and support.) And...I'm almost done! With a fairly polished draft, at least. I'm working on the epilogue and hope to finish it by the end of the month and then spend this NaNo on revisions.

I know this isn't the "right" way to do NaNo, but there were a couple of years when I set out to do the 50,000 words in 30 days thing and never got more than a few hundred words before giving up. But I've been rolling along ever since I decided I was just going to start off slow and steady and keep on past November. I mention this in case anyone else likes the idea of NaNo but has a hard time following the rules -- do it your way, but keep writing.
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Old 10-19-2016, 05:58 PM
Poysyn Poysyn is offline
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I am writing this year, and my daughter is also going to give it a go!
  #9  
Old 10-19-2016, 07:36 PM
Trinopus Trinopus is offline
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I'm a frustrated novelist, and am *always* writing "my next book." I started my most recent in mid-May, and figure to finish it mid December.

Clavius Frederick Earbrass is a close personal friend of mine.
  #10  
Old 10-20-2016, 01:35 PM
Catamount Catamount is offline
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Not only am I doing it, I'm doing the same novel I did last year. There was a major momentum loss around the beginning of the year. I blame the Great Apartment Flood of 2016.

ETA: I'm Ryl over there if anyone wants to add me.

Last edited by Catamount; 10-20-2016 at 01:37 PM.
  #11  
Old 10-20-2016, 01:52 PM
Sunny Daze Sunny Daze is offline
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Originally Posted by Catamount View Post
Not only am I doing it, I'm doing the same novel I did last year. There was a major momentum loss around the beginning of the year. I blame the Great Apartment Flood of 2016.

ETA: I'm Ryl over there if anyone wants to add me.
Ryl - I believe we're linked from last year when I was the artist formally known as ddsun

Spice Weasel I have braved their buddy system and tried to add you.

If anyone wants to buddy up, I'm still "ddsun" in the NaNo world.
  #12  
Old 10-20-2016, 05:59 PM
PrimalEnvy PrimalEnvy is offline
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Hopefully doing it again this year. I'll probably be continuing last year's novel.
  #13  
Old 10-20-2016, 08:06 PM
mage-girl mage-girl is offline
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I'm doing it again this year, though I'm not completely sure what I'm working on. I could attempt the same old-same old, or something new. New is intimidating. Don't like it. :grump:

Earlier today I did have an idea for fleshing out the old story, and it would also beef up one of the supporting characters (who tends to get overlooked). So that may work.

Same as ever over on the Nano site: mage-girl.

Good luck to everyone who signs up!
  #14  
Old 10-21-2016, 08:38 AM
Draelin Draelin is offline
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I stopped doing it three or four years ago when my writing well dried up, but I'm considering trying anew this year. I have a whole world that I built by cannibalizing characters, ideas, and settings from literally everything else I've ever written. I have notes, sketches, outlines, character sheets ... I have it all.

And I don't know if I like it. I don't know if I care.

I have a few vague ideas for something entirely new. And that usually works for me. I've always done my best flying completely by the seat of my pants. No ideas, no plans, just a couple characters, a setting, and maybe a funny bit of dialogue I plan to use eventually.

Several years ago, I took the whole first week of November off work and finished in six days. I've got the second week off this year ... maybe I'll try for a new record.
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Old 10-21-2016, 09:41 AM
ivylass ivylass is offline
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I don't know that I have the nerve to do this. Plus there's a time factor. I usually only have time on the weekends to devote to my scribbles.
  #16  
Old 10-21-2016, 09:45 AM
Spice Weasel Spice Weasel is offline
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I don't know that I have the nerve to do this. Plus there's a time factor. I usually only have time on the weekends to devote to my scribbles.
You know you waaaant to.
  #17  
Old 10-21-2016, 12:18 PM
ivylass ivylass is offline
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I don't know...it feels like stepping into a party where everyone else knows each other. Introverts don't play that game.
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Old 10-21-2016, 05:37 PM
Catamount Catamount is offline
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I'm a huge introvert and I'm playing that game.

Dooooooo eeeeeeeeet.
  #19  
Old 10-21-2016, 05:55 PM
Spice Weasel Spice Weasel is offline
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''Introverts don't play that game,'' she says to the most introverted person ever.

Most writers are introverts. It's not like you even have to talk to anybody (though it helps, if you want some accountability.) Also, you know me. I count as a person you know.

