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Topic: 2011 NaNoWriMo Participants' Thread

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Subject: 2011 NaNoWriMo Participants' Thread
Date Posted: 10/22/2011 5:20 PM ET
Member Since: 6/4/2007
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Welcome one and all to the 2011 NaNoWriMo Participants' Thread, a place for us to check in with and check up on each other as we each endeavor to complete this year's challenge. As the month goes along, we can come here to share our day to day experiences with the task of writing our novels, encourage and support one another, share anecdotes about and tips on the writing process, share useful resources and titles of the various books that guide and inspire us, blow off steam, and otherwise revel in a sense of community with our fellow masochists lol.  
 
To get us in the right frame of mind, I thought I'd include some quotes on the topic of writing that I've found useful over the course of my time as a self-identified writer:
 
"Surely it is an odd way to spend your life - sitting alone in a room with a pen in your hand, hour after hour, day after day, year after year, struggling to put words on pieces of paper in order to give birth to what does not exist, except in your head. Why on earth would anyone want to do such a thing? The only answer I have ever been able to come up with is: because you have to, because you have no choice." ~ Paul Auster

"A writer′s life and work are not a gift to mankind; they are its necessity." ~ Toni Morrison, Burn This Book

"I am a man, and alive...For this reason I am a novelist. And being a novelist, I consider myself superior to the saint, the scientist, the philosopher, and the poet, who are all great masters of different bits of man alive, but never get the whole hog."  ~  D. H. Lawrence

"Life can't ever really defeat a writer who is in love with writing, for life itself is a writer's lover until death - fascinating, cruel, lavish, warm, cold, treacherous, constant."  ~  Edna Ferber

"The pages are still blank, but there is a miraculous feeling of the words being there, written in invisible ink and clamoring to become visible." ~ Vladimir Nabakov

"Every writer I know has trouble writing." ~ Joseph Heller

"Writers are not just people who sit down and write. They hazard themselves. Every time you compose a book your composition of yourself is at stake." ~ E. L. Doctorow

"A writer is somebody for whom writing is more difficult than it is for other people." ~ Thomas Mann, Essays of Three Decades

"There is no royal path to good writing; and such paths as do exist do not lead through neat critical gardens, various as they are, but through the jungles of the self, the world, and of craft." ~ Jessamyn West

"There's nothing to writing. All you do is sit down at a typewriter and open a vein." ~ Red Smith

"Being a writer doesn't have anything to do with the actual business of writing. Of course, writing sometimes happens, but even when asleep, a writer is still a writer." ~ myself

 

 



Last Edited on: 10/22/11 5:26 PM ET - Total times edited: 2
Date Posted: 10/22/2011 6:03 PM ET
Member Since: 1/3/2010
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OK. I don't usually bother with this forum as not much happens here. I will also miss the cheering on and enthusiasm of the CMT community not participating in NaNo but if this is where everyone else wants to then I'm here too.

 

Date Posted: 10/22/2011 6:11 PM ET
Member Since: 6/4/2007
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I figured it'd be nice not having to hunt through the first few pages of CMT to find the thread on busy days, and I hadn't really anticipated much posting from non-participants. I also thought it'd be a great way to inspire a bit more activity in this forum. For all the writers we have on PBS, it's a shame this forum is so seemingly neglected. 

eta: don't know why this was an afterthought and not just a thought in the first place, but there's nothing saying we can't use both threads :)



Last Edited on: 10/22/11 6:16 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 10/22/2011 6:21 PM ET
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Last Edited on: 2/13/16 6:03 AM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 10/22/2011 8:35 PM ET
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Whine to your heart's content, SAN, or I'll feel bad about my own whining when the time comes lol

 

Date Posted: 10/23/2011 1:01 AM ET
Member Since: 6/2/2011
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I'm in too. This will be my first NaNo, so I'll need all the encouragement I can get smiley

Date Posted: 10/23/2011 8:33 AM ET
Member Since: 10/7/2011
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For all the writers we have on PBS, it's a shame this forum is so seemingly neglected. 

