Looking for more from Sean McLachlan? He also hangs out on the Midlist Writer blog, where he talks about writing, adventure travel, caving, and everything else he gets up to. He also reproduces all the posts from Civil War Horror, so drop on by!
Wednesday, December 11, 2013
Indie Life: Ten things I learned from National Novel Writing Month
It's called Radio Hope and you can download the first 51,000 words for free from Smashwords. I'd love to get some feedback and as a thank you I'll send a free electronic copy of the final book to you once it's released in February.
OK, enough self-promotion. What did writing a novel in a single month teach me? Here are ten things I learned.
1. If you are mostly unemployed (I recently lost my travel blogging job when Gadling laid off all their regulars) your word count goes way up.
2. Keeping your word count up helps with your self-esteem when you're mostly unemployed.
3. Keeping your word count up after the challenge is over maintains your self-esteem. I'm working on the sequel right now.
4. You'll help your confidence if you get a jump on the game by writing a lot on the first day. November 1 was my most productive day, with 5,300 words.
5. Write every day, even if it's just 500 words (my worst day) because that forward momentum keeps you from getting stuck.
6. It's good to find a group to help you. I was down in Madrid on November 1 and got to hang out with other members of my old writers group. We took over the back room of a cafe and wrote like mad!
7. If you give the project sufficient focus, you will not have a drop in quality as you increase quantity.
8. You will, however, make more typos. A lot more. Really embarrassing ones.
9. The online community at the NaNo website is super supportive, helpful, and friendly, and disappears after November 30.
10. It's really, really fun!