Participating in the yearly writing marathon known as NaNoWriMo has become a tradition for me and many of my writer buddies. It's a very helpful tradition that will result in the rough draft of a book for me - in this case, Book 2 of my Dragonsfyre series.
Here's what I've been doing during Week 1 of NaNoWriMo 2012:
1 - Feeling the infatuation glow of rushing into the arms of my characters.
2 - Fighting the urge to write well.
3 - Loading a plot template into my manuscript document, one that I'd crafted a few months ago in preparation for NaNoWriMo. I'm not a plotter by nature, but the requirements of writing a political intrigue series pushed me out of my seat-of-the-pantser comfort zone.
4 - Writing scenes out of sequence in order to shake me out of my urge to write neatly and well.
5 - Allowing myself to go deep. Writing more than I normally would allow, in order for a scene to take me somewhere unexpected.
6 - Watching footage of actors that I've 'cast' as my characters, in order to get the feel of their body language and sounds of their voices 'downloaded' into my psyche.
7 - Going without sleep. Having taken part in the 3:15 Experiment, a month-long poetry-writing challenge which requires participants to wake up at 3:15 am for the month of August and write poetry, I realize that for me, the hazy sleeplessness of NaNoWriMo acts as a way for my subconscious to take over and allow deeper creativity full rein.
8 - Noting my word count publicly on Facebook and on my NaNoWriMo page, as well as on my local writing chapter's NaNo loop. Keeps the excitement of group participation front and center, rather than writing in the normal solitary writing cave of everyday practise.
9 - Cheering on my fellow writer buddies as they pile on the word counts.
10 - Watching footage of period dramas, fantasy films or fight sequences as needed, when I need to immerse myself in an emotion or a scene mood.
11 - Go for a walk so I can think.
12 - Listen to music while I ride the bus, so I can run scenes through my head.
13 - Be willing to go wherever my muse takes me, regardless of my own preconceived expectations.
Are you taking part in this writing marathon? If you've never done one before, would you consider doing it next year? You might end up with a book at the other end.