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Camp NaNoWriMo and my humble attempt

It’s July already, and this is the month for Camp NaNoWriMo. NaNoWriMo stands for ‘National Novel Writing Month’. Basically, every November writers take up a challenge to write 50,000 words in 30 days. But in Camp NaNoWriMo, the writers can take up any challenge, set their own targets and work towards that.

My profile has been active on the NaNoWriMo site since 2016. That just means that since 2016 I have been setting challenges for myself every year and I have been failing every single year. Without fail, every single year I have failed. I know how ironic that sounds.

This year I am planning to try my discipline at Camp NaNoWriMo to be slightly better prepared for the main one in November.

It is true what they say about failure to be an excellent teacher. But the problem is that while we learn the lesson, applying the lesson is whole another story.

Let me elaborate on this. I have been doing my best every year to finish my manuscript. Every time I start with a lot of enthusiasm and then write the first chapter. That’s the easiest chapter in my story. I know exactly what is happening. I know what each of the characters is doing and feeling and it doesn’t take me long to type up the scenes. Then comes the next chapter, and then another one. So far I am on track. I am writing fast enough to stay on track to finish my challenge.

Then my story comes to a point where I know what the characters are going to do but I don’t know exactly how or even why they are going to do these things. And this is the point I get stuck. Every time. I struggle to write. I struggle to untangle the story mess. I do everything possible. But the story remains stuck.

I know about outlines and plotting and planning. And I do all that too, but I guess I am not too good at that cos my outline does nothing to untangle the mess I have created.

So, naturally, I stop struggling. I delete the 10-15K words I had written so far and then go back to studying outlining process. Every time I work on refining my outline, I end up making few changes here and there and then start writing again.

So, this year I have planned to make a bigger change. This year I am going to write a detailed outline before I start writing my book. In my mind, a detailed outline will be of 10,000 words minimum. So that’s my target for this month’s Camp NaNoWriMo.

I am going to write a detailed outline of a minimum of 10,000 words before the end of July.

In the last few days, I have been working on my outline consistently every day. I am still getting stuck. I still don’t know how to untangle certain sections of the story. But this time I know exactly what are the questions I still do not have an answer to. So every time I am stuck at those questions, I start writing other things like my character’s background story or even the history of a ruined temple. I just keep exploring different sections, hoping that something might lead me to the key to untangling my biggest problems.

Why am I writing a blog post about this?

Well, I have been told again and again that making public commitments helps one stay accountable. And I need a regular dose of accountability and motivation.

So, this month I am going to keep sharing my progress of camp NaNoWriMo and keep hoping that it will make my writing life a little easier.

Thank you for keeping me motivated.
Until next time…

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2 comments

  1. I actually want to comment on your Project Hail Mary post, but since I’m halfway through the book, I dare not click on it for the fear of spoilers, based on the title, lol. Will revisit that post soon, and for now, good luck with all your writing pursuits!

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