Tag Archives: pantsing

Conference Time! by Vivienne Lynge

Hello!  Happy Saturday to you!  Vivienne Lynge here.  I’m so excited…the 2013 RWA National conference is just days away.  This will be the first year that I’m going.  I’ve been to a local, 1-day conference before which was good, but I’ve outgrown it.  It was a general “writing” conference, not something focused on romance.  RWA Nationals is a 5-day, jam-packed fiesta of wonderfulness.  Well, at least it looks that way from the schedule. 

Now, as you know, I’m a plotter, not a pantser when it comes to my writing.  Naturally, my plotting tendencies overflow into the rest of my life as well.  Except instead of ‘plotting’ we call it ‘planning’.  I love to plan.  About 6 weeks ago, I studied the huge schedule of daily seminars and made myself a spreadsheet of those things I’d like to attend.  Ooooh – I just saw that I can pre-print workshop materials…I’ll have to do that on Monday!

Today, I’ll dig out my luggage (I’ve already decided what pieces) and begin packing.  I love to pack (not for moving the house, but for trips).  Packing is a physical form of planning.  I’m a pretty low-maintenance kind of girl, so I’ll be trying to figure out the very minimum I can bring along and manage to get through a week.  Yes, I may resort to hand-washing a shirt in the hotel sink and hanging it up to dry.

There’s been a lot of chatter on Facebook about shoes.  How many pair is the right number?  Of course, I need a comfy, casual pair (will wear sneakers), I have fancier-than-usual flip flops, open toed mules for conference time and a dressier pair for the RITA gala.  So four.  I might skimp on shirts, but I’ll have 4 pair of shoes!  :)

Because this will also be the longest time that I’ve been away from Hubby deLuxe, Princess Second Grader, Jester and Minx, I learned how to Skype last night.  I need a little more practice, but that’s what the weekend is for. 

Today’s Secret: For me, the planning and anticipation of the event (and of course, purchasing needed supplies!) are as much fun as the event itself. 

How about you?  Do you like to travel?  Do you plan it out ahead of time, or just wing it?

Nanowrimo-ing Monkey Blog #1

Hello there Blog-land!  J Monkeys here.  Do you Nanowrimo?  I’m Nanowrimo-ing this year – hard core!  Aren’t familiar with Nano – check out their site.  Or check out PJ’s blog from last week.  Nano is a great (FREE!) program.  I’ve been a Wrimo since 2008 and a winner at least twice.  Of course, since doing the challenge has resulted in words on the page, I’m really a winner every time, but you know, they have rules…

So, for Nano 2012, I’m going to get all of my Saturday blog posts for the month of November done in advance.  I’m trying to set myself up for success, that kind of thing.  But before I get to the meat of Nanowrimo-ing Monkey Blog #1, let me tell you all my goal now, because like PJ, I’m often motivated by the fear of public humiliation.  Between Nov 1 and November 30, I shall write 50,000 words in my current WIP.  In fact, I’m hoping to hit closer to 60k.  So that’s my goal.  By the time this post goes live, it will be the 3rd of November.    At a rate of 2000 words a day, I should have 4,000 words under my belt.  Here’s what I’ve got: 4,587.  Every Saturday for the month, I’ll let you know how far along I am and how things compare to the goal.

Today I’m going to tell you a little bit about my preparation for Nano.  Bear in mind that I’m a plotter, not a pantser.  Many people welcome Nov 1 with nothing more than a keyboard and a smile.  That doesn’t work for me.  I’d find myself on Nov 30 with about 10,000 words if I was lucky.

I’ve been working on a plot for 10 months or so and I’ve got my plot grid finished.  I know the overview of the story.  I know how it starts, what the turning points are and how I think it will end.  Of course all of that is subject to change as things go along, but at least I have a plan. 

I have a set of characters – protagonists and antagonists.  I know a lot about them and what makes them tick.  I know how the relationships between these folks are supposed to develop and the kind of personal growth I want for each of them.  I know what they look like and I have little cards about each of them pinned to the corkboard in my office.

I know the setting for the story – I know when and where it takes place.  I also know why it takes place there.

And finally, I understand the conflicts in the story.  This one has a main conflict of Man vs Man and a Man vs Nature sub-conflict. With a little bit of Man vs Self for good measure.  Nothing like covering all the bases, eh?

All that’s left is to write the story and believe it or not, for me, that’s the hard part.  All of this earlier work is really my favorite part of the writing process – creating the people and building the essence of their story in my mind is what I really like.  Pulling the sentences out of my brain, thinking as each character in turn, reacting the way she would – those are the hard parts.  And that’s why Nanowrimo is so great for me.  Lot’s of support and inspiration to get those sentences out.

Today’s secret: Nanowrimo – it’s not much of a secret, 300,000 people participated world-wide last year.  But of 7 billion, that’s less than 5 hundredths of a percent of the population.

Today’s question: What have you found that helps you get your writing done?