Sunday, November 30, 2014

NaNoWriMo - Reverse Mode

I finished NaNo in three weeks and this is how I did it:

In reverse.

I first heard about this method when a friend of mine shared the link over Facebook. The title was intriguing enough that I clicked Reverse NaNoWrimo and it was just one of those light bulb in the head moments.

The ‘rules’ of NaNo say that you write 1,667 words everyday for a month and at the end, lo and behold, you’ve got yourself a 50k novel. That 1.6k daily goal is very easy during the first week or two, when you’re all excited, words are pouring out, and you’re not only meeting the goal, you’re destroying it. But somewhere along the third week your words start to dry out as if the idea faucet has suddenly been turned off, and it becomes an uphill battle to even get 1k. NaNo troopers know this, and for years I've been reading how 'you just have to push through and keep writing.' It's too bad that  pushing doesn't always work.

This is where Reverse Mode comes in. It takes into account this shift in ‘writing mood’ by making use of those first two weeks when we’re all pumped up and ready to type/write until our fingers fall off to get most of the words out. By doing this, it leaves the remaining two weeks with word goals lower than 1.6k, effectively helping out the dry spell that comes on when we reach that stage in NaNo.

It totally worked for me.

Week 1
The word goals were between 3.3k-2.6k. The story was still shinny and fresh in mind, so I reached the goals easily, sometimes even going over by a couple of hundred words.

Week 2
The word goals were from 2.5k-1.8k. Again, I had no trouble achieving this since the muse was still going strong. I sometimes started more than one scene in one day, leaving half of one to work on the next day.

Week 3
The word goals were between 1.7k-1k. Even with fewer words, it's when I started to struggle. Mostly because I decided to play pantser this time around and had no outline whatsoever of my story. I’m a manic plotter by nature, so I fumbled in the end to come up with scenes. But I simply started writing random scenes that came to mind, even if I didn't know where they fit yet. Even when I skipped two days of writing, I recovered quickly and kept on writing.

Week 4
Goals were less than 1k, but I didn’t need them.

I finished NaNo in three weeks!

The NaNo word counter said 50,550 for final count.

After this year, I'm recommending the Reverse Method to any NaNo trooper/writer I come across. I'll definitely be using this to set my own deadline for future projects.

Sunday, November 23, 2014

Finished the NaNo Madness

This is what I've been up to. I might return and to talk a bit more about my approach to NaNo this year, because it worked really really well!