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Week 3 Nanowrimo, Act 3 of my novel November 24, 2011

Posted by mattfarmer in writing.
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It is late Thursday, Australia time, week 3 Nanowrimo. I am in Act 3, nearing the end, sitting just under 75k words as I write this. I am determined to get to the end of my story, although Act 3 implies a bit more story than I thought, dramatic ending, and such. They were just going to walk off into the sun(s) set, but I might have to make it a bit more deadly. Perhaps an avalanche. We will see.

I have noticed that I sometimes settle into a nice rut of conversation. A lot of talk, quirky talk, not dull conversation. But the book doesn’t go anywhere. That was happening today. I was enjoying the conversation. My Alchemist was fitting my MC with a gun, explaining how and why it works, what types of potions it fires and such. I enjoyed it because the workings of the weapon made a sense of logic for me. And the way they described things- this is the casting plate. I like the term casting plate. Plate, being a physical, metal object, which allows the ‘casting’ of a spell. I want a mix of magic and technology, brought through alchemy. And I feel like I even have the language to do this.

However, the book wasn’t going anywhere. I had such fun creating the village of Thunderfall, way up in the mountains, that I wanted them to stay a few days. But in a book, in an adventure, that can’t happen. So I brought the bad guys there, in the middle of the night. Okay, they didn’t arrive there, a massive dragon blew their ship up and it crashed. I thought- if that doesn’t get their butts moving, nothing will!

A few interesting things have happened to the book and to the characters while I have been writing. Some characters have been wrestling with me. The lead male and female both wanted screen time at the start of the book. I would manage to get one under control and then the other would start acting up. Then those two were quite happy to hop along with the ride, until they decided they wanted to be lovers. Well, I intended that, but it took them a while. And now they cant keep their hands off each other. The poor boy, just as he is getting around first base, SURPRISE! Goblin attack

But what I think was the most intriguing thing to happen was to a character who lives with my alchemist. He was found as a child, in the wild, and she more or less adopted him. Not a motherly type, their relationship is more like friends. He is a very talented tinkerer, which is like an engineer. Except he draws pictures of creatures and puts cogs and gears and pulleys in them. He has this way of seeing the world as it would look like as a machine. And that was the character basis. Then, when my MC meets him for the first time, I discovered he was autistic. I honestly had no intention of making him so. It literally just happened. He hasnt fought me over it, he hasnt argued, he is quite happy seeing the world as he sees it,”much better this way”, as he likes to say. It surprised me. But I am happy with it.

Being at home with not much work has enabled me to pull out 5000 word days, 3000 word days and the like. However, I am thinking I may need to delegate Thursdays as my ‘maintenance’ days. I have just began the weekly newsletter duties for my BNI Chapter. Great idea, I will get content from everyone and put it into a newsletter for them. Actually a bit of work, chasing down people to email you content. Lay it out in a template and such, and then send out. Free of charge. It’s always the setting up of templates that is the biggest bit, next time will be copy and paste under the picture. And 2 other people have expressed interest in me creating a newsletter for them

And some have expressed interest in me creating and maintaining a Facebook page for them. So I think I will delegate Thursday to be THE DAY where I update newsletter templates, update Facebook. Thursday will be my day of social networking. I must be on Facebook! As a job! Who would have thought…

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Week 2 and a little bit of Nanowrimo, winning! November 17, 2011

Posted by mattfarmer in writing.
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It is now day 17 of Nanowrimo. I have yet to write today, but that is okay because yesterday I had a 10 000 word day and hit the 50k goal line for Nanowrimo! I completed the challenge in 16 days! There was only 1 day I did not write, and that was Saturday. Chances are I’m not going to write this Saturday either, so, 15 days to get 50k words. This is, of course, while not being full-time employed, so for me its been the quickest I have written. I am quite happy with the effort.

