Camp NaNoWriMo Recap #2 + Snippets

Hello, everyone! This is super late, but basically a recap of my last two weeks of Camp, plus snippets. I know —  another writing post when I promised more diversity :0 but bear with me because I think recaps are fun to read. You also get like four snippets.

Note: this is my crazy NaNo brain that wrote these, so… I did format it differently, though, so it should be somewhat easier to read. This is not meant to brag, it’s just for fun. I didn’t make a featured image (it’s not like it would be on bloglovin anyway).

Day Eight

DWC: 2350

I was a bit drained from the past week, and I was also in the state capital most of the day with my friend Amy. (Amy! I don’t think any of you will remember her but here is a post from my cringy days and here is our just as cringy video. You know, from back when I was actually like twelve? I look way different now XD)

Day Nine

DWC: 1812

This was my worst day because I was busy most of the day. However, I did write some very fun scenes that day. EVERYTHING IS ABOUT TO CRASH AND BURN. My apologies to Kamri, Mason, Erin, Kaelin, and Trey. Collin and Clara are in the clear for now. Good job, guys.

Day Ten

DWC: 2887

Mondays and school and math, yay! School can be a big distraction to writing (and a very reasonable one), but I did get some words in and that’s good.

Day Eleven

DWC: 3000

I hit 60k! I can’t believe my novels are so close to getting finished, it seems surreal that the ideas were just in my head (one for a month, the other for over a year) and now they’re real and on paper!

Day Twelve

DWC: 2451

My goal is to finish before winning begins now! *gasp*

Day Thirteen

DWC: 2072

Nothing much today. Characters fighting, evil winning, same old, same old.

Day Fourteen

DWC: 3585

My word count is getting back up there! Tomorrow is “sprint day”, so I think I may get really close to finishing Fantasy Gossip! AHHHH I’m almost to the climaxes WHAT EVEN.

 Day Fifteen

DWC: 6893

I hit the 75% mark today! I can’t believe how close the first drafts are to being finished– and I think I’m actually going to edit and let people read them. I’ve only let one person read one of my books entirely (my mom has read a few chapters of my first book, and one of my friends the first two of a book that I discarded, and my other friend who is probably reading this has read all of my first book).

I just realized that one of the characters in my first books has the same name and personality as one of my friends, who I didn’t meet until long after that character was created. O_O

Day Sixteen

DWC: 5004

Never mind the difference in word processing programs. I pretty much just hit the climax for Fantasy Gossip, and the one for Halfway to Fourteen is coming really soon. Maybe I can actually finish one tomorrow! Or the day after. We don’t have school tomorrow, so I can spend a bunch of time on writing.

Day Seventeen

DWC: 5611

Woah, I’m so close to finishing my novels! (I say that a lot XD) This is insane. Not much to report today.

Day Eighteen

DWC: 5442

Well, Fantasy Gossip decided to stick around a bit longer, and Halfway to Fourteen is closing a lot shorter. I thought they were going to end up being too long, but they may end up being a bit short (right now, they’re at ~45k each). If I can do 9k tomorrow, then I’ll win before winning begins! The problem is, when I did the 10k days before, the words kinda just fit together. The words kinda stopped flowing recently.

Day Nineteen

DWC: 3697

I didn’t get as many words as I wanted to because I was busy most of the day — I want to sprint a 10k+ day to finish before winning. I did end up planning the last few scenes of both novels, so it should run a bit smoother tomorrow. Also, apparently my word program is like 2000 words off. Oh well. 

Day Twenty

DWC: “8470”/5527

Total Word Count: “103, 224″/100,281

First, allow me to explain that these “” are what my processor, Open Office, says, and the other ones are what the validator says (sadly, the validator seems to be right, but more on that later).

I FINISHED.

I completed Halfway to Fourteen and Fantasy Gossip, both approximately a little over 50k words. My word processor was a little behind, so I had to make up for it today.

Either way, I think choosing to write two novels at the same time was the best decision I ever made. Typically, I wrote 500 words for one novel, then switched, and so on and so forth. This kinda punched writer’s block in the face, so I was able to take full advantage of my writing speed.

