Thursday, November 10, 2016

Personal Achievement Badges


There are three kinds of badges at NaNoWriMo. Today's topic is personal achievement badges. These are self-awarded and plenty of fun. You can see from my above illustration that I am a "planster" that is a cross between a plotter and a planner. I am also a nano rebel, meaning I believe rules are made to be broken :-) I do not award them to myself all in one day. I portion them out so I can give myself a new badge whenever I want some extra credit. The other two badges are system awarded and we'll cover them tomorrow.

We are ten days into Nano and you might be hitting a bit of a wall so some posts are coming to help with that. Write on!

Wednesday, November 9, 2016

How to Find a Write In

On the NaNoWriMo home page there is a tab labeled Regions. When you click on that tab you will find several drop down links including one called Come Write In. When you select it the above page opens up and you can click on the light blue box to find Write In locations. They suggest you contact the location for dates and times. Remember, you home region will list Write Ins as well and they usually have more complete information there.


At the time I took this screen shot there were 1,029 entries. Write in your location in the search box and it will immediately sort out the closest upcoming Write Ins for you. My next post will talk about why attending a Write In can be such a boost.


Tuesday, November 8, 2016

Editing Word Counts by Day



Sometimes I forget to post my word count! This usually happened when I write early in the day and don’t post because I plan to add some more words later. Then I find myself in the position of posting two days worth of words the next day and a jump in my graph that does not accurately reflect my daily progress. Does it matter? Not really, it is the end total that counts but I like being accurate so here is how to fix that glitch.

Here's what the chart looks like with the skipped day. The accurate word counts were 14963 for November 7 and then 15800 for November 8.




So all I had to do to fix this was click on November 7, fill in 14963, and hit save. Now the daily counts are accurate and the graph has updated as well! Easy peasy!






Monday, November 7, 2016

Find Your Region

In the brown bar near the top of the home page at nanowrimo is a tab labeled Regions. This tab will help you find your closest region and be your link to local nanowrimo happenings. When I click on the tab, find a region this pops up. As you can see my closest region is USA;;Ohio::Dayton. There are nano chapters all over the world.


When I click on my region first I get this screen.





And when I click again, I get this. This lists my municipal liaisons, those are folks who volunteer their time to organize nano events and foster a sense of community. You can see that my page also has notes and a constantly updated list of Write Ins.


I am fortunate that there is a second region very close to me USA::Ohio::Elsewhere that is only one county over. You can only choose one region to be your home region but you can belong to facebook groups for as many as you like. The advantage for me is that it gives me more opportunities to find a Write In. I'll post more about Write Ins later.

Sunday, November 6, 2016

You've Got NaNo Mail!






I loved the movie You’ve Got Mail and recently watched it again. I had forgotten about hearing the electronic signal when I opened up aol, followed by the cheery voice saying “You’ve got mail.” I don’t get the electronic noise and there is no voice announcement but I get the same anticipatory frisson when I see the little envelope next to Hello, novelone! and a number indicating I have new mail. I tend to save my email for the duration of the 30 days, just feels right somehow. I can go back and read the most recent pep talk (more on those later), check out upcoming write-ins (more on those later too), and see what my buddies have sent my way.


I try to send an email to at least one of my buddies every day. They always write back, usually just a few words but the connection keeps my writing energy up and I hope does the same for them.


One more hint on how to add a Buddy, once you are on your email page on the left side will be a brown box saying Invite a friend. If you know the person’s NaNo name you can fill it in there and buddy up that way. And before you know it you’ll be connected. Expand your tribe!


Saturday, November 5, 2016

Buddy Up!


Now that you have selected your nano name, it is time to build your buddy list. Your buddy list consists of fellow NaNo participants whose word count you are following. These are people you will cheer on and who will encourage you right back.  BUT, you need to know a writer's NaNo  name to locate them. When I put in novelone as I did in the example above you can see my profile come up. Yes, I am standing in front of one of the world's best known bookstores Shakespeare and Company in Paris. #writerbliss You may also notice that I am wearing a halo. More on that in a future post :-)


For example, I want to buddy my friend author Kristina McBride. She has published three amazing young adult novels and is participating this year. I checked with her and she uses her author name as her NaNo name. So I filled in her name and this came up.


I recognized her beautiful face right away so I knew which of the 3 results to select. If you search someone and get multiple results you can click on the profiles and figure it out that way. When I click on her name her profile comes up.


Now all I have to do is click on the Add as Buddy link to the right of her name and presto! We are Buddies! 


Friday, November 4, 2016

Choosing Your NaNo Name


When you sign up on the NaNoWriMo site you have to choose a name. At first I thought well, I HAVE a name, why not just use that? I asked the writer friends who were encouraging me to try NaNo who they were on the site and was delighted by the variety and ingenuity of their chosen monikers. Some took the name of one of their characters. Some rearranged the letters in their name to create something new. Some just flat out made something up. Some used their email address. Some used a version of their favorite author’s name. Some used their actual name. Some used initials. Writers are so clever and creative!

After considerable thought I called myself, drumroll please, novelone. I liked the word play. I was working on my first novel and I am a little quirky (well maybe a bit more than a little) so I AM a novel one. Clever, huh? Novel one creating her novel one. I did mention I am writing a series? I liked it so much I have kept it although it is very easy to change your name by simply registering again. You can preserve previous years by just letting them be.

 So have a little fun choosing your NanNo name. Think about how it will look on someone’s buddy list. Think about how you want to be greeted each time you open the page. If you look at the cream box on the top right of the accompanying illustration you can see my Hello novelone! I love it. It reminds me who I am and what this is all about. If you want the site to be where “everybody knows your name” then start buddying people right away. Tomorrow’s post will detail how to do that. It’s easy and fun and you will be creating your very own virtual Cheers writing bar. Admit it, you have that theme song in your head now too. Posts are coming soon about NaNo music!

Thursday, November 3, 2016

Love Your Data Charts



Every day when you update your word count a page with this chart on it will pop up. I LOVE this graphic! The average words per day and words written today is a good snap shot of your current pace. The fun part is looking at words remaining, the date you will finish at your current average rate, and when you will finish if you keep that pace. If you have been jackrabbiting because it is early in the month and you are in that first flush of writing power but are worried about sustaining the pace, you can look at the words per day you need to finish on time. In this example because I am a bit ahead, I only need 1,564 words per day to be a winner on the 30th.

Of course if I stay with my personal goal of 2,000 words or more per day I will finish early. I like to post my total on Thanksgiving morning and then spend the day celebrating and relaxing with my family and friends.

Tomorrow we will talk about how to choose a nano name.