Category Archives: The Whole Truth

The end of another NaNo

So, today is the last day of November. That means NaNoWriMo is coming to an end. For some of you, maybe it’s already over. Or maybe you have most of the day left. Here on the east coast of the US, we have about 9.5 hours left as of this writing. But I’m not writing anymore.

Because I am done.

Total words written: 500,005
Total novels completed: 4

  • Degeneration – 46k
  • The Story of Em – 185k
  • The Whole Truth – 98k
  • Trail Magic – 96k

The rest was random scenes. I wrote 4k of fan fiction, 5k of a novel that I ended up not finishing, a 2k short story about Halloween candy, a 2k poem, and the rest was random scenes involving characters from other novels. Sort of deleted scenes and stuff. Or scenes from their lives after their books were finished.

And now for the goal list:

• 50k Day One
• 75k opening weekend
• 100k by end of week 1
• 250k by end of month (dream goal of 300k)
• Finish at least 3 novels (5 if necessary to reach word count goal)

○ Degeneration
○ The Story of Em
○ The Whole Truth
○ Trail Magic (formerly 2,000 Miles)
○ Imprisoned Lightning

• Another 50k weekend
• Write at least 2k every day (preferably 5k)

I am happy to say that I accomplished every single one of those goals. Some of them I blew out of the water – like “another 50k weekend.” Turns out that 500k equals 50k every 3 days. So every weekend was 50k weekend! Also, 250k by the end of the month. I hit that on the 15th and then went on to double it. I never thought I would be able to do that! I also wrote at least 3k every day, including the days when I had eight hours of school AND three hours of grad school.

And now for some stats. Because numbers are fun:
• Most words in an hour: 5,026
• Most words in 10 minutes: 1001
• Most words in a day: 50,001 (Day One)
• Least words in a day: 3,018 (Day Five)
• Average words per day: 16,667

If anyone wants to see the breakdown of words written by novel, here’s my original spreadsheet:
Original spreadsheet 2013

And here is the spreadsheet I created when I realized I was increasing my goal:
New spreadsheet 2013

I have to say, as glad as I am that I came back for NaNo this year, I’m really glad the month is over. That was a lot of work, and I’m really looking forward to just relaxing and reading and playing video games and pretty much doing everything else that I haven’t been able to do this month. 🙂

What about you? Did you hit your goals for the month? Are you still writing? Are you glad the month is (almost) over? Or do you wish you still had a few more days?

Week 2 update

This is just going to be a quick post since I should really be writing.

Yesterday marked the end of week 2 of NaNoWriMo. Yesterday, I also finished my second novel. Here are the stats for anyone who’s curious:

Book 1: Degeneration (YA Contemporary) – about 46k
Random fan fiction – about 4k
Book 2: The Story of Em (NA Romance) – about 185k

Total word count: 235,311

The Story of Em is way too long. I know. I was hoping for 75k, and it sort of got away from me. I will need to cut a lot in the rewrite, but I’m still mostly happy with it. Two of the minor characters became much more important to the plot, and I never would have figured that out if I hadn’t given myself permission to ramble a bit.

If I can hit 250k by the end of tonight, I will still be on pace for 500k for the month, which is my new unofficial goal. The official goal is 400k. I’ve been keeping pace for 500k, but I’m not really sure I can keep this up. I’m going to try as long as I can, though!

Today, I’m starting a third book: The Whole Truth, which is also contemporary YA. This is my football player novel, which I’m a bit worried about. I’m still not entirely sure I like one part of the ending, but I’ll worry about that later. I might change it when I get to it, or I might not. Haven’t decided yet.

So, yeah, that’s how my month is going so far. I’m having a lot of fun. I also learned that I do really well with 10 minute sprints. I used to hate them, but now I’ve found they’re useful for when I’m not quite sure I have enough planned for a longer war. I’ve been doing an hour of 10 minute wars – 10 writing, 5 break – and it seems to be working well right now. Maybe I’ll try that again today.

