Post-NaNoWriMo advice, from the blogosphere

4 12 2011

Yippee!! Fritos and KitKat bars for everybody!! Streamers and noisemakers, confetti everywhere!!

You just won NaNoWriMo!!! 50k in 30 days WooHOO!

Ahem. Now what?

In my case, finish the bloody novel. It’s nowhere near done, as I didn’t do any worldbuilding before I started, because I didn’t decide to participate until 9:30pm, Oct 31, 2011. I was originally going to set the novel in 600 AD among Germanic tribes, but people who read historical fiction expect that there be some historical accuracy involved, and I had less than 3 hours to do any research. Then I remembered Avatar and the Na’vi, and boom! But what do Umgonnan eat? Bother. Time for worldbuilding.

There is no shortage of good advice out there for Nano writers, whether ‘winners’ or participants, and since this is my first time out, I’m not going to stick my neck out and make a fool of myself. So here are some post-Nano links that work for me.

First out: Chuck Wendig. I ❤ Chuck, and you might, too… IF you aren’t offended by coarse language. Don’t click this link if you are, because I guarantee you’ll be seeing red and unfriending me on Facebook and unfollowing my blog and my twitter feed… You get the idea. Just don’t do it if the F-word bothers you.

Chuck’s exhortation to Just. Write. is brilliant, vintage Chuck. IOW, just because you finished (or didn’t), don’t get the idea that you’re done. You aren’t. Miles to go and all that…

And for more specific advice, I like Victoria Mixon’s post on 23 Questions to ask yourself at the end of NaNoWriMo. I can see spending several hours contemplating that list, and there are links to four more of this editor’s posts on beginning a novel. I’m sorry I didn’t see those before now… though if I had I might have been too cowed to even begin. But now that I know I can do this, I’m ready to learn how to do it better.

Daniel Swensen’s post on Writing Through the Wolf’s Hour, deals with the ‘crippling doubt’ that every writer has about his/her work from time to time. I look at my ‘novel’ and think “Eeep. No one is going to be interested in this shit!” Well, maybe, maybe not. It’s nice to know that we all are host to those fears more often than not.

This will be my last post for a couple of days, as I’m heading out on vacation on Tuesday, and tomorrow is packed. I meant to get this post out on Friday, but as you can see, it’s Sunday evening and … here it is. I hope you guys have a good week, and I’ll see you on Friday-ish.

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4 responses

4 12 2011
Karen McFarland

Happy NaNo Julia!!!! Have a great vacation. The timing is perfect and when you get back you’ll be refreshed and ready to edit. And edit. And edit. LOL !!!!! 🙂 See ya when you get back.

5 12 2011
Julia Indigo

Karen, that would be the case if I had actually finished my first (zero??) draft! I plan to do some writing while gone (and especially in transit for 23 hours), and will hopefully finish the first draft by the end of January (at least, that’s what I’m aiming for).

5 12 2011
Diana Stevan

I enjoyed your post. Not having particpated in the NaNoWrMo, it gave me some inkling of what you, as well as others, have gone through. I also appreciated the links, some good ideas on how to get going on my next project.

5 12 2011
Julia Indigo

Thanks, Diana!
I had no idea that I was going to do Nano until 10/31 at 9pm, but I’m very glad that I did it. Made new friends, lots of great camaraderie… and now I have about 3/5 of a book.

I look forward to reading where you’ll be going with your next project!

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