Screenshot 2014-03-10 10.23.32It is coming up to a year since I started writing my first novel. This time last year, I hadn’t even heard of NaNoWriMo. I just sat down at my computer one day, inspired to write a story and got on with it, by the seat of my pants. Then I heard about Camp NaNo coming up in July and decided to set myself a goal so that I would keep writing. By then, I already had 70,000 words but I was finding it tough to keep going. I had no idea that writing would be so hard 😉 So, I set myself a modest goal of writing 10,000 words last July which seemed manageable whilst I was still working full-time. Once I had a goal and it was written down somewhere, I knew I would meet it and I did.

In November last year, I used my first proper NaNoWriMo to start my second novel and wrote just over 50,000 words on that story in the month. Since then though, I have written nothing further on it because I have been busily rewriting my first ‘pantser’ novel. Next month’s Camp is going to be for novel number 2 then but before I can go back to it, I must do some PLANNING! Having written one story and half of a second one, the most important lesson I have learned in this past year, is that I am a natural planner when it comes to writing, as with all other things in my life. I so bitterly regret not having planned my first story. So when it come to starting the second one, I tried to outline what I was going to write before getting started. I did write an outline of sorts but what I then wrote did go off at a bit of a tangent and I know there is a lot to fix in the 50,000 words I have already written. Aargh!

I am therefore going to have to spend a bit of time this month getting myself ready before I write again. The thing is, I don’t really have the time to do lots of rewriting before I start but if I just carry on, there will be a ton of rewriting to do when I get to the end! I have decided to start by re-reading what I’ve got so far in order to identify any potential plot-holes, making notes on my Scrivener file where they occur so that I can pick up on them later. After that, I’m going to just get straight on with writing. I have read a lot of advice about outlining before writing and the common theme that comes up is that you are ‘allowed’ to veer off course from what you originally planned and so I’m going to give myself the freedom to do that. It’s not like me but maybe that will be good for me, to just follow my characters and see where they take me. I’ll just have to hope they won’t take me so far off course that rewriting further down the line becomes a nightmare!

Are you taking part in Camp NaNoWriMo this April? If so, what are you doing to get ready? Leave me a comment in the notes below. It would be great to hear from you. As always, thanks for reading 🙂


16 Comments on Prepping for my first April Camp NaNoWriMo

  1. I’m doing Camp NaNo for the first time this year. I’m hoping to write a 30,000 word novella in April. I already have the story pretty much mapped out in my head and as it is very much character driven, my prep is really going to be getting to know my two MC’s better. I’ll probably write some backstory for both of them and build on that. Good luck!

    • It sounds like you’ve really prepared, well done! I’ve settled on 25,000 because I’m away for a week during April. Good luck to you too and hopefully, we can keep each other going 🙂

  2. I’ll be fascinated to hear how you get on Julie, I’ve been tempted to do NaNo in the past but never seem to be in one place long enough to do it properly. SD

    • The Camps in April and July are a nice way to start because you set your own goal, whereas in November you ‘have’ to aim for 50K. So, last July, I set myself a goal of furthering my 1st novel by 10K and when I achieved that, it felt great. 50K in Nov last yr was tough but I did it. This time, I’ve only set myself 25K for April because we’ve got a holiday in the middle but I hope I’ll be able to achieve it. It feels so good when you do 🙂

  3. Good luck Julie – I also done it in November, it was tough but really enjoyable! Writing is all about discipline and self motivation – too things I tend to misplace every now and again… Nano helps to keep the momento going so well worth the effort 🙂

    • Thanks for your reply, Karen. Tough but enjoyable is how I’d describe the November Nano too. I’ve signed up to 25K this time so I’m hoping it’ll be a little easier. Are you going to do it this time?

      • V Welcome 🙂 Unfortunately I’ve decided to take a back seat this April as I have a few projects that really need my time but in a nurturing way – I find I go into full steam ahead mode during Nano, whereas these projects need research/maturity time. Does that make any sense at all? 😀 But wishing you all the very best with your 25K challenge!!! xo

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.