Maybe you'll hit 50k, maybe you won't. I've had smashing success some years and catastrophic failure others. You just have to take the mentality that you've won just for bothering to play at all.
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Old 10-21-2016, 05:57 PM
Sunny Daze Sunny Daze is offline
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Yes, yes. Do eeeeet.

You know us. That counts.

If it makes you feel better (it may not) last year, a writer with whom I have corresponded online for literally years and years announced that he was doing NaNoWriMo and did anyone want to buddy up. Ooooo. Oooooo. Me! Me! *Crickets* (I'm talking before he was published people!)

I promise not be *crickets*.
  #21  
Old 10-22-2016, 05:29 AM
Atomic Alex Atomic Alex is offline
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The secret to writing a woman is that we're basically just like men, only treated differently.
That's what I've always believed, that women and men are basically the same, just treated differently by society (with good and bad things for both) but it tends to elicit a strongly negative response for some reason. So I've stopped saying it and just let people get on with their weird stereotyping and assumptions about others.

Personally I prefer upbeat stories but yours does sound interesting!

Last edited by Atomic Alex; 10-22-2016 at 05:31 AM.
  #22  
Old 10-23-2016, 10:13 AM
ivylass ivylass is offline
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It says you cannot write your novel on the site. So what the heck is the 50,000 word count?
  #23  
Old 10-23-2016, 10:34 AM
ivylass ivylass is offline
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How does this work? Do I write directly into NaNaWriMo or do I write in Scrivener and the copy/paste?
  #24  
Old 10-23-2016, 11:26 AM
Lamia Lamia is offline
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How does this work? Do I write directly into NaNaWriMo or do I write in Scrivener and the copy/paste?
You write in whatever program you like and then if you want the official NaNo word count you can paste it in.

IIRC you can also just keep track of your word count yourself and enter that into NaNo. However, I think you do have to paste in the text at some point if you want the NaNo site to recognize you as a winner (if you manage to hit 50,000 words).
  #25  
Old 10-23-2016, 12:15 PM
Spice Weasel Spice Weasel is offline
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Write in whatever word processor you want. Manually update your word count daily. At the end of the 50k, it will ask you to copy/paste into its word count machine (they give instructions for encrypting the text if you're worried about stealing) and it verifies that you entered 50k words and declares you a ''winner.'' That's it!

P.S. Scrivener has a feature that allows you to set a daily writing word count target, if you want.

Last edited by Spice Weasel; 10-23-2016 at 12:16 PM.
  #26  
Old 10-23-2016, 01:53 PM
Infovore Infovore is offline
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I'll be doing it again this year, but as usual I'll just be using it as a tool to help me get some serious wordage down on my current novel (book 9 in my series). It's at 60,000 words right now and I anticipate it'll be about 100-110 when it's done, so I probably won't hit the 50,000-word target. That's okay, though--I love their little tracking widget, and it does a good job at keeping me on track. NaNoWriMo has helped me get over humps in several novels over the years.
  #27  
Old 10-23-2016, 05:11 PM
Renee Renee is offline
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I'm doing it.

I'm currently about 30,000 words into a novel I've been working on for a couple of months, which I know isn't really in the spirit of this thing, but I want to finish it by the end of November, so I'm going with it.

I've given this a go a couple of times in the past and didn't end up accomplishing anything, but this year I'm SERIOUS. For real.

In my novel, a naive sea nymph must embrace her power to stop Poseidon from turning the Earth into an ocean planet. I have zero ideas for a title at this point.

Is there a way to make a SDMB group over there? I'm having a little trouble finding people's names. I'm "Renee." Friend me.
  #28  
Old 10-23-2016, 05:52 PM
Atomic Alex Atomic Alex is offline
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In my novel, a naive sea nymph must embrace her power to stop Poseidon from turning the Earth into an ocean planet. I have zero ideas for a title at this point.
The Little Mermaid
  #29  
Old 10-23-2016, 07:51 PM
bibliophage bibliophage is offline
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I joined a few years ago when I thought I was going to write a novel about a crime-solving vigilante meteorologist. Life intervened, and I didn't get very far. In recent years I've always been too busy in November to even try it.

I think I may give it another shot this year. I have several ideas and I'm not sure which to go with. I'm still playing with the meteorologist story but I'm not sure it's going anywhere. Just last night I had a dream that I think might make a good short novel. It's about a teenage girl suspected of murdering her older brother, and the brother's friend who finds out the truth. Trouble is I woke up too early and I never found out what the truth was.
  #30  
Old 10-25-2016, 09:16 AM
ThelmaLou ThelmaLou is offline
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I'd never heard of it until about a week ago. But I'm gonna do it! My career for the last 38 years has been generating verbiage on behalf of various causes. Surely I can generate some on behalf of myself, right?

