Wednesday, October 31, 2007
Dear NaNoWriMo participant
Well, we're on the cusp of another beautiful noveling November. The turn-out so far has been phenomenal. Between our main program and Young Writers Program, we'll have over 90,000 authors on board by the end of the week, making this officially the largest NaNoWriMo since the event was first adapted from an Andorran mule-wrestling ceremony back in 1999.
For those of you who are new to NaNo, I want to quickly run through the noveling schedule for the month ahead.
Step 1: Keep reading this email; learn the secret of NaNoWriMo.
Step 2: Wait for 12:01 AM local time on November 1.
Step 3: Write a novel.
Okay, back to Step 1. The secret of NaNoWriMo. Which is this: There is a door in your brain. The door has been there your whole life. You may not have noticed it before because it blends in with everything else in your brain. Weird art. Mismatched furniture. Squishy gray bits clinging to everything.
So what does this door have to do with your novel?
Your job this month is not so much writing a book (which is intimidating) as it is finding that door (which is easy).
It's easy because you'll have guides in November who will take you right to it.
These guides are also known as your characters. They're kind of an abstract notion now, but you'll meet them in all their glory in Week One of NaNoWriMo. They'll be a strange lot. Insecure warlocks. Stamp-collecting squirrels. Teenage detectives.
Whoever shows up, go with them. And go quickly. You may have a general sense of where you're going together; you may not. It doesn’t matter. Just write your allotment of 1667 words (or more) on November 1. Don't edit any of it. Editing is for December. Then come back and write another 1667 words the next day. And the next. And the next.
By Week Two, you'll be at the door. A few words later, you'll be through it. You'll know you're there because the writing will feel different. Less like work, and more like watching a gloriously imperfect movie with cringe-worthy dialogue, heaps of confusing tangents, and moments of brilliance so delightful that you'll want to scream.
Once you've stepped through that door into the vast reaches of your imagination, you'll be able to return there as often as you like. It's an enchanted, intoxicating place, and there are other great things besides novels in there.
But we'll talk about that later.
For now, here's our game plan for the coming week.
1) Make sure you've affiliated with a region and then made it your Home Region. This is a two-step process. You do it by signing in and then going to the My Regions page of My NaNoWriMo. The far-left tab gives you a list of regions to choose from. Choose one by clicking "affiliate," then go to the far-right tab called Home Region and make sure your region is ticked.
2) Make sure you have your Edit Profile settings geared to allow emails from us (if you got this, you're good), and that your email program knows to accept messages from firstname.lastname@example.org. Pep talks from esteemed authors will begin landing in your inbox this week, and will continue to arrive every four days or so. To turn off emails from us, just head to Edit Profile and change your settings to "No mail."
3) On November 1: Begin writing. At this point, you'll be able to begin updating your word count on the Author Info tab of the Edit Profile page. You can do this on the honor system by just typing in the number, or you can paste the whole book in and let our robots count it for you. If you paste your book, please scramble it first, using instructions in our FAQ. You can also post an excerpt of your book in the same area of the Edit Profile page.
4) For the first week of the event, the site will be on fire. This year we moved to a completely new back-end system, and it has made me beat my head against the wall almost every single day. Pages disappear. Parts fall off. Error screens everywhere. It handles high traffic the way a country lane would handle a freeway. We have so many plans on rebuilding the site it for next year it's not even funny. But for now, we have to work with what we've got. Russ is making all the improvements he can to make it suck less.
If the site isn't functional, just postpone updating your word count until the dust settles. NaNoWriMo does not live on a website. It lives in your heart, in your powerful typing fingers, and in your dramatically escalating word count.
We'll keep working on the site. You keep working on your novel.
Together we will rock November.
Happy noveling, everyone! We're so glad to have you writing with us.
Monday, October 29, 2007
Sunday, October 28, 2007
Wednesday, October 24, 2007
The Birmingham and West Midlands Nanowrimo 2007 Kick-Off will be held at the Malt House Pub, 75 King Edwards Road, Birmingham, from 4pm onwards. It's at Brindley Place, on the canal, overlooking the NIA and Sea Life Centre.
malt house loc: Birmingham - Google Maps
The staff at the Malt House have kindly agreed to reserve a space for about 20 people. In the event that more people turn up, I'm sure we can spread out. As long as people buy at least one drink, the management will be happy. We'll have a big nanowrimo sign on our table to let you know who we are.
Rolnikov (Stephen) and I, the two ML's for Birmingham, will be there of course. We'll do all the formal stuff in the first hour or two: introductions, handing out freebies, initiation rituals etc. Stephen and I both have family commitments, so we probably won't be staying out drinking late into the evening, but obviously everyone else is free to stay as long as they like.