Now for some (rough draft) snippets, whether you want them or not! I’m surprised I got any readable parts, but yeah. Here they are: first three from Fantasy Gossip, and the second three from Halfway to Fourteen.

“I took a huge risk getting these, so be very careful with them–”

Trey drops his.

“Whoops. Won’t happen again,” he says as he drops it again. “Okay, for real this time.”

“It is so weird there,” Ava says. “They’re teaching– normal classes.”
I shudder. “Normal classes? You mean like… Teleportation, right?”
“No, like math, and English, and – it’s so scary!”

Why do I keep getting caught up in teams of two girls and one boy? It’s like, really annoying. Emphasis on the boy part.

“Books are crazy and unrealistic,” I say. “They give you huge expectations about life and then you grow up and realize that it’s wrong!”

Mason sighs. “Kamri, what is into you lately?”

“Reality, Mason!”

“Can we get this over with?” I ask.

“I thought you wanted to do this,” Isaiah says.

I try to think of an answer quickly. What did Erin and Mason tell them? “I… do! It’s just I’m very, very busy and have places to be that definitely aren’t metro stations and alleyways.”

“Okay, then, don’t let me stop you?”

“You know, I always felt that there was something cool about you guys,” I say.
Collin puts his hands up in the air in mock offense. “Woah. Hold up. You didn’t think we were cool before? All our work was for nothing?”
“Pretty much.”


I hope you enjoyed this post, as long as it is! (Also, I wrote my first post on The Young and Dreaming! You can check it out here.)

How is Camp NaNoWriMo going for you guys? FILL THE COMMENTS WITH YOUR UPDATES. I MUST KNOW.

Focus {April} + The Goodbye Movie

So, yet another Camp NaNoWriMo post! Mostly, anyway. Allie created a link up for all the camping writers out there, and it was so fun to fill out!

We’re halfway through NaNoWriMo. How’s your novel going?

Pretty good! I am so close to finishing Fantasy Gossip and Halfway to Fourteen. It’s so surreal that they were just ideas in my head and now they’re out on paper.

Where are you struggling the most in your writing?

I think accidentally added in a lot of plot irrelevant scenes (whoops. #sorrynotsorry), and sometimes there are parts where it drags on a lot. Quick tip I learned: if you find that your writing is boring you, that part is probably unnecessary, and it’s going to be even more boring for the reader.

Where are you doing the best in your writing?

Character! I love my characters so much, I’m having so much fun taking them on their journeys.

Music helps. So, what are your writerly idyllic tunes?

guitar pick:

via

Here’s my Halfway to Fourteen playlist, and here’s my Fantasy Gossip playlist. The Halfway to Fourteen playlist has a fun, vibrant feel to reflect the plot, and the Fantasy Gossip playlist has a mellow, whimsical feel which matches the characters and the plot.

Where are you in your word count goal? And how do you do with word sprints?

I’m eight days ahead, and I’m hoping to get to 100k before winning begins, which actually looks possible right now. Word sprints are great, but they have to be small. I can’t sit down and sprint a thousand words once, but I can sprint a hundred words ten times.

What encourages you to keep writing?

My cabin mates, my will to write, my will to succeed, and my love for my stories.

PUSH! How much will you try to write one of these days to burst forward in your word count?

If I get to where I want today, I’m going to write about 7k tomorrow, though it might end up to be more like 10k+.

What’s your strategy for focusing?

The key to writing is to stop thinking about writing and start thinking about what's happening in the story.:

via

As I said above, work small. Write ten words. Coming up with an idea for ten words isn’t hard, and you’ll likely stop in the middle of a sentence. Then, you finish the sentence. By then, you have an idea for the paragraph, then an idea for the page, and so on.

What is your favorite element of your novel?

SPIES! Just kidding. My aesthetics are “Live while you’re young” and “Nothing is impossible”.

What is your plan after your first draft?

