_Today is the last of November, the thirtieth. I’m a beginning writer. I only began in January of 2011 having been directed toward this endeavor by God. I knew He was leading me away from the area in which I had been serving Him. Who would have thought the direction would be to begin writing Christian Fiction? Certainly not me.
I’m working on a series of three Life Fiction novels set in the town of Cottonwood, IA in 1875. They could also be called Historical Romance I suppose but Life Fiction seems to better express what I want to focus on. Romance is a large part of the stories but how the characters deal with challenges, personal sins, dealing with other people, consequences of sin, etc is more the goal of my writing.
That’s sort of all backstory. My topic for this blog is NANOWRIMO, affectionately known as Nano which is much easier to spell and say for that matter. The acronym stands for National Novel Writing Month. This happens every November. Participants start on Nov. 1 with a new story and in the course of the thirty days write 50,000 words. The idea is not to write a polished, publishable novel but simply to get at least the specified number down on, well not paper, whatever word processor the writer typically uses.
I found out about Nano two weeks before the start and decided to give it a try by starting the second novel in my series. I was gone for one of those weeks, so other than thinking up events I might use no outlining or other planning was done. This made it even more of a challenge for this novice writer.
Another challenge for me is not doing any research or editing during the month. In my first novel, still not totally finished even in draft stage, I note card outlined the events as I thought of them, researched for period accuracy, and would review and edit earlier chapters as I wrote later ones.
I became stuck a couple of times and had to figure a way to go on with the writing. The first time I needed a sermon. No research when you write a sermon? No editing either? Stuck. Then deciding to simply skip the sermon and write it later I was able to get unstuck.
The next time I knew where I wanted to go but not how to get there. So I simply jumped ahead to the goal and wrote that. The work is rough, unfinished and not only needs to be filled in, but extensive rewriting. I definitely wouldn’t want anyone to see it now. Hey, after writing furiously on it all month even I don’t want to see it. But I’m proud to say I won. I finished my 50,172 words on Nov. 28.
The work will go into hibernation until Healing Love is finished, polished, and ready for publication. I plan to do Nano again in 2012. Then I will have outline cards, research done, and fingers again ready for the challenge of 50,000 words in 30 days.
Sign up for Sophie's Newsletter. You'll get Keith's Coming, a Love's Infestation short story for free.
Sophie Dawson has made up stories in her head all her life. It wasn’t until 2011 that she began writing typing them out.
Her first books were all historical fiction romance. They’ve won multiple awards and garnered rave reviews. Now, Sophie is branching out into contemporary romance though she plans to continue writing historical and hopes to add more books in her popular Cottonwood and Stones Creek series.
Sophie lives with her husband and cat on a farm in western Illinois. She’s an avid seamstress and was a professional quilter for a number of years before the writing bug bit. She’s just thankful it’s not fatal.