NaNoWriMo: Writing For the Digital Bookshelf

The Indie Author. So many challenges, so much to learn. So much to watch out for, so much to take responsibility for.

And so much fun!

One big plus to the Indie movement is the ability to write what you love instead of writing to editorial or marketing department demands. This means the readers are finally getting the variety of novels they have been craving for years but that traditional publishing has failed to give them.

However, with this comes responsibility. A responsibility we, as authors, have always had: TO WRITE!

Find those words. It’s time for the storyteller in you to go into overdrive. You now have an avenue into which to release your work, but first the work must be created.

One way to create new product for your digital bookshelf is to join in various writing challenges. One of the biggest around is “National Novel Writing Month.” Every year authors from around the world join in a challenge to write at least 50,000 words in 30 days in the month of November.

For those of you who love math, that’s an average of 1667 words per day.

And, for those of us who are jumping into Indie Publishing as a business, we already are trying for regular word output, right? Is 1667 words that far above your current goal?

It doesn’t matter if it is. NaNoWriMo is loved (and hated) for many reasons. One of the big things I love about it is the creative energy of joining in on a big challenge with a lot of fellow authors. Wow, what a rush. I can do things I might have trouble doing at other times by myself, such as high wordcounts.

Or, how about the deadline? So much time to get so many words. Of course, those like me have goals higher than 50k, but the deadline is still there. How many drafts can you finish?

This year is the first year I’ll be participating in Nano while also in the publishing business. In a way it hasn’t affected how I view and want to use Nano, but in other ways it has. I have several goals:

1. Have a LOT of fun.
2. Tell a few great stories.
3. Produce several first drafts for eventual publication.

I now have several series published, with more in mind. That means a lot of stories and characters to continue. Using Nano I can nail those new stories and get first drafts finished and ready for revising in 2012. Series typically sell better once 3 or more books are published in them. The more the better. It means a reader who finds and likes the series can go ahead and sink their teeth into sequels without having to wait on the author producing more.

Using Nano to produce is a win-win for me on the Indie side, and a win-win for the readers.

Included in the Nano project list is a new series, which I’m working to outline the first four stories in. Doing something new is important to me, as it will keep this Nano fresh and fun. It won’t be only about previously started series. It will also be about new!

It’s time to do the serious brainstorming. Time to get out the outlines and virtual corkboards and index cards of Scrivener. Time to discover new adventures.

I can hardly wait.

Other Nano News: I’m not the only one gearing up. Lazette Gifford, is the author or the wonderful ebook “Nano for the New and Insane,” a venerable Nano guide that has helped many writers succeed in the Nano challenge of achieving 50,000 words in 30 days. For 2011 she has newly edited the ebook and added several new sections. It’s available for free download in multiple ebook formats at Smashwords.

Lazette’s latest blog post: Zette’s Take: Why Nano?

__________________________

J.A. Marlow

Welcome to Salmon Run, Alaska! A place of wild animals, wild land, and wild inhabitants…oh, and native legends come alive and an inter-planetary alien conflict at their backdoor.

Zach Callahan and his father, Hawk, arrive in Alaska to begin a new life. Anxious to arrive at the lodge crazy Uncle George left them, they find the first challenge is just getting to Salmon Run.

While still in Cordova, an old prospector declares the two greenhorns unprepared for the realities of an Alaskan winter. Sasha, a young native girl, attaches herself to Zach, much to his disgust. A failed sled-dog won’t leave Hawk alone, giving rise to an old phobia. They think they have it made once they get to the Solar Express, the unique train that will take them through a dark road-less wilderness to their new home.

The same night a massive display of the Aurora Borealis lights up the sky.

The Solar Express shuts down, stranding its passengers in the middle of nowhere. Hidden beneath the snow and ice, and under the path of the rescuers, an alien spaceship also feels the effects of the light show.

Cut off from the rescuers and trapped inside the spaceship, Zach and Sasha must ally themselves with a pair of aliens before either the malfunctioning security systems or the native Alaskan wildlife kills them.

A 37800 word stand-alone Novella in the Salmon Run series.

Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Smashwords

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6 comments on “NaNoWriMo: Writing For the Digital Bookshelf
  1. I’m looking forward to NaNo too. This year, I’ll do two projects at the same time: translate a finished and polished novel from English into German, and write a new story set in a fantasy world with an African related setting. I’m sooo excited!

    • JA Marlow says:

      Kat, I hope you have lots of fun for Nano, too! Both projects sound like fun, although the translating sounds like a lot of work!

  2. Good luck with writing during NaNoWriMo. :-)

  3. Nano is definitely a great incentive for the indie writer. I’ve taken part quite a few years in a row, but it’s exciting to know that this year what I write will be going straight on to the “bookshelf” as you put it. I’m going to be working on two novellas and a couple of short stories, should pan out at about 70k for the month.

    If anyone wants to buddy up over on the nanosite, I’ll be under JABrown. Good luck to all!

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