Camp NaNoWriMo April 2020 Week 2 Recap

Week two of Camp NaNoWriMo, when the initial burst of week one is over and it’s time to settle down for the rest of the month to get through to the end. Compared to the roller-coaster ups and downs that I had in week one, week two was relatively stable, averaging around 1 050 words a day, with a decent bump on day 13.

It was a week marked by a lot of dialogue and the creation of several secondary and tertiary characters, with less overall plot development than in week one but a decent amount of background work. I also dabbled in using Scapple to try and get my ideas sorted out but I think that it’ll have to wait until I have more time to dedicate on working out where the story goes after the end of April.

Day 8

1 114 words. A good increase on the end of day 7 as I got into a scene that I’d been waiting to write since the start. It’s pretty much the central point of my introduction from which the rest of the intrigue branches out. It involved figuring out who the members of the royal council were and their relative positions and needs, as well as for a few other high society members. I also had fun drawing out the table plan to show where everyone’s relative position of power was, which was fun and harder work than I thought. A pretty positive day all-round, though I am seriously wondering if I should change to a first-person narrative rather than third-person limited as it currently is.

Day 9

1 016 words. The second day of working on the council meeting scene. Lots of plotting but not the kind I normally do. I had fun fleshing out the characters more and trying to get a feel for each of their speech patterns.

Day 10

1 043 words. Day three of council meeting scene. I didn’t think it would go on this long when I started it to be honest. This is now getting to be an enormous block of dialogue and I’m slightly concerned that it will be abominable to read unless you happen to be a major fan of bureaucracy and management. Which I am, but so far this story is starting to look like it’s for people who wanted Game of Thrones with all the interesting bits removed, or who were really hyped to learn more about those trade negotiations in the Phantom Menace.

Day 11

1 050 words. Forth and final day of work and the council meeting is finally concluded. Happy with the outcome but not sure that it’s really going to pull its weight in the story. I need to work on the voices of each of the main members to get them down before a do a second pass in the revision. Still unsure about first or third person.

Day 12

1 057 words. Time to write the fall out from the council meeting. Time for some one-on-one sessions with different characters as the plot develops. I’m trying to strike a balance between making everyone scheme for their own goals and yet not sufficiently so as to make them ridiculously suspicious. Lots of intrigue to thicken the plot soup.

Day 13

1 294 words. A good day for writing. I got my writing done early on Monday, finishing it before noon for once. My word count for the day was the second highest I’ve done, only just beaten by day 1 when all the ideas were still fizzing strongly in my mind after having spent a week working on the story without being able to put a word down on the page. It was also a day that marked what I felt was a shift in my writing style, becoming more fluid, closer to how I want to portray my voice. I don’t know how it will pan out in the end, if the change will stick or not but I hope it does.

Day 14

1 064 words. Day 14 was mostly spent on working on secondary characters who will be accompanying my hero for the rest of the adventure. It’s finally here that they are introduced, as the council members from before are more there for the big picture narrative arc and represent the different political powers in play in the world. I think one of them should be introduced earlier in the story but I’m not yet sure how. I’ve moved away from wanting to shift to first-person and possibly develop the third person limited more by shifting my point of view character around more.

Recap

Total words at the end of the week: 15 443 out of 14 000 goal.

Average words per day: 1 103.

Projected date for 30 000 words: April 27.

A more stable week in general which showed slow but steady progress. I didn’t have any major breakthroughs, but I think I’m slowly finding my voice and working on my style which is probably more important in the end and I’m happy about. I think the slower pace means that I take more time to work on how I’m saying things rather than just why.

So far, the first two weeks of Camp NaNoWriMo has been an education. It’s gotten harder now that the initial rush of ideas has worn off, but I’m ready to push on to the end and see what else I’ll learn about writing and myself.

Stay safe and stay sane,

Sam.

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