Hmm. I didn't realize it was (too new). That is a shame.  Maybe we could host writing contests on here to bolster participation?

You know I'm in!

 

Date Posted: 10/23/2011 10:50 PM ET
Member Since: 10/13/2007
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*waves*  just found the stickynotes feature on my Win7 laptop..LOL I've now got around ten notes on my screen about my NaNO plot.

I am ready to go :)  just will spend the week finding floorplans and writing out more detailed character sheets.

Date Posted: 10/24/2011 7:34 PM ET
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Last Edited on: 2/13/16 5:55 AM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 10/24/2011 7:34 PM ET
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Last Edited on: 2/13/16 5:55 AM ET - Total times edited: 2
Date Posted: 10/24/2011 10:48 PM ET
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I haven't gotten as far as floorplans. I do have maps drawn up, though to be fair, I'm using Earth's geography, so it's not quite as difficult as inventing something from scratch lol. This "in over my head" feeling has been a fantastic motivator! I've got all kinds of ducks lining up in neat little rows. Still have to get all my resources assembled and organized, my affairs are nowhere near having been put in order, but the psychological preparation has built up an impressive amount of momentum. Only 1 week to go as of midnight tonight! Anybody else feeling particularly psyched? 

Date Posted: 10/25/2011 1:19 PM ET
Member Since: 10/13/2007
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I need floorplans so I know where the cameras are to be set up..LMAO!   I draw them on grid paper, it's a good creative exercise.

Date Posted: 10/25/2011 8:05 PM ET
Member Since: 1/3/2010
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That's us this time? Only 6?

Date Posted: 10/25/2011 8:18 PM ET
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Naw, there's bound to be more people on the Swap participating. I'm sure there are some who just haven't found their way here yet, but not everyone's going to want to come to the forums about it. Norman Mailer said "I think it's bad to talk about one's present work, for it spoils something at the root of the creative act. It discharges the tension." Maybe some of the others are of this mindset. Many people feel writing is a lonely business; certainly cavorting with others in the field runs contrary to such a view. At any rate, I'm not discouraged in the least; I'm encouraged by the mere fact that other Swappers are participating. To discuss the matter in the forums is one hell of a bonus, though :-D

Today was a HUGE day of prep for me. I found ALL of my notes on the story I'll be writing, including the very first ideas committed to paper (eta: this story idea's about 4 years in the making). I collected and organized the books I'll want on hand during the writing process, as well as those I'll be reading for research and inspirational purposes. I feel at least ten times more ready than I did yesterday. I'm definitely chomping at the bit, though I still think November could arrive just a bit more slowly LOL.



Last Edited on: 10/25/11 8:19 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Matt C. (mattc) - ,
Date Posted: 10/26/2011 10:17 AM ET
Member Since: 8/13/2008
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I'm in for a 4th attempt.  Never won so far, but I've had some fun.

Date Posted: 10/26/2011 10:56 AM ET
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Okay, I was hesitant to join this group since James told me a few weeks ago I should find a hobby that was more joyful to me,  I should add here that I write in parody, humor etc.   But here is the way I have pulled it off two of two times.   Read the book   No Plot no Problem.   It takes you through each week and all the feelings you will have.    Also recognize most of what you are writing is 'word vomit'. (Not my choice of words, but the guy who started  NaNo)   Don't make spelling corrections etc as you go.  That is for the editing done in Dec or later.

Also, and this is the thing that works for me....put your ass in a chair and write....everyday.    I have gone to a couple write ins in the area here, and while they are fun, I don't get much done other than order coffee and chat.  And if your family is making noise, use ear plugs.  Yes I did use ear plugs to tune out Monday Night Football.  

