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NaNoWriMo 2016 – Update – Week 1

As you may have noticed I didn't blog this week except to put up the November Goals post. That's because I'm ankle deep (just ankles at this point) into a new book for NaNoWriMo, National Novel Writing Month! I happened upon Cait's Paper Fury blog this week and saw these NaNoWriMo questions and thought I would answer them for you here. If you want to follow my daily progress, I'm updating every evening on my Facebook Page, so please like and follow me there.


I'm now at 7,603 words for this novel and I'm trying to get in 1600-2000 words per day.

1. Overall, how is your mental state, and how is your novel going?

It's going well. I don't find 1667 words per day to be at all daunting. I do 2000-3000 regularly when I'm on a deadline. So far the novel is going well, even though I'm pantsing it instead of outlining for the first time in ages. I *am* outlining as I go, though, and referring back to story structure to make sure I hit all the beats I need to.

What’s your first sentence (or paragraph)?

My fist flies forward, smashing into Miyazawa’s face with a satisfying crunch.

My main character has a bit of a temper!

Who’s your current favourite character in your novel?

I haven't met all my characters yet, so I'll have to go with the main one, Yumi Minamoto. She's the daughter of two characters from The Nogiku Series, and I know her parents well. So it's fun to be writing her now.

What do you love about your novel so far?

Yumi's voice. Her dialogue and voice are just flying out of my fingers.

Have you made any hilarious typos or other mistakes?

Hmmm, not yet except that my tense is all over the place. I keep switching between past and present!

What is your favourite to write: beginning, middle, or end — and why?

I don't have a favorite part except to dislike the middle. Lol.

What are your writing habits? Is there a specific snack you eat? Do you listen to music? What time of day do you write best? Feel free to show us a picture of your writing space!

I write best in the middle of the day or in the evening. I get my exercise done in the morning and then work the rest of the day. The photo associated with this post (click through to my website to see it!) is me dictating at my computer. I try to get in a 1000 words typing and dictate the rest to save my hands.

How private are you about your novel while you’re writing? Do you need a cheer squad or do you work alone (like, ahem, Batman)?

Pretty private which is why I didn't answer the first set of Beautiful Books questions. Lol. I work alone but share texts with my critique partner, Tracy. But I'm also a member of a great NaNoWriMo Facebook group and we do sprints and word count check-ins every day. It's motivating! Plus I'm updating my Facebook Page every day with a status. That's pretty much all I need.

What keeps you writing even when it’s hard?

Knowing that if I get past the hard parts there are better things to come.

What are your top 3 pieces of writing advice?

(1) Know and understand story structure so you can get yourself out of pinches when need be. (2) Answer all conflict questions with, “Yes, but; No, and”. Do they finally kiss after they fight the first time? Possible answers are: Yes, but it leads to another fight; or No, and they walk away to be frustrated another day. (3) If you're stuck on a particular detail, leave an XXX in your document and come back to it later in revisions so you can keep going.

Okay, that's it for the questions! I'll see you back here tomorrow for the Sunday Update!

9 thoughts on “NaNoWriMo 2016 – Update – Week 1”

  1. I am so excited you’re writing a new book! Glad to hear it’s going well so far. I am looking forward to meeting Yumi! I’ve been seeing your word updates every day and it’s nice to see your progress. Hope it keeps going well!

    1. I’m enjoying doing something brand new, and I’m rising to the challenge of creating some new characters and bringing back some old ones as well. I think this will be a good entrance point for new readers to my Nogiku Universe!

    1. Lol. I’m sure lots of people have jumped ship to work on their books. I had decided a month or two ago that I would work on books all winter, so I’m not surprised I’ve kept blogging to the weekend.

      I mostly don’t share a lot about my work while it’s in progress because I feel it jinxes things! I’m a bit superstitious. :)

  2. I could never pants a book. A couple thousand word short story, yeah, but yikes, no, not anything longer than that lol. I love your first sentence though! And your number 2 piece of advice is great, I’m going to remember that if I ever get back to working on writing.

    Good luck with the rest of your writing!

    1. I’ve pantsed several books and outlined others. I think a combination of the two works best for me. I outline a little, pants a little, and then when it’s all done, I update the outline so I can go into revisions with a clear vision of what I need to do. I have a guided outline so I’m sure to hit all the stuff I’m supposed to hit. I definitely don’t go in without making sure to hit all the three-act structure pinches and what not. :)

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S. J. Pajonas