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I've been creative writing all my life, though with various haitus(es) along the way. IFrom 2010 I started this blog and enjoyed sharing writing and other information with everyone. illness and bereavement supplied the more recent hiatus.

Tuesday, 11 October 2011

The Challenge

I've been considering doing Nanowrimo this year, but am scared I won't succeed.

For those of you who have done it
WHAT would you say were the pluses and minuses of doing it?

My writing creativity has taken another serious blow due to the recent news that a friend, our Vicar, died suddenly. I guess it has brought up a whole emotional can of worms connected with my parents.

I did read somewhere that (something like) 80% of authors have experienced clinical depression at some stage in their lives. An interesting statistic! So if I'm quiet on the blogging front it will be either because I'm toiling at a MS or watching a film or doing some vigorous housework to drown out the negative thoughts than accompany grief.
I'm sure I'll be much better when the overcast weather clears.

Hope you are all well and happy.


  1. I'm so sorry for your loss.

    I too am scared I won't succeed at this year's NaNoWriMo try but I'm going to do it anyway because win or lose, it's a great experience. I waste entirely too much time trying to turn the perfect phrase the first time around and I think NaNo helps me breaks that pattern. Plus, at the end of the month, you still have a fun new story with which to play.

  2. Sorry for you lose. I haven't completed the challenge, but I'm considering it this year. I'm working on an outline now that will help direct the story. I'm hoping this will help.

  3. I'm very sorry for the loss of your friend. Please take care and see you soon! x

  4. My thoughts are with you. Losing someone close is had enough without it being unexpected.

    Best of everything with whatever you choose for November.


  5. I'm sorry to hear about your friend. Death puts us in a whole other place and we need the time to reflect and mourn.

    Re: NaNo
    I tried it once, but I didn't feel it was any different than when I put myself on a regimen. It's only real advantage is peer support, though I felt that took time away from writing too.

  6. Madeleine, look after yourself and do whatever you need to do, for you.

  7. *hugs* I hope you are spending some of that time writing! As for NaNo, I've done it before and it was a great experience. Don't worry about failure, just give it a shot (if it works this year for you). Failing is what happens when you're trying, which is much better than the alternative.

  8. So sorry for your loss.

    Ref: NaNo
    Pros--the energy, knowing you're part of a huge group doing the same thing, and the "freedom" to just write without thought.

    Cons--the site is a huge time suck (I got more out of the FB group that developed last year), you pretty much have to put the rest of your life on hold for the month, and no matter how well you plan ahead of time you will not end up with a finished story.

    I choose to do ROW80 this year rather than NaNo. Good luck with your decision.

  9. Sorry for the loss of your friend. I have heard a lot about Nano. Its good if you start plotting and brainstorming and outlining now, so by end of October you will be ready to tackle the 50,000 words. Hugs. Take Care.

  10. I'm sorry for the loss of your friend. Take time to grieve and see you when you post again! I always do Nano but don't sign up and never hit 50K, but I get a lot of writing done and so I feel like it's a success for me. I do the same thing in June.

  11. Coping with the loss of a loved one is always hard, Madeleine.
    Don't worry. The creative juices will start flowing very soon.
    Even I am interested in taking up the NaNoWriMo challenge but it scares the hell out of me. :(

  12. I'm sorry for your loss.

    I've done NaNo since 2003 and I've completed it every year except last year. Babies take up a lot of time! I'm going to try again this year. I've been seeing a lot of writers posting entries with the same fears as you. NaNo isn't about finishing it, though. It's about the community and the creative rush. Even if you write a little bit, that's better than nothing at all.

  13. I'm so sorry to hear about your friend.

    I like NaNoWriMo because it pushes me to write, regardless of anything else--and it also helps me explore other story possibilities beyond what I've outlined. Most of the time I stick to outlines like glue, but demand for quantity tends to change that for me.

  14. I am sorry for the loss of your friend. Very sad. Only natural that it takes time to get over a loss like that.

    I have no idea about NaNo. Never done it. I'm too slow of a writer. But I don't think trying and not finishing is failing. Any forward progress is good in my book. :)

  15. Hi Madeleine .. sorry to hear the news re your vicar .. sudden deaths or major accidents or illnesses can just take the wind out of our sails and then we're lost for a while .. sort of floundering - I'm not surprised you're a little befuddled with what is happening and why .. look after yourself and I do hope life resolves itself without too many more hiccups for you ..

    Good luck with whatever you decide to do ...

    With thoughts - Hilary

  16. I'm sorry about the loss of your Vicar.
    As for NaNo, you will sacrifice to do it - blogging, family, etc. However, it's an excellent opportunity for completing a book project. I had all the time in the world to write my first book, but I couldn't take years with the second - NaNo forced me to complete my task. I'm glad I did it last year!

  17. So sorry you're feeling blue - with your health and grief together (plus this ghastly weather)it's hard to find something uplifting.

    Re NaNo - I loved it last year as it was the first serious writing I had ever done and I completed a novel. I won't be doing it this year as I'm working on two projects that NaNo really won't help with and the devotion needed for NaNo is better spent on these instead.

    A plus was meeting up with fellow writers (in tea shops!) all working towards the same thing.

  18. Sorry to hear, Madeleine! Go for it! You'll make it easily when focused.


  19. Dear Madeleine,
    I have been diagnosed with severe clinical depression. For what its worth, when I can, I embrace the therapeutic and healing magic that can be found in the written word.
    Please never put pressure on yourself. I know emotional 'cans of worms', can be dredged up. However, through this, my dear friend, you will embrace the inspiration that beats within your writing heart. In peace and happy writing, your way, Gary

  20. Madeleine, first off I want to say sorry that I haven't popped by your blog much lately!!! I hope to remedy that!

    Secondly, I am so sorry for your loss - it's hard to lose anyone that important to us in our lives.

    As for NaNoWriMo? The thing I always get out of it is a complete manuscript, albeit in rough draft for, that I can then work on shaping into something special. Possibly with some of them I will never go far with revision, but I haven't written any off entirely yet. I guess NaNo just gives me a serious 'boost' and gets me all of the way there with a first draft, or at least very close to all the way.

    Plus, if you win you get that free proof copy I mentioned a while back on my blog! :)

  21. I am sorry to hear of your friend, Tara. Hugs and my sympathies.

    My sister's husband died very suddenly last fall, so I can understand.

    I've dealt with the big D, which is why I say writing is my sanity.

    If you ever need to vent ... you know where to find my email.

  22. I mean, Madeleine. My brain is metling.

  23. I'm so sorry to hear of your loss.

    The beauty of NaNo is that there is no fail. It's a fantastic motivator and that in itself is a win.

  24. I did the past 2 NaNos and finished both. It was very good for me because I became motivated to drive myself and I proved what I could do. It's a great writing exercise. You should at least try.

    Tossing It Out

  25. I haven't done nanowrimo. Don't think I'll have any time. As for your creativity, that will come back in full force as soon as your sadness clears. Of that I have no doubt. :)

  26. I'm so sorry.
    Take care of yourself.

  27. some great pros and cons thank you everyone.
    I am feeling a lot better today, but we have the memorial service this afternoon, so I hope I don't go down hill again. Hugs x


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