Saturday, November 5, 2011

I'm not a very good writer, but I'm an excellent rewriter. ~James Michener

It's Saturday, NaNoWrimo Day 5! A day for tons of writing and relaxation from school! Too bad I work today from 3-5.. I hope I can just stay home for the rest of the day after that.

So I have a little less than 7k done of my book. I hope to get at least 10k done by tonight, and around 13k tomorrow.
I said my original goal was 25k, but I cheated and wrote 4k before November 1st, so I raised my goal to 29k, and now I think I'm trying to head more towards 50k. Will I do it? Maybe, probably not, but it's fun to hope and strive for it anyway! If I make it past 29k, I'll be proud of myself. If I made it to 50k, I might just have to go buy myself a present.

This is my first year of NaNo, so it's all new to me. People keep saying, "WRITE NOW, EDIT LATER!"

I. Can't. Do. That. 

I sit down at my computer and start typing away, then after I do a few paragraphs, that little voice in my head goes "Okay, you better go back and fix these couple paragraphs up and make them better, because you know they suck." 

And that little voice and the urge to go back and edit WON'T SHUT UP! Like, if I know there's mistakes, I have to go back in fix them. I just can't leave them there. Because you know what happens when I do that? The little voice keeps on talking!

"That last paragraph was terrible. There was dialogue there? Sorry, I fell asleep! You want to be a professional author? HA! If one of your idols like Sara Shepard, Markus Zusak, Richelle Mead, Lauren Oliver, or Sarah Ockler saw this, what would they say, Paige?

Yeah, I'm really hard on myself. 

I'm in that whole stage of self doubt. Like when I look back at my writing, I KNOW it's not as good as I want it to be. 
I heard all writers go through this stage, and it takes a while to get out of it and actually be good. Slowly, I think I'm crawling out of it.

-The first book I wrote but didn't finish- Completely terrible.
-The second book I wrote and actually finished- Bad.
-The third book I wrote but didn't finish- Just average, Not good but not terrible. 
-The fourth book I wrote but didn't finish- A little above average, tilting toward the better side. (This is the one I just retired that some of you said you actually really liked and earned me my own personal best rank on Inkpop, Flawed.)

Then now, I'm on the fifth book I've started, I'm worried I won't get any better than the fourth book, Flawed, because I'm stressed with a deadline. 
But you know, if I really want to be an author, I better get used to it. 

Even though I am really hard on myself, I can truthfully say that I have definitely improved since July 2010 since I began writing my first book on the computer. I'm proud of that, I just wish I could improve faster, you know?

My Bloggie friend Taylor Lynn did a post about NaNo today, and put this video on hers. It's completely true and totally applies to me. I'm glad I'm not the only one going through it. 

Ira Glass on Storytelling from David Shiyang Liu on Vimeo.

No body told me I was going to completely suck at first. If someone told me that, honestly, I wouldn't have started writing. So, I'm glad no one told me and I figured it out on my own.

Sometimes I wonder if my biggest writing idols mentioned above, went through a stage like this. Did they start writing at a young age like all us NaNo's and suck at a time? Or were they just born good? If I could ask any of those authors some questions, that would definitely be a question.

My Freshman English teacher once told me, "The best way to get better at writing, is reading." 
I think that's really true. But I have also heard that to get better at writing, the most important thing is to WRITE, WRITE, WRITE!

So I guess NaNo will be a positive influence on my improvement progress, I'll just be ripping my hair out on the way.
The quote I used as a title for this post, "I'm not a very good writer, but I'm an excellent rewriter," Is like it was made for me. That's me right there, the re-writer.

My best work comes from rewriting. You guys remember that prologue I posted of my NaNo Novel a while back? Do you guys know how many times I had go read through it and change it? I lost count. The first time I wrote that prologue, it was nothing like it is here.. I've even changed it since then!

So my other Bloggie friend Qui, (who I've mention in like the last 3 posts..) did some NaNo related questions for us participants to answer on her blog!

1. At this point in your novel, is it turning out the way you want it to? So far, about 7k in, yes. It's going as planned. I even did part of an outline, something I'm usually totally against.

2. Have your characters had any big turning points yet? Heck yes! Pretty much, without this turning point, I wouldn't even have a story. So, it's a big one that happens to Faye. And what happens to Faye affects Alice majorly.

3. Have any of your characters met their specific other in the book yet? Well, not really. They know of each other, and at this point they aren't very fond of each other. The boy character actually hates his significant other character(Alice) at first, and he hates her even more after what happens to Faye.

4. What are your future goals for your novel this month (besides word goals)? Improvement, major improvement and progress is my goal. I hope to actually make this book successful and exciting too. I don't want it to go downhill in the middle like Flawed and most of my other books did.

-Caffinated drinks consumed: 0 (I hate coffee and usually don't drink pop that often)
-Nyquils taken: 0
-Breakdowns: 0.5
-Episodes of Writer's Block: 1
-Procrastination- >10
-Listening to: Florence + The Machine, Coldplay, Lady Gaga.

 post signature


Jessica said...

haha you're too funny. love the comic♥ i would be the middle guy.

Jenfier Harrod said...

I'm interested in this nano rymo thing for my children. We went to a homeschool meeting the other day and the kids there were doing nano work books. I think you will do fine.

Jenfier Harrod said...

Oh I forgot to tell you. Zach is having a linky party today.

Amanda said...

Keep at it ... I am sure you're doing just fine! You write on this blog wonderfully and while I know it isn't a novel, writing in any form, is still writing.

That is a ton of words and I'm so happy you've made it that far so far! I agree with you, if you make it to 50,000 words, you totally deserve a gift to yourself!

Don't give up!!

Taylor Lynn said...

Ooh, you might go for 50K, huh? Good luck, I hope you make whatever goal you set for yourself! :D

And OHMIGOSH, believe me, I am very familiar with that little voice. I think our little voices are identical twins. Mine's always insulting me and my writing. So I just tell it, "I know, okay? It's not the best. But I'll get better. And guess what? I CAN ALWAYS EDIT! MWAHAHA! So you can hush up about now."

All you've got to do is shut the little voice in a closet and try to ignore its pounding. ;)

I do tend to edit little bits here and there as I go, but for the most part, I don't reread much of what I've written. At least, not until the end. If I did, I'd probably scrap all of my projects, and then I'd never get better because I'd never learn. I'm going to quote the bestselling author Libba Bray about now. This was one part of a post on her blog:

"Q: How do you keep going when you’re stuck?

A: It’s awful, isn’t it? And the answer is…you keep going. I mean, nobody answers the question, “How do you keep swimming when you’re tired but you haven’t reached the other side?” with “Oh, just stop swimming.” That would be a bad answer. The truth is, you just write, even if you hate everything you write. Even if you suddenly go off on a tangent about llamas who long to put on a high school musical. Even if it makes you cringe with every word. Even if you're bored or filled with seething hate for your WIP. Just keep going. Eventually, you will reach the other side. And I’d really like to read that book about the llamas. So few llama musical novels these days."

Haha, she's fantastic, isn't she? You can read the rest of that post here:

Or you can check out her blog here:

Good luck with NaNo, Paige. And I think I may need to steal Qui's questions! ;)

Shelby said...

good luck! :)
add me on nanowrimo im sstods :)

The Mysterious D said...

good luck!
i wanted to try NaNoWriMe this year but didn't have time.

oh, and your blog is beautiful, by the way. :)