Sunday, November 1, 2015

Happy NaNoWriMo 2015!

Last year, I wrote a novel. I loved every minute of the process. But I hate my finished product. I wrote more than 50,000 words last November. I wrote almost every day.Some days I wrote for two or three hours;other days, I could only manage 30 minutes or so. The words just poured out of me (again,this probably surprises no one), but when it was all said and done, my book really didn't say anything. I didn't set out to write a romance novel, a piece of chick lit, and that's exactly what it turned out to be.I didn't really plan my book in advance but wrote it 'by the seat of my pants' as they say. Those of you who know me won't be surprised by that at all; it's kind of how I roll. So I finished up most of a manuscript that really said nothing. It might be entertaining, but I really want to create something that has more depth, more breadth, and more significance than just a run-of-the-mill love story with some steamy scenes. 

This year, I want to approach things differently. I'd been toying with writing a fictionalized account of the life of one of my grandmothers (as you might imagine, they were women with sass), but I woke up one day last week with an idea for a story that has real potential. I'm not ready to give much away, but I'm excited about trying to write this story. I even plan to do some actual prep work this weekend so that my story has real direction and momentum before I even begin to write it. This is huge, people; the planning isn't usually fun for me when it comes to creative projects. For now, my book is entitled The Middle Way, but I do reserve the right to change that title. (It will come as no surprise to many of you that the title is one of the last things I think about when I write, and I change my mind about it pretty frequently.) I've currently labelled its genre as mainstream, but that might also change as the book itself progresses. This is the photograph I took in Monet's garden at Giverny that I'm using a portion of it as the current book cover; I figure maybe the beauty of it will inspire me and intrigue others who might see it.

Who's with me? Who wants to spend the next two months or so hammering out a first draft of a novel? Technically, you're supposed to finish the first draft in the month of November, but I'm giving myself a deadline of the end of the year. Last year, NaNoWriMo sort of consumed my life. These days, I have so much going on that I'm not willing to commit to quite that level of intensity - if I can help myself, of course. We'll see, right?

If you're interested in NaNoWriMo (or National Novel Writing Month held every November), I encourage you to visit their website and begin writing. Most cities have one or several locations that sponsor activities and offer talks/tips/write-ins/etc. Check out your public library for more info; some Barnes and Noble locations participate too.

Click on this link for more info:
'Friend' me the nanowrimo website if you'd like; my username is lowdertiff. I'm so creative, right?

I'll be posting about my progress and may even ask some of you for advice/input. If any of you plan to write along for NaNoWriMo, I'd love to hear about your progress too. Writing nerds, unite!


  1. I am sooooo not a writer. Good luck to you!

  2. Sounds wonderful! You were born to write! Don't neglect the gift that is within you!

  3. Ha -- now I feel bad for complimenting your excerpt in the other blog post, since it's not something you love. But even if you never do anything else with it, it's the equivalent of hours at the barre for a dancer, or hours at the keyboard for pianist. I have signed up for NaNoWriMo multiple times and have never come close to "winning" -- I'm just not willing, apparently, to give up all other leisure activities for the month. But I like your idea of giving yourself two months. That might actually be more doable and less stressful. I signed up this morning, but haven't written anything yet.

  4. I'm always so impressed with people who participate. Good luck with this year's. I like the sound of your new idea. Also, I'm the same way. I don't really dig "chick lit" but that is what comes out of me when I write.