I hope to edit the second drafts on a road trip where I’ll have lots of free time, then third/fourth draft in July, and I’ll possibly have betas (!). I have a top secret plan for Fantasy Gossip, but I don’t have a clue about Halfway to Fourteen.

So, on the other hand, Madi made a stop motion movie! It’s really amazing and you must watch it! In fact, here it is:

How’s Camp NaNoWriMo going for you all? How do you feel about link ups? Do you like stop motions (hint: yes!)? Should I do more diverse posts, or do you like reading my writing related posts more?

Camp NaNoWriMo Recap // Week One

Welcome to my first Camp NaNoWriMo recap, where I share the story of how I accidentally on purpose got 50k in seven days. Mind anything weird in this post, I am in the writing process which has made me a tad insane.

Mind the weird math in some of this, I haven’t been keeping exact track like I probably should be, but thankfully Camp NaNoWriMo keeps all the most important stuff handy for me.

Day One

Wordcount for the Day: 10,003

Total Wordcount: 10,003

Today was a great start! Working on two novels has actually made my writing process so much easier. What I’ve been doing is writing 500 words on each novel, then switching back and forth. It’s been less draining, surprisingly, since I haven’t had to work on the same novel the whole time.

Day Two

Word Count for the Day: 8000

Total Word Count: 18,003

I’d hoped to get 10k again, but I still got a pretty good word count. I think these books are going to end up being longer than 50,000 words. Tomorrow, we have off school, so hopefully my word count can spike up. I like staying ahead while I can.

Day Three

Word Count For the Day: 4057

Total Word Count: 22,060

I didn’t get as many words as I hoped after the previous days, but 4k is still pretty good (I couldn’t expect 8k days forever, now could I?) . Tomorrow, I have school for the first time in Camp, but it shouldn’t matter too much. I did spend a good portion of my nighttime writing on other super secret plans with a super secret person (Who is probably reading this right now…), and we have some fun stuff coming for our blogs!

Day Four

Word Count for the Day: 4941

Total Word Count: 27001

The perfectionist in me wishes I’d written just 59 more words.  Today was good! I did start worrying about plot, however, it should all be fine for at least two weeks. (If it takes that long…) I think Fantasy Gossip is going to be around 60k but Halfway to Fourteen may be at least 70k, and I’ll probably still be writing in the beginning May.

 Day Five

Word Count for the Day: 4549

Total Word Count: 31,550

We were on a road trip most of the day, so I got a thousand or two words while driving, and the rest after we got back. I hit 30k today, though! Most of Thursday will be busy, so it’s a good thing that I’m ahead.

Day Six

Word Count for the Day: 8450

Total Word Count: 40,000

I hit 40k today! Yay! Cheers! Even though I had a lot of math and drove a lot, today was a pretty good writing day. And… going to bed after midnight again… oh well. I’ll survive (but not if my keys keep getting stuck. Right now it’s the l). Also, the plot for Fantasy Gossip decided to turn itself inside out. :/

Day Seven

Word Count for the Day: 10,000

Total Word Count: 50,000

Two minutes before midnight I hit 25k on Fantasy Gossip and Halfway to Fourteen, adding up to 50,000 words. Even though I was busy most of the day, with hard work and prayer, I made it to 50k. I’ve come so far since last year, I can’t believe it. We’re driving again tomorrow, so I’ll either have a lot more time or a lot less time.


I’m really happy with this week–I surprised myself. I’m pretty sure everyone in my cabin is tired of me, but oh well XD. I’m off to catch up on sleep.

How is Camp NaNo going for you? Are you ahead, behind, or right on track? Also, if you’d like, share what your novel is about! Or are you editing, or writing poetry, or even a screenplay? (Hint: screenplay is going to be the best answer you can give.)

~Josie

3 Things I’m Going to do Differently for (Camp) NaNoWriMo

One of the reasons I love NaNoWriMo is because it not only challenges you, but it teaches you–that is, if you let it. So, this year, I took a step back to see what I’ve learned.

