Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Nanowrimo is almost here again

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Okay, it’s almost here again – Nanowrimo, that is – and I thought I was prepared.

I was ready

Unlike last year, when all I had was a single beginning sentence rumbling through my head, competing for space with a story that grew from this seed. Like Jack and the Beanstalk, the seed took root and on the 1st November, began to grow. Tendrils reached out as sub plots before winding back onto the main stem to add to its strength. I reached over 50,000 words by the end of the month, but the story fell short of the goose that lay the golden egg, so I let it grow by another 30,000 words before setting it aside. I rationalised this procrastination by telling myself I’d complete it during Nanowrimo 2012, for which I set myself another 50,000 word goal for the month.

The dilemma

To continue with this plan, I would end up with a novel of 130,000 plus words and, given the average novel has between 80,000 and 120,000 words, I would be writing myself out of the market. Even with a trim of 10,000 words it would still put it in the high end - risky. I also do not believe the story needs another 50,000 words to bring it to completion so maybe I need to return to my Nanowrimo drawing board and replan.


  1.   I could begin another novel from scratch and meet another 50,000 word goal and end up with yet  another incomplete novel slumbering on my hard drive.
  2. I could tap one of the sleepers on the shoulder for example Annike Leugenaar – the Dutch Housewife, currently resting at 16,500 words, and bring this one close to finishing.
  3. Or I could resurrect The Great Western Tiers, 17,000 words (hmm, do I see a word count cessation pattern developing here) said manuscript having survived six computer and operating system changes over the years (it started life on a diskette for those who can remember) in the optimism it would one day be allowed to tell the rest of the story?

Nanowrimo begins in 16 days, by Australian count, so I need to get my thinking boots on and make a decision. 

It’s almost here again and I am totally not prepared.

1 comment:

  1. Well I can empathise with your dillema as not having attempted something like this before I have millions of story ideas, plots and subplots running around in my head. Yes I do know that focus is what's needed but I reckon I will get these into note form and draft out a rough plan before the kick off. I could put on country music and make it a weepy western or channel my inner teenager and stick with a young adult theme.

    Good luck with your November Challenge.


For some reason I'm yet to fathom I'm unable to reply to comments left by others so thank you for dropping by and taking the time to read and comment. Merlene