#NaNoWriMo2016: Week 2 | Jo Linsdell

#NaNoWriMo2016: Week 2

#NaNoWriMo2016: Week 2  #NaNoWriMo #amwriting

Time to tick off week 2 on the writing frenzy known as NaNoWriMo, and what a week it was! (If you missed the week 1 update you can find it here: http://www.jolinsdell.com/2016/11/nanowrimo2016-week-1.html)

Getting lost

I started week 2 by getting lost. My characters took me off my original plot outline, which was fine for a brief moment, but then everything suddenly became hard. Following my scene outlines everything had been going really well. Words flowed and I knew exactly where I was headed. Not any more. Thanks characters! 

So what do you do when your characters take over, and leave you feeling lost? Turns out you just keep on writing. It was that simple, and that hard. I kept writing through it and somehow managed to bring my story back on track with my original story plan.

Allow yourself to suck

A really important thing that helps in situations like this is something that NaNoWriMo creator, Chris Baty, talks about in his book No Plot? No Problem (grab a copy here: http://amzn.to/2eUCNhg). In chapter 5, he asks that I let the NaNoWriMo team "Take my inner editor". There is a very good reason for this. The goal this month is to write a first draft of a 50K novel. It doesn't have to be perfect, it just has to be written. 

Knowing that I'm not writing a great masterpiece, but instead building a foundation that can be worked on later, helps. Trust me, I've written some sentences over the past two weeks that are seriously cringe-worthy. I have written over 30,000 words in just two weeks though, some of which are even good.

There is no limit to how rough a rough draft can be.~Unknown #NaNoWriMo2016 #amwriting #quote

Big milestones

On wednesday I reached 25,000 words. The big halfway mark! This is a huge turning point in the challenge as what is written from now on is more than what is left to write in order to reach the 50K goal. It's no longer so much about how much you still need to write, but instead knocking words off the still need to write tally. It feels good.


Let's talk a bit about NaNoRewards. A NaNoReward could be something small like allowing yourself to eat a chocolate after you've written 500 words, or going out for dinner to celebrate hitting a big milestone (yes, both of these are on my NaNoReward list ;)). 

After the high of Wednesday, I gave myself a big, well deserved NaNoReward. I gave myself the day off. Yep, the whole day. A daily word count total for Thursday of 0. It was wonderful. I caught up with other tasks I'd been putting on hold, spent time with family, relaxed... bliss.

Friday was not so wonderful. You see the problem with taking the day off is that you come back with a sense of guilt. You see that big fat 0 on your progress chart and kick yourself. What was I thinking?!

Writing was hard going, and most of Friday morning was very frustrating. The words just didn't seem to flow. Then I remembered what had happened on Monday. I just kept writing... and it worked. I still made good progress. 

Writing with kids

Weekends are always hard for me to find writing time. I have two small children. With the help of cartoons, and video games I managed to squeeze in some word sprints though and met my goals. Don't underestimate the power of those quick 10 minute sessions. It might just gain you 300 words, but it makes a big difference at the end of the day.

#NaNoWriMo2016: Week 2
Current stats as of Sunday 13th Nov.

and then there was this....

Yep, looks like this is going to be a series. Still not sure how I feel about this.