NaNoWriMo Progress Update

I figured that now that we are into the third day of NaNoWriMo it’s time for a progress update. I couldn’t think of anything to write about the night before NaNo started so I decided to put my music player on shuffle and write a novel based on the first song title that came up. As a result my novel is called How to be Dead and I’ve decided to pen a slightly morbid but hopefully light novel about a guy who has just died but hasn’t passed over to the other side and doesn’t really know what’s supposed to happen next. I guess the title could’ve been more painful. As I only decided on this title a few hours before NaNo began it’s a bit all over the place but that’s a known side effect of doing NaNo without planning and it’s also fun to write.

Below is an excerpt from the first chapter just in case you are curious. It’s pretty crappy because NaNo = speed over quality but I’m fairly sure I’ve written worse, especially on this blog!

I can’t find anything at the library, which is a little frustrating. I mean I wasn’t expecting to find ‘So, You’re a Ghost, What Now?’ or Being Pretty Dead for Dummies’ but a little bit of guidance would have been nice. The books in the supernatural section clearly hadn’t been written by anybody who had died at the time of writing which made them a little short on relevant information. I checked out the spiritual section too but given that I’d never planned on scamming anyone by doing fake readings there was nothing there to help me either.

I then realised that this is the 21st century and that while most traditional ghosts that you hear about seem to be Victorian and trapped in the past I was able to surf the internet. The internet would save me, there must be tons of websites about being a ghost because the internet has everything, whether you want it to or not. Usually you can’t get a computer in the library for love nor money and when you can the keyboard is usually covered in what appears to be decades of dirt but as a ghost that wasn’t a problem for me. Don’t really have to worry about germs anymore, do I? I decided to start my search with “what to do when” and I was surprised to find the following results:

“What to do when your bored” (I would suggest working on your grammar)
“What to do when you see a bear” (I’m genuinely interested but not my priority)
“What to do at the weekend” (can’t really go on a night out when you are dead
And “what to do when someone dies” which is more relevant in terms of subject matter than the others but what happens when you are the person who has died?

I decided that I would need to improve on my search and went with “what happens when you die”. The top result on Google was “There’s only one group of people who really know what happens when you die: the dead. And since the dead won’t be revealing their secrets anytime soon, it’s up to scientists to explain what happens when a person dies.” This is problematic because I’m dead and I have no fucking idea what is supposed to happen, like what’s the protocol here? I am well and truly fucked.

How’s NaNo going for you so far?

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12 thoughts on “NaNoWriMo Progress Update

  1. Like it! This definitely has potential and you’ve got a great style for it. The major problem is likely to be nailing your ending. Lots of fun and japes between then and now but knowing how it should finish will help you get there (of course it may morph into something different over time, but that’s fine too).

    1. Thank you! Yeah the ending is going to be problematic although I’m starting to think of some decent possible endings. I like the idea so I think I can revisit it after NaNo and do a lot of improving to make it readable. 🙂

  2. I like it! And I like the way you decided to start based on a song. Mine is a bit boring – it’s basically about our expat lives. But my thought process was it’s my first book, I’ve never written anything bigger than a blog post (beyond my school years at least) and that for me it’s about learning how to organize the info, etc. Next year I’ll put my creative hat on. But I’m at 11k words already so that’s a positive!

    1. 11k is hugely impressive, you are clearly really into it! I was tempted to write about my expat life too and probably would have had I not had my last minute idea. I used last years NaNo as a learning process and it helped with my novel writing a lot, so I hope it does the same for you. 🙂

  3. Not a bad start, Tom. It made me chuckle in a few places! I have always felt the first chapter (or two) is the hardest part to write so you’ve got over a major hurdle.

    As for my progress, I wrote about 2,000 words of my WIP Salmonweird on Monday night and a coherent plan about how to get from where I am to the end. It all feels tied up now except for the actual writing it. No more plotting or planning, just identifying the loose ends and tying them up.

    1. Thanks Matt! Yeah the first chapter is brutal, once I had got the first 2000 words done it seemed to almost write itself though. Which is probably a sign that I’m not thinking about it as much as I should but ah well. Glad to hear you are making good progress on Salmonweird!

  4. Nice idea! I’m just under 3,000 words. I meant to do more, but with exams coming up (I’m a teacher), I’ve had tons of work and a huge pile of grading and have had trouble keeping up with my word count. I hope I can get a bit more done this weekend!

  5. Pingback: NaNoWriMo Progress Update – Old England to New England

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