Sunday, September 30, 2007

Update & Announcement

I spoke today, for the first time since giving his chapters back, to the man whose writing I critiqued. Find my anxiety about giving him constructive comments here. He was very appreciative and told me that I had picked up on patterns and flaws in his writing that he had never been aware of before and that no one else had ever pointed out to him. He said that he has found my comments very helpful as he has gone forward in writing the rest of his book. I was much relieved and felt that he was very gracious in his complimentary way. It was all very pleasant. He also told me that because I was able to be so specific and helpful he respected my opinion more now. Yay! I guess I did that one right.

So I started talking to him about a story that's been knocking about in my head and his eyes lit up as I laid out the basic premise. He told me he thought it was a clever idea and that I should definitely write it. That was the boost I needed. I have been toying with the idea of doing NaNoWriMo this year and his comment sealed it for me. I have never attempted anything longer than a short story before, but I think that this will be a forum in which I can really start with a sprint and keep on running without letting my internal editor shut me down. Having the permission to write crap (as long as there's lots of it) is so relieving, and who knows, maybe there will be some true gems in my piece. I'm anxious for the freedom that goes along with NaNoWriMo and exhilarated by the idea of living a dream I've been afraid of for so long. I've counseled with my husband and he is on board. He understands that this will require me to be mostly absent from family life for a month. What a great guy.

Are any of you doing NaNoWriMo?
Also, I'm trying to work out an outline in advance. How extensively do you outline?


Vocabulary Word of the Day:
ASCETIC - noun - One who renounces material comforts for austere self-discipline, esp. as an act of religious devotion

15 comments:

SzélsőFa said...

Go, Hoodie, go!!!
It must be a real challenge.
1. - I don't think it will be crap, though. Why would it be?
It's you, who's writing it, right?
Why aiming at crap?

2. - You're such a fortunate person to have a supportive husband like him!
Mine, would support me, I'm sure.


3.- I'm not taking part in NaNoWriMo, for obvious reasons *laughs*

4. - Outlines...
Since I am writing my very first longer story, and I started doing it without an outline, I don't think I can help you...

There are moments when I think I should have done some outlining at least. I still think I'm not late with that.

I will write a somehow-related entry on my Copper Moon site within a couple of days. You might wish to check it, if you have time.

strugglingwriter said...

I'm very glad the comments were well received. That's great news.

I've tried nanowrimo twice before without outlines and the best I did was 15,000 words. So, for the first time in my life I'm going to attempt to outline. I found this post on outlining very informative:
http://pbackwriter.blogspot.com/2007/09/novel-outlining-101.html

Good luck!

Jaye Wells said...

I'm glad the feedback went well. Isn't it funny how we work ourselves into a tizzy over stuff like that?

I don't plan on doing Nano, but I do outline. I need to have turning points figured out before I start or I go off in really weird tangents. However, I leave enough wiggle room for those flashes of inspiration that happen along the way. Good luck!

Michelle said...

Still on the fence, although I'd really like to participate again this year. Rewrites on a current novel, end of pregnancy, blah, blah, blah. It's fun, though, and a great push in the right direction.

Last year I didn't outline enough, so I've spent this last year rewriting the whole darn project. BUT I think jumping in and just writing was the only way I would ever have made the leap from short stories to novels, which is where I belong now. It's scary unless you give yourself permission to write a really crappy first draft. But now that I've overcome that fear done it once before, I'm sure I'll be doing a lot more plotting/outlining this time.

Bif said...

I've completed one novel and am on my way to completing another. I've never outlined as I don't believe in it, but everyone has a different process. I have no idea what Nano... is at all.

I was happy to read about the critiques though. Good guy to take it the right way.

Bif said...

Why does it have me as bif? That's my nickname. Oh well.

briliantdonkey said...

crap think it ate my first comment.

briliantdonkey said...

Anyways a much shorter version of my last comment(hopefully).......I have done Nano twice. Two years ago I had just heard of it and greatly looking forward to it. Result 43,000 words or something like that.

Last year, I wasn't really looking forward to it but it was 'nano time' so i went with it anyways....result 8,000 words or so. It sounds to me like you are greatly looking forward to it so you are off to a good start in my opinion. I am not sure if I will do one this year or not but if so maybe we can keep each other motivated throughout. Either way I wish you the best of luck with it. Keep us up to datewith your progress.

Hoodie said...

Szelsofa - If you aim for crap then you're pleasantly surprised if it isn't, and if it, then you've met your goal!

Struggling - So does that mean you're doing it this year? Thanks for the link. I will definitely check it out.

Jaye - I suppose if you've already got a WIP then you don't need NaNo. I can't see myself jumping into a project like this without an outline. I need something, however skeletal, to keep me on track should I go astray.

Michelle - I see pregnancy as an exemption from pretty much everything, but if you do decide to do it be sure to let me know. I agree about the permission to write crap being a motivator. I think the thing keeping me from trying something so big is my fear of it not being genius.

Bif - Thanks for the visit, if you are indeed new to the blog. NaNoWriMo is a program designed to help you write 50,000 words in a month, emphasis on quantity over quality. You can check out the link with the body of the post. Good luck on your current WIP.

BD - If you do decide to do it this year, be sure to let me know. I'm all about keeping each other motivated. What became of your 43,000 worder?

Jamie Ford said...

I'm working on my second book during that month, does that count?

SzélsőFa said...

Hoodie, thanks for the laugh.
Being a perfectionist, I never aim for crap, but when I end up with anything I feel that I crap.
Yes, I made 'crap' a verb in the above sentence.

Church Lady said...

I'm glad your friend took your comments in the way that you meant them! He sounds like he wants to improve his craft, and you're helping him along the way. Kudos to both of you!
I thought I might try Nano, so I started outlining. Then I wrote a paragraph, and then a chapter. I've been revising that chapter for a week. NOT the point of Nano, I know! I think I'll bow out! :-)

Hoodie said...

Jamie - With your recent success story, you know I won't question anything you do. :)

Szelsofa - Thank YOU for the laugh.

Church Lady - Awww. If you change your mind....

jason evans said...

If Nano will inspire and spur you, then go for it!

As for outlining, I don't do enough. I'm changing that. I now think it's very important to keep the story sharply anchored. Today, there is very little tolerance for wandering.

Hoodie said...

Thanks, Jason. I'm getting more excited every day.

When I think of trying to take on a novel without an outline it makes me think of trying to carry a load of laundry. I'm always grasping and tugging to make sure nothing falls. But if its all folded and stack neatly I can carry the same load much more confidently.

There's my SAHM analogy of the day.