NaNoWriMo in just three days

October 28, 2013|Posted in: Books, indie pub, NaNoWriMo, novel, work, writing

MAM33juliawithtypewritersideDude. Where did October go? I was sitting over there filing my nails and making glib promises to write a novel in 30 days, and suddenly Halloween is here and I have to get started writing. Like, soon.
I have a title. It’s called “That Thing I’m  Gonna Start Writing.” I have no outline. I figured it would come to me in a dream. I have nothing simmering in my head, waiting to burst out onto the page.
The last few times I NaNo’d, I knew exactly what I was going to do, and I was revved up and ready to go. This year I am mid-book-tour, with a reading, an author fair and a research trip to another state planned (hello, Albuquerque!). In other years, I had been blogging about the book ideas. Once I wrote creative nonfiction. Another year I wrote 30 poems in 30 days. I’ve used NaNoWriMo in my writing classes to inspire students, and have guest-spoken in a middle-school classroom to budding authors on the delights of NaNo. I felt utterly confident about the ease of the project.
But here, now. In three days. I have no excuses. I have been working on other people’s projects. I have been producing nonfiction. But I haven’t been writing – my own sweet words. And chances are, as with many other areas of my life, that what I really long to do would get pressed to the side or nudged to the bottom of the list while I deal or manage or fix it for others. So. No title. No outline. Just a general idea, little more than an elevator pitch. One sentence with which to start a novel.
I’m not ready. But I’m ready. If you know what I mean.
Read all about National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo) here.

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Julia Park Tracey is an award-winning journalist, author, and blogger. She is the author of "Veronika Layne Gets the Scoop" and "Veronika Layne Has a Nose for News" (rep'd by Booktrope). She is the Poet Laureate of Alameda, California. She's also the conservatrix of The Doris Diaries, the diaries of her great-aunt Doris Bailey Murphy. Her articles have appeared in Thrillist, Quill, Paste, San Francisco Chronicle, and in many magazines; her latest poetry appears in The East Bay Literary review.



    scott meek
    October 29, 2013

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    Totally know. I had the three opening lines last year and a picture. This year is the sequel, so I have my character, I know the genre, and I have the event that will move everything, but other than that, I’m not sure what’s going to happen, and I think that’s for the best. If you are just enjoying the flail of not knowing, you win. If you are not, I suggest going through Pinterest or Tumblr or Bing and just peruse random pictures. A great deal of my writing has been based on nothing but a picture I find randomly, from which a story and a world grows. It’s way more fun to not have a clue what’s going to happen next, isn’t it? 🙂


    November 1, 2013

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    I’m with you on that! Kept thinking it starts tomorrow but apparently tomorrow is today. This is my first year. . Hope it goes well for you 🙂

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