You see, I really love the novels I’m planning. I want to enjoy writing them in all the drafts, not just the first ones. In my attempt at editing my last NaNoWriMo novel, it was a pain. Everyone said it was simple: macro edit, micro edit, beta readers, done. Mine was simply falling apart and not enjoyable. It wasn’t what it was.

Me being me, I also decided to find out what went wrong and how I could improve. Using that, here is what I am going to do differently this April.

1. Know When to Take Breaks

December 1, I was tired. I’d almost hit my OA goal the night before, then had to go to bed. My novel still had a lot of story left in it. So, I took a few days off. I was not only drained physically, but I was drained of creativity. Forcing yourself to write may be a NaNo essential, but save yourself and know when to take some time off. (I talk more about this here)

2. Run Spellcheck 

What? You mean… editing? Lowering my word count?*clouds turn gray, children scream, stereotype breaks* No, I do not. I mean, when I go back to my novel, I’m going to see “say” instead of “sai”, “that” instead of “dat”, etc, which is going to make it much easier on me. When I am done writing for the day (or if I’m writing a lot, done a chapter), I will run basic spell check so my novel appears easier to edit. It’s a psychological thing. It won’t even take time out of my writing.

3.When in Doubt, Write it Out

No, I did not steal this rhyme from when I played soccer. You may have heard of the whole “write what you love in a novel”. Well, when I’m in writer’s block, I want to write a scene that’s not plot relevant, but it’s just something nice and pretty and flowy that I’m going to enjoy. I recommend this to anyone. Write something merely for your pleasure that you will look back and smile at. (Now, I realize for some of us this may be stabbing characters…please refrain.)

So, that’s what I’m doing differently this April! If you’ve ever participated in NaNo, or ever written a novel, what are you going to do differently next time? What have you learned?

Camp NaNoWriMo: The Complete Guide (For Planners, Pantsers and Everything in Between)

NaNoWriMo the Sequel: Camp NaNoWriMo

Just when you thought all the WriMos were gone… more showed up…as NaNo REBELS!

Camp NaNoWriMo is the time to #rebel from the normal NaNoWriMo foundations. Write whatever you want. Poems? Yes. Sequels? Sure. Editing? Go for it. A million words? You’re crazy, but if so, please call me (555-555, a very real number), because I’m crazy too. Just maybe not a MILLION words crazy… yet. I assure you, read through five of my posts, come back, and try convince me I’m not crazy.

Kinda like last year’s NaNo post, I’ll divide this off into easy-to-find sections. A pet peeve of mine is when a blog post is just one big text block. When does it begin??? I don’t want to hear your story, I want to read the article! What if I want to skip a part?

Just wanted to let you know, I am not a professional writer even though I pretend to be, because confidence is key. I go by my own experience. Feel free to disagree with me at any point. We can have a lovely conversation about it and hopefully we’ll both learn something.

Choosing a Project

Projects You Can Choose From:

  • Writing a draft (or part of one)
  • Writing a bunch of short stories
  • Writing poetry
  • Editing your NaNo novel
  • Rewriting your NaNo novel COMPLETELY
  • Anything you can think of related to writing except reading

Link to NaPoWriMo, which totally counts, and not in the sarcastic way. (It’s February, and all there is on the site is the cool page saying COMING IN MARCH ((actually, it says sign-ups start March 1st)), but I’m not posting until March so you’ll have to see it next year).

Do’s and Don’ts for Choosing a Project:

Do:

  • Choose something you enjoy
  • Create a goal that will challenge you but won’t stress you
  • Check your schedule
  • Be caught up on school before you write

Don’t:

  • Force something that doesn’t work
  • Choose a goal too high/hard and completely break in April and June
  • Stay up late and wake up at an unreasonable hour to write
  • Ignore all your other priorities

Can you tell what I learned this year from NaNoWriMo? And every other project ever?

Prep and Types of Writers

Types of Writers (prose only)

There are four general categories as far as I’m concerned. (In Case You Didn’t Know: Plotter is someone who plans out their novel before writing, pantser writes “on the edge of their pants” by letting the story come naturally as they write it, and plantser is the “perfect” in between).

