Category Archives: Nanowrimo

Nanowrimo – It begins again…

Well, I’ve done it again and signed up for another Frantic November of scribbling in the great National Novel Writers Month event. 

This year, I actually have a plot!!!  Which will be a pleasant change from having a ‘vague idea of where the novel will go’. 

So, by this time next month, I’ll be wrung out, stressed, sick of looking at my computer, and wondering if I’m going to make it, and wondering why I do this to myself… 

I’m starting to wonder already.


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Nanowrimo – Winner 2009

Well, it’s been a little bit of a hectic time here in the Bray household.  November is National Novel Writing Month, and this year I went out of my way to ensure I would have plenty of time to write my novel, without the usual frenzy of scribbling that I normally have to endure. 

I cleared my calendar, pushed back appointments, cancelled others, and caught up on a few jobs around the house in October.  I had even worked out a basic plot outline that I was very pleased with… clever me.

Well, that was the plan.  As the poet Rab Burns says, “The best laid plans of mice and men, are aft to gae awry.”  He was right.  He was also right when he wrote this oft quoted little ditty, “No matter how much you shake and dance, the last drops always land in your pants.”  So true, so very, very true…

Anyway, long story short (well shorter), appointments were bought forward, the hot water system died, my airconditioner died, and we had some unexpected visitors.  All of these things needed my undivided attention, and they got it.  The thing that never fails to impress me is this;  it has been proven time and again that I don’t need perfect conditions to write eg: a silent room, no interruptions, weeks off work, a clear calendar etc.  In fact, all I need to do is squeeze in some scribbling whenever I can… just like a real writer I suppose! 

Anyway, I’ve finished.  A few days early, which is good, because tomorrow I have to be in Caloundra for an appointment on Friday morning, after which I’ll be dropping out of society up in the back hills of the Sunshine Coast for a few days.  I can’t wait to be surrounded by the peace and tranquility of the forests up there.  Unfortunately, I have to drive through Brissy on Monday to visit a mate who is recovering from surgery (Hi Rob!), then back home sometime next week.  Hopefully taking the long way round, and making a few stops along the way.    

Life is good, we have hot water in the bathroom, cool air in the bedroom, and a cold beer in the back fridge which I am about to open and enjoy the long awaited taste of to celebrate this years Nano win. 


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A Big Weekend

In spite of the best laid plans of Mice and Greg, this weekend didn’t quite go to plan… 

On the bright side, we (dear Wife and I), managed to paint the bathroom and toilet, transforming them from brown walled booths of depression, to white walled wonders!  In spite of a few things going wrong, as per normal in the home handy man game, they actually came up pretty good, and both of us have been left with a great sense of satisfaction.  Lots more painting to go, but we’ll tackle it one room at a time…

Then today, I woke up and realised that I’m 4000 words behind with my novel, no dramas, got a couple of jobs to knock off before I sit down at the ol’ keyboard.  A quick walk to the shops with the dogs to get the papers at 6am, then over the road to help my neighbour shovel and barrow approx 14 cubic metres of chip bark for his gardens.  I felt pretty good while we were into, and after a few hours we had emptied the bin, and I toddled home for a shower, a beer and a sandwich. 

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Just a few barrow loads to go...

After lunch I fired up the laptop, then went down harder than a schoolbag on a Friday afternoon, slumping unconscious over my laptop.  Word count: 23.  An hour later I surfaced with the letters QWERTY dented into my forehead, and spent an hour and a half typing out just under 3500 words.  A good result. 

Followed this up with a walk down at the marina, wash the dogs, clean up round the house, and a quiet read on the deck as night fell.  It sort of dawned on me, that every November this happens.  Every November I clear my calendar to write my novel, and every year I get sidetracked by some project or another.  It’s dawned on me that perhaps I ‘need’ a project to keep me occupied when I’m not writing?  To keep me moving, to stop from getting stagnant perhaps.  Who knows.  If I’m able to produce the necessary words, while working on the house (and someone else’s gardens), imagine how much I’d get done if I was doing it full time…

I’ve got a feeling that it wouldn’t be very much, because the sense of urgency would be missing.  And, it’s pretty obvious I need to be under the pump to get results. 

Lucky me.    



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Nano Week 1

Well, this week marks the first week of Nanowrimo 2009.  The fun, the thrills, the sense of, “Why the Hell am I doing this again?!” 

This year, I sort of surprised myself and actually had an outline all prepared.  5 days into the event I’m only making minimal changes, and the story is coming along quite well.  I hope this trend continues. 

The forum activity is steady, and very upbeat, and this year we have been joined by some new folk here in CQ, which is fantastic! 

More scribblers, yay! 

Ok, we’re still a tad short of creating an outpost of Bohemia up here, with large groups of writers, poets, artists, and musicians, gathering to encourage and inspire eachother, but it’s a start!  

If anyone is interested in what the story is about, let me know, and I’ll have a crack at a synopsis… at the moment the best way to explain it is, Fantasy/Coming of Age/Medieval/Sword & Sandal/Ripping Yarn/Adventure.  With a touch of humour for effect.  It’s definitely much easier for me to write this type of yarn than a romance novel.  Boy, that was a forgettable, and surprising difficult, experience. 

Ok, better get scribbling!

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Nanowrimo – The Countdown Has Begun!

15 days to go bofore this years novelling event!  This year, I decided, I would give it a miss.  The only other year I’ve missed was a couple of years ago when we moved to the new Plasterboard Palace.  That was the month from hell.  I wrote a few desultory paragraphs, but the pressures of moving, changing jobs at work, and well, just life in general was too much.  But in the last couple of weeks I’d had a change of heart, and I’ve found myself plotting story outlines in my head as I walk the dogs of an afternoon…  


Last year, I tackled my first (and possibly last!) Romance novel.  It was bloody hard work!  This year though, a story has formed based around the song “Sons of Vengeance”, by the old metal band, Krokus (they rock harder than the Swiss franc… apparently).  It will be a fantasy, swords and sandals epic.  I get to choose a mythical land, minus the mythical creatures and monsters, and tap away as my hero sets off on his epic quest.  I’ve got a ‘love interest’, warring kings, a rogue knight, and a couple of deputy sidekicks who will make life a bit more interesting for the hero. 

As a result, I’m quite looking forward to this years event… it’s the Nano curse, who will save me from it?! 

So, in preparation for a month of novel scribbling, I’ve upped the number of columns contributed to The Observer this month so I can concentrate on my ‘masterpiece’.  Thus my night time scribbling is consuming at least 2 – 4 hours each night, as I tap away in bed on my little laptop, writing, editing, re-editing, and writing.  How the hell I’m keeping up with this blog, work, house work, renovations, and finding time to read at least 2 books a week I don’t know… but I’m not unhappy with this situation, life is certainly a lot more interesting 🙂 

Meanwhile, in the loungeroom, my family are enjoying shows that I wouldn’t normally let them watch…  everyone’s a winner!

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