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Sunday, October 18, 2015

Fall must-have: Tall leather boots from . . .

cj Sez: Oops. Wrong headline, but here I am, in a state of flux, trying to get ready for winter. I’m somewhere between the beginning of fall (the autumn equinox occurred Sept. 23) and the end of daylight savings time (if you’re on it, it ends November 1). I feel as if I’m on a slippery slope to the end of the year. Think about it. Right this minute, stores have displays for a generic harvest season, as well as for Halloween, Thanksgiving, and an increasing number of cultural holidays (including my personal favorite, Christmas).

If you’re a writer who likes a challenge, here’s something to do in the waning sunlight hours: The beginning of NaNoWriMo is November 1. The National Novel Writing Month.  Writing 50,000 words in one month. Let’s see, “30 days hath September, April, June, and November.” That means you’d have to write an average of (just a minute, calculations going on) 1,667 words per day. Whew!

If you’re going to take the challenge (I’ll only admit to “thinking” about it), now is the time to pre-plot … you probably should have already started the process. Deciding to take the NaNoWriMo challenge is one of those times where it isn’t a good idea to jump right in and begin writing. In order to accomplish 50,000 words in thirty days, you will definitely need some pre-planning.
From my Facebook page
You’ll need a basic idea of how you want the action to progress. Especially important to speedwriting is to know something about your story arc, your characters’ development, and what their emotional arcs will be. Attention-getting beginnings, strong middles, satisfying endings don’t just happen (especially the strong middles).

Granted, a final NaNoWriMo story will wind up as a fast first draft. However, the plus side of all that plotting and planning is not only will you have a better chance of completing the NaNoWriMo challenge, but it’s also a good bet that you’ll need a lot fewer rewrites to make that first draft into a viable, saleable novel.

If you’re not in a support group (get your encouragement and motivation there), there are multiple sources of helpful forums and advice online. There is even an official organization: http://nanowrimo.org/

So, what are you waiting for? Put pen to paper or fingers to keys and get started on developing those plots. There are only 13 days left until Nov. 1.

And now that I think about it, since I get paid monthly, I have only two more paydays until Christmas. Aarrgh!

Okay, I’ll leave you to your work. You-all guys keep on keeping on; I'll try to do the same; and remember, I’m rooting for you!

cj
cjpetterson@gmail.com
Choosing Carter  -- Kindle  /  Nook  /  Kobo   /  iTunes/iBook
Deadly Star --  Kindle  / Nook  / Kobo

PS: On Friday, grandson competed in/finished the Alabama Spartan Super Race in Saraland ...8+ Miles, 24+ Obstacles. Yay Jeff!

PPS Stocking Stuffer Hint No. 1:   
Stocking Stuffer Hint No. 2: 

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