NaNoWriMo part 2

Okay, a last minute family situation has come up and I cannot have class at 6 p.m. tomorrow (30 Oct). I apologize for having to cancel.

Please check out NaNoWriMo and let me know if you’re going to do it. I’d love to see some of my students try the challenge. The result last year was one of my students getting a book published!

Since I have an author’s commitment for the Saturday after tomorrow, our next class will be Saturday, 13 November 2010, 6 p.m. eastern US time, at the Writers’ Retreat in Twinity.

See you there and keep writing!



In Saturday, 30 October’s class (in Twinity, 6 p.m. eastern in the Writers Retreat), we are going to discuss NaNoWriMo, National Novel Writing Month.

To quote the site:

“National Novel Writing Month is a fun, seat-of-your-pants approach to novel writing. Participants begin writing November 1. The goal is to write a 175-page (50,000-word) novel by midnight, November 30.”

So you have between now and 1 November to find a topic and get yourself in gear so that you may start writing on the first of November. We’ve been discussing getting unbogged-down, and how to keep writing despite your own doubts, floundering in research, etc. So let’s see if we can put that into practice!

How many are willing to give NaNoWriMo a try?

The week after, Saturday, 6 November, we will not be having class as I will be away on an author-related event. I’d love you to post your writing endeavors here if you feel inclined.

And – keep writing!

Plot Generators

I’m posting this as a two-fer. For class, and for the Writer’s Cramps column.

Yesterday, we discussed several aspects of The Plot. Mostly getting stuck, with the advice (from students! I guess I’ve repeated myself enough they’ve learned it – yay!) to just write – you can polish it up or fix plot points later. The first draft just must be written, not written well.

We also talked about the fact that sitting back and letting a story simmer is often an important part of the writing process. Yes, not writing can be writing. Just don’t let the simmer excuse stand in your way if you’re just afraid to jump forward and write!

What do you do when you are just out of ideas? Well, here’s a few tips. Just go about life. Wash dishes, clean your house, go to work, take a shower, garden, work out – do whatever things you do. Many times a story idea will pop out of nowhere in the middle of a mundane or ordinary part of the day.

But what if it doesn’t? Well. One student asked about plot generators. Controversial they are, but they can be helpful – and at times, just fun. As a matter of fact, I recommend not drinking while checking these out, you might spray your monitor or choke while laughing.

So, with much fanfare *sprinkles confetti and plays the kazoo*, here are some plot generators. Take them as seriously as you please.

This is an excellent one. Many choices:
Seventh Sanctum™’s Plot Generator

Random Plot Generator by Teresa Nielsen Hayden (more fantasy-based)

Random Plot Points

Random Writing Prompt Generators

Plot Twist Generator

Random Logline Generator
(these are hilarious!)

There are tons more out there – do a search, then sit back and enjoy.

I will want to know if any of these help at all. You can tell me next Saturday, 6 p.m. eastern US, at the Writers’ Retreat in Twinity. See you there!

And don’t forget – keep writing!

Curious Teacher…

Has everyone been writing? Are you ready to tell me how much you’ve written? No, you don’t have to share what you’ve written, but I’d like to know you have been writing.

After updates, I’ll answer any questions (last time we had a discussion on the publishing process, which was fun and informative).

Then, we’ll discuss the middle-of-the-novel problem – you get a great start, you know how it’s going to end, but what about in the middle? All those great plot threads seem to unravel or get knotted up. What to do?

See you Saturday, 16 October, 6 p.m. eastern, at the Writers’ Retreat in Twinity.

And keep writing!