Thursday, November 3, 2011

Thoughts Before the Fall

Why, hello there. It's been a while.

Hey, didn't you start another post like this?

Yeah, besides the point. Originality is overrated, especially within my craft. I've decided in advance to throw topic focus down the well for the duration of this post, so I ask your forgiveness for the wandering nature of my thoughts. I have a few things I want to talk about before I officially begin NaNoWriMo, as I feel these things are important for me to remember this month.

When I started this blog, my original intention was to use it for building a readership for my writing. It was going to be my "author blog," which, in short, was supposed to give people who love hopefully like my work a place to go to learn about me. Also, I wanted to document the experience of writing my first novel which, if I'm published, might provide some other new writer inspiration in the future. I find that I am always in need of encouragement and validation as a writer, so hopefully someday my words as random bits of advice might help someone in the future.

While these things are well and good, in practice, my blog has become a place for me to write about what I'm learning as a new writer. I can't be bothered to do the research, but I remember someone saying that "the best way to learn something is to teach it." I have found this to be 100% true. Whenever I talk about some aspect of writing or the creative process on the blog, I am forcing myself to think critically about it, making myself better understand my topic by putting it into words. As practice and reminders to myself, JJ's Magical Rag has proven it's worth, and I hope to continue using it as such for months and years to come. I humbly ask you to bear with me.

Oh no, not the bare/bear thing again...

So, as I might have mentioned in the past, National Novel Writing Month (a.k.a. NaNoWriMo) kicked off Tuesday, the 1st of November. As of yet, I have not started. Shame on me. Truth is, I'm scared. This thing called "fear" happens to me a lot with writing. Luckily for me, this kind of writing stage fright is not uncommon. The solution (which, don't let me fool you, I know very well) is to just plow through it. All I need to do is start.

Well, tomorrow, I'm going to do just that. I'll even prove it. Look for a link in a special "Day 1 which is actually Day 3" blog post. There are a few things anyone who is considering participating in NaNoWriMo should remember:

   - Turn of your internal editor. That douchebag will just get in the way and show your progress.Your goal is 50,000 words, and you'll never get there unless you learn to initially ignore some of your mistakes.

   - Outline your story before you start. Even though it won't be perfect, your story will be better and more usable at the end of the month if you know where you're going when you start writing.

   - Don't be afraid to commit. There are some late night ahead if you want to reach 50,000 words. Accept it and work through it. Sleep is for the dead.

   - Have fun! I have heard it from a number of sources that NaNoWriMo is an extremely valuable experience whether or not you can actually use the material you wrote during November. Don't let the stress make you sick.


That'll about do it for today. Thank you for reading my irrelevant NaNoWriMo tips. Remember, by reading them, you help me help myself. Until next time....

Take the leap with me.

See you at the bottom