Let’s talk about NaNoWriMo & Inktober

I have mentioned NaNoWriMo and Inktober a couple of times on here probably, but I’ve never updated how these things were going, so that’s what I’m gonna do right now.

Let’s start with the basics: NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month) takes place in November, and people from all over the world attempt to write a novel of 50 thousand words. Inktober is a drawing challenge that takes place in October and basically it means you draw one ink drawing per day for each day of October.

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Inktober

Inktober was a bit of a mess. I did not realize how much time it was gonna take me to draw every day. And then it was not just the drawing, I was much of a perfectionist and wanted to make them look good when I uploaded them. This meant, scanning them with my printer, then editing them in photoshop (making the background completely white) and then uploading them. This was just too much work to keep up for an entire month. I also didn’t prepare anything the month so I had to think of topics while I was drawing and it became too draining combined with two big projects and university. I had to stop. I made it to day 8… Anyway, here’s what I drew in those 8 days:

inktober

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NaNoWriMo

I wish I could tell you how excited I am for NaNoWriMo, but I can’t. I’m still doubting whether taking part is even a good idea. I was planning on continuing with my current WIP. I’ve been referring to it as Our Shattered Minds and it is a YA fantasy about four magical outcasts who get caught up in a rebellion that wants to steal their magic. The concept is quite fun and I love the characters but I’ve been watching a lot of writing videos lately and it has made me doubt about every single thing about it. I don’t know if the plot is strong enough, I still don’t have an ending, I’ve been doubting whether my writing is good enough and basically everything has just put me off from writing it.

A couple of days ago, I was scrolling through pinterest as usual and got inspired for a title for another one of my story ideas. I’ve talked about the one before but I’m trying not to tell people (spoiler: I fail), anyway, it has sparked my excitement over that other story so much I just want to start on that one instead. The problem with this is that I can’t start it right now. I need a plot, outline, character profiles and I need a hell of a lot of research. I really want to do it right, so I wanna do a lot of research before I actually start writing it. And 3 days before NaNoWriMo starts is probably not the best time to start this.

So what am I going to do about NaNoWriMo? Honestly, I’m still in doubt. I want to try to participate, I really do. And I guess I could continue with my WIP, like I was planning to do. I might try that? But I also might give up after day 1, which would be really sad. It’s also so sad that every time I get stuck in this cycle of getting a story idea, being super excited about it, writing quite a big part of the story and then losing all motivation to continue. It feels so hopeless.

Well. Anyway. I guess I should try to get excited for NaNoWriMo because if it’s not gonna happen in the next couple of days I don’t know if it’s gonna happen at all.

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I really wish this was a very happy post about how I completed Inktober and was super excited about NaNoWriMo, but I guess life is not always about the successes and more about what you learned along the way. If you want to follow me on the NaNoWriMo webite: go here (you can also see the complete synopsis of my WIP there), and if you’d like to see more of my art on my instagram: go here.

Are you taking part in NaNoWriMo? How are the preparations going? What do you do against the writing blues (Idk if that’s a thing but I just made it up). Or are you taking part in Inktober?

32 thoughts on “Let’s talk about NaNoWriMo & Inktober

  1. I definitely considered taking part in NaNo for the first time this year but I’ve decided against it. I have a good balance of writing, reading, reviewing and other life things at the moment and I don’t want the pressure of writing to ruin that.
    I quite often have several days in a row (or more) where I really don’t feel motivated to write. I would necessarily call it writer’s block, more like I just need to take a little break. I’ve learned to just let myself do this and I always get back into writing eventually. I’m in no hurry to finish my book.
    I also have concerns about it not being good enough but you learn more as you write more and when the time comes for people to judge it I’ll learn from that too 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. You have to decide what works best for you and for me NaNo might work. I don’t know. I haven’t been very motivated to write in the past few months but NaNo seems to work very well! Writing every day is definitely hard! I don’t know if I’m gonna be able to do that, but we’ll see.

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  2. Ooh, I’m doing NaNo as well, but I have done SO little planning! I haven’t made any character profiles and I’ve outlined like the first two chapters… I only know the ending and the plot twists, which isn’t helping me come up with a beginning and middle. Which I kind of need to start writing. 😂 Anyways, good luck with NaNo! You could always plan for half of the month and use your outline’s word count, and then write the last half?? Maybe. 😊

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    1. Thank you! I’ve decided last minute to change my story completely and start something new haha.
      So now I don’t have anything, no character profiles, no outline… I worked on plot yesterday and today I’m gonna focus on characters and setting. I won’t be able to make it to 1,667 words today I think but that doesn’t really matter. Thank you!