I should say my first book was about a period of time in my life that sort of needed sorting out in my mind.  That took maybe 20 pages.  So I had to do some major subplotting......that is where the humor came in.   In short  the time that needed sorting in my mind was about the time when I developed epilepsy. The subplot came when I needed about 45,000 more words.   I branched out into becoming a sleuth for a missing rosary.       My second book was about searching for a toilet paper theif.    As you might guess my goal is not NYT best sellers, but I had a sense of accomplishment.  My third book is about  my sister who developed epilepsy just 3 weeks ago.   I may need some subplotting here................

Date Posted: 10/26/2011 1:16 PM ET
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Deb, I certainly didn't mean to put you off anything more than the perception of writing as less than enjoyable. It can be hell at times, to be sure, but it should be a hell one thoroughly enjoys regardless, yeah? I'm glad you decided to join the conversation, and apologize if my previous comment was too harsh.

 

Date Posted: 10/26/2011 1:52 PM ET
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Apology accepted.   Still not sure I'm going to pull it off.....extended family issues.   I hate to start something I can't finish, though I guess nothing ventured nothing gained.

Date Posted: 10/26/2011 2:58 PM ET
Member Since: 6/25/2007
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I'm still deciding. I have a plot. But I don't know if I have the time. November is the worst month for me since I've been in grad school. I'm already experiencing library school burn out and lack of motivation and am not sure if NaNo will exacerbate the situation.

Date Posted: 10/26/2011 4:36 PM ET
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NO PLOT NO PROBLEM yes just as Deb said.

Glad you're giving it another go, Deb. Sometimes when life interferes it's nice to have NaNo as a distraction and/or excuse to bow out from the fray every now and again.

Date Posted: 10/26/2011 10:35 PM ET
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I was looking up my favorite authors for motivation/inspiration, and came across this quote by Frank Herbert (easily my favorite fiction author, almost entirely because of Dune). I found the sentiment to be quite poignant, so I thought I'd share: 

 

"A man is a fool not to put everything he has, at any given moment, into what he is creating. You're there now doing the thing on paper. You're not killing the goose, you're just producing an egg. So I don't worry about inspiration, or anything like that. It's a matter of just sitting down and working. I have never had the problem of a writing block. I've heard about it. I've felt reluctant to write on some days, for whole weeks, or sometimes even longer. I'd much rather go fishing, for example, or go sharpen pencils, or go swimming, or what not. But, later, coming back and reading what I have produced, I am unable to detect the difference between what came easily and when I had to sit down and say, "Well, now it's writing time and now I'll write." There's no difference on paper between the two."

— Frank Herbert

Date Posted: 10/28/2011 1:31 AM ET
Member Since: 8/14/2008
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My first year. First I looked up the website because I had up and decided to do it - then I discovered the forums and just about decided that this year would just be for reading forums and hanging out, since I couldn't settle on a story line, anyway - then something I saw on the forums kind of reminded me of a short story I wrote several years ago which I no longer have but which I think is one of the best things I've ever written, so I decided to go well back in that time line, like, 6 or 7 years before the short story, and write a romance. I don't really read romances, so that could be a challenge.

Date Posted: 10/28/2011 4:15 AM ET
Member Since: 6/4/2007
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The majority of my writing aspiration is geared toward non-fiction, sociological essays and the like. When it comes to fiction, I favor science fiction, so of course that's what I'm trying to write. I've always felt a bit stilted or hackneyed when it's come to writing fiction, but I think it's more for a lack of having tried than anything else. Tonight, while doing menial tasks for Swagbucks, of all things, I had a cerebral lightning storm, and realized the first three scenes of the novel I'm going to write for the WriMo. Each day so far, I've been twice as enthusiastic as the day before, and thanks to that ephiphany I think I tripled my zeal this past evening :)

Date Posted: 10/28/2011 12:48 PM ET
Member Since: 10/13/2007
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James- sounds weird but try doing very boring tasks, like scrubbing the tiled floor in the bathroom or mowing grass, washing dishes etc repetitive tasks taht require little brain power. they seem to help free up the creative side and start the scenes flowing. 
Hubby can't wait for november, he never has to clean the house in that time..LOL usually spotless for thanksgiving!

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