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#FirstDraft60? I Think We Need MORE TIME. #amwriting #nanowrimo

Thursday, November 10, 2016

If you haven’t been able to tell, due to the lack of interactivity here (and the lack of a THORsday post), things have been . . . stressful this week. Between health issues (mine, family members’) and, well, all of the other stuff happening in the world this week, I’ve been completely unable to focus and haven’t written a word since Monday.

This afternoon, Carol and I got together for our weekly writing session—and neither of us could concentrate. (And then things got a little crazy—thanks for putting up with me, Carol. I really needed that laugh!) Both of us agreed that trying to get a first draft finished by the end of November isn’t going to happen. But neither of us wants to give up, either.

Therefore, I’m pleased to introduce you to . . .

We’re extending our deadline for a complete first draft to January 31, 2017!

I know a lot of us fell behind with the prep work in October; and, although we were excited to start writing on November 1, we may not have actually been ready to do the kind of heavy-duty writing that completing a draft in 30 days requires.

At this point, looking at the days piling up on which I haven’t met my writing goal (and on which I haven’t written at all), it would be so easy to quit. To tell myself that I’ve written all the books I had in me and should just give up. Just stop writing.

But I’m not going to do that. I owe it to myself not to do that.

By extending the deadline to January 31, it not only gives us a chance to write at a more comfortable speed, but it also gives us a chance to build in days off, or to have time to make up for when we miss a day or two due to extenuating circumstances.

And it means we have time to go back and do some of that prep work we might not have finished by October 31. Especially now that we do have a little bit written and we may know more about our characters and/or plot than we did and can go back and restructure, do research, write backstories for new characters, etc.

I hope you’ll continue along—or, if you’re just now finding this, join in by going back and reviewing the prep-work posts from October and then jumping in with your goals and progress.

Assignment: If you’re in, check in with your progress to date and then a re-calculation of your daily/weekly/monthly/total word-count goals with January 31 as the final date for the challenge. (November 11–January 31 is 82 days.)

Let’s do this!

  1. Thursday, November 10, 2016 7:38 pm

    Progress to Date: 6,900 words (2.5 chapters, an average of 690 words per day, but with writing on only 3 out of 10 days)

    New Daily Average Word-Count Goal: 1,000
    I can usually write around 1,500 words in a 1k1hr sprint—if I do that five times per week, that’s 7,500 words, or an average of 1,071 words per day. On the day when I did the “write 200 words, take a break, write 200 more words, take a break” schedule, I ended up with 2,700 words. So an average of 1,000 per day is very doable for me.

    First Draft Total Word-Count Goal: Still the same: 75,000 words

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Sarah Madelin permalink
    Thursday, November 10, 2016 11:06 pm

    This is the best news I’ve had all week. A re-set button is exactly what my project needs, and additional days with a more feasible daily goal is the only way I will finish now that my job has started up. Slowing down somehow fits with the autumn/winter season, and aligns with some new goals of being gentler with others and kinder to myself. I’m all in, I love this idea. And I love that the connection of working on our books as part of a common goal will continue for a while longer. Participating has been a nice boost to my writing routine and my morale.

    Almost forgot: I have a lot of planning done, but 0 words written as I switched gears to work on a different project at the last minute. I’m scrapping that plan and going back to the story I developed throughout October. So this will be a complete reset for me. And I feel inspired for the first time in days, so I’m going to start right now.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Thursday, November 10, 2016 11:10 pm

      You and Shirley were both in my thoughts as Carol and I talked about this today—I knew both of you were in the same situation as me, falling further and further behind and getting more and more disheartened. Having your participation, even when it’s just to say that you weren’t making the progress you hoped, has been so encouraging and supportive to me. So I’m super happy that you’re sticking around for the lengthened challenge!


  3. Friday, November 11, 2016 1:27 am

    I forgot to include this in the post—something that had me crying laughing when Carol and I were in our silly phase Thursday night.

