NaNoWriMo check in #3

45,000 words.

My fingers are aching and a little bit numb (it’s very cold today) but the story is flowing and going in directions other than what I thought it would so I’m happy.

I’m writing.

My aim is to hit 50,000 by Wednesday and see how much of the story I can get done before the 30th November. My overall general goal for this novel is around the 75,000 mark but I’m not putting pressure on myself to reach that before the end of the month. Before the end of the year will suit me perfectly, and be far more than I anticipated for this year!

How’s everyone else doing?

About half of the writers I speak to are on track to hit the 50K this year, which is a nice feeling. There seems to be something about this year that was missing last November – we’re all finding motivation and inspiration from somewhere and while we’re going at our own paces, we’re all writing and that makes us happy. Even those in the group who aren’t going to hit 50K are happy because they’re making progress on projects that have been evading them for a couple of months and that in itself makes it all worthwhile.

I hope any writers out there reading this are finding inspiration, too, and are finding the words they need, regardless of how many of them there are.

Just keep writing, folks. That’s all we can do.

Taking inspiration where you find it

I’m away from home for a long weekend so brought not one but three notepads with me. I’m glad I did as the words are flowing (as is the gin!) when we’re not out adventuring and I’m now on notepad number 2.

The featured image on this post is a little bit of inspiration for a chapter in LWL3 I’m currently writing. It’s not where we are now but where we were a few weeks ago on our summer holiday.

It got me thinking about the old “write what you know” advice that always gets bandied about when you write. It’s good advice, and advice I’m certainly taking to heart at the moment, but it’s not advice any writer can strictly stick to. 

The joy of writing is partly about being able to imagine situations outside of the boundaries of the ordinary lives lived by those who write and those who read. Readers don’t want to pick up a book and always find it full of the usual 9-to-5 experiences they themselves have every day, and writers don’t always want to write about the ordinary and mundane. Both want adventures and escapism, interesting tales and stories that grip you and won’t let go so you have to keep the pages turning to find out what happens next.

You can’t always write about you know – I’m sure crime writers who build their stories around murders don’t experience it themselves to really get a feel for the antagonist’s motivations! – but sometimes it can be fun to use experiences you’ve had and build on them in ways you only can in fiction.