2018 NaNoWriMo Thread November 5, 2018 7:29 AM   Subscribe

The annual check-in thread for MeFites participating in NaNoWriMo.

I wanted to wait a couple days to start the thread, so it would be open for most of November and a couple days of December because the last minute word count posts are always some of my favorites. So, what are you writing? How's it going? Have you changed gears and plots for the third time, like I have?

I'm also PearlRose over on the NaNoWriMo site, and I've been doing this for um, thirteen years, fourteenth NaNoWriMo project. (It's a teenager now? My word.)
posted by PearlRose to MetaFilter-Related at 7:29 AM (37 comments total) 3 users marked this as a favorite

Fun! Thank you for setting this thread up. I've done NaNoWriMo a few times and won a couple of times, and this year I'm doing my second sci-fi piece, written in the style of a memoir, that touches on themes of reincarnation and extinction, with a vengeful female archetype at it's center. This is my first year as a writer in the Pacific Northwest and I am delighted by the prospect of some horrid, OMG-rainy-stay-inside-tea-fueled writing benders. Going to add you as a buddy over there now, looking forward to encouraging you and other MeFite NaNos onward!
posted by missmobtown at 9:12 AM on November 5, 2018 [2 favorites]

I'm semi-NaNo-ing. I'm not officially signed up, but all my friends are doing it so I'm participating in their write-ins and things, just trying to finish up some outstanding projects.
posted by Eyebrows McGee (staff) at 11:14 AM on November 5, 2018

I'm signed up for NaNo mostly because of all the procrasticleaning I will get done when I am pointedly not writing things. I'm only at just over 1000 words, but I have washed, dried, folded and put away all the laundry, which is something I almost never do -- usually the laundry comes out of the dryer and goes intoa laundry basket and then I just pull it out of the heap as needed.
posted by jacquilynne at 11:22 AM on November 5, 2018 [7 favorites]

Good luck NaNoWriMoers!
posted by ellieBOA at 11:56 AM on November 5, 2018 [2 favorites]

I wrote absolutely nothing for the first two days, then managed to properly get back on the wagon over the weekend, so I've caught up and I'm at about 8500 now. It's entirely silly self-indulgent fanfic stuff that I have no intention of publishing and probably won't even attempt to edit, but it's being a good escape at the moment, and good for just getting back into the habit of actually writing regularly.

I had the "I" key literally falling off my laptop keyboard until Saturday afternoon, and I'm very thankful to have that fixed. It technically still worked but only if my laptop was completely horizontal so it wouldn't fall out. Getting that fixed was very helpful.
posted by Sequence at 12:03 PM on November 5, 2018 [1 favorite]

I started writing romances (um, of the 1920s-with-magic variety) for my Nano project last year, and now I seem to be writing book 5 in a loosely connected series (some overlapping characters, but they read as standalones) and am planning to release the first one (self-pub) in December. (I'm Jenett over the Nano site)

I'm currently 8K into a country house murder mystery variant romance, and having a blast with it.

My big goal this year is to actually make it to a couple of events, in the hopes of meeting more people I don't already know doing a thing I know I like. (Aiming at my first write-in on Saturday.)

I have never won Nano, but I have really levelled up my wordcount in the last year (I'm reliably averaging around 1K words most days, though there are days with 300 and days with 2000, so, averaging is a thing) so Nano feels somewhat less daunting now.
posted by jenettsilver at 12:13 PM on November 5, 2018 [3 favorites]

Also semi-quasi-not-really this year. Just harnessing the NaNo zeigeist and some other factors, like avoiding holiday stress, to work on pre-existing projects. I used to have a regular habit of writing that I've gotten away from. My goal this year is to re-establish the habit, and work it back into my life.
posted by cage and aquarium at 1:59 PM on November 5, 2018

