Pep Talk Week 3: Breeze Through the Middle of Your Novel

Ruth Long addresses how to work through the middle of your book and how to tackle the rest of this challenge. 

My first attempts at novel length stories were exhilarating and demoralizing.

Exhilarating because I could so clearly envision the beginning and end of the story.

Demoralizing because I could never quite manage to bridge the gap between the two.

Why is it that middles so often become baffling, exhausting, and tedious to get through?

I’ve been actively seeking the answer to that question and here’s what I’ve come up with so far.

There are no hard and fast rules for writing a novel.

There are, however, a handful of techniques that make the process easier.

The first technique we’re going to reference is the Three Act Plot.

The general breakdown of the Three Act Plot looks like this:

Setup = 25% of story

Middle = 50% of story

Resolution = 25% of story

Whoa! No wonder the middle seems like a monkey on our backs. It’s half the story.

We need to cut that sucker down to size but where do we start?

By employing a middle-of-the-novel-tedium-busting technique I like to call “Lemony Snickett’s ‘A Series of Unfortunate Events.’”

This is the technique we’re going to focus on. Continue reading “Pep Talk Week 3: Breeze Through the Middle of Your Novel”

Pep Talk Week 1: The Dancer and the Nag

Mat Morris comes to us as a veteran of the 30-day novel challenge–and not only a veteran, but a wizard, having completed 50,000 words in 24 hours. Enjoy his Pep Talk; we know it’ll fire you up for the challenge ahead!

 

Greetings, fellow Dream Warriors. Welcome to the beginning of the end.

Most of you don’t know me, and that’s fine. This isn’t about me. It’s about you.

You see, you’re about to embark on a journey that will change your life. You’re about to do something that most only fantasize about. You’re going to take that little voice whispering in your ear, and you’re going to set it free. And I’m going to share with you a dirty little secret that will let you do it.

Everyone has a story to tell.

Now, you might be wondering why I called you a Dream Warrior. And we’ll come back to that. Promise.

More importantly, you might be wondering why someone you’ve never heard of was asked to impress upon you some words of inspiration. Honestly, as I sit here on the night of my deadline, writing what amounts to my third attempt at arranging my thoughts into something coherent, I’m wondering the very same thing.

So, a short bit about me—the current voice in your head.

You see, I was asked to write this because of my past successes in completing these little word challenges. Technically, I’ve completed the challenge of writing 50,000 words in a single month on more occasions than I’ve actually counted. But what seems to impress (read: stupefy) people the most is that, on four occasions, I’ve completed it within a 24 hour period.

Yes. You read that correctly. Continue reading “Pep Talk Week 1: The Dancer and the Nag”

Another #JuNoWriMo Giveaway! #amwriting

JuNoWriMo Twitter BannerIt’s the middle of May. THE MIDDLE OF MAY! That gives us just over two weeks to finish our pre-writing (if we are the pre-writing sort), stock up on our favorite snacks, and enjoy a lazy evening or two before all our spare moments are full of words. To make the preparations even better we are having another giveaway!

Before you go check out the awesome prizes I want to remind you that there is still time to join the blog hop. It’s a great way to spread the word about JuNoWriMo and earn more entries for the giveaway.

Joining is easy.

1. Write a post.

You can copy and paste what you need to from this post, create your own unique post, or do a combo of the two. If you choose to write your own, have fun with it! Share a little bit about what you will be working on this June, talk about your favorite part of JuNoWriMo, share your favorite recipe for a late night snack on those nights when you need to stay up and write all the words, the sky is the limit. The only must is please include a link to the JuNoWriMo website.

2.  Join the linky list.
Once your post is live, join the linky list. That way everyone else participating can visit and help promote your post.

3. Hop!
Visit a few of the other participant’s blogs. It’s a great way to meet some of the other writers before the event.

For those of you who are unfamiliar with JuNoWriMo, it’s a month long writing adventure in the style of NaNoWriMo, complete with word sprints and plenty of other writers to cheer you on. The goal is to write 50,000 in one month (1,667 words a day). You can write whatever you want. Fiction, non-fiction, the final 50k to something you started five years ago. Anything. We’d love to have you write with us!

You can learn more and sign up here.

Our Facebook group is here.

Now for the prizes!!!

First prize – writer care package  including chocolate, coffee, assorted teas, and a JuNoWriMo mug.

Robot mug
Cute, right? Perfect for long writing sessions!

Second prizeJuNoWriMo swag pack including a JuNoWriMo button, JuNoWriMo sticker, and a hand-painted JuNoWriMo bookmark.

junowrimo rocket button
These buttons are a great way to show what you’re doing this June.
Robot sticker
What’s more fun than a sticker? Especially an adorable, writing robot sticker?
JuNo bookmarks
Now you can show your JuNoWriMo spirit even while relaxing with a book!

What are you waiting for? Enter the giveaway now:
a Rafflecopter giveaway

‘);
// ]]>

JuNoWriMo Blog Hop (and a giveaway!)

JuNoWriMo Twitter BannerCan you believe that it’s already May? Before we even know it, it will be June 1st, and we’ll all be tucked away in our favorite writing corners with a vat of our beverage of choice. We’ll be tallying up our word counts and gathering momentum as we sprint with other writers and tweet encouragements.

