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Below are the 20 most recent journal entries recorded in National Novel-writing Month Journalers' LiveJournal:

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Friday, September 30th, 2011
8:04 pm
NaNo Early
So, who else here is doing NaNo this year?

And is anyone a rebel like me and doing it early.

I'm starting tomorrow, and doing it for thirty days of October, due to November being busy for me this year.

I have a title, plot and characters all ready to go, and I'm raring to get started in the morning.

If you want more info on my novel or to track my progress, please feel free to follow my blog here, and if you want another follow for your own blog, leave a link in the comments and I'll check it out.
Monday, December 6th, 2010
12:14 pm
December 2010: Debriefing
It's the end of the show for NaNoWriMo 2010. As they say in the biz, that's all she wrote.

So how'd it go?

Did you hit 50,000 or your goal? Did you reach the end of the story? Are you going to continue to work on this novel or trunk it? Are you going to do NaNo next year?
Monday, November 29th, 2010
11:30 am
NaNoWriMo 2010: Day Twenty-Nine

My NaNo profile tells me that a lot of us are already at the 50k mark, and that a lot of us are still pushing on. Push on! The fat lady may be spraying her throat and applying mascara but she has not yet sung! We have two days to wrap up this thing. Let's do it.

Today's goal: 48333 or higher.

Although there's still time to write, I can't be the only one salivating for the end of NaNo. So here's a question: What are you going to do on December 1st instead of writing? I'm thinking an all-evening Runescape marathon following a dinner that did not come out of a box.
Wednesday, November 24th, 2010
9:50 am
NaNoWriMo 2010: Day Twenty-Four
...day twenty-four? Really?

Yes, really! But in case you're like me and need some cheering up, think about this: counting today, we have one full week left to write. This is Day One of the last week of NaNo 2010. Think of your first week on the novel, and what you did during it, with all that energy and creative power; then, do that for another week. Then wictory!

I had a word challenge for today, but it was stupid, so here's a game instead: write a sentence that contains three or more words that rhyme. Then post below for our amusement.

Oh, and we're looking to cross 40,000 today. The end is in sight! And it's beautiful.
Monday, November 22nd, 2010
10:25 am
NaNoWriMo 2010: Day Twenty-Two
It's Day Twenty-Two! Today's word-count goal is 36,667.

I don't know about you, but I could use a boost. Here's a challenge word to net us a few hundred words each as we contort our stories to accommodate it. Unless you're already writing about harps. If that's the case, I apologize to you. And feel a little sorry for you too.

Wednesday, November 17th, 2010
10:49 am
NaNoWriMo 2010: Day Seventeen
Good morning, NaNoMoJo! Today we're gearing for 28,333 words.

The other day, in the comments on a news story, someone was farcically describing his own predilections when he said, "It will eventually destroy me." How evocative! Some of the most fascinating characters in literature (and life!) are driven, self-destructive, or tragically flawed. So here's today's challenge: comment as any one* of your characters, admitting his or her tragic or destructive trait, and append "It will eventually destroy me." Then think about whether you'll let him achieve his goal before the destruction, or not.

*Or more, because goodness knows some of us write some depressing casts.
Monday, November 15th, 2010
10:48 am
NaNoWriMo 2010: Day Fifteen
Guys. GUYS. Guess what.

It's halftime.

Today's goal is 25,000 words, to put us halfway through the month and halfway to the final 50,000-word goal. That milestone is a special joy, and it comes with special challenges.

If you're ahead of the game, stay ahead! It's easy to flake out in the mid-twenties or early thirties, get too comfortable with your lead, or start re-reading what you've got and suddenly lose the will to carry on. Don't succumb! There's still half a game to be played.

If you're behind right now, do not despair! Every year thousands of people put a little extra juice in their tanks and come from behind to catch up and win. Now's a great time to recalculate how many words per day you need to write in order to make your 50k by the 30th. Formula: (50,000 - your word count) / 15. Then do that number of words every day, without fail. Then do a little more. It works every time.

So how are you doing?
Thursday, November 11th, 2010
6:09 pm
Editing Up

Isn't that one of the cardinal rules of NaNo? The purpose of this event is to pour all the unpolished prose right out of you onto the page or computer screen, to rack up those word counts to impressive totals. Of all the edicts we could violate during this 30-day marathon, editing seems to be the biggest no-no of all.

And yet ...

Last night, after wrapping my Day Ten writing session, I tallied up my total for the evening and was rather disheartened to see it standing at a tad over 1,500. Now, I'd ended right at the point in the story where I both wanted and needed to; the following scene required some mental character development I'd need to sleep on, and thus I was unprepared to move forward past my stopping point. So, I went back over what I'd typed out over the previous two hours and did some judicious editing - not to pare it down, but to add to it. Reading it over carefully, I found spots where extra ideas and and exposition and dialogue could be inserted to no great deleterious effect. A few extra words and phrases here, and couple of clarifying sentences there ... and by the time I was finished, my 1,500 words had turned to 1,800. I'd met the minimum necessary daily goal with some extra bankable words to spare, and had still left off where I needed to.

