Sunday, 8 November 2015

WRITERS WEEKENDS: NANOWRIMO WEEK 1 UPDATE (+THE FIRST PARAGRAPH OF MY NOVEL)

Hi everyone,

You may have noticed I haven't posted in a week, and I only have one excuse for that...NANOWRIMO! (If you don't know what I'm on about, here's last weeks post)

We're a week into NaNoWriMo, and I have to say I'm doing pretty well! At the time of writing it's 10:14 pm on Saturday the 7th of November, and I currently have a grand total of 20,196 words, which is over 8 thousand more words than the goal of 11,667 words for today. Hell yeah!


I owe almost all of my early success to the 6 thousand words I somehow got on day one. I seriously have no idea how that happened; it's all kind of a blur. Since then I've been writing about two thousand words a day, which has made my average words per day 2,885 words. Apparently, at this rate I will reach 50k on November 19th. Basically, I am doing a heck of lot better than I thought I would!



This week I just wanted to share some of the things that have helped me succeed in the first week of NaNoWriMo (not as well as some people though, how the heck have they got 100k words already?), as well as updating you on my word count and everything so far. I'm also going to be sharing the first horrible, unedited couple of paragraphs of my novel, so watch out for that at the end.

My biggest motivational tools so far have, strangely, been the two things I thought would distract me and hold me back the most: twitter, and the NaNoWriMo forums. The trick, I've discovered, is to use these outlets in a positive and productive way, so that your internet obsession helps your writing instead of hindering it. Word sprints have been brilliant for getting my word count up, and to find them I've been using the @NaNoWordSprints twitter, as well as this page on the NaNoWriMo forums (which has everything you could ever want for a productive day, including Harry Potter themed things!). I've also found the Virtual Write Ins on the official NaNoWriMo youtube channel a really fun way to connect with other writers whilst getting a lot of words down.
As this is my first time trying NaNoWriMo I'm really enjoying figuring out what helps me to write as much as possible, and it's really great to have discovered such an encouraging and supportive community of writers! I just hope I can keep up this enthusiasm for the rest of the month...

As you can probably tell, I haven't quite reached the time of the month where I get really stressed out and lose the will to live. As I've said, this is my first time participating, but I've been told by many NaNoWriMo veterans that this time will come...and I am not ready for it. I feel like everything going so well at the moment is just building me up for some kind of horrible crash, and I have to admit that I'm a little bit worried about that.
That's not to say that I haven't had any problems with NaNoWriMo so far, not by a long shot. I had exams at school all of last week, and I've kind of been struggling to balance concentrating on my education and keeping my writing momentum going. I'm honestly exhausted. There's also the fact that I've done literally nothing but write and study for the whole week, and I haven't read a single page of a book in November so far, which is absolutely CRAZY for me!

As far as my actual story goes, I don't think I'm doing too badly. Sure, it's far from perfect (I don't even want to think about how much editing I'm going to have to do when this is over) but the plots moving along nicely and I haven't got stuck yet, and I'm genuinely enjoying writing about this set of characters. I've just reached a really exciting and intense point after pages and pages of walking, and I'm actually looking forwards to carrying on and writing the crazy stuff that's about to go down. It's kind of strange; I'm usually not this optimistic about ANYTHING in my life, never mind my writing!

Without further ado, here are the first two paragraphs of my novel. I must warn you that they're really rough and haven't been edited, and I wrote them at 2am when I just got back from a One Direction concert, so please don't judge me too harshly...

The metal bars were freezing against his face, the floor hard under his shoulder. The cold of the stone was seeping into his body and locking his bones together. On the other side of the bars, James seemed just as uncomfortable, although his eyes were closed and his breathing was even with sleep. Their fingers were intertwined in the gaps between the bars, clasped tightly even as one of them slept. Theo could feel the soft leather of the Prince's boot against his own bare toes.
That was as close as they could get.

Theo hadn't slept. He couldn't. He'd tried to, but he just couldn't let himself slip into oblivion when he knew he only had a few hours left. Instead, he had made sure the time he had let with Jay wouldn't go to waste. Instead he had tried to memorise every freckle across James' nose, every eyelash, every sweep of the bones under his skin and every hair that curled near his ear. He hoped he would still remember it all when knelt down on the stage, and when he straightened his neck for the executioner to cut it. He hoped he would remember every little detail. Then, he knew, he would remember nothing.


Thank you SO much for reading, and I hope NaNoWriMo's treating you well if you're taking part! If not, just have a great November...
-MIA

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