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NaNoWriMo 2016 In Review

5 Dec

Well, I made it! I hit my goal and here I am on the other side. I didn’t write every day though I rarely do during NaNo. I’ll admit I’m a rebel and maybe my rebel goal is easier than the traditional 50K. I didn’t start until after my final exam on the 9th, which is the biggest cheat I allow myself. I realized when I did NaNo the traditional way that I could write the minimum 1667 words in about half an hour. Hate me if you will, but that’s what it took. So I held myself to 30 minutes of editing each day. To add some pressure, I made myself meet that goal each week. If I missed getting the 210 weekly amount by Saturday night, I would consider the whole thing a fail.

And I made it! You can look at my daily posts if you like for details, but I’ll say I made my goal by more than two hours. I finished going through the book from the mid-point I was at and went through it one more time. I added scenes for consistency and made some character changes. A lot of my writing was a write-ins at my local library. There’s a Detroit ML that came to all of them because he lives close by so I still felt connected to the region despite not attending any of their events. They did a stamp system to encourage participating and unfortunately, I ended with a total of four stamps.

I was going to start doing a go-through for dialogue consistency, but I think I’m going to change directions. I started reading Writing the Breakout Novel by Donald Maass and even three chapters in, I’m coming up with ways to make my story better. I need to change the pacing. I need to strengthen a subplot. I need to make my female lead character’s motivation stronger. In short, I need to make a better story before I worry about better dialogue. What I have so far is valuable. I got to page 13 or so and a lot of the changes I’ll make are much later in the book so I do plan to come back to this later.

I’m rejuvenated. I want to work on my novel again and to be honest, I’m kicking myself for typing this when I could be working on it! I’ll take the time to write the reviews I’ve missed and catch up, but I’m considering cutting back another post per week to spend more time writing. Maybe making one post per week a writing update instead of what I normally post. I want to work on it more, especially before school starts up again in February.

Congratulations to all the other winners out there. We survived! Happy writing.

You can follow me on Goodreads, Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and Instagram. I’m available via email at SamAStevensWriter@gmail.com. And as always, feel free to leave a comment!

NaNoWriMo: My Day 20 2016- DONE!

29 Nov

I’m calling it quits for this year. Goals met!

Today’s writing time (30 goal): 80
This Week’s writing time (120 goal): 180
Total time for the month (630 goal): 765

 

Daily, weekly, and monthly goals all met. I got through the full read through today and I did a Grammarly check. Apparently I put too many commas in sentences. If you don’t use Grammarly, I highly suggest it (mostly because it’s free). I started a new round of editing that I’m looking forward to. I’m putting the dialogue my characters say into Excel, using a different sheet for each character. This way, I can see if my characters have consistent speaking patterns and I’ll notice when they say something out of character. So far, I’m learning a lot about my side characters!

I’m really excited about how this month’s gone. It’s gotten me really excited about my story again and I hope it gets me working on it a bit more in the next few months before school starts up again. I know it can be hard around the holidays, but it might also be a welcome break! I hope it will at least.

I’ll do a full review post in the next few weeks.

Until next time, write on.

You can follow me on Goodreads, Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and Instagram. I’m available via email at SamAStevensWriter@gmail.com. And as always, feel free to leave a comment!

NaNoWriMo: My Day 18 2016

27 Nov

WRITE IN FOR THE WIN!

Today’s writing time (30 goal): 100
This Week’s writing time (120 goal): 100
Total time for the month (630 goal): 685

Done! I went to a write-in at my library and got a lot of solid time in. I have one page (just one page!) left to edit, much like earlier this month when I stopped at this same point to keep my momentum going. WOO! I have one more write-in to hit up on Tuesday and I’ll be able to start working on editing with my book guide. I’m so excited!

I had less to change in the later sections, but I did continue to add some bits to make characterization more consistent and emotional transitions more believable. I think I rushed through when I wrote the first time because I was so excited to get to the end. The only problem is I love my ending so much I’m continuing to do it when I edit!

I’m ecstatic with my progress this month! I think it’s almost time for some more beta readers.

Until next time, write on.

You can follow me on Goodreads, Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and Instagram. I’m available via email at SamAStevensWriter@gmail.com. And as always, feel free to leave a comment!

NaNoWriMo: My Day 17 2016

26 Nov

There’s nothing like a last-minute catch-up to round out the week, huh?

Today’s writing time (30 goal): 90
This Week’s writing time (210 goal): 210
Total time for the month (630 goal): 585

 

I was spending time with my family out-of-town for the holiday so I didn’t get anything written Wednesday, Thursday, or Friday. My husband is driving us home now and I utilized the time to write for 90 minutes! I’m hot-spotting my phone to put this post up. Yay technology.

I’m getting really close to finishing my second time through the story. I’m fairly certain I’ll finish doing it before the end of November. That leaves me until my class starts again in February to do some work on editing with an editing workbook I have at home. It will be fun to work through it. But for the rest of the day, it’s more family time with his side. Tomorrow, I’m thinking a write-in? We’ll see

Until next time, write on.

You can follow me on Goodreads, Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and Instagram. I’m available via email at SamAStevensWriter@gmail.com. And as always, feel free to leave a comment!

NaNoWriMo: My Day 13 2016

22 Nov

Write in for the win!

Today’s writing time (30 goal): 90
This Week’s writing time (210 goal): 120
Total time for the month (630 goal): 495

As expected, I got nothing written yesterday but I went to a really fun event for the Detroit Red Wings. See Instagram for details!

