Yes, I finished writing my 50,000 novel in a month at Camp NaNoWriMo!  The Way West is still coming out here, chapter by chapter, and is due to finish around 17th September. I got a lovely merit badge for completing the challenge!

If you ‘ve missed it you can catch up by clicking NaNoWriMo on the blog Themes on the right, or click here to go straight to the first chapter.  They are linked together from there as it was a bit painful to hunt for the next chapter on days when there were other blog posts in between.  I’d love to read your comments too, especially if you find plot holes that I haven’t noticed yet!

I did write a five sentence outline, which was a technique I learnt from someone else a few months ago.  I’m sure  it helped, but not sure how much as I seemed to go to the fourth sentence very quickly. Then the second and third crept back in and it went back and forth for a bit.  The outline was this:

  1. Humphrey is working his way west as his mother told him before he escaped from the Lost City.
  2. Ex-pirates, outlaws, and other displaced persons are being hunted by radical elements in some of the castles.
  3. Humphrey (who has limited social skills) links up with three other people and they take refuge in a welcoming castle for the winter.
  4. The radical elements in rival castles attack the welcoming castle, which reveals it is home to people with supernatural powers.
  5. Humphrey finds a purpose in life while his new friends find reason to stay where they are.

I’m not sure that the last line ended up as expected, but it’s roughly that.

I’ll be editing it during the winter with a view to bringing it out in the late spring.  I think it’ll be good enough with some polishing and Humphrey is adorable!

It taught me a lot more about writing and what happens when you just carry on writing, too.  I must finish Victor’s story now I’ve learnt that.  The other interesting thing I’ve found is how much emerges as new plot whenever I write about these characters.  The character interviews have thrown up lines of inquiry, the A to Z challenge developed a number of ideas (some of which, like the Narrathon, are included in The Way West) and the more I write about this world the more opportunities for new tales creep into my head.

Did somebody ask how many books were planned? Only three…

Back from Camp NaNoWriMo
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