zvi: Jill Scott: make a joyful noise unto the Lord! (Story time)
[personal profile] zvi posting in [community profile] nano_writers
What are your best techniques for getting to the win? (Conversely, if you are yet to be a winner, what have you identified as things to avoid so you can win next time?)

Something that worked for me the one time I won, was actually a bit of advice from Sue Grafton, author of the Kinsey Millhone mysteries: write a little bit around your writing, some before you start and after you finish each session. I usually only wrote a couple of sentences; Ms. Grafton usually writes three or four times in this parallel journal what ends up in the book. In any case, the idea is that you (a) check in with yourself and your emotional state, (b) remind yourself of what you are going to write [when writing before] and what you will need to write next [at the end of a writing session], and (c) get distracting thoughts out of your head, blocking the writing, and on to paper, where you can leave them until the writing session is done.

(I suspect it also has some of the benefits of free-writing, where it just gets you into the physicality of writing, whether that's by pen, keyboard, dictation, or whatever you're doing, and, also, it means you're not confronted with a scary blank page while trying to tell a story.)

What do you do to get you through?

(no subject)

Date: 2013-10-30 02:59 am (UTC)
silverflight8: bee on rose  (Bee)
From: [personal profile] silverflight8
Deadlines.

That's it, pretty much. I loathe failure. Thus, deadlines are unbelievably motivating (if stressing).

(no subject)

Date: 2013-10-31 09:52 pm (UTC)
morwen_peredhil: (nanowrimo soviet russia novel writes you)
From: [personal profile] morwen_peredhil
This. I am not a person who misses deadlines, and I have rather a lot of self-image tied up in being that sort of person.

7 NaNoWriMos + 1 Camp NaNoWriMo = 8 wins

I grit my teeth and refuse to fail, because the shame that would make me feel is much worse than the stress of writing. Also, I refuse to fall behind. The one time that happened (even though it was only 5000 words or so), I felt so horrible until I had erased the deficit that I resolved never to let it happen again for anything short of a zombie apocalypse or a stay in the ICU.

In conclusion, my secret to winning is the possession of an entire subscription's worth of classic firstborn-child issues.

(no subject)

Date: 2013-10-31 02:11 am (UTC)
tryslora: photo of my red hair right after highlighting (Default)
From: [personal profile] tryslora
Things that have helped me in the past:

Never end with a finished scene. Even if you only have a paragraph saying what the goals of the next scene are, make sure it's there. Better yet, write a sentence or two so you know where you're going when you start the next day.

Every few days, outline the next few scenes. For each scene, you should have a goal, what does the scene accomplish. Just that is a huge help to the writing.

Always check in. Even on bad days. Seeing the graph change is amazing motivation!

Reread your prior day's words. I know they say not to edit, but I find that doing a really quick reread helps me set the tone/voice and I can keep going forward more easily.

That's it... those are the things that have helped me win NaNo and helped me get through four 50k+ months this year. Best of luck to everyone!!

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