Now, this method is clearly not for everyone, but I thought I'd share my experience here in case it might benefit some of my fellow NaNoers. Those of us who've been writing for years know the rules of our craft backwards and forwards, and knowing the rules that well is the Number One requirement for knowing when it's okay to break them. So, who else here is up to the challenge of breaking some rules?
10:23 am
NaNoWriMo 2010: Day Eleven
Why, hello there, NaNoMoJo! You're looking good today.

Today's on-track word count goal is 18333 words (or if you're going the finish-by-Thanksgiving route, 22917). Those word counts are getting rather large, aren't they? They have some heft. Which means we have enough words to do one of my favorite NaNo activities: the auto-summarize.

Here are the directions in Microsoft Word 2002. If you've got another program, please post the instructions in the comments for others!

    Tools -> AutoSummarize
    Choose "Create a new document and put the summary there"
    Choose "10 Sentences" from the drop-down menu
    Click OK

Then post in the comments, because the results are always hilarious.

ETA: It's also tahmthelame's birthday, so be sure to wish her a happy birthday and a happy NaNo!
Tuesday, November 9th, 2010
11:57 am
NaNoWriMo 2010: Day Nine
Good morning, NaNoMoJo!

We should be crossing the 15,000 mark today in order to stay on-target. If you're behind, make that extra push and catch up today! If you're ahead...make that extra push anyway, because darkness looms.

We are entering Week Two, where doubts begin to creep in, and are just a few days from the Terrible Twenties, where so many before us have fallen. Now's the time to harness that still-fresh energy and put it to work--things are going to get hairy, but with enough gumption, we can all make it through.

Here's a challenge word:


As always, variations are totally valid.
Monday, November 8th, 2010
9:33 am
The 8th!
Oh man! We're more than a week in already! I hope it's going well. amberdulen told me to come up with a game, I guess. But I couldn't think of any games, so I came up with a challenge. (Hope that's okay!)

Okay, since we're all well into our writing now, let's do 1 or more of the following:

1. POST your favorite paragraph so far

2. WRITE a new paragraph of 100 words or more

3. WRITE a new paragraph describing something in an absurd amount of detail

You can combine 2 and 3, of course, or treat them separately. Word count enhancers for the win!

Haha, sorry. I'm bad at this. XD

Good luck everybody!

Current Mood: determined
Friday, November 5th, 2010
10:29 am
NaNoWriMo 2010: Day Five
A day for gunpowder and treason, certainly, but mostly plot. Or no plot. Word around these parts is that's no problem.

Today's on-track goal is 8333 words. And that means it's time for the most important public service announcement of the month. BACK UP YOUR WORK. Do it now. Every year programs crash, laptops take a dive, jump drives explode, Google eats a document. BACK UP YOUR WORK NOW. Two different places if you have to. Trust me.

Here's a daily challenge word.


Noun? Verb? Root word for some kind of bizarre adverb? Your call. Post the sentence you use it in, there in the comments.
Wednesday, November 3rd, 2010
9:19 am
NaNoWriMo 2010: Day Three
Good morning, NaNoMoJo!

It's Day 3, so we should be crossing the 5,000-word mark today. It's not too late to catch up, and if you can get ahead, do it! 5k is 10% of the goal, by the way. That's right: we're 10% done already. That's pretty nice.

Let's play a game.

1. List the first three characters who turn up in your novel
2. Give them each a three-word description (e.g. grim alcoholic cop, evil winged dragon, blue-haired hippie)
3. Play Kiss, Kill, or Marry with them
4. Let the rest of us do the same :)

(True fact: the second Google result for "kiss kill marry wikipedia" is Bella Swan. Al Bundy is first.) (?)
Monday, November 1st, 2010
11:45 am
NaNoWriMo 2010: Day One
The sun has risen on pretty much most of the world for day one of NaNoWriMo 2010! Our daily word-count goal is 1667, but as always, if you pick one day to get ahead, pick today! Nothing beats back the twenties blues like a going in with a nice big buffer.

Since we're all just getting started, in today's comments, post the first sentence of your NaNovel!
Sunday, October 31st, 2010
8:33 pm
As one of my last-minute preparations for NaNo, I pulled out and dusted off my battered and ancient ex-library copy of Robert Heinlein's "The Door into Summer," which I plan to keep propped on my computer table here until I hit the goal mark or until I go down in flames in my valiant attempt.