I'm another person sort of but not really doing it...? I'm doing nanowri2mo I guess because I didn't want to commit to one month and then fail. I started in mid-October and my goal is to finish a longish thing by mid-December. I've been getting back into regular writing as a hobby this year and this is my first time trying my hand at something longer than a short story. It is, uh, an absolute fucking mess which so far seems to be about a paranormal investigator who is dealing badly with grief and who faces, you might say, both literal and metaphorical ghosts. Jeez. I'm enjoying writing it even though it's literally awful, and according to my little chart on Pacemaker I'm 45% done. It's mostly an accident that I happen to be writing it now, but it's cool if a little daunting to see other people working on stuff and to catch a bit of the NaNo fever.
posted by the cat's pyjamas at 2:44 PM on November 5, 2018

Off-topic, somewhat related: I don't do Nanowrimo, but for the past 10 years I've been going to the write-ins to work on my Yuletide fics. Now I'm not doing Yuletide and I feel sad about it. I suppose I could work on one of my current projects at a write-in, but that feels weird to me.
posted by betweenthebars at 3:14 PM on November 5, 2018

I'm trying. So help me.

Thriller-type murder story with a hopefully nonbinary protagonist. I've written part of the climax scene. I'm hoping that will help me. This will be my first real attempt and I'm hoping to at least get close.
posted by Night_owl at 3:20 PM on November 5, 2018 [1 favorite]

I'm posting here instead of working on my novel, because the bloom is officially off the rose.

I've been a local municipal liaison for ...well, this is my tenth year. So many years, I get so involved with organizing write-ins, encouraging others, and basically neglecting myself for most of November. This year, I've made a pretty deliberate decision to take about two steps back, because I really like being an ML and I really like doing NaNo. I'd like to keep continuing to enjoy both of these things, so I'm scaling back (slightly).

That said, it's close enough to week two that I actually went to the grocery store tonight to avoid working on my novel. I'm winging it more this year than I usually do, and it's definitely showing.

I'm writing a YA Murder Mystery set in Florida, and it's a loose sequel to my 2015 NaNo novel. Murder happens under the guise of a hurricane, and my quirky sarcastic teen protagonist has to sleuth out who did it while being a teen with the usual teen drama.
posted by PearlRose at 3:58 PM on November 5, 2018

I've participated but not won twice before but this is going to be the year I do it! My son had a sleepover last night so I'm still groggy from the aftermath of 5 seventh-grade boys tearing around my house till the wee hours. I would really like to sleep but want to hit a minimum word count first because if I slack off this week I probably won't finish and this year, I really, really want to finish.
posted by selfmedicating at 4:41 PM on November 5, 2018 [1 favorite]

I started participating in 2009, and won from 2011 to 2015. For the last two years, I was working on an academic book, which is now published. For this year, my eight year olds wanted to participate, so we are collaborating on a children's book about time travel (Tentatively titled "The Time Vortex"). A matching graphic novel ("Time Cat") is being put together by the kids. So far Time Cat is two pages and a surprising amount of tape, but The Time Vortex is just over 10,000 words, and only about 6000 are nonsense. I've never tried to write children's fiction before, but it's really quite fun.

Anyways, I have no friends on the NaNo site (I'm Amy_Rachel there), but it's fun to see how others are doing.
posted by Valancy Rachel at 6:43 PM on November 5, 2018 [2 favorites]

I was an ML in 2007 and 2008 and would not do that again. It was a really interesting experience but OOF it is a lot to take on on top of the writing itself.

I hit 10k tonight. I'm actually really delighted by it being allowed to be bad, because I just write whatever is making me happy to write in the moment and that is making for much better progress than usual. I don't expect to be this far ahead for long, though, I'm just trying to get as much in on the good days so that I can have some bad ones without stressing out.
posted by Sequence at 9:23 PM on November 5, 2018 [3 favorites]

I'm sitting Nanowrimo out this year -- too much other stuff going on -- but good luck to those who are participating!
posted by maurice at 3:25 AM on November 6, 2018

Hello, Wrimos and fellow travellers! I am having my best NaNoWriMo ever and I’m not sure why, but it’s probably a combination of writing a brand-new project, for which I’m allowing myself to be a bit silly, having done a little planning but not too much,* and finally having my ADHD managed.

