Reprinted with permission from Ja’nese Dixon
Fear of Writing held a day-long challenge. Writers were asked to cop a squat and write 10k words.
I had a plan. I would gather my research for Black Diamond and use the time to work on my outline for NaNoWriMo.
I had part of that right—I worked on my outline—but I only managed to write a little over 4,000 words.
I am nearly done with my outline for Black Diamond. I have the book synopsis or book summary. I also have the preliminary information for working on my character profiles this weekend. Lastly, my thoughts are much clearer on the direction of this book.
Are you nuts?! Yes, it was nerve racking sitting in front of a blank screen watching the flashing cursor. My head was full of ideas. But my fingers just wouldn’t comply.
1. I didn’t make the 10,000 word goal. However, I can’t deny that writing 4,000 words in one day is wonderful.
2. It helped to clear my thoughts. I had things bouncing everywhere in my head. I had to outlines running at once. (Yes, it was that bad!) I even stopped for a while and wrote by hand—I didn’t count these words. Every minute of this time was productive because it would have happened eventually.
3. 1,667 words per day is what’s required to win NaNoWriMo. That’s if I write daily. After completing the 10k Challenge I have a realistic idea about what’s expected of me to complete my book in November. I know that I can’t write during the day when my house is hectic. I know that I need healthy snacks around my computer. But most of all, I know that it’s doable.
What I’ll Do Next Time
They are planning another challenge day for October 24th. Here’s the plan:
1. Purchase a timer. I should write for 40 minutes and then break for 20 minutes. I found I tried to sit for long periods of time. The longer periods of time didn’t produce more words. I noticed that I wrote more after taking a break.
2. Healthy snacks. I usually am more prepared but I thought “what the heck…I have all day.” Way wrong answer!!! (As, my drill sergeant once said.) I think having my hard candies and green tea on hand would have made my environment more relaxing.
3. Don’t get so technical. I wanted everything to be just right. That put too much pressure on the day. Thus, I plan to just write. I can always clean it up later.
I’m off. I have a few more books I want to complete before November 1. I will leave you with this. . . .
“Deliver me from writers who say the way they live doesn’t matter. I’m not sure a bad person can write a good book. If art doesn’t make us better, then what on earth is it for.” – Alice Walker
JA’NESE DIXON is a wife, mother, entrepreneur, and a closet writer in Texas. Her days are filled with marketing strategy and search engine marketing consulting. In the middle of the night you will find her on her laptop writing her first novel, Black Diamond. To learn more about Ja’Nese, visit her online at www.janesedixon.com.