The NaNo site has all kinds of tips, help, advice, etc. I also downloaded the $1.99 kindle book No Plot? No Problem! by one of the NaNo creators. Very helpful and hilarious. There are even tips on what snacks to stock up on. Whole chapter on how to find the time (Hint: it's easier if you're really busy). If you want to feel inspired to do this, I highly recommend this very short read.

I'm not doing any prep, except that I bought Scrivener (a very clever program!) and I'm going to find a place to put random grab-bag stuff that I might want to drag in. I have NO ideas at all going into this. Just going to dive in head first and devil take the hindmost!

I'm taking the advice of Ray Bradbury, "Your intuition knows what it wants to say. You just have to get out of its way."

Last edited by ThelmaLou; 10-25-2016 at 09:17 AM.
  #31  
Old 10-25-2016, 09:43 AM
Spice Weasel Spice Weasel is offline
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Originally Posted by ThelmaLou View Post
I'm not doing any prep, except that I bought Scrivener (a very clever program!) and I'm going to find a place to put random grab-bag stuff that I might want to drag in. I have NO ideas at all going into this. Just going to dive in head first and devil take the hindmost!
Have I told you all about our Lord and Savior, Scrivener?

I have an exciting opportunity that everyone's talking about.

Seriously though, it changed my life. I've also been using it a long time, so if any of you have questions about how to do something, PM me before you sort through the 500 page instruction manual.

My current saving grace is a little program called Cold Turkey that allows you to set a schedule blocking stuff (internet sites, or all internet, or any computer app) and lock it so that it cannot be undone. Then there's Cold Turkey Writer, which takes you to a full-screen writing app and doesn't allow you to do anything but write until you've hit a time or word count goal. Seems perfect for NaNoWriMo.

Last edited by Spice Weasel; 10-25-2016 at 09:43 AM.
  #32  
Old 10-25-2016, 09:45 AM
Draelin Draelin is offline
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I'm not doing any prep, except that I bought Scrivener (a very clever program!)
I have yet to do any actual writing in Scrivener, but the control-freak inside me loves the organization of it. My problem is that I get so excited about organization that I never get around to the actual writing.

Still no earthly (or unearthly) idea what I'm going to do. I might just sit down on November first and see what comes out.
  #33  
Old 10-25-2016, 11:42 AM
chrisk chrisk is offline
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I've decided that I'm unlikely to ever write a first draft in Scrivener... especially not when I'm pantsing. It just doesn't seem like a very pantsy way to write. But I love it as a revision framework!
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  #34  
Old 10-25-2016, 12:47 PM
ivylass ivylass is offline
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I'm using Scrivener...or should I say, I'm writing in it, but I doubt I've tapped into even a tenth of its potential. Hell, I can't even figure out how to set a default font.
  #35  
Old 10-25-2016, 01:51 PM
ThelmaLou ThelmaLou is offline
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I'm using Scrivener...or should I say, I'm writing in it, but I doubt I've tapped into even a tenth of its potential. Hell, I can't even figure out how to set a default font.
Spending a little time with the Quick Start Tutorial would be a good idea.

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I've decided that I'm unlikely to ever write a first draft in Scrivener... especially not when I'm pantsing. It just doesn't seem like a very pantsy way to write. But I love it as a revision framework!
You can just use the word processing part and ignore the extra features. But they're there if you want to use them later.
  #36  
Old 10-25-2016, 02:06 PM
Spice Weasel Spice Weasel is offline
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I'm using Scrivener...or should I say, I'm writing in it, but I doubt I've tapped into even a tenth of its potential. Hell, I can't even figure out how to set a default font.
Scrivener --> Preferences --> Formatting

You can customize everything in Scrivener including fonts and colors for every function (you can make the binder a different font and color than the editor, for example.)

Quote:
Originally Posted by chrisk
I've decided that I'm unlikely to ever write a first draft in Scrivener... especially not when I'm pantsing. It just doesn't seem like a very pantsy way to write. But I love it as a revision framework!
I pretty much always pants (and have accepted I'm probably gonna pants in November) and I will admit Scrivener blurs the line a lot between drafting and editing. I have a compulsive editing problem that seems to be exacerbated by this program.