I am writing urban fantasy set in Austin, Texas, a city I’ve never visited. There’s a lot of driving involved, right?

Much love to all current and former MLs in the thread. It’s our ML’s final year (she’s moved internationally but actually came back for One Last November) and I can’t think how we’ll manage without her.

*I actually wrote a snarky review of an imaginary series, a couple of months ago, and was then encouraged from all sides to write the first book for NaNo. This is a surprisingly effective strategy.
posted by daisyk at 4:48 AM on November 6, 2018 [5 favorites]

I'm doing it this year, having not written anything creative in about a decade. I'm double-par so far (20,240 words as of today; par is 10k) and I'm not even to my climax yet! This story is just pouring out of me, and I know that most of it needs cleaning up and work, but that's not the point right now!

It's a historical novel about the eugenics movement and the forced sterilization of "unfit persons" in the 1920s, partly based on the infamous Buck v Bell Supreme Court Case from 1924 ("three generations of imbeciles are enough") that was used as a Nazi defense at Nuremberg. I had the idea in 2013 and it's been percolating in my brain for the last five years. This year, especially, it seemed urgent to insist on bodily autonomy....
posted by basalganglia at 6:32 PM on November 6, 2018 [2 favorites]

I didn't get started until the weekend, but my word count is all caught up now--at least until tomorrow--and I'm having fun so far.

Good luck, everyone! I love reading these threads, even the years I don't participate.
posted by mixedmetaphors at 7:07 PM on November 6, 2018 [1 favorite]

I was going to do it, but then this week I got half diagnosed with ADHD and scheduled for a surprise emergency colonoscopy so I’m thinking I’m going to have a lot going on this month. I have a great idea though, which I should probably write down for future reference.
posted by Ruki at 8:08 PM on November 6, 2018 [2 favorites]

Best of luck to everyone who is participating! I'm still working on the same novel that I was working on last November, but if I can manage 560 words per day throughout November and December, I should hit 70,000 words by the time the New Year rolls around, which I'm hoping is enough for me to wrap up the story.
posted by A Bad Catholic at 9:48 AM on November 7, 2018 [1 favorite]

I slow down a lot during the week, but I've managed double-par again both days this weekend and I'm finding it really helps a lot to go into the week with a cushion where I don't need to actually hit the full count every single day to keep from falling behind.

I am weirdly finding that I am also now more caught up on housework, as I tend to procrastinate from writing by going and actually doing dishes or vacuuming.
posted by Sequence at 8:17 PM on November 11, 2018

I went to my first write-in this week! (After multiple years of doing NaNo). Hosted by a nearby library, and fairly minimalistic, but I got a lot of words done. (And then I lost 500 words twice due to tech glitches, and called it a day.)

I'm currently about a day ahead of par, which also feels really good.
posted by jenettsilver at 6:38 AM on November 12, 2018 [1 favorite]

No NaNo for me this year; still trying to learn to compose by voice instead of typing. It’s...challenging. But I’m cheering wildly for the rest of you! I’ve learned to embrace sustainable daily creation, and I’m getting better work done. But I miss the comaraderie of NaNo. All participating: rock on!
posted by Nancy_LockIsLit_Palmer at 3:14 PM on November 13, 2018

Hi everyone! Hope it's going well for you all.

Nancy_LockIsLit, I've found the voice recognition on the iPhone's Notes app (the built-in one) to be surprisingly good. I use it for notes since I always have my phone nearby, but it's sort of morphed into an appealing substitute to sitting in front of a computer. Which sometimes will freeze me up. I ended up writing 500ish words in the bath without realizing it the other night. Might try a few afternoons writing in the park, if I can find somewhere isolated enough (and the weather gets better).
posted by lefty lucky cat at 10:22 PM on November 13, 2018

Ten days down the road, how is everybody doing? daisyk, as an Austinite I'm very curious to read what your vision of my city looks like!

