Writing ALL THE WORDS ~ Outside the Margins with Shae Connor

Join Prism Book Alliance® as Shae Connor goes Outside the Margins today.


It’s time once again, guys and dolls, for the annual frenzy of wordsmithing known as National Novel Writing Month. For those who haven’t heard of this phenomenon, NaNoWriMo (or NaNo for short) is a challenge to writers of all stripes to write a novel during the month of November. Well, more specifically, the goal is 50,000 words toward a novel, since most end up longer than that.

I’ve been a NaNo participant most years since 2009, when I wrote 53,000 words on a fanfiction project (technically two projects, parts 2 and 3 of a series in progress). In 2010, I wrote 63,000 words that became the bulk of my first published novel, Sand & Water. I haven’t hit the 50,000-word goal since then, and last year the timing was totally wrong for me to even try, but this year I decided to dive back in.

For 2015, my NaNo project is a book targeted for Dreamspinner’s Dreamspun Desires line that I’ve kinda-sorta promised to have done by the end of the year. It’s a fairly basic guy-next-door theme, with some cute kids and fun secondary characters and (I hope) plenty of sexual tension. I actually have part of the first chapter written, but I still have 50k-plus to go, so I’m totally good for the NaNo count.

I’m normally not much of a planner when it comes to writing. I tend to start with a title (check), basic information about the lead characters (double-check), and a general direction I’m headed (triple-check). Some or all that information often changes as the story plays out. For this project, though, I’m spending more time in the planning stages. I’m a little out of practice, to start with, since I took some time off writing for real-life events, plus I had some time before the official start date. That means I have more notes written or typed out than I usually start with.

The real challenge, though, will come on November 1, when I have to start producing an average of 1,667 words a day. I can write that in an hour when the words are flowing, but getting to that point is the tricky part. I’ll be pulling out every trick I can manage to get myself in gear.

When I “won” NaNo in 2010, I started off the month by getting up early in the morning and writing for an hour or more before work. I also took a long weekend away and wrote about 15,000 words over three days. Both of those methods are in my playbook for this year. Writing in the morning only lasted a few days last time (I am SO not a morning person), but it gave me a good kick in the pants out of the gate, and if a few days alone in a mountain cabin doesn’t get the words out, nothing will.

(The hot tub certainly can’t hurt.)

So, from one NaNoer to another, to anyone else out there who’s going the NaNo route, good luck! May the words come easily and swiftly, and see you at the finish line.

(Oh yeah: I’m shaeconnor on the NaNo site, if you want to buddy up over there.)

~Shae Connor




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About Shae Connor

Shae Connor lives in Atlanta, where she’s a lackadaisical government worker for a living and writes sweet-hot romance under the cover of night. She’s been making things up for as long as she can remember, but it took her a long time to figure out that maybe she should try writing them down. She’s conned several companies into publishing her work and adds a new notch on her bedpost each time another story is unleashed onto an unsuspecting universe.

A member of the Romance Writers of America and the Rainbow Writers chapter, Shae was first published in 2010 and has a lineup of short stories, novellas, and novels available from Dreamspinner Press, Wilde City Press, MLR Press, and Amber Allure.

Shae is part Jersey, part Irish, and all Southern, which explains why she never shuts up. When she’s not chained to her laptop, she enjoys cooking, traveling, watching baseball, and reading voraciously, and she’s an annual volunteer for the Dragon Con on-site publication, the Daily Dragon. You can find her hanging out on Twitter most any time @shaeconnor, but for the more direct route, you can email her at shaeconnorwrites@gmail.com or visit her website at shaeconnorwrites.com. .

Farewell Giveaway
I have a number of paperbacks, most of which are signed, to giveaway. Over the between now (11 Mar 2017) and 31 Mar 2017, every comment on the blog (this post and all other new posts), will be entered to win 1 of these paperbacks. There are also some misc swag items, so there will be a few packs of these to give away as well.

Thank you so much for your support over the last 4 years. Prism will be closing its doors on 1 April 2017. All content will remain available, but no new content will appear after 31 Mar 2017. As such all request forms have been turned off. Again Thank you,

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