NaNo Goals – 2013

NaNoWriMo starts in less than 27 hours. Part of me is really excited to start writing again, and the other part of me is terrified that I’m not ready. I should probably be working on another outline right now, but I’ve reached that point where I just feel all prepped out. I used to get the same way before tests. I’d make study guides, but then I’d get tired of pretending to study and just say “Screw it – whatever happens, happens.” That’s pretty much where I am right now.

Before this thing actually starts, I suppose I should share my goals for this month. I’ve posted these on the NaNo forums, but it can’t hurt to post them here. More accountability is always good, right?

• 50k Day One
• 75k opening weekend
• 100k by end of week 1
• 250k by end of month (dream goal of 300k)
• Finish at least 3 novels (5 if necessary to reach word count goal):

  • Degeneration – Contemporary YA
  • The Story of Em – NA Romance
  • The Whole Truth – Literary YA
  • Trail Magic (formerly 2,000 Miles) – Contemporary NA
  • Imprisoned Lightning – Contemporary YA

• Another 50k weekend
• Write at least 2k every day (preferably 5k)

That looks like a lot, but I think I can handle it. As you might remember, last year I got to 243k, wrote 2 novels, one novella, finished a third novel, started a fourth, and wrote a bunch of short stories. I’m hoping my projects will be longer this time so I won’t have to deal with short stories. Also, I’m pleased to say that I’ve gotten every school assignment out of the way – EXCEPT for the lesson plans that I need to write once a week for my student teaching experience. I’m still going to be spending two days a week at a high school. Plus I have two Thanksgivings to do to and several things on that second Saturday of the month. Other than, though, I’m completely free.

I have the first three chapter outlines finished. The fourth one is about three-quarters finished, which is enough to get me almost to the climax. Really, I should be able to figure out what I’m doing by that point. The last novel is the one I’m worried about. I have the basic concept and the characters, and I have my three-act structure planned out. Sadly, that’s about it. I was hoping to have the rest of it figured out by now, but that doesn’t seem to have happened. I kept changing my mind about what was going to happen. What makes for more interesting characters is making the plot suffer, and what made for an interesting plot had rather stereotypical characters.

That said, I’m holding that novel off for the end. Hopefully I can get to 250k with the four mostly planned novels. Imprisoned Lightning is going to be the backup novel. I also have another idea that I got from the OA chat. I have two characters and a basic concept for that one. Plus, there’s always the dystopian series I started last NaNo. I still don’t have that one planned enough, but I could start rewriting it if I had nothing else to write.

I have tomorrow off, so I’m going to spend the day doing laundry and making food for the next few days. I’m then going to sleep most of the afternoon/evening so that I can wake up around 10 or 11 pm and get ready to write at midnight. I’m hoping I can quickly get back to the 3k/hour I was able to write last November and really get 50k Day One off to a good start.

Degeneration is my Day One project. I feel a bit like I’m cheating since I’ve written this story so many times, but I’ve decided to go with it anyway. I wrote it twice as a screenplay and once as a novel, and each draft has taken me one step closer to something I’m proud of. The last draft I wrote for one of the 2012 camp sessions, and it was about 49k. Now I’ve added a whole different subplot and changed her trip from two days to a week. It really is a significant difference. I’m not just rewriting scenes I already wrote – I’m adding like seven chapters that weren’t there before. And I’m not going to be looking at any of the previous drafts while I write, either. It’ll be just me and my outline.

I’ll probably end up doing what I did last year and write a brief post letting you all know how my 50k day went. I feel more prepared than I was last year, but you never know. Here’s a link to the spreadsheet I’ll be using, if anyone wants to keep up with my word count as the day progresses: Quix’s Day One Spreadsheet

I probably won’t post again before NaNo, so good luck to everyone who’s participating! Remember – don’t let anyone else make you feel bad about your goal. You’re only competing with yourself.

Also – don’t call anyone else a cheater just because that person can write more than you can. Hopefully no one following my blog would ever do that, but I felt the need to mention it anyway. Also, just because someone writes faster than you do doesn’t mean that that person’s writing is horrible. We’ve already had people in the Beyond 50k forum tell us that our novels must be utter nonsense, and I’m really not in the mood to deal with that crap already. So, just, yeah – be nice to all the other participants! 🙂