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23. FUCK THE POLICE
NaNoWriMo has a lot of rules: you’re supposed to “start fresh,” you’re not really meant to work on non-fiction, blah blah blah. This is all just made-up stuff. It’s not government mandated. This isn’t taxes, for fuck’s sake. Do what you like. Even better: do what the story needs. Hell with the rules. Fuck the police. Write. Write endlessly. Don’t be constrained by this program. It’s just a springboard: use it to launch your way to awesomeness. Anything you don’t like about it, toss it out the window. That certificate you get at the end doesn’t mean dog dick. The only thing that matters is you and your writing.this article
Fellow writers! What do you do when you write a chapter and look back thinking, “Holy cow, that was a really, REALLY boring chapter to write”?
If a writer doesn’t have fun writing a chapter, a reader probably won’t enjoy reading it.
So do you scrap it entirely? Or, if there’s something important in it (plot twist/new character/etc.), do you find a way to write it and make it more fun?
When you go to the library to use their fancy Macs to type up your novel, and some DMA students who actually need to use the Macs show up and glare at you for using one of their precious computers… and then you’re surrounded by too many people to write without feeling self-conscious.
Already cranked out the Day 11 goal of 17741 words. (: I’m now more than halfway to the Day 12 goal. I needed to get ahead because I’m working all day Friday before hanging out with Colin.
So, yeah — good day. (: Outlining my novel was a fantastic idea.
My only concern is that my story is very dialogue-heavy, but that can be easily fixed once I go back and edit. I’ll definitely add some more setting description and internal dialogue.
I haven’t “written” a single word today of my actual novel yet. But I’ve just outlined the rest of my book, chapter-by-chapter. I have been outlining this whole time as I’ve been going along — writing out summaries of about two or three chapters on index cards, and then typing them up over a couple of days, then outlining two or three more, etc. etc….
But I reached a lull after Chapter Six and needed to sit down and really think things through. The result? Chapters Seven through Twenty outlined in detail. And I’m really proud of what I see — great character arcs, plot twists, action, and good pacing. The rest of the month should be a breeze once I start writing in a couple minutes.
I’ve been doing a lot of thinking today about why I prefer to plan out chapters before I write them; I know outlining is either loved or hated by fellow writers. For one thing, it’s my nature. I’m a “true” Capricorn in that I need to set solid goals, and then strive for them; without knowing where I’m going with a story, I feel lost. But it’s also a great confidence booster, to be able to not worry about plot and focus instead on the quality of the characters and the setting and everything else that’s important. And I know it will make a second (and maybe a third) draft much easier. What I see when I look at my outline is something that I think can very easily be submitted to a few publishing companies for consideration, and that’s something I’m really excited about.
So for those who are currently suffering from “Writer’s Block,” I suggest sitting down, really thinking about the situations you want your characters to be in, how you want them to change — and at least outlining a couple chapters. It helps a ton, even if you dread outlining. I was a bit wary of it at first too, but once I sat down and did it, I found it to be really fun and rewarding.