However, there is that draft mode specifically for writing without the editing tools. You can make it full screen if you like. The only reason I don't use it is that for some reason I end up obsessing over the background and font colors.
  #37  
Old 10-25-2016, 05:22 PM
Catamount Catamount is offline
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I've looked at Scrivener, but I've done so much work in Open Office I don't feel like transferring it over. Besides I already have my notes arranged in various folders and I don't want to have to make my brain work with someone else's organizational system even if it is just a computer program. That's why I love working on a computer so much: it's all arranged the way my mind works and no one else's.
  #38  
Old 10-25-2016, 08:59 PM
Sunny Daze Sunny Daze is offline
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I will try to find out if we can make an SDMB group. Sounds like a good idea.
  #39  
Old 10-25-2016, 09:29 PM
ThelmaLou ThelmaLou is offline
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I will try to find out if we can make an SDMB group. Sounds like a good idea.
What is that? If it's Facebook, I'm not on it.
  #40  
Old 10-25-2016, 11:31 PM
Sunny Daze Sunny Daze is offline
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On the NaNoWriMo site, I mean. I'll try to set it up. Going to go poke around right this very second.
  #41  
Old 10-25-2016, 11:41 PM
Sunny Daze Sunny Daze is offline
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I don't see a way to start a buddy group but they do have a social media forum. I've asked if we can have our own thread in that forum. I'll let you know what they say.

We can also have group messages, I think, once we're buddied up.
  #42  
Old 10-26-2016, 07:12 AM
ivylass ivylass is offline
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Oh, what the hell. I'm ivylass over there too.
  #43  
Old 10-26-2016, 09:25 AM
Spice Weasel Spice Weasel is offline
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WOOT!

*One of us! One of us!*
  #44  
Old 10-26-2016, 09:45 AM
ivylass ivylass is offline
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Can my word count be what I've already written? I have a synopsis and a snippet already posted. If you've made me your buddy I'd love your feedback.
  #45  
Old 10-26-2016, 04:11 PM
Spice Weasel Spice Weasel is offline
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Can my word count be what I've already written? I have a synopsis and a snippet already posted. If you've made me your buddy I'd love your feedback.
I mean, there are no NaNo police coming to arrest you if you include what you've already written.

I finally created the new novel. And added back whoever added me (ivy, ddsun and Ryl.)

Figuring out what snippet to use takes the longest time. Especially when you don't have much written yet.

And all the, ''No really, it's a first draft, I swear!'' caveats.

Last edited by Spice Weasel; 10-26-2016 at 04:14 PM.
  #46  
Old 10-26-2016, 04:17 PM
Spice Weasel Spice Weasel is offline
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Hmm... the Shadow Witch Chronicles. I can see it now.
  #47  
Old 10-27-2016, 10:23 AM
chrisk chrisk is offline
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Added a bunch of people. I'm chrisk0 over there...
  #48  
Old 10-27-2016, 11:35 AM
Nava Nava is offline
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I keep saying I'm going to do it but never do...

I think my biggest enemies for writing stories are, one, that I'm always loathe to do nasty things to my characters (but honey, when I start I make the Marquis crawl into a corner, whimpering...), and two, TV Tropes.

I'm Coramendi because they think Nava is a spammer

Last edited by Nava; 10-27-2016 at 11:39 AM.
  #49  
Old 10-27-2016, 11:37 AM
Velocity Velocity is offline
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I am an extremely slow writer. Forget about NaNoWriMo; I might be a NaNoWriDecade writer....
  #50  
Old 10-27-2016, 12:32 PM
Spice Weasel Spice Weasel is offline
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Originally Posted by Velocity View Post
I am an extremely slow writer. Forget about NaNoWriMo; I might be a NaNoWriDecade writer....
I am too. I re-wrote a fairly large chunk of my novel Killer for 2014's NaNoWriMo, as soon as December 1st arrived I rewrote it again. I'm still working on it. I'm rewriting it again (I'm changing the genre from fantasy to sci-fi, so this is a necessary revision.) I have about 30 drafts of every chapter. Shoot me please.

I can't wait to work on something new. I've got a couple of chapters of The Burning written but it's all fresh and my favorite part of writing is the part where you have no idea where a story is going -- knowing it can go literally anywhere.

Last edited by Spice Weasel; 10-27-2016 at 12:32 PM.
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