Camp NaNoWriMo – Day 1

I think I’ve made a reasonable start for Camp NaNoWriMo. It was my first job of the day and I spent longer than my designated hour on it. I also already had a few words in the bank, about 2,000. But with a daily target of 1,860, I think it’s doable.

I’d already typed out the first scene and started another when I tested my compile in Scrivener the day before. Yesterday, I finished the partial scene and typed up a new one and tweaked the binder a little more.

I added a timeline and an A to Z list of characters. Every time I mention something date-specific, it gets added to the timeline, and every time I mention a character for the first time, they go onto the A to Z list.

One of my biggest bugbears in the editing and proofreading that I do is that amateur and inexperienced writers seem to open a babies’ names directory at a certain page, and then lift something like a dozen names all beginning with the letter A. So we’ll have Andrew and Andrea, Anne and Annette, Alex and Alex (yes really!), and so on.

I keep an A to Z list for characters’ names right from the moment I start to plan a novel or a short story. That way I’ll soon see if too many names are too similar – or even if any names are too similar – before I get too far into it.

Catch the Rainbow might be a prequel to Night Crawler, but it’s also book 6 of a planned six-book series. So I’m going to use the Scrivener file as a series bible as well as my novel bible. This means everything to do with this Catch the Rainbow reboot will all eventually go into its own folder, titled (again, I have such imagination!) Catch the Rainbow, but the characters A to Z list can be duplicated.

In case you’re interested, the working titles for three of the other five books in this series are (going backwards): Hattie’s HotshotsThe Wrong Side of the Blue, and Cider & Sympathy. Books 3 and 5 have yet to be named. Hattie, as in the hotshots book, features in this book, and so do some of the other characters, such as the rest of the family and some of the footballers.

So it’s important to me to get this binder working in a workable way. Any legwork I do now will hopefully save time further down the line.

Other sections in this current binder include character pen-sketches and photographs leeched off the internet of how I see those characters, research website URLs (I can’t save the full website in Scrivener for Windows and I think we’re still awaiting the Windows upgrade), and photographs of settings.

Then, when I’m writing from the point of view of a specific character, I can just keep their picture open in the top right-hand corner of my screen, and if I’m describing a location, I can have that in front of me too.

Once I’d hit the word-count I wanted to, I came to a suitable place to finish and then started to mess with the binder again. I gave myself a kick up the bum and then I went and recorded the number of words so far on the NaNo site.

I updated my two spreadsheets (the book planner and the word-count daily spreadsheet), and then got on with some other work.

It was a busy day, and I decided to stop work a little earlier than of late, once I’d scheduled this blog post to post.

Remember, the word-meter is the end of day 1 for me, and not the start of day 2. Isn’t it nice to see him typing away?

word meter from Writertopia