Challenges for Camp NaNoWriMo (April 2016)

Camp NaNoWriMo 2016Camp NaNoWriMo starts tomorrow, and I have done absolutely zero planning. The reason for that is because I am writing a 25,000-word outline for Camp, so essentially all of April will be for planning. And when I say “outline,” I don’t necessarily mean in-depth, step-by-step plotting of all the scenes in the order they appear. I’m talking about just general planning: getting to know characters, describing settings, figuring out the real premise of the story, and so on. I guess I should call it a “month-long brainstorming session” rather than an “outline.” I did a similar thing in April and November 2014, and it turned out to be pretty helpful.

The story I’m going to be working on is something I have been wanting to write for some time, and because it is intended to be a fairy tale/fable, I anticipate that it will be difficult to focus on the plot itself and not on the moral/ideology/theme behind the plot. Writing advice books will always tell you that story comes first, theme comes second. So I will spend this Camp session trying to come up with a fascinating story that will hold readers’ attention and try to hold off on all the moralizing. 🙂

My original intent with this story was to polish it up and post it online somewhere (like I used to do several years ago on FictionPress), and I wanted to make it “expandable” so that it could become an ongoing series rather than just a standalone. With the story’s subject matter, I’m not sure that it would go over well with its audience, but that’s why my challenge is to get the story and characters right first, then worry about all the “background” stuff later.

Good luck to you if you’re participating in Camp NaNo!

9 thoughts on “Challenges for Camp NaNoWriMo (April 2016)

  1. Sounds like you’ll be having fun this April! I love making a “compendium” of sorts for stories. For my favorite books, I wish the authors could share their brainstorming sessions (if they had them) so I could see their writing process. Good luck and happy writing, I’m sure you’ll make it just fine.

    Fictionpress! I like that site, though I took off an old project on there. I like their platform (fanfiction.net) much better than the other writing sites like Wattpad and etc. For some reason, it just has the best aesthetics and organization. If their forum section was better constructed, I’d be on there constantly. How did FP work for you? Did you get a lot of feedback or did it take a while to find readers?

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    • It would be nice to see authors’ work before the final product hits the shelf. All you see is perfection, so it’s hard to imagine that the book was ever a horrible first draft!
      I liked FictionPress quite a bit when I used it; some of my writing had a fairly large following. I wouldn’t consider it a good critique site because I rarely got constructive criticism, but I do agree that the layout and story upload process are user friendly. I’ve been contemplating moving to Wattpad or a newer site because it seems like FP is losing popularity, though.

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      • Or how many rewrites they’ve done! I suppose those questions are reserved for if you ever meet the author.

        A lot of sites aren’t really excessive on the critiques, even when you ask. Wattpad is a bit light on the crits as well. Scribophile, now that’s a different story (: I personally enjoy and am a member of Critters.org, you’ll get some 1 paragraph reviews, but the majority are very detailed. But like Scribophile, it’s get what you give. Which is why I prefer working one-on-one with a beta.

        Wherever you decide, let us know!

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        • Critique Circle was also a good site to go to if you wanted in-depth reviews, but it’s been a while since I’ve used it, so I’m not sure it still is.
          But yes, I will definitely blog about where I choose to post my story!

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      • Hey Maggie! I’m happy that I stumbled onto your site! I’m doing Camp, too! It’s my first time doing Camp and I failed last November. It’s a struggle. I’m in publishing (that’s what I blog about), and trust me, you’d be surprised what comes through. It’s good that you recognized that the final product is the end result. There are some manuscripts that take years to complete!

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        • Hello there! It’s so true — many people don’t have the patience to “go the distance” with a story, so they rush to get it published and it’s not as good as it would have been had they actually spent the time on it.

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          • Yup! It’s kind of frustrating. From the outside, it looks like the author slapped something together but, when you’re a writer, you know that it takes a LONG time to just even complete half of a book. I don’t know. . . some authors don’t even want to hear it though. You tell them it needs proofreading, what they hear is, “I think you work sucked.” 😦 I’m a proofreader.

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