Why that particular tome? Well, when I read it in my late teens or early 20s (can't quite remember when) and found it to be a quite passable time-travel mind twister, I was wholly unaware that years earlier Heinlein had boasted in an interview that he'd written that 188-page novel in ONE WEEKEND. And this was back in the 1950s, before home computers and word processors, when a simple electric typewriter was considered state-of-the-art. Now, Heinlein was one who never embraced obsessive re-editing and fine-tuning of his works ("That's what editors are for," he once said dismissively), instead knocking out his manuscripts and throwing them out to the world to sell or not sell as they would. If that's not in the spirit of NaNo, what is? If he can churn out an entire novel in one weekend, surely I can make 50,000 words in 30 days, can't I?

So, what are some of YOU doing to evoke a little extra inspiration to help you along in your word counts?
Wednesday, October 27th, 2010
1:11 pm
November Encroacheth
Click here for our welcome post: What is NaNoMoJo?

My goodness, time flies.

With just a few days to go, are you scrawling footnotes on your outline or sipping umbrella drinks on a hammock? Or to put it another way: are you a plotter or a pantser? And how's that working for you?
Tuesday, October 26th, 2010
9:46 am
Click here for our welcome post: What is NaNoMoJo?

Happy Tuesday, NaNoMoJo!

We've got just under a week to go until the starting gun--and then, we're off! In the meantime, this is a great time to make yourself a NaNo calendar. Knowing your daily word count goal is vital to winning NaNo, because as I say every year: the only trick to winning is to never fall behind.

We've worked up two calendars for you, below. The first one is the standard one, designed to have you write your 50,000th word on November 30. But if you're American and trying to finish before Thanksgiving so you can enjoy your turkey and stuffing in peace, the second calendar will get you to 50k on November 24.

Of course, calendars are only one way to measure your progress. I like the thermometer-style progress meter. What are you using to track your progress this year?

2010 Regular Schedule (1667/day):

Nov 3 - 5,000 (Wednesday)
Nov 6 - 10,000 (Saturday!)
Nov 9 - 15,000 (Tuesday)
Nov 12 - 20,000 (Friday)
Nov 15 - 25,000 (Monday)
Nov 18 - 30,000 (Thursday)
Nov 21 - 35,000 (Sunday!)
Nov 24 - 40,000 (Wednesday)
Nov 27 - 45,000 (Saturday!)
Nov 30 - 50,000 (Tuesday)

Finish-by-Thanksgiving Schedule (2083/day):

Nov 3 - 6,250 (Wednesday)
Nov 6 - 12,500 (Saturday!)
Nov 9 - 18,750 (Tuesday)
Nov 12 - 25,000 (Friday)
Nov 15 - 31,250 (Monday)
Nov 18 - 37,500 (Thursday)
Nov 21 - 43,750 (Sunday!)
Nov 24 - 50,000 (Wednesday)
Monday, October 25th, 2010
5:37 pm
Peering In
Um, 'ello.

Seems I just joined this happy little outfit. This is my first year even contemplating doing NaNo, and Cata said I ought to join NaNoMoJo, and who am I to naysay a personage of her esteemed esteemosity?

I see a few familiar faces. Well, okay, they're ALL familiar. *waves at AmberTahmeTwapaEtc* So, what happens now? Just sit back and wait for November 1st to drop?

*rubs hands in anticipation*
Friday, October 15th, 2010
10:13 am
They ALL Fight Crime
Click here for our welcome post: What is NaNoMoJo?

Hello, NaNoMoJo! It's a little over two weeks until liftoff.

There's a generator out there called They Fight Crime. It invents two characters with bizarre traits, pairs them up, and, well, they fight crime. (http://www.theyfightcrime.org/) Pretty much everything it suggests would make a rockin' TV show.

Today's Challenge: Describe your main characters in terms of the They Fight Crime meme.

Here are mine from years past to get you started:

He's a thirteen-year-old Pittsburgher who works in his parents' restaurant. She's a moody four-armed blonde who can fly and has abandonment issues. They fight crime!

He's a one-armed RAF vet. She's a thirteenth-century saint. They fight demons!

He's a professional supervillain sidekick. It's a brain in a jar. They commit crime!
Tuesday, October 12th, 2010
9:54 am
Making a Mess
Click here for our welcome post: What is NaNoMoJo?

A couple of days ago we posted about the germs of our NaNo ideas, the one thing we were sure would show up in November. Today let's go the other direction. This is NaNo, after all, and the motto lays it right out for us: no plot? No problem.

What's one thing about your NaNo novel you don't yet know? Is your antagonist nothing but a blank face? Are you not quite sure where and when the story takes place? Are you planning to go in and just kind of freehand it?

I've got a part in the middle where I have no idea how to get from part A to part C. There is no B. Or possibly B stands for "blur". It will be an exciting day when I reach that part of the story, let me tell you.
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