Stephen will be bringing his camera to record the occasion, and there may be other people with cameras too. If you don't want your picture taken, just let them know. I'm sure everyone will be considerate about this.
Looking forward to meeting some of you on Sunday,
Tuesday, October 16, 2007
Nor have I ever belonged to any political party.
After extensive journeys to the East, to Malaya and China, and several visits to the United States, I inspired a change in the Danish literature and press by introducing English and American vigour, which was to replace the then dominant trend of decadent Gallicism.
The essence of my literary work is to be found in my collection of poems, which may be regarded as a reaction against the fastidious style of the day bearing Baudelaire's poisonous hall-mark.
My poems represented a turn to simple style and sound subject matter (Digte, 1904-41, 1943 [Poems])."
Johannes V. Jensen (1873-1950) developed his theories of evolution in a cycle of six novels, Den lange rejse (1908-22) [The Long Journey], which was published in a two-volume edition in 1938.
From Nobel Lectures, Literature 1901-1967, Editor Horst Frenz, Elsevier Publishing Company, Amsterdam, 1969
This autobiography/biography was first published in the book series Les Prix Nobel. It was later edited and republished in Nobel Lectures. To cite this document, always state the source as shown above.Johannes V Jensen, 20. January 1873 - Google Search
Monday, October 15, 2007
What Is Theaker's Quarterly Fiction?
Theaker's Quarterly Fiction publishes fantasy, science fiction and horror; to date most of the contents might best be described as science fantasy. It was launched in 2004 with the goal of encouraging the eponymous Theaker to do a bit of writing every few months, because writing stories makes him happy. As time has gone by, and it's kept going, other writers have begun to make more ambitious contributions.
The format was initially modelled after that of the Medico-Legal Journal, the official publication of the Medico-Legal Society, and, like that esteemed publication, every issue is designed to be a good, solid read. You can sit down with a cup of tea and lose yourself for a couple of hours in thrills, adventure, laughter and wilful foolishness. Hence, stories tend to be longer than in most small press magazines, with serialised novels not being uncommon.
We got this email today from your imagination. It was misaddressed to us, so we're sending it along to you. We hope it finds you well.
This is your imagination. I know work, school, and general craziness have been keeping us apart lately. But there's something we need to do together this November.
It's called National Novel Writing Month. For it, we'll bash out a 50,000-word novel, from scratch, in 30 days. You and me. Writing a book. Together.
I need you to sign us up. Because I don't have any arms.
Friday, October 12, 2007
"Ordnance Survey 1:2,500 Epoch 1 The County Series maps at scale 1:2500 for Birmingham, Cardiff, Chester, Chichester, Colchester, Coventry, Durham, Edinburgh, Glasgow, Lichfield, Liverpool, Manchester, Newcastle, Oxford, Portsmouth, Salisbury, Southampton, Winchester, Worcester, York and much of central London.
Ordnance Survey 1:10,560 Epoch 1 The County Series of Ordnance Survey maps for Great Britain. Begun in 1840, this is the first comprehensive historic mapping of England, Scotland and Wales."
excellent site new to me -worth a bookmark
Day One: Write down a list of various questions you would like to ask someone else. Start out with ten.
Day Two: Answer these questions yourself, adding as much detail as you want.
Day Three: Add your basic vital statistics, such as birth day, marriage, children, parents, locations lived in, and other things that are important to you, such as ecclesiastical information, occupations, fraternal organizations, political affiliations, clubs, hobbies, etc.
Day Four: Look at a timeline such is found in the e-Sourcebook of American History. (It is a free download that came when you signed up for the newsletter. Look for the newsletter confirmation letter in case you didn’t download it at the time you first confirmed.)
Day Five: Use the timeline to help in the recollection of memorable historical events and your, your family’s and others’ reactions to them. Do the history books reflect your feelings on the events that have so far transpired in your life? Why or why not?
Day Six: Make sure that the questions and answers are typed.
Day Seven: Email to a close relative, or to whoever may be interested to make sure that the history has multiple copies available.
This is not meant to be an all-inclusive article concerning personal histories but something to get readers started.
By Amanda Forson, World Vital Records, Inc
OR YOU COULD DO THE SAME ABOUT AN IMAGINARY PERSON TO PLOT A NOVEL
Sunday, October 7, 2007
Saturday, October 6, 2007
"Russ is working around the clock on the site's turtle slowness and the "unable to connect to database" errors---both caused by the same issue of heaps of people accessing the site at once
. . . The slowness and connection problems are frustrating, but the number of sign-ups causing it is exciting. It's going to be an amazing, record-setting November, and I'm thankful we have the next couple weeks to get everything fine-tuned before the big event commences. Thanks so much for your patience!"
classic web site mistake having an opening date