Friday, November 7, 2008

Wordle and the Art of Procrastination

We're seven days into Nanowrimo, and how is everyone feeling?

Is the writing flowing? Or is it coming in stops and starts? Or not at all?

For me, the last week was a writing rollercoaster. The first couple of days flowed, until I hit the first sex scene and then it felt as if I was forcing every word. Still I got through it and know that I will go back and rewrite it sometime after Nano ends. The one thing that I am very happy with is that I have not taken a day off from the writing. There have been days where I didn't make the required Nano average, but that was okay - I was still writing.

Last year on the 8th November, I was sitting on 1067 words in total! And I still managed the 50ks in the month. So don't despair if you've fallen behind, there is still time to catch up.

This year, I am at 15,016 words, mainly due to a huge series of word sprints yesterday. Also the second and totally unexpected sex scene just poured out last night. Perhaps it was the fact that it was unexpected that the writing of it was so much easier. (Or perhaps it was just RC's influence - after posting her little excerpt in email, I think my character Kirsty thought I'll have what she's having!")

So I think I'm finally mastering the art of writing every day. But I am also an absolute Master (no gender bias here) of the Art of Procrastination. Yes I can surf and stumble through the internet with the best of them. But now I have discovered Wordle, and already I'm a wordle addict.

You go to the Wordle site and paste in a piece of text and it will create a 'word cloud' or a text cloud for you based on how many times you use each word. If you don't like the colours or form it is given you, you can choose those or just click on the 'randomize' button until you like the design.

So far I have wordled the opening board room scene, the restaurant scene, the first sex scene, a phone call between Dylan and Kirsty and last night's sex scene. And just for good measure, between word sprints, I wordled my short stories Beyond Happily Ever After and Are you a Real Person?

On Saturday 22nd November, I have my Writers Group Christmas party. I'm going to print out all the worldles for Reality Check, put them in a display folder and then hand them around, saying "This is what I've written so far."

So here are my wordles of the sex scenes:

It's actually interesting to look at these and see the emphasis of words you've used in a scene. And also looking at the pattern of words can set off a whole different set of associations. From the words I've used, you can probably see that this was rather conventional and took place in the bed room.

Last night's scene which poured out as quickly and passionately as the act itself took place in the garage!!

Here's a link to one of these on Wordle itself:

Or click on my username disyc, it will take you to my gallery of all of my Wordle images.

I think we should have a Wordle competition! Who can come up with the best Wordle of an excerpt of their Nanowrimo? No idea how we would judge it, but it could be a lot of fun!


Rachael Johns said...

Just stopping by to see how you are all going! Most of those word metres are seriously A-MAZING!!

Claps all round.

Sandie Hudson said...

Yes, well I'm staying away from that wordle site, if Miss P gets a look at that I'm a gonner, no all you other wonderful people can play wordle I'll just do whatever it is I'm suppose to be doing, which I'm not doing now because I thought I should come and visit the blog to see what everyone has had to say lately. LOL.