It is 25 November and I have decided that it is too late to start NaNoWriMo this year.
For those who don’t know, NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month) is a challenge to write a novel (well, 50,000 words) during the month of November. This equates to 1,667 words per day – more if you take a day off.
Taking 24 days off rather ruins the whole experiment. To complete the challenge I would now need to write 8,333 words for each of the last 6 days. This would be a struggle when in full flow, and virtually impossible for me from a standing start.
However, it has highlighted to me that I need to set myself some targets or Book 2 will never get written. Avid readers of the blog may recall that I managed to lose all the work I’d done on a break over half term and I am aware that I have struggled to go back to it. I have written the odd little ditty to keep my brain ticking over, along with the blog posts, but seriously getting down to the art of writing is a bigger hurdle.
But it isn’t writing per se that is the problem. It is the crafting. Somehow the book has to have a cohesion, an overarching tale that will sweep the reader from beginning to end. Currently there is a series of stories, all interesting in their own right but without any phrasing. I have found, though, that it is hard to get an overall picture when I am constantly being interrupted (mainly by children, and other life events, such as the central heating not working…) That was also the beauty of my three days away, as I could concentrate solely on the storyline and re-jig the writing to-date.
Christmas is coming, and I know I will struggle to find the time to hold the book together, but I think today’s task will be to set some absolute deadlines: some small challenges that will get the brain juices flowing and the book into shape.
So: time to print out the calendar, set some realistic targets and get back on track. 25 November is St Catherine’s Day (I forgive her the misspelling!) and exactly one month until Christmas. I wonder how much I can do between now and then?