The first week of Camp NaNo is usually the week where I tear my hair out.
Let me restate that: I would have torn my hair out if my stomach flu didn’t sap all the energy out of me.
While we’re on the subject, let me just say that my 4th of July sucked. Why? Because I didn’t have an appetite for ANYTHING…not even buttery dinner rolls! I never would’ve imagined the day I’d turn down a calorie filled dinner roll…
But that’s life for you.
I WAS behind on my NaNo novel.
But after downing two glasses of coffee I sorta went postal on the keyboard…
Since it’s Camp NaNo I thought it would be fun to tailor July’s “challenges” to our NaNo projects. The following scenarios should only be thought of as fun exercises using your Camp NaNo character(s). Don’t feel obligated to actually include them into your manuscript.
When characters are put under extreme pressure, their actions says something about the type of person they are.
The neighborhood geek could actually be a courageous hero.
And the bully? A cuddly kitten!
Your challenge is to choose a character from your current WIP and put them in one (or more) of the following situations:
Stuck in an elevator with no way to contact anyone
Stranded and needs medical attention
Is a witness to a robbery in progress
They’ve just found out there’s a bomb in the building
You’ve got two weeks! Post it on your blog and leave a link in the comments.
Guess what?! It’s the first day of July’s Camp NaNoWriMo!!
To be honest, I’m not as enthusiastic as I may seem. I sorta feel…well look at the cat!
However, writing is important.
So, regardless of motivation, I’m going to sit and type something for my WIP. I’m not doing this for the sake of Camp NaNo or for the sake of having something to blog about. I’m doing this because I have to.
If all I do is commit 10 or 100 words to a page–I’ll be happy.
Last semester, I was sitting in my mass communication class listening to a guest speaker. I managed to compile six pages worth of notes for the “take-home” assignment; however, there was no take-home assignment. Uh-oh!
My professor stood in front of the class and told us that we had the remaining hour to write a report on the guest speaker’s presentation.
I nearly choked on my breath. An hour!? I needed much more time than that. I had to mull over the information, slap together a rough draft, and edit it until I thought it was acceptable (I say acceptable because, in my eyes, everything I do can be better).
You can bet your left arm that I was stressing.
But I eventually realized that I was wasting time worrying and just started to write. In the end, my report came out great!
I know what you’re thinking: That’s great, Desiree, but what does this have to do with creative writing and over researching?
Don’t get testy.
My point is that some writers, me included, wont commit a single word to a page unless they’ve thoroughly researched a subject (for fiction, I’ll usually research things like plot theory, character technique, or whatever else). Sure, research is awesome! It can make you feel super-uber smart (and who doesn’t want to feel that way?); but it can become an elaborate reason to not write.
Eventually, enough is a enough! Research must be cancelled so creativity/writing, not editing or fact checking, can take the stage.
Can you relate to my experience? What’s your view on over researching?
After typing in the last letters to your manuscript you jump up and down in excitement. You should! You put a lot of effort into that slosh pile of words! But…is that the end to it? Or is it just the beginning?
I don’t mean to scare you but…failure may be out there.
Failure is always around us, like the wind, but that doesn’t mean I’m afraid of it.
Elizabeth Gilbert’s TED talk discusses writing through your failures. It was inspiring to me and I hope it will be to you too!
You and I have something in common. Want to know what it is?
We made it to the finish line.
Whether you participated in one of the national events (NaPoWriMo, Camp NaNoWriMo, or A to Z Challenge) or accomplished something else–you did it! Sure the road was rough. Sure you made a mistake or two…or three? Who cares! You did it!
There’s a snobby space-elf at table three, dwarves are brawling in the bathrooms, someone set a bonfire in the middle of the Tavern…and an old guy is swinging a shirt over his head screaming “ANARCHY!”
This is the type of stuff gray hairs are made of!
Ok… I am not really dealing with a tavern in the state of anarchy but I do have a lot going on. I’m dealing with a book report, term paper, presentation, research paper, critical analysis, finals, not to mention the four quizzes coming up and a nasty fever. So yeah, I’m a pretty busy gal.
Don’t feel sorry for me, that’s all apart of being in college.
Aside from my studying aka legal torture, I wanted to share a few things about my WIP(s).
First, my Camp NaNoWriMo project is going…okay. I planned on writing 50k this month but it was an utter mistake didn’t work out. However, I am glad with what I did write!
On a brighter note, I’ve been using April to critically read another WIP that I finished in March. I don’t see it being sent off to editors or beta readers any time soon but I am happy with how far I’ve gotten it.
My big goal this week is to see some progression in both projects. Whether that’s writing 20 words a day or critically reading ONE paragraph (or even a sentence).