I’m checking in this morning before I begin writing my NaNo pages. After five days of writing, I have over 8,600 words on my first draft of the novel I will have 50,000 words completed on by the end of this month. I also have completed my beat sheet (outline) and a long worksheet (20 pages or so) about the novel, as well as character sheets on each of the major characters. Only the words that will appear in the draft are counted. BUT, and this is a big but, all that other work is what is allowing me to write those words that will appear in the novel. 

When I started on Day One, I wasn’t quite finished with the beat sheet, hadn’t settled the question of my antagonist. So I wrote the first two scenes I was clear about, then stopped and worked out all the rest before I went on. There simply isn’t time for flailing about during NaNoWriMo! 

In fact, I realize now that I need to take that same amount of time to complete my beat sheet for The Illustrated Client before I go back to it. What I’ve been working with isn’t nearly fleshed out enough. Some writers are pantsers, some are plotters. I do not do well writing by the seat of my pants. Clearly, I need to have a well built scaffolding on which to hang my story. Then I can write efficiently and effectively.

I’ve been able to finish up each day fairly early, depending on what time I start. Yesterday, I was able to make it to an early showing of Seven Psychopaths with a good friend. We laughed long and loud, and I felt well rewarded for my first five days of NaNo!

Are you a WriMo this month? If you are, I hope it’s going well for you. Do you have time to share some thoughts? Tips? And if you aren’t joining in the frenzy of writing 50,000 words this month, are you reading? writing? planning for Thanksgiving? Watching a good movie? Do tell!