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Furiously Writing Your Novel? Celebrate NaNoWriMo with a Contest!

Posted on November 3, 2012 by Flames

This month, aspiring (and existing) novelists everywhere begin their 50,000 word jaunt for National Novel Writing Month, otherwise known as NaNoWriMo. 50,000 words, or the equivalent of half a standard novel, translates to writing roughly 1,666 words every day. For writers with a full-time or even a part-time job, furiously scribbling five to seven pages of text can seem rather daunting — especially if you’re not sure how (or what) to write. Not sure if the snowflake method is best? Or if your dialogue techniques are up to par?

Flames Rising and DriveThruFiction can help!

In honor of novelists everywhere, we’re offering a contest to receive $10 gift certificates to DriveThruFiction.com!

Some of the excellent writing advice and how-to guides for authors at DriveThruFiction include:

On Writing Horror
2012 Horror Writer’s Market
Bullies, Bastards, and Bitches: How To Write The Bad Guys Of Fiction
The Guide to Writing Fantasy and Science Fiction
The Art of War for Writers
20 Master Plots and How to Build Them
Writing the Paranormal Novel
Eighth Day Genesis: A Worldbuilding Codex
Worldbuilding For Writers, Gamers and Other Creators
Formatting and Selling eBooks

To enter is extremely simple: all you have to do is give your fellow Flames Rising readers your best snippet of writing advice in the comments below by the end of November. There’s three chances to win, so if you need help with your novel? Consider entering our contest!

Contest Details

    Flames Rising will be giving away three $10 gift certificates from DriveThruFiction.com. Please read the fine print below to find out how you can win!

    1. One Entry Per Person – We ask that you post one entry per person, so that your fellow readers can have an equal chance of winning a prize.
    2. Entries That Will/Won’t Be Considered – By keeping these simple guidelines in mind, you will increase your chance of winning.

    What Will Be Considered – Give us your favorite piece of writing advice in the comments below. Only entries posted by midnight CST on Thursday, November 15th 2012 will be eligible to win.
    What Won’t Be Considered – Entries that are full of harsh or foul language, overly graphic/sexual depictions or discriminatory/slang comments will not be posted.

    3. Valid Email Address Required – When you post your comment, there’s a field to enter your email address. In order for us to notify winners, we ask that you please include a valid email address. This email address will not be posted publicly. We will not use your email address for any other reason other than to notify you if you’ve won.
    4. Prizes and Notification – FlamesRising.com will provide a gift certificate in the form of store credit to three lucky winners. Based on the number of entries, we may award random prizes for other gifts from DriveThruFiction.com as well. Contest winners will be notified via email within one week after the contest ends.

    Good luck!

    DriveThruFiction.com

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    22 Responses to “Furiously Writing Your Novel? Celebrate NaNoWriMo with a Contest!”

    1. Don Corcoran says:

      I like Earnest Hemingway’s revelation. “There is nothing to writing. All you do is sit down at a typewriter and bleed.”

      Reply

    2. Andrew Peregrine says:

      My advice is the simplest:

      Write,
      and then write some more.

      :)

      Reply

    3. Jen Schoonover says:

      At a dead end? Sit back, relax and think about the punchline. No matter where you are in the writing, there’s always a “great moment” that can be found–a turn of phrase, the culmination of an action sequence, the completion of an event–that will be exciting, awesome, or gut-punching. So when you’re kinda stuck, come up with the scene’s best moment and then work backward to see how best to get there.

      Reply

    4. Asylos says:

      For the first draft just write. Then edit. You can’t skip Editing.

      Reply

    5. Eric Crabtree says:

      My advice. Make me care about the characters.

      Reply

    6. UTSquishy says:

      Don’t Write a Second Draft Ever. Write a New First Draft.

      Reply

    7. Bob Cram says:

      Don’t be Orpheus. Don’t look back. Keep moving forward. There will be plenty of time to turn around and show your words some love when the journey is finished. If you look back too soon, you risk losing them forever.

      Reply

    8. Sean Holland says:

      Read other authors, one you enjoy and you think write well, then write. Reading good writing help you structure your writing.

      Reply

    9. Crystal M says:

      Draw inspiration from everything around you. Some of my best stories are developed from my own dreams. Don’t be afraid to use what is already in your head.

      Reply

    10. An exercise in character development: Have an email or IM conversation with your character. You can set up a second account for them, or just do it in a notepad, but keep in mind that you don’t have to stick to the subject matter of your manuscript, and you don’t have to justify them talking to you. Ask them what they like to eat, music, movies, etc. If you do it long enough, they might even say some things that surprise you. And perhaps they’ll even tell *you* what to write.