I spent weeks 2k-3k words behind par, but used Thanksgiving to turn things around, and now I'm 2k-3k over par. For something that actually only involves sitting in front a computer for 2-3 hours a day, this sure feels like a full-time job! All that pacing, taking baths, and making tea.
posted by lefty lucky cat at 9:00 PM on November 25, 2018 [1 favorite]

I had a few basically-nothing days due to a sinus infection and work stress, and I caught up with almost 3k words on Thanksgiving and nearly 6k words on Friday. But I wasn't able to keep that pace up for the rest of the weekend--I still made par on Saturday and Sunday, but I wasn't really able to get ahead the way I wanted, and I'm a bit stressed about the rest of this week. I've been relying on getting at least a few hundred words a day during work, during the week, and of course this week I'm in full-day training every single day. But I'm 1k over par right now, and hopefully that'll be enough to let me squeak in without making any dubious sleep decisions.
posted by Sequence at 5:47 AM on November 26, 2018

yeah, after a nine-hour day at work, it's hard to come home and find yourself sitting in front of a computer again needing to knock out 1700 words... sometimes if I'm exhausted enough I can flip into a sort of automatic writing state, but usually I just crash out on the couch before that gets productive.

as I noted a few weeks ago, I've been trying to head out to a park and dictate into my phone, the voice recognition being, for my purposes, more than good enough. sitting in a front of a computer makes me anxious; outside my mind can wander.
posted by lefty lucky cat at 7:25 AM on November 26, 2018 [1 favorite]

Best of luck to everyone finishing, and everyone trying to catch up!
posted by mixedmetaphors at 12:03 PM on November 29, 2018 [1 favorite]

502 words to go, but I am just dead. Running on empty, hating every word I write. But this is, I suppose, the practice.

Good luck everyone!
posted by lefty lucky cat at 9:22 PM on November 29, 2018

51,818... done and dusted. whew!
posted by lefty lucky cat at 4:33 PM on November 30, 2018 [1 favorite]

As noted I was only semi-NaNo-ing, and I was aiming for 30,000 words ... and hit 40,000! Now I kinda wish I'd gone all-in, although with the November I've had I don't think I could have handled it.
posted by Eyebrows McGee (staff) at 9:05 PM on November 30, 2018 [2 favorites]

Well, my kids and I won last night. I can’t believe how freeing it is to write a kid’s book where every day you ask a kid “so they have a time machine. When should they go next?” And write that. Needless to say, there are dinosaurs. But I hope the rest of you had fun!
posted by Valancy Rachel at 7:10 AM on December 1, 2018 [3 favorites]

One thing I'll say, a month of trying to hit 1,667 words per day makes the idea of doing 500-600 words per day for a few months seem pretty easy.
posted by lefty lucky cat at 1:28 PM on December 1, 2018 [1 favorite]

I hit just over 50k and forgot to come back here to update, because my reward was Fallout 76 and I kind of got seriously sucked into that starting Friday night.

I am definitely hoping to use this as the jumping off point for more consistent writing in future, along with trying to figure out something better as far as how to write things with actual plots, even if most of what I'm writing is fic, so that maybe next year I'll actually have produced something worth editing.
posted by Sequence at 4:06 PM on December 2, 2018

Next year I am definitely going to spend October writing an outline.
posted by lefty lucky cat at 9:15 PM on December 2, 2018

Congratulations to everyone who wrote, and everyone who won! I got 50,057 words by the end of November 30 and I’m incredibly happy about it. Still finishing up the story, which I hope I can do while travelling in the next couple of weeks.

My Austin probably isn’t recognisable to anyone who’s lived in the real one, lefty lucky cat! My characters spend a lot of time driving between a light-industrial area with a yoga studio in one of the buildings; a “downtown” which has bars but also housing with stoops to hang out on; and another neighbourhood with both a dollar theatre and an enormous, surreal Masonic Hall type of building. It can start making sense in the second draft. *handwave*
posted by daisyk at 1:19 PM on December 4, 2018 [1 favorite]

It's bound to be an extremely interesting version of Austin if you've never been here! Congrats on finishing!
posted by lefty lucky cat at 8:36 PM on December 4, 2018 [1 favorite]

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