One of the best parts of JuNoWriMo is being a part of a huge group of writers, all striving for the same goal. At almost anytime, day or night, you can find another writer working towards their word count. You can ask for help brainstorming the perfect name for a character and get several replies. Plus there’s all the accountability you could possibly want.

This year we want to build up our community so we have even more writers to connect with. In order to do that we are hosting a blog hop to spread the word and we would love it if you would join us!

Joining is easy.

1. Write a post.
You can copy and paste this post, create your own, or do a combo of the two. If you choose to write your own, have fun with it! Share a little bit about what you will be working on this June, talk about your favorite part of JuNoWriMo, share your favorite recipe for a late night snack on those nights when you need to stay up and write all the words, the sky is the limit. The only must is please include a link to the JuNoWriMo website.

2.  Join the linky list.
Once your post is live, join the linky list below. That way everyone else participating can visit and help promote your post.

3. Hop!
Visit a few of the other participant’s blogs. It’s a great way to meet some of the other writers before the event.

For those of you who are unfamiliar with JuNoWriMo, it’s a month long writing adventure in the style of NaNoWriMo, complete with word sprints and plenty of other writers to cheer you on. The goal is to write 50,000 in one month (1,667 words a day). You can write whatever you want. Fiction, non-fiction, the final 50k to something you started five years ago. Anything. We’d love to have you write with us!

You can learn more and sign up here.

Our Facebook group is here.

One more thing! There is a giveaway, and these prizes are perfect to get you ready to write.

First prize – writer care package including a pen, post-it notes, and this official JuNoWriMo notebook.

Notebook

Second prizeJuNoWriMo swag pack including a JuNoWriMo button, JuNoWriMo sticker, and a hand-painted JuNoWriMo bookmark.

junowrimo rocket button

Robot sticker

JuNo bookmarks

What are you waiting for? Enter the giveaway now:

a Rafflecopter giveaway

‘);
// ]]>

Pep Talk Week 4: Don’t Give Up

This week’s pep talk is written by novelist and interactive fiction writer, Alana Joli Abbott.

~

There are few things that make me more stressed than being late. Whether this is being behind on a writing deadline or just running late to drop off my daughter at school, the result is the same. I feel frustrated that I can’t move things along faster, or that I made the choice to check the weather (or worse, Facebook) online instead of getting stuff done. And I’ve discovered that sometimes I have the absolutely worst coping mechanism for dealing with being late.

Ready? Continue reading “Pep Talk Week 4: Don’t Give Up”

Pep Talk Week 3: Bribe and Bludgeon Yourself into Winning

This week’s pep talk is by JuNoWriMo co-founder Becca Campbell.

~

Chocolate fondueHowdy, hard-working overachievers and unmotivated procrastinators! Whichever of the two you are, you are awesome—did you know that? You’re writing a book, and that’s no small thing! Whether you’re ahead or behind on word count, the point is, you are out there getting it done—something that many will never even attempt, let alone try to do in thirty days. Give yourself a pat on the back: you deserve it.

Plan a Sweet Reward

Right now I want you to stop worrying about schedules and whether or not you’ll be able to hit 50K by the end of the month. Put that out of your mind and instead dwell on something more pleasant for a moment: how will you reward yourself when you do win?

Not if, but when. Continue reading “Pep Talk Week 3: Bribe and Bludgeon Yourself into Winning”

Pep Talk Week 4: Coming Down the Home Stretch (Angi Black)

Here we are coming into the home stretch of Junowrimo. How do you feel about that? I feel great! This month far exceeded my expectations in wordcount and creativity.

At first I thought it was just because I was on a roll. The numbers were climbing and the stories were forming. (I did Juno and CampNano this month!) But as I ended the first week far ahead of goal, I looked at all the numbers. Several of us were riding high on big wordcounts, far about the daily goals.

I thought long and hard about why this was. We’re all busy. Most of us have ‘day jobs’ and kids. There are spouses to tend, houses to clean, food to cook and eat. But yet, here we are nearing the end and the counts are still climbing.

The answer is simple – support.

Almost anytime of day you can hop on Twitter and find a sprint going on. That’s simple motivation. If you happen to find the small window each day one of us isn’t on there, all you have to tweet is “Word war anyone? ” “1hr 1K?” or my favorite “Someone tell me to put away the internet and get my words in!”

These are all followed by the same thing – support and motivation.

Tons of “You can do it!” That’s easy” and “You’re awesome” will follow anyone of these statements at anytime.

We don’t want to be the only one who succeeds. As writers, when one of wins, we all do. There’s room for every single person who puts words on a page to have a success story. We have the greatest community of people!

So Junowrimo-ers… almost to your goal? Divide the words you lack to reach 50,000 and see what you need to write each day to get there. I bet you can find plenty of cheerleaders. There are sprints all week long to help you out too!

Nowhere close to your goal? So what! Make a new one! Can only do 40,000…30,000? Fine! Make it happen.

Want to put up another 10,000 words this week? You can do it!

Want to make your goal higher or really push yourself this week? Tell other people who will ask you how you’re doing? Be accountable to someone who is in your corner.

No matter how many words you have by midnight Saturday night – you’ve already won! Remember, we’re all rooting for every single one of us to make it to 50,000 words. The beauty is that we can all have blue ribbons at the end.

But no matter how many you have, it’s more than you started with and that is a win in my book.

Keep on writing! Angi

Find me at @AngiNicole722 and http://angiblacktallthoughts.blogspot.com/