As some of you may know by now, if you know me in real life or follow me on Twitter, I am participating in National Novel Writing Month for the eighth year in a row.
For those that aren’t aware, every November a bunch of writers around the world spend the entire month building a novel toward the goal of fifty thousand words. For the Young Writers’ Program, used in schools and for children, the goal is whatever the individual wants it to be.
I’ve been participating in NaNoWriMo for eight years now, completed it five times, and am pretty much obsessed with the idea of it.
This is going to be a little run-down of my history with NaNo, if anyone is interested. Also, all stories mentioned here will be added to the Books page if they’re not already.
Year One: 2009
Ghosts of Autumn, a paranormal story about a family of psychics. Despite being in the middle of a pretty rough year, I somehow managed to hit 50k and escape with my sanity.
Year Two: 2010
Deadline, a poorly-titled horror novel that (I was told by several people) sounded a lot like the Hunger Games, only with grim reapers. Having since read the Hunger Games, I agree.
I did finish Deadline, though I’m not proud of the amount of (totally allowed) word-padding I did to achieve the 50k. In the end it didn’t even matter. Two hours before midnight on the last day of NaNo, my computer crashed and I lost everything I’d written that day. Basically I wouldn’t have had enough time to rewrite everything. I had to copy and paste 50k from another project just to claim my certificate.
Year Three: 2011
Cold Vendetta, another horror novel. I was on a roll with the scary stuff, apparently. This was a vampire novel in the first of what is to become a series from the perspective of classic creatures (vampire, werewolf, zombie … can’t remember the fourth I had planned).
Year Four: 2012
Keeping the Faith, historical fiction. An idea that came from a Harry Potter fanfic I was writing. The story follows a girl throughout her life as she searches for her missing twin brother. I was confident with this story – I had more plot than I really needed to hit my goal – so I excelled. I hit sixty thousand.
Year Five: 2013
Spectrum: Book One, fantasy. Probably my favorite year, not for anything spectacular that happened during NaNo itself, but because the novel was such a huge success. I hit 5ok and went on to finish the novel on Halloween night of the following year.
I’m working on editing it right now, and looking for publication next year.
Year Six: 2014
Specrrum: Book Two, fantasy. The year I went downhill. Family crisis, getting sick, and lack of motivation all attributed to my failure to hit 50k.
Year Seven: 2015
When the Bucket Kicks Back, superheroes. See year six’s excuses for reasons why I failed this one too.
Year Eight: 2016
The Roles We Play, dystopian. I have plotted and planned like never before. I have character bios and family trees and (hopefully) enough plot to last me.
I am going to complete this year. Of course, as I write this I have 14 hours to go and an as yet unfinished chapter guide. Still, I’m optimistic. I know myself enough to know that despite an outrageous work schedule and my stress levels, I am going to do this. (This is going to look really back if I don’t wind up finishing.)
So anyway. Now you know what I’ll be up to for the next month.
As far as the blog goes, I wish I could say I’ll be doing daily updates here. I usually like to do daily videos on youtube, but I don’t really have time for youtube at the moment. So, yeah, if I have time and I’m not completely exhausted from work and writing, I’ll update daily. If not, I’ll at least do weekly posts.
If you want a more reliable account of my NaNo experience, follow me on Twitter or add me as a buddy on nanowrimo.org (Elizabeth_Sabourin)
Have a Happy Halloween!