Thank you Sandie for inviting me to talk about my NaNoWriMo Novel, Passion In Paradise, which now has been accepted for publication by The Wild Rose Press, New York. 50ks in 30 days is the same as a writing a NaNoWriMo manuscript, and there is four weeks before we start. Yikes.
Before I start, I should say you have to have passion for your writing. You should want to achieve your target more than anything else in the world. Then there’s determination. You have to be determined, stubborn, never failing and refuse to let anything or anyone stop you.
Preparation: This is what works for me, as we are all different. No one can tell you how to undertake your writing schedule. I got up every morning at six-thirty to be at my computer by nine and typed away until I reached those two thousand words. Late nights may suit some. Whatever way, prepare it as you prepare dinner. How many nights a week do you cook? We all buy groceries, bring them home, plan what you are having for tea and do it almost every day.
What is different from cooking and writing? Think about it. I hear you laugh. But they both have to have preparation. I think this is the key word. For me getting up at six-thirty every morning, allowing two and a half hours for washing, showering, dressing comfortably and having breakfast before chaining myself to the computer. If other things needed attention I’d do it within those hours or when I had finished my word count. You have to make it your daily routine.
I had preparation, but this wasn’t preparation to sit down and write. Now, I needed Preparation number two. I knew what the theme was going to be for my story. Lovers united, stranded on a deserted island. It doesn’t matter what title you give your story, it will change along the way, and if the editor doesn’t like it she’s going to suggest changes anyhow. My titles for Passion In Paradise were, Seven Days, Paradise Found, The Italian Lure, The Lure of the Italian, and Island of Dreams. Lol. I came up with Passion in Paradise when I finished the book. The very first comment my editor said to me was, I love the title. I think from memory it has around 55,000 words it could be closer to 60.000. lol
DON’T answer the phone. This is vital, and it really helps if you have a answering machine. That way, important calls can be returned later. DON’T answer the door. Tell your friends, family you are undertaking this challenge and make sure they understand not to disturb you. If you think this won’t help, tell them you won’t be home. I had someone tell me about unexpected friends that turned up on their doorstep and stayed for two days. She broke the golden rule. DON’T answer the door. Lol Unless you see two uniformed police waiting impatiently.
I needed to have a basic plan of attack. I knew who my hero was and what he wants. I knew who my heroine was and what she wants. I had character sheets drawn up for them, not necessarily filling in every little white space, only what I thought of up front. I had the major plot. I could see a motion picture in my head of what was happening at the beginning. I saw the conflict up front. This is my ingredient for beginning any novel.
Then I sat down and typed. Um, um. Um, now that’s three words. Lol. Seriously. Just type. His smile ??? oh hell… can’t think… so whenever I came across a place I was stumped for a word, or even a sentence, I didn’t waste time thinking about it. I put in three question marks and did a find ???, at a later date. This is then thinking time. It’s amazing what I came up with. Sometimes these questions marks made me think more about my novel. I found the question mark vital.
I hope some of my comments have been helpful. Remember what works for me might not work for you. However, make sure you have some type of preparation and desire to succeed and you will.