Tag Archives: writers block

Nanowrimo Day 10: Captain’s Slog

A fellow NaNo author’s experience and getting out of a writing slump, if you fall into one this year.

He’s definitely not alone in the NaNo slump – I got myself ahead of word count in the first couple of weeks and had – dare I say it – three days off last week!

This author seems to write in a similar way to me – I like to write all the big, exciting, important bits (which flow nice and naturally) and then go back through to join them together. My main struggle this year has been when I got bogged down in the bridging stuff to get my main character from one part to another, when I just wanted to write the exciting action stuff. I also find, that if I’m getting stuck, I start to mini-edit which then affects the flow as well…

In the end, after my break early last week I’ve skipped writing in order, in favour of doing the big stuff again. I had quite a few one-shots drafted in my note books as well, which I’ve typed up and used as prompts to get me going into a scene – always helpful to have old notes, for when your writing mojo abandons you 🙂

Anyway – check out the post to see how NaNo is for someone else

Mel x

NaNo – No no…

Head Desk Day 13 of NaNoWriMo and I’m really not doing very well… Four weeks ago, when I was finishing RMT I was bubbling over with enthusiasm and ideas for another book: scenes kept springing into my head, one-shots were pretty much writing themselves, cover design was done in a single sitting….

Then 1st November rolls around and pfft – nothing, nada, zilch. I tried the next day and the next – I tried the prologue, and skipped forward to chapter 1, because I wasn’t really feeling good about the writing. I tried jumping ahead to some of the ‘action scenes’ thinking they might spur me on (yeah – I’m not even going to bother letting you see those). By 4th November, I had a grand total of 462 words:


“How can there be this much friggin’ rain?”

Corinne Smith was muttering to herself as ran for the shelter of the tram station platform. Her feet squelched inside soggy boots as she stomped down the stairs, annoyed that no one had thought to enclose them to protect passengers from the elements. Twenty seconds later, she stepped into a dark, damp recess on the platform and out of the storm.

She shook her head, which made ringlets of wet hair stick to her face and the inside of her hooded coat. I hate being damp.

(Note: Insert major action scene to draw in reader and bump off this lovely lady in a pretty gruesome fashion).

The creature pulled himself up into a tree, his long finger nails sinking into the wet bark. It was an easy climb for him up to a low branch, which gave a good view of the platform and his recent handiwork. He didn’t miss being human, not one bit, but that didn’t stop him being fascinated by them.

hapter 1

“Beth! Psst – Beth!”

I turned in the direction of the voice. As did half of the people on the tables surrounding me – they obviously didn’t appreciate being interrupted either. My fellow students looked at the whispering girl and then glared around the library workspace until they identified the other guilty party. Perfect, it was me.

Please don’t come over, please don’t come over…

“Hey!” Kerry greeted me, at full, normal ‘non-library’ volume, as she plopped into the chair opposite.

“Hey,” I whispered back, closing my books and piling them together as quickly and quietly as possible.

“Are you finished?” Kerry continued, still on full volume.

“I am now!” I hissed back, getting out of my seat and grabbing the book tower I’d just made. There was no point trying to continue working and I was eager to get away from the death-stares we were receiving from the people studying around us.

With my books in my arms, I hurried through the library stacks, passing dozens of bookcases with shelves crammed full of every type of book and document you could imagine. Kerry trotted along behind, close at my heels until we passed through the glass doors into the main library entrance hall.

As soon as we moved into the hall, we broke out of the bubble of silence that existed inside the main library and re-entered the normal world,

“Who the hell says psst, anyway? You sounded like a character from a bad spy film or something.”

“Whatever – I stand by my method of extraction.” Kerry shrugged. “I had to get you out of there: you were turning into one of those brainiac zombies who devours books and craves silence.”

I nodded, in mock-agreement. “Yeah – those guys are crazy. You’d think they were there to learn or something, who’d want to do that when you’re a student?”


So, for the last nine days I’ve been stuck – I really like this story (the one in my head, not the one I’ve managed to get down on paper), but my mojo has definitely gone. I’ve 17 days left in November – and I actually think I could still complete the challenge – but I don’t think it will be with this book: there’s too much planning and prep to put into it, to write something I’m not sure I’m ready to write.

Maybe if I want a break from Ambrosia but can’t get into gear on this piece, I should try something else… ?

Your thoughts (and any additional word count you can offer!) would be gratefully received!


Should be…doing something…

Ever have those days where you’ve got lots of things to do, spend the whole day busy and then look back and wonder what happened to the time at the end of it when you don’t feel you’ve achieved very much? Yes?

Great…because I’ve been having one of those days for about four months now 🙂

I know I’m actually getting on with things (although my blogging frequency on here is pretty low and my ability to do any decent writing seems to be completely absent), but I’m wondering whether I’m spending my time focusing on the wrong things. It’s hard to know what’s the best thing to do with your time some days: should you be promoting your book, working on the next one, pushing your social networking, or perhaps (even) sleeping?

It feels like I’ve spent a lot of time doing social stuff recently and not much actual writing… What do you think – go quiet on the promotional stuff to get on with writing? Does the social stuff make much of a difference overall to the success of your book? It’s tough to decide because you see lots of interesting stuff too through facebook, twitter, etc. Perhaps I’m just easily distracted, like a giddy puppy: “ooh ball!”

Anyone out there with some sage advice or wonderous insight?