Hey peeps and welcome to Beautiful Books, hosted by the lovely Cait @ Paper Fury and Sky @ Further Up & Further In. What is Beautiful Books? It’s very similar to the monthly link up of Beautiful People, but this month it focuses on NaNoWriMo writing projects rather than specific characters in the novels. You obviously don’t have to be participating in NaNo in order to join; it can be any writing project. Click here or the picture to be taken back to the most recent Beautiful Books linkup page!
It’s time for an update! We’re already halfway through the month (a little over, actually) and many of us participating in NaNoWriMo have been writing furiously (or like me and didn’t write for a solid week, ughhhhh). I’m writing this on Sunday the 13th, so I should be farther along than what I was at today (she says hopefully), but let’s talk about some of the updates with me and my novel!
1. Overall, how is your mental state, and how is your novel going?
Well, my mental state is improving now that I’m actually writing again. I didn’t write a single word last week; I had zero motivation to do anything. Instead I had watched anime, read some books, and did anything but write. Even when I told myself to write, I didn’t. I don’t really know why. I just couldn’t bring myself to do it? But now that I’m doing it again, I feel like I can actually do this. If I keep reaching little milestones, it’s like I’ve accomplished something, and I love that feeling.
As far as my novel, it’s proceeding as planned! I used to hate outlining, but now that I’ve done it and I’m actually following along with it? It feels amazing! I may deviate from what I have written in the outline, but I’m still coming back to the key points that I have listed, and I think that’s the most important part. And I know I have a butt ton I need to fix, but that’ll come later.
2. What’s your first sentence (or first paragraph)?
Here’s my first paragraph:
The museum is quiet, all but for the ticking of the grandfather clock in the main lobby and the occasional shuffle of feet as patrolmen walk up and down corridors and through exhibits. It’s just another night in the Rising City, I reassure myself, and take a deep breath. Getting in was the easy part; getting the ruby and getting out are going to be just a smidge more difficult.
3. Who’s your current favorite character in your novel?
Currently my favorite character is probably Nara. I love both Nara and Mikail equally, but I love her sass and how she keeps trying to find humor in things.
4. What do you love about your novel so far?
I love that it’s actually going in the direction I wanted it to go. I also love that I get to see it being fleshed out and how I’m working out in my head and on paper (computer) what’s going to happen next. Even though I know I’m going to have things that I’m going to need to fix down the road, right now I’m seeing it turning into something other than just an idea in my head – and that feels amazing.
5. Have you made any hilarious typos or other mistakes?
Nope, I don’t think so. Nothing hilarious, anyway. Just typos, things I need to fix or change around.
6. What is your favorite to write: beginning, middle, or end – and why?
I find that I can start my story with BANG. Like, I can shoot out of that starting gate at full speed, no turning back. But as I get closer to the middle I slow way the hell down and there’s more for me to figure out. The end is such a blur that I can’t even see it at all. It’s weird to think about, really. I find that that’s the same with every novel I wrote. I can picture the beginning perfectly, but the end? Forget it. The middle is murky at best, and I can see just certain scenes clearly in my head, but otherwise there’s nothing really there. I just have to see where my characters take me and see how the world develops as a result.
7. What are your writing habits? Is there a specific snack you eat? Do you listen to music? What time of day do you write best? Feel free to show us a picture of your writing space!
I’m not going to show a picture of my writing space because my desk is HELLA messy, but some of my writing habits include: wearing my NaNo merch (seriously, they’re magical), listening to instrumental music, and I think my best writing time is morning/afternoon. So when I have work during the days it’s very hard for me to pick up writing at night because everyone’s home and bugging me or making noise and I’m distracted and then my husband wants to watch anime that I love…
It’s honestly annoying.
8. How private are you about your novel while you’re writing? Do you need a cheer squad or do you work alone (like, ahem, Batman)?
My husband says I don’t like to share what I’ve written yet, but he doesn’t even ask, so why would I share? I mean, I would if he asked.
I like the cheer squad! I like it when I post updates to Twitter and others are cheering me on and I cheer them on. It’s good morale!
9. What keeps you writing even when it’s hard?
Well, as you could tell from my week 2 progress, uhhh… I don’t? I mean, I know it gets hard and everything, and I just sort of give up. And sometimes those “giving up” moments last months and months. But now? Now I think about a few things:
- This is something I want to do as a career. I can’t just NOT do it.
- I have fun when I’m writing, so why do I stop? Life gets in the way, and I obviously need to enjoy more things outside of it, but when I’m in it, why do I stop?
- What would future me tell past me? Would I be happy with where I was, or disappointed in myself?
These are all hard questions and statements and hard to answer, but I DO want to be an author. I DO have lots of fun writing and seeing what I can come up with in my own way. And I would tell my past self to not give up, because what’s the point in that? It takes hard work to get anywhere, you’re not going to have things handed to you all the time, so why wait?
10. What are your top three pieces of writing advice?
Hmm, let’s see here. Here are some things I would not just tell others, but myself as well:
- Have fun writing. I know it’s kind of one of those things that every writer ever drills into others all the time, but it’s true: if you’re not having fun writing, then why are you even doing it? Maybe it’s not the right time to write that particular story, or maybe you’re writing in the wrong perspective, with the wrong character, or even in the wrong world. Think about your writing time: are you having fun?
- Don’t compare your progress to others’ success. Some people write hella fast and they’re able to get a 100k novel written in a month, while you’re still struggling with the first 20k words. That’s okay! You don’t have to worry about that. They just write at a different pace than you. You’re successful in that you made it as far as you have, so don’t give up.
- Write the story YOU want to read. This is another one that’s always spread around, and it’s true: write the story you want to read about. No one else can tell it like you can, and maybe someone also wants the same story idea. So write!
So there you have it, peeps. Writing it going as well as it can and I’m not going to stop just because I convinced myself there was no point in catching up. CLEARLY I was wrong. I want to do this, and I’m going to do this, and I need to stop wallowing and bring myself back up.
I can do this, you can do this, so keep your chin up!
Let’s Chat! ≧◡≦
How is your writing progress coming along? Have you reached the middle of your story yet? Are you following an outline? Tell me all of your progress updates!