Make Nanowrimo Yours

creating writing is messy
writing is messy

I set my Nano goal today, figured out how I’ll make it work for me this year, so I don’t end up with another tangled mess; that’s usually what I have at the end of Nano. Or I give up.

But this year I’m going to make Nano work for me, and not be a slave to the word count. I surprised myself with what I came up with- it seems so do-able and so perfect for my project and me.

I’m working on a memoir that I hope reads like a novel with a strong narrative arc, memorable characters, a meaningful sense of place. I’ve got many words written, in many places- in two Scrivener documents (thanks to last year’s Nano I bought Scrivener at 50% off), and several journals, and a doc called Wildfire Writing from a community college class I took last year. I also have 3×5 cards laid out on a table- Robert Olen Butler’s brilliant way of creating an organic structure from his book From Where You Dream.

I tend to use bits and pieces of ideas, melding them to make my own method rather than strictly following their ideas.

I love writing by hand in notebooks, but that doesn’t seem like it works well with Nano, until now. I was listening to Mary Adkins, author of When You Read This, talk about her 4 notebook handwritten first draft method and I adapted it for myself. She gives an easy way to figure word count.

So here’s my Nano goal: I’ll write 1000+ words per day in my notebook (from my scene cards and prompts), and rewrite 1000+ words per day. I have several scenes that were thinly written and need some flesh on their bones, and/or need a complete overhaul. So my goal is actually 60-70K of a novel memoir I can call finished, at least for that round.

It’s all writing. I can see through to the end of the tunnel now, and I’m embracing this tunnel with intense vision, ready to have fun– on my terms.

How about you? How will you make Nano work for you? You can do it anyway you want. But do it.

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