Winning at the Write-in

I did it!  I won… the right to continue keyboard banging.

Okay, maybe I’m not celebrating enough. I hit 50k on Still They Watch, which means I’ve technically won NaNoWriMo. In 12 days. And I’m fairly happy with what I’ve written so far.  Take that with a large grain of salt though, as I haven’t really gone back and read it, except for a few check-backs to make sure I’d included something I was referencing in the currently-writing portion.  But, of course, I’m not done yet and for me, NaNo isn’t over until I have a completed manuscript.

I’m on track with where I expected to be, both in terms of the progress of the story and the length of the manuscript at this point. In a way, the story works in three portions, two major and a minor (which is really the denouement). I’m now fairly early in the second major, and it’s going to be a richly emotional, eventful and torturous section.  I’d feel sorry for Devan, but I’m having too much fun and he’ll be all right in the end, honest. I’ve even had a few surprises already, small deviations that felt more like they belonged, including one place where I’d originally intended Devan to be accommodating to someone else until I got to writing it and was informed that no, given a whole host of factors, he wasn’t prepared to just roll over for said person, no matter how much he liked them.  To paraphrase myself, Devan was right. Devan is always right. 😀

I have to say, I love going through the way my characters negotiate their relationships with each other. I’ve become very aware of the fact that relationships are, in many ways, a negotiation as I write this trilogy. I mean, I was engaging in that during the Mirrors trilogy, but for whatever reason, I wasn’t as consciously aware as I am now. I don’t know for sure why that is, but as I’ve outlined and written the Necromantic books, I’ve actually been consciously checking that, asking myself, “Is this really where they’d compromise or not? Is this a point that they wouldn’t be willing to do that with?” Perhaps part of the difference is that Devan and most of the other major characters are in their thirties, with more personal history behind them, more past to influence them and to either share or not share with each other. It’s having an interesting effect, that’s for sure.  It’s something I see continuing to be part of my thinking, in both writing and editing, a part of the story I consciously shape. In Masques, it’s going to be a big theme for a number of reasons, and in Spire of Time too, for different reasons.

I went to my second write-in today, since I had so much fun the first time. As it’s a holiday here in BC, one of the write-in people had the room booked earlier than usual and I went at that point, wanting to have a seat. Last week, there were so many people that we had a few jammed into corners and sitting on floors.  I managed a seat then too, but only barely.  I wasn’t taking chances with it this time. Yes, I definitely got a seat.

The write-ins are fun because you’re in a room full of like-minded people.  You may all be working on different stories, in different genres, but you’re working toward the same goal: 50k in 30 days.  There’s a camaraderie and energy to it that’s wonderful, not to mention a certain friendly competitiveness.  You can get some of that from the forums, but it was so much more amazing at the write-in.  If you’re doing NaNo and there’s a write-in around you, try to make it to at least one in November.  It’s seriously fun, or at least the group I’m doing it with is.

As always with long weekends while I’m writing a draft, I don’t want this one to end.  Ever.  The fact that I have a 4-day-weekend coming up for the last one in November in no way diminishes this feeling.  Here’s hoping I can one day make it full-time as a writer when, essentially, it’ll be 7-day weekends and I never stop writing.  Well, okay, I never stop writing already, but that’s totally not the point.

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About Julie

I'm a writer and photographer. I always have something with me to take notes for ideas or writing projects I'm thinking about or have on the go. I also like to go around with my camera and take pictures of anything that strikes me as beautiful or evocative. I'm perpetually working on one story or another, while waiting for enough distance to judge the last one (or more). I'm always working on several projects at once, developing the next book, even as I'm editing the last. Beyond that, there's always plenty of scraps and twists of ideas rolling around in my head, eventually turning themselves into full blown stories.
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14 Responses to Winning at the Write-in

  1. R. K. MacPherson says:

    Congratulations on hitting 50K! That’s a massive achievement. 🙂

  2. Congrats, Julie. I have never written that much in such a short amount of time. You are amazing!

  3. Pete Denton says:

    Congratulations. 12 days. Wow

    The write-in sounds like a good idea. I can imagine the competitive edge kicking in and you typing faster and faster and faster …

    • Julie says:

      For a lot of them, it seemed to be a bit of a friendly competition. For me, it was more about the collective energy and being able to talk to like-minded crazy people.

      And thanks. I’d have to check, but the 12 days might be a record for me. Not sure. 🙂

  4. jmmcdowell says:

    Congratulations! And you’ve still got 17 days of November to go! When you can do this full time, I bet you could do a NaNoWri—WE!

  5. Celtic Forest Dweller says:

    CONGRATS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! 😀

    Wow. Just… wow. You’re amazing. (I’m never going to get over how fast you write, am I? ;))

    Keep going! Can’t wait to see you cross that finish-line! The other one, that is…

    • Julie says:

      You should write at your own speed. I’m not sure my warp speed is healthy, but I can’t seem to slow down either. I think my characters cut the brakes. :p

      And yes, I’m looking forward to the finish line too, the real one where the story is done, at least until I write the next set in this world. Apparently I’m never going to be entirely gone from Devan’s side. 😀

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