Today,  however, I went to a write-in and it was very productive. I added a scene to my story and built on a few more. I’m adding another one now as I stop so I can start with some momentum when I pick up again, which will probably be Friday. It was a ton of fun and I added over 1000 words!

I might not get to say this again but HAPPY THANKSGIVING to my American friends! Enjoy time with your loved ones.

Until next time, write on.

You can follow me on Goodreads, Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and Instagram. I’m available via email at SamAStevensWriter@gmail.com. And as always, feel free to leave a comment!

NaNoWriMo: My Day 11 2016

20 Nov

Just enough today.

Today’s writing time (30 goal): 30
This Week’s writing time (210 goal): 30
Total time for the month (630 goal): 405

 

And so the next week begins! I’m going to be cutting this close again this week. A write-in Tuesday will help a lot. I got in just the needed 30 minutes today. Between a 10K race this morning and Friendsgiving tonight (best tradition ever), I don’t have a lot of time, but I got in my 30 minutes.  Good enough!

I added a bit of the character I’m flushing out. It’s hard to write a ‘bad guy’ who’s funny and light-hearted! I think I’ll have to add him in more in the second half of the book. I’m almost at the half-way mark now. My big focuses are consistency and character development, especially of my secondary characters. I’m going to be confident and say I’ve got my primary characters more or less figured out.

Tomorrow will probably be very minimal writing, I’m going to a big local hockey event. Exciting for me, not my editing time. Tuesday should make all the difference.

Until next time, write on.

You can follow me on Goodreads, Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and Instagram. I’m available via email at SamAStevensWriter@gmail.com. And as always, feel free to leave a comment!

NaNoWriMo: My Day 10 2016

19 Nov

I’m going to just squeak by this whole thing, I think.

Today’s writing time (30 goal): 30
This Week’s writing time (210 goal): 270
Total time for the month (630 goal): 375

Finishing out the week with about an hour over goal! I’m pretty happy with that. The write-ins I’ve been able to go to were a big help this past week. I’m not sure I’ll be able to make any this week but I’ll try for one on Tuesday. The week of Thanksgiving is always rough with NaNo so I’ll see what time I can carve out as my family travels to Ohio to visit my brother.

Not much added today, really. I took out a good amount of ‘saying’ and was able to give one of my pseudo-villains a bit more of an edge. I think he needed it, he was kind of bland. I tried giving my silent character a bit more to say as well. I’ll probably have to add a scene for him to be really fleshed out. I’m not sure where I’ll do that. Hm.

Until next time, write on.

You can follow me on Goodreads, Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and Instagram. I’m available via email at SamAStevensWriter@gmail.com. And as always, feel free to leave a comment!

NaNoWriMo: My Day 9 2016

18 Nov

Better today!

Today’s writing time (30 goal): 40
This Week’s writing time (210 goal): 240
Total time for the month (630 goal): 345

I didn’t get any time in  yesterday but I managed to do some today! I did forty minutes just now and depending on my evening, I might do some more tonight. I’ve got to head to a doctor’s appointment and then I can’t decide if I’ll have a beer or go for a run. Time will tell.

Nothing too exciting to report about my edits. I changed a setting for historical accuracy in one scene, but I didn’t add much. I’d made a commitment to make one quiet character a bit more talkative but he hasn’t been in any of the scenes I went over today. Maybe more tonight? I like what I’m doing with him so it will be fun to bring him out.

Until next time, write on.

You can follow me on Goodreads, Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and Instagram. I’m available via email at SamAStevensWriter@gmail.com. And as always, feel free to leave a comment!

NaNoWriMo: My Day 7 2016

16 Nov

So… not so good with the writing again. And I suspect tomorrow will be the same.

Today’s writing time (30 goal): 0
This Week’s writing time (210 goal): 200
Total time for the month (630 goal): 305

If it makes any difference, I got a yoga ball today. And I did WWW Wednesday and answered all those so YOU’RE WELCOME! But no, I got no writing done, sadly. I was asked to play bar trivia and I love trivia so I said yes. And then we were terrible. Like, really terrible. I was confident when I shouldn’t have been and second-guessed when I shouldn’t have.

Tomorrow I’ll be at the Fantastic Beasts premier so I’m guessing no writing again. I’m so excited thinking about it that I could cry. And I probably will tonight. And tomorrow. But I hope to write on Friday! I’m setting long-term goals.

Until next time, write on.

You can follow me on Goodreads, Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and Instagram. I’m available via email at SamAStevensWriter@gmail.com. And as always, feel free to leave a comment!

NaNoWriMo: My Day 6 2016

15 Nov

Another write-in for the win! These really help me keep on track for the week.

Today’s writing time (30 goal): 100
This Week’s writing time (210 goal): 200
Total time for the month (630 goal): 305

It was the week for my writers’ group but because of NaNo, we participated in the library’s write-in instead. I got about an hour and a half of time in. It got me to page 30 of my novel for this full read-through and I forgot how much I was adding and editing last year! I completely changed a few scenes and I do have to admit I like them a lot more! I was trying to play up a minor character that fell really flat so I’ll have to work on adding him in more in the later part of the book.

I’m still really happy with how this is turning out. I’ll be ready (or nearly there) to hand it off to some beta readers come December. Maybe someone will think it makes for some nice Holiday reading, haha.

Until next time, write on.

You can follow me on Goodreads, Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and Instagram. I’m available via email at SamAStevensWriter@gmail.com. And as always, feel free to leave a comment!