By Janice Seagraves
The Nanowrimo starts in about a week. For those of you who don’t know what that is, it stands for National Novel Writing Month, which is a contest to write a 50,000 word novel in a month, starting November 1 until November 30th. You can go to the website to sign up.
Congratulations for all those who entered. It’s going to be an extraordinary month.
On November first, a lot of you are going to want to start with a bang and push to get your word count up. It’s a good strategy to get your numbers high before the mid-novel slump (more on that later).
This will be my seventh year of doing the Nano, and I've won all of those years, and I have a few nifty tricks for gaining additional word count.
So here’s some advice from me:
Give yourself permission to write crap: We’re going for speed here, so writing crappy lines, and overwriting is not only okay, but necessary to succeed. Remember, while you’re working on your Nano story you’re basically writing a sloppy first draft.
Tell your interior editor to wait until November is over, and then you can edit to your heart’s desire.
Set the scene: this increases the word count and your characters aren't just standing around in a white space, saying their lines.
When setting the scene use all four senses:
Example: The surf roared as it rushed up onto the beach. Seagull screamed overhead. The smell of brine and seaweed filled her nose. Moist air blew the hair back from her face. Cold water lapped over her feet as wave after wave rushed past her toes, tumbling broken seashell across the sand. Fog waited just past the breakers, announcing it was going to be another gloomy night.
During the mid-novel slump, and yes you will have one we all do, go over your story.
I know, I know I told you not to revise or editor now. However, when you go over your nano story you can add additional details to your scenes, adding to the word count, which should get you going again.
Example: When he stared into her green eyes, he found himself wanting to kiss her.
Change to: when he stared into her sea green eyes, he noticed flecks of gold surrounded the iris. He realized he could easily get lost in her gaze, and he very badly wanted to kiss her.
Another way to get past the mid-novel slump is to plan for the first great reveal or sex scene in the middle of your story.
Good luck with the Nano. May you all be winners.
Janice’s website: http://janiceseagraves.org/
Janice’s main blog: http://ladyjanice.blogspot.com/