The Total Plotter

The total plotter will plan out every single detail. Typically, they have a very high wordcount by the time they are done because they have envisioned everything, but not always. They prefer to know all there is about their story. They tend to have an easier time in editing, but their story can come off as stiff.

The Plotter-Based Plantser

There are many degrees of Plantser-ism, and this is one. The plotter-based plantser likes to keep the element of surprise (however, they need plans or they will freak out), so they typically will make an outline, but not a very detailed one. They like to know the main events of the story, the backstories of their characters, and do some world building. However, sometimes their plans can flop and they will get very confused without them.

The Pantser-Based Plantser 

The pantser-based plantser will not use an outline, or if they do, a very broad one. They only like to get an idea of their story before they start writing, a helpful little guideline. Their document labeled “prep” will only be a couple pages long. Oftentimes they envision their story in their head. Sometimes, though, they come to a dead end and writer’s block strikes.

The Complete Pantser

The complete pantser doesn’t even come up with a title for their book before writing: a couple character names and a quick synopsis, usually. They come up with new ideas as they go along. Because they do this, their writing sounds fresh and it really feels like the characters are going on the journey for the first time. It’s exciting, but editing can be a nightmare and writer’s block can make it hard to move on.

Which degree are you? Anything in between? I’m more of a plotter-based plantser. I don’t like insane details, or I get bored, but if I don’t have a plan I’ll get confused and my story will fail.

How do I know all these degrees, you make ask? I have experienced them all– you don’t understand. Literally all of them. But I am a plotter-based plantser, as seen above. At least, I think. It could change after this round of novels.

Preparing to Edit

What I do is read through, at least until the part where my brain died and literally everything fell apart. I’m also marking which parts need to be rewritten, partially re-written, and deleted. Of course, I’m going back, but you don’t have to.

The point is to assess what you need to do. How do you want to divide your edits? Create a plan.

Preparing to Write

Oh, here’s where things get fun! I shared all of my methods for prep here, basically a bunch of ideas, and a way for even the pantsiest of pantsers (that’s a word) to prepare here. A basic summary of this article: Writing when you feel like it is like training for a marathon whenever you feel like it. Practicing writing every day will make NaNoWriMo a lot easier for you, just like it would be easier to run after a training schedule.

Because I have already done this, let’s not. 

Kidding. Find your own way. What works for you? Write down everything you typically struggle with when writing. Plot seems stiff? Loosen your outline. Or, do your plots fail? Go into more detail. Characters annoying or flat? Learn more about them.

Links, Tips, and Such For the Other Projects

Scriptwriting: http://www.mensaforkids.org/teach/lesson-plans/writing-a-screenplay/

Poetry: http://www.napowrimo.net/ (I’m linking to it again)

Kind of a letdown. But, it’s what I’ve got. (If you know of or have any resources or tips for the other projects, let me know and I’ll add them up here to share with everyone!)

Keeping it Organized

I used to have all of my prep spread all over the place (digitally). But, what I do is I have a folder for each novel. What goes in there is the novel itself, the drafts, the prep, and anything else I find useful. In my prep, I like to use a large, noticeable text to define where things are, like characters, plot, outlines, descriptions, and basic details. This can be a great format to keep poetry and songs organized in! This also works for screenplays.

After I have it all finished out, I’m going to move it onto WikidPad so I can find it all easily when I need it while writing my first draft. I don’t use WikidPad very often, but it seems to work pretty well, even if it requires a bit of coding. I heard about it in Jill Williamson’s book Storyworld First, which is another great recourse.

So, that’s my post for Camp NaNoWriMo. You should see a description of my novels in the next My Writing Life. Anyway, as promised, more non-writing-related posts coming!

What are you doing for Camp NaNoWriMo, if you are? Are you rebelling, or using this as an opportunity for your first draft? Do you need a cabin? Because me, Sarah, and Chloe have a cabin and we need members. Comment if you do.

Should I change my signature?