    Make Writing First Drafts Great Again . . . because we’re Stronger Together! #itsbeenareallylongweek

    Liked by 2 people

    • Sarah Madelin permalink
      Friday, November 11, 2016 8:51 am

      Haha! That is the truth! I’m so glad you extended the challenge–I desperately need something else to think about. #imwithherawesome120daychallenge

      Liked by 2 people

  4. Friday, November 11, 2016 10:30 am

    Kaye, thank you for changing up your challenge. I am still planning on completing the Nano challenge (provided I can get my homework done prior to Thanksgiving) but with all the activities I have for the end of the month, I still need to go at 2k a day. I can wait, though, and finish the last 25k after November, which was my intent all along. I hope with this long weekend to get a lot of words down. My fingers are crossed.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Saturday, November 12, 2016 4:29 pm

      Update: I can’t do my homework and win Nano. Something has to give, and it’s the 50k. I’m full in for 75k by the end of January. That’s actually a little more doable at this stage in the semester.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Carol permalink
    Friday, November 11, 2016 9:36 pm

    You know I’m in. I’m going to extend my draft word count goal to 50,000 words. I’m also going to build in a couple of days off per week, Thanksgiving off, and December 23-26 off. That gives me 50 writing days between now and 1/31/17. I’m at a tad over 2k now. But, to make it easy I’m going to say 1k on each of the writing days. And, Thursday night was just what I needed!

    Liked by 2 people

  6. Saturday, November 12, 2016 7:03 pm

    Oh yay! That is just what I needed to hear. Count me in. I had a YA ms I started several years ago and had 9,000 words written. I now have 13,000 words. My goal is 65,000 so I need to write just under 1000 words a day (that gives me 2 days off a week, plus the holidays.) I’m not sure that is doable for me with my full time job and pastor’s wife duties, but I am going to try. 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

    • Saturday, November 12, 2016 7:06 pm

      Yay! I’m so happy you’re joining us, Sherrinda!


  7. Shirley Taylor permalink
    Monday, November 14, 2016 4:36 pm

    So I’m just reading this now and I’m so very very thrilled and thankful (and thanks for thinking of me too, Kaye, it means so much!). After my toddler pulled her other super late nap/night stunt and my cold got worse (instead of better like it had been) I didn’t write for two more days (missed both Timer Tuesday times too) and while I stayed calm and cool outwardly I felt the familiar feelings of me giving up because it just wasn’t happening. I both fought and accepted the feeling by going on a 3 day reading binge (I had library books due back that I wanted to read as I’d already sacrificially returned several books of a series I want to read because book one still hadn’t come in and this challenge had consumed me anyhow). As a result I’ve avoided all forms of internet (except my Township game lol) because I didn’t want to tell anyone that I’d basically given up and didn’t know how to get started again.
    Today, I checked into NaNo and saw that a fellow member I’d been chatting with had taken the time to check in on me with my word count not going anywhere and it led me to the realization that I DO want to keep writing and that I do NOT want to give up. Which led me to a mental adjustment of my goals and acceptance that it’s okay and then I came here and saw this and it’s exactly what I needed – to know that I’m not alone and that the “deadline” has been extended. I’ve decided that with just 81 words away from a 5000 word count that I just need to sit down everyday (except Sundays unless I manage to do it by hand at church – before it starts) and write and that writing consistently is the only thing that truly matters for me at this point. I have set a goal of 500 words per day so that I’m not just writing a sentence and then quitting for the day but once I get into the groove of writing everyday and getting at least 500 words down I can build on it…probably not until after Christmas but that is OKAY).
    Also, as much as I want to treat this as a real part time job I’ve realized I’m a SAHM because that IS my full time job of choice and I need to spend time with my children, especially my toddler as she just gets in my face and won’t take ‘no’ for an answer when I try to tell her ‘Not yet, I’m working’ and I feel guilty when the house starts to fall apart at the seams because I’m spending every second I get obsessively trying to meet a goal that turns out actually IS way more than I can manage in two hours. lol
    So again, thank you Kaye and everyone else for this decision, post and comments! 😀 Thrilled to be back!



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