NaNoWriMo, IWSG Day, and OFMD

Our Flag Means Death

I mean, hello!

You know that feeling when you fall down a new rabbit hole?

That's my mind at the moment, having watched Our Flag Means Death and read some of the fiction based on the characters...

That is a very mild way of putting it.

I've been weeping over this story: Piña coladas;

Devouring all the Claire Gregory stories;

And going crazy over some of the fan art.
Here's a lovely one, one of the first I saw:
Soft here, too by cache

Meanwhile, NaNoWriMo!

The Flight of Time is complete!

This was my best NaNo ever. I reached 50k about two weeks in, I didn't have to struggle to meet the end of the month (adding in all my notes and speculations just to meet the word count), and I finished the entire novel before the end of the month (without leaving the ending or the epilogue for my future self to resolve)!

I think there were a few factors in my success:

1. I plotted properly
(I had a threefold structure prepared for each of fifty scenes, featuring a conflict in the present, a memory of a past incident, and a goal or plot point to be solved. Some were more loosely defined than others, but I basically had a story question for each scene, assuming I would write at least 50 scenes of 1,667 words each (some turned out longer, others shorter). This was equivalent to what I've done in the past, which is to leave each writing session with a question for the next session, but laid out without gaps, 50 days ahead, so there were hardly any stumbling blocks along the way).

2. I continued to type on my phone
(I would love to continue my Luddite ways, but having struggled for months now to type up all my handwritten bits and pieces from across four notebooks and however many emails and loose sheets of paper for Larksong (I've FINALLY finished!), which was my NaNo 2013 story (!), it's a huge relief to have the story in full, in my face from the start.
I can't type on a computer because I end up being distracted by formatting and research, and also because I don't always have one on me. But the phone is always there, for even short bursts of writing -- two minutes while waiting for a train? No problem!)

3. I did the story problem-solving the month before, working out character names, backstories, arcs, all that sort of thing, so there were fewer rabbit holes during the writing stage.

4. I did NOT let myself get tempted by all the books I bought at the library book sale! (This is a first; I've never entirely ignored reading in favour of writing before.)

5. I continued to collect story inspiration images and songs for my playlist!

The Flight of Time playlist

I hope any of you who took part had a great NaNo!

Purpose: To share and encourage. Writers can express doubts and concerns without fear of appearing foolish or weak. Those who have been through the fire can offer assistance and guidance. It’s a safe haven for insecure writers of all kinds!

Posting: The first Wednesday of every month is officially Insecure Writer’s Support Group day. Post your thoughts on your own blog. Talk about your doubts and the fears you have conquered. Discuss your struggles and triumphs. Offer a word of encouragement for others who are struggling. Visit others in the group and connect with your fellow writer - aim for a dozen new people each time - and return comments. This group is all about connecting!
Be sure to link to this page and display the badge in your post. And please be sure your avatar links back to your blog! Our Twitter handle is @TheIWSG and hashtag is #IWSG.   

December 7 question - It's holiday time! Are the holidays a time to catch up or fall behind on writer goals?

The awesome co-hosts for the December 7 posting of the IWSG are Joylene Nowell Butler, Chemist Ken, Natalie Aguirre, Nancy Gideon, and Cathrina Constantine!

You ready? Let’s rock the neurotic writing world!

I've had both kinds of holidays, the kind where I want to Do All The Things (Plan To Straighten Out Entire Life During Weeklong Vacation Yields Mixed Results) and the kind where I want to sit in a corner and reread old favourites.

This year I'm hoping for a mix of both -- catching up on reading and knitting, while still editing both Larksong and The Flight of Time, to send them both to betas (I hope!) in January.

Our writers' shelf at home is filling up and it's so exciting!

My next two posts will run for two weeks each, and I also hope to catch up on comments!

Here's a brief snip of the start of The Flight of Time...
I travelled to Australia, because that was where my half-brothers had gone, but I didn’t find myself there, neither in the desert nor the bush.
I travelled to India and Cambodia and Thailand. Many of my friends had sought themselves in those lands, but I was not there, among the temples or across the rivers.
Then I travelled to Turkey, and there, amidst the mayhem of the traffic and the silent spaces during the calls to prayer, they could pronounce my name. They changed ph to f and dropped the final e, and I became Stefani, like the surname of that girl from that long-ago band from California.
I never did make it to California but lingered in Istanbul. A few of my friends had arrived before me, and I made new friends, some with names I couldn’t pronounce, and others who tripped on the syllables of my friends from abroad. Taylor became Tylore, for one. He was a distant relative–he grew up in England and I was raised in Switzerland–and we stayed in touch now that we each had a Turkish partner and lived in the same neighbourhood.
A bakery nestled between our buildings, so visits from my place to his were scented by cheese rolls in the mornings and chocolate-y confections in the evenings.
I thought I'd travelled far and wide, but it turned out I still had one unexpected journey to make.

Have you seen Our Flag Means Death?
Are you planning a restful holiday or lots of activities or both?
What's on your plate?


Natalie Aguirre said…
Congrats on making so much progress in your writing during NaNo. Thanks for sharing your tips on how you finished NaNo. Happy Holidays!
Congratulations on beating NaNo!
Jeff said…
That an amazing number of words for two weeks. Congratulations.
Chrys Fey said…
Congratulations on your NaNo win!!!
Nick Wilford said…
Wow! Congrats on your NaNo success. It sounds like you were super organized and focused.
Olga Godim said…
Congrats on your NaNo win!
Deniz Bevan said…
Thanks so much, everyone! I can't leave the story alone -- I just tweeted my draft pitch :p
J Lenni Dorner said…
Congratulations on doing so well during NaNoWriMo. Looks like your writing is going very well. It is hard to balance between writing time and reading time, especially with new books in the home.

Dewey Decimal System Day is December 10. 📚
“The only limit to your success is your own imagination” – Shondra Rhimes
I wish you a merry holiday ⛄ season, and a New Year full of peace, joy, and creativity.
Hi Deniz - congratulations on all your 'wins' and successful conclusions ... thanks for the link to Our Flag Means Death - I see it's coming out in January to BBC2 ... so I'll be sure to watch.

Brilliant you've changed your pattern for NaNo ... here's to much success in 2023 ... enjoy the family time and have a blessed time - cheers Hilary