November Writing Challenges Report | Jo Linsdell

November Writing Challenges Report

WOW! What a month November was. I'm happy to report that I hit 2 out of 3 of my challenge goals.

NaNoWriMo: Winner!

I completed the first draft of my novel Vengeance reaching a total of 50,064 words. I finished a day early too so really pleased with myself. I'll be jumping into revisions at the start of the new year and getting it polished for publishing. I'm considering going with a traditional published for this book so the timing for when it will be available is still very much up in the air.

PiBoIdMo: Winner!

I actually came up with 31 ideas but only a handful will probably become actual books. There are a few good ones my my list though that will be keeping me busy in 2014.

NaNonFiWriMo/WNFIN: Loser... kind of 

OK so I didn't finished my non fiction book for this challenge but I do still have a good outline to work with. Twitter went public and threw my plans off a bit. I've now decided to wait until January so the knock on effect of those changes is in place and then I'll finish the book. The book still has the scheduled release of Spring 2014.

By doing all these challenges over the past month I've learnt a few things:

1) I can do more than I thought I could. When I decided to do these challenges a part of me thought I was going mad. Three challenges in the one month, PLUS my normal work load, was stretching it a bit. I did it though and didn't burn myself out either. The trick was being organised and scheduling time for each of the challenges during each day. Once I got into a routine it wasn't that hard.... not that I'd work like that all the time.

2) Trying new things is fun and motivates in other areas too. My NaNoWriMo project is a romantic/psychological thriller. VERY different from anything I've done before. I enjoyed experimented with this new genre and it pushed me creatively to go where I'd never been before. I killed people, I wrote sex scenes (lots of new ground covered in this one), and I had fun with it. I've always had a "it's not about thinking outside the box, there simply is no box to begin with" kind of attitude. I also believe that just because you're good at one thing doesn't mean you can't be good at something else too. This month has re-enforced this line of thinking. As I progressed in my novel I also found I was getting more ideas for PiBoIdMo. Although the two are in no way related it's true that creativity breeds creativity.

3) Doing so much in such a short period of time has also made me think about my writing career. With so many different projects in process and more planned for the future I'm now starting to think I might need some help along the way. I've always been a self publisher by choice and as I often have publishers asking me for advice I didn't see the point in going that route. Why give up royalties when I could do it all myself and the very people who I'd be giving a percentage to were asking me for advice about how to market books? So why my change in thought? I simply don't have time to do everything. A publisher would give me support and take some of the weight off me. They would help with editing, design, marketing... all meaning I would have some more time to work on new projects. I'm still weighing things up but I think for my novels I'm probably going to be looking for a publisher.

Thank you to all of you that cheered me on over the past month and kept me motivated.