Hey what's up everyone! As you can clearly tell, I've been out for about a month. I haven't gone anywhere. In fact, I was putting some extra work on my plate. Like last year I decided to work on NaNoWriMo again this year, and lo and behind I actually made it! In case you are wondering, this stands for National Novel Writing Month and the goal is to write 50,000 words in the month of November. It was a both difficult and amazing writing journey for me, as I picked up on the second novel of my two parter- Deus Ex Anima. Last year I wrote the rest of the first book (still in need of major edits) and I decided not to let anything keep me from putting in work on this second novel. I put aside all other writing projects, including reviews and the push for my new endeavor in comic writing, for the month of November, and alongside work and school, got it done.
What I learned
I'm serious. There isn't. It's an illusion and a breeding ground for excuses. Honestly, I didn't learn this just from completing NaNoWriMo for my second time. I've been learning it over the course of the past couple of years. You can always write. There are times where inspiration is more bountiful than others. There are times when it feels like you don't have good ideas. But the fact of the matter is that you will always have a direction to go in, even if it's a bad one. The key is to get it down on page, and come back and review it later. It's not always going to come out at the same time. Sometimes you have to let it sit, and return with fresh eyes. If you are a writer, then you need to write. If it's tough, force it, and then go read. Read history. Read fiction. Read a book about writing. Watch a (good) TV show or movie. Talk to other writers. Then comeback the next day, sit your behind down, and write.
Plot... Just a little.
I am not telling everyone to be a plotter/planner. If you write by the seat of your pants then that is fine. However I think everyone, whether they think they should or not, should be at least in part, a plantser. That's my term for those that do some of both (that I acquired from NaNoWrimo). I did plotting for three days before I started on this project. They weren't intensive days. I didn't spend hours upon hours grueling over the fine details, but I took a little time to set some of my thoughts in order. I wrote out sentences for the first then or so chapters. A basic rundown of what I wanted to happen. I wouldn't have been able to complete NaNoWriMo if Ihadn't done this. Then I jotted a few side notes that came to mind at random times. This last bit I do for all of my projects now. It is what gets them going.
There are always tiny details to write about your book. Always. Even if you aren't really plotting, that little idea that comes to mind when you're at a red light or sitting in the bathtub? Write it down. It doesn't matter how insignificant it might seem at the time. Write. It. Down. These are notes that you may forget later, that you will come back to and compare with new ideas. This creates a writer's room in your own head. This is what makes these ideas an stories more complex. So, if you don't make a full outline, that's fine, but keep a notebook or file somewhere for jotting at the very lest.
Maybe. As I said, I'm working on multiple projects and depending on what is going on I may be writing a comic script next year, or simply editing. Whatever the case, I'm going to be getting something done. But then, I always am. As a writer it's important to keep your mind engaged. Read. Write. When you watch movies analyze and deconstruct the plot. Learn something from them whether good or bad. Glad to say that I do all time. Keep your eyes open.