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  3. Good luck with NaNo – as for the writer blues, well, consider this: it’s a craft that takes time and practice to master, and there will always be times you get ‘sore thumbs’ or other maladies that try to get you to back off. Don’t. The only way to master this, or any other craft, is to do it, finish the stories, get more words down, write out the character arcs, plan the plot, etc, etc, etc.
    And if you do a bit of your wip and a bit of the structure for the new piece, add the words together, and hey presto, the word count goes up.
    I’m sure we all go through times (usually in the middle of a wip) when the story just doesn’t seem as exciting as it was before … that’s just how it is. Whether it’s building a house, or sewing a gown, there’s always that moment where it looks a mess and you can’t see the potential in it … but a few more steps, a few more bits added, and there it is, looking shiny and shaped and exciting.
    yes, I’m doing NaNo this year too, and this time without a plan (well, not much of a plan), and I hope to see you there.

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    1. Thank you so much for the pep talk! I’ve decided to go with a different story because I’m really excited about it and I just couldn’t see myself finishing the old one at this point. I do have to get on with outlining and character development now though.

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  4. Oh man, I feel the exact same about Nano. I’ve been getting SO excited at the beginning of October and I was ready to prep and outline and feel prepared to start writing in November. Reality is that I BARELY got any prepping done and I only just about know what the general plot of my novel is. I still need to figure out pretty much EVERYTHING about my characters and it’s just too much work 3 days before Nano.

    I’ve been thinking about doing what May has suggested in her comment! I’ll try to do lots of research and outlining for the first half of the month and see if I’m ready to start writing my novel halfway through. If I WON’T be ready, I’ll just continue outlining and do the actual novel writing after Nano! 🙂

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    1. I’m now doing research and writing side by side but I don’t think I’m gonna be able to do that for the rest of NaNo so I might just keep low on writing the first weeks and then do research and outlining instead. I’ll see how it works out! Good luck on your story!

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  5. I’m not good at following my own advice of course but I say work on your other novel. Don’t worry about if it’s good enough or not and just write. You can always edit or rewrite things later. 🙂 A good piece of advice someone gave me once was to NOT edit as I wrote because you’ll spend forever trying to perfect each paragraph and you’ll never get anywhere. That’s what I did anyway. Last year I only got about 2000 words out though :/ I just spent the rest of the time coming up with plot outlines and ideas.

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    1. Haha I’m also really bad at following my own advice! But thank you! I’m gonna try to not edit and make this a messy draft on purpose to make myself write on instead of going back.

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  6. I’m doing nano. I find I have to completely stay away from writing advice otherwise I’ll psych myself out and doubt myself. Start thinking I’m rubbish and then never write anything. Nano is for getting the story down and the good writing techniques can come in the editing stage. That’s what I tell myself anyway!

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  7. I’ve started to doubt doing NaNo or not because honestly I want to go back to the other book I have been working on for Camp NaNo because I miss the characters and have ideas for the story, but also I don’t want to make a decision I’ll regret so I’ll probably end up doing NaNo anyway. I wish you the best of luck 😀

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      1. I’m actually really loving this NaNoWriMo book I’m writing so I’m happy I stuck with it. I think it was just pre-NaNo fear that was getting to me haha!

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  8. Your art is so pretty! I feel you, but it’s totally fine that you didn’t do all the days — sometimes stuff just doesn’t work out. For the first time in a few years I’m actually not doing NaNoWriMo… Though I’d have liked to, and I might do some writing, I don’t think I’d be able to do anything I’m proud of whilst keeping up with school and not destroying my mental health. Plus I don’t really know my plot for my WIP yet oops. There’s always Camp NaNo and other months to write things! Or you can mix it up a bit with NaNo (AKA what I usually do with like counting plans in the word count and stuff haha).

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    1. Thank you ❤
      I just changed my story completely and now I'm really excited about it! Yes, of course, I love doing Camp! I hope you get to find some time to write 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  9. i’m doing the NaNoWriMo too! just added you as a buddy on my thing. i think… lol i am new to this. i was definitely more excited when i first signed up and now the closer it gets the more i’m like OH MAN what did i sign up for?!

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    1. Haha I felt the same way! It’s quite terrifying but now that I’ve actually started writing it’s way less intimidating than I initially thought it was. How is it going with you?

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      1. i also feel that way, once i started it wasn’t so scary. i have been out of town and traveling until yesterday, so…not well so far. lol i think i have like 2,000 words.

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      2. Awh you’ll get there! And even if you don’t, you’ve (probably) already written more words than you would have without NaNoWriMo! 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

  10. I totally get you! I’ve had the same problem with my current project, it just didn’t feel right anymore and I doubted my own writing sooo much. Gladly, I managed to rework it, so now I’m satisfied with it 🙂

    I wish you all the best luck with your project! 🙂 You could still rework your old project, or maybe give it a rest for a bit and come back with fresh eyes. Just do, what feels right for you in the moment, there’s no wrong way to do NaNo, progress is still progress 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I’m glad you found a way to rework it! I just started something completely new! Thank you! I’ll definitely see in the future whether I want to rewrite or continue my old project!

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