      I find that the writing goes faster when the characters have their own plans in mind.

      Reply

    11. Ryann says:

      Write like you are drunk. You say whatever is on your mind, have no inhibitions, and let it all spew out of you in a glorious mess that you won’t clean up until it’s all over.

      Reply

    12. Anthony Adam says:

      The mistake most new writers make is reading each chapter or page that they write and then editing it time and time again. The first task of any novel is to get the bulk of the work done.

      You don’t even have to write the chapters in order. Stay with your inspiration, write those parts of the novel first. Write from your heart and soul, write the parts of the story that are the centrepiece.

      You can worry about transitions between scenes and chapters as part of your first and second edits (which come after you decide the novel is finished and only editing remains). You can worry about your style, grammar, spelling later. It is only after you have put down your 50,000 + words you even think about editing.

      So get it written first, in any order as inspiration takes you. When you finally think its done, then and only then put things in order and start to edit, accept that if your book catches a publishers eye, they will want you to edit it more, cut some chapters, add new ones and rewrite existing ones. Probably multiple times.

      And that’s why getting the story down and complete is more important than revisions and editing in the first stages of writing a novel. No one will read that first brain dump draft, except you. So don’t waste the nanowrimo month doing editing – just get those words down first.

      Reply

    13. FSTM says:

      Think of a general premise. Then begin to imagine different scenes in no particular order. They should be epic, touching, or characterizing. Then take all your jotted notes about the scenes and begin to write in and around them until you sew it all up into one narrative. This takes advantage of the beginning thoughts about your work, as the neater scenes will begin to emerge from behind the eyeballs into your third eye. Collecting, nurturing, and connecting these ideas allows you to start with germs of ideas and grow them into a network of coherent writing.

      Reply

    14. Glen Taylor says:

      Never make the mistake of thinking that you can proofread for yourself. You know what you meant to write, and you’ll read that instead of what you actually wrote. Always get someone else to read through your work, even if it’s just a friend who’s good with spelling and grammar.

      Reply

    15. Jon Grigsby says:

      Don’t waste time and effort editing and censoring yourself on the first draft. Let the words flow. You can always go back and edit later. Getting words to paper must come first.

      Reply

    16. Maire Bourke says:

      If you get stuck, go take a walk or cook dinner, something that will use your hands, but free up your mind.

      Reply

    17. Sean Fowler says:

      Let your characters live, don’t try and force them into the mold you want let them be themselves and sometimes they will surprise you and take your story in an unexpected direction.

      Reply

    18. Enyn says:

      Give yourself a deadline- better yet, have someone else give you a deadline. Nothing gets me going more than the threat of looming consequences. It works for me every time I’m stuck, and sometimes has a way of getting an epic eleventh-hour rush of words that’s exhilarating as well as satisfying.

      Reply

    19. When it comes to character creation, I fall back on my gaming experience. I think about archetypes, skills, traits, backgrounds, nature and demeanor, etc. It can be helpful to fall back on your favorite game system’s character creation as a rough template because they are organized in a way to help people think about generating a whole new person.

      Reply

    20. Mike Conway says:

      I don’t really believe there’s such a thing as “writer’s block.” It’s my experience that what many people call that is really a lack of planning and initial effort.

      If you’re going to write anything longer than a few pages, you really need to have a plan, and I never even begin writing a story unless I have blueprinted it first. Seriously, have a blueprint. You’ll be good for it.

      It doesn’t have to be anything fancy. Make a list of chapters, then decide what one thing you want to have happen in each chapter. In each chapter, have 10-15 things happen. Want some real magic to happen? Turn each of those 10-15 things into questions. Change “Dave banishes the demon” to “What tool did Dave use to banish the demon?” Answering a question is a lot easier than coming up with a few paragraphs based on a sentence.

      For you “creative and inspired” types: This doesn’t inhibit creativity. It just organizes it. If you want a neverending story that wanders here and there, then go the “inspired” route. Trust me, it’ll be awhile for you.

      The biggest advantages for this are that you only spend a couple of hours coming up with your story, which you then write down, and also that you will save yourself hours of editing and rewriting by avoiding the trap of writing, then discovering that you repeated yourself, or contradicted yourself, and you have to do that all over again.

      I found that writing the blueprint was the hardest part, but once it was done, I had a book right there, and all I had to do was write it. When it’s all there, laid out for you, how can you have “writer’s block?”

      Reply

    21. Shadowcat says:

      Read the first half of a story; then stop and write how you think it will end. Now go back and write your own version of how you got there.

      Reply

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