Have I finished? Gosh no. I am just coming to the action packed conclusion to Act 2, and Act 3 beckons! I stopped writing early last night because the next scene is going to be utterly chaotic. Two ships, fighting each other, and throw in a good  dose of dragons. Crazy! And so I wanted a fresh day to write this scene. I have been thinking about it all of last night and this morning. Who is going to die, how can they overcome the pride of the corporate fleet. And then I needed the collective noun for dragons! Role Playing Gamers seem to think a Flight of Dragons is the term. I trust them. They have provided a load of inspirational ideas for my fiction.

Another facet of my Nanowrimo this year has been my daily updates of my status on Facebook. When I wrote the first book in my science fiction series, I posted the chapters on a blog for people to read as it happened. It prompted me to write for an audience, but it was an audience I never really knew were there. Long before I could see blog stats and visit counts. But now, I am updating on my Facebook, a good, meaty sized update at the end of the day with a humorous summary of what I had written during the day.

And it is generating interest. This may seem like a no-brainer to other people who are more experienced in the world of advertising through social media, but I am finding it fantastic to generate interest in my writing through just my friends. So many want to read my work, ask about my writing, how it is going, can they be a part of it. I included three friends of mine in the story as pit fighters and sent them the extract. They totally loved it. And people who I never thought would be into writing come up to me and tell me their husbands or partners or friend have always wanted to write a novel and so on. It has been great.

The link to get the WINNING image is not yet available through Nanowrimo. But in the mean time, there is this one.

See you in a week!

Week one-and-a-bit nanowrimo. I am now recognised as a writer. November 9, 2011

Posted by mattfarmer in writing.
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I was going to give a one week update of nanowrimo, however I got caught up with writing and family visits and the obligatory restaurant dinners, and so I am two days late.

I have had a fun time wrestling with the lead male character and the lead female character. Firstly, my male lead was trying to control the book and what happened. Admittedly the action was around him making discoveries, such as who the bad guys were, what his feelings for the lead female were, what drove the golems and made them creepy. Except, he was taking his time discovering these things, and when he did, he wanted to explore them more.

It may sound strange to say this, but I took control back from him, and made him behave, by changing the weather. A festival and a ball was going to happen once it stopped raining. It is going to be at this ball where the chase begins and they must escape the city. I made the rain stop early to stop my man from dawdling.

But then the female lead started taking control. She has developed strong mind control powers, suggestive powers. This has helped me move the plot along, but she is too powerful. And she met with royalty half a book earlier than she should have. I am going to give her a head injury so she loses those powers. Take over MY novel will you?

I have to admit, saying things like this, out loud- I will give her a head injury, is such a cool thing to do and say. In normal conversation you would be looked upon as strange and possibly as a felon if you said those things.

So, I am twenty two thousand words into the novel, and they havent left the city yet for the flight on the sky ship. Nearly halfway to the word count target, and they are still in act 1. I get the feeling a lot may need to be edited from the start of the book. I have only done one serious edit so far, and that was on a phrasing about the revelation of two suns for the world. I was very aware of feeding the reader small portions of explanation jelly beans about the names and the looks of the suns. So I Changed it, implied some and left the description minimalist. If you don’t get it, you will later on.

I am also updating my Facebook page at the end of each day with an exaggerated description of what I have done for the day in terms of nanowrimo. This has had some fun follow on effects for me. On the weekend a friend hugged me hello and asked if I could put her into my novel. On Saturday night a friend greeted me with a bow and said- Hello nanowrimos! Someone else, while skating, asked how my novel was going. She told me how her husband wanted to write a book and we should talk. I asked why he hadn’t started.

People are more aware of me as a writer, that I am writing a book and are actively asking about it. If they see me they ask how it is going. If I am online they ask if I am writing. Twice I have been guilted off Facebook to write. I like this in my friends.

And, to be honest, I am also enjoying people coming up to me and asking how my writing is progressing. Especially those whom I never thought would ask. That makes me feel like a legitimate writer. I can already hear friends saying- BUT YOU ARE! Yes yes, I know. But, its good to be reaffirmed.

I will give you an update at the halfway mark, November 14th. If they haven’t left the city by then I am dropping that asteroid on them. That will get them moving.