NaNoWriMo Day Nineteen Update

It’s been a crazy week.

I did really well on Monday, writing 2,017 words, tying for my third best day so far this month. Tuesday was an average day, at 1,748 words.

Wednesday was my worst day all month. I only wrote 183 words that day.

It’s generally been more difficult for the last couple of weeks. I try to write about 400 to 500 words every morning before work. It’s quiet, and I can get started on a scene. When I get home after work, it’s relatively easy to pick up where I left off and then reach my word goal for the day.

Since the smartboard was installed in my classroom, I’ve only had a couple of days when I’ve been able to write in the morning. I’ve been spending my time adapting my lesson plans to the smartboard.

On the other hand, it’s been fun putting the pep talks from the Young Writers Program website into the smartboard software to share with my students. Not all of them have logged into the site, so I’m able to share the pep talks with them this way.

Wednesday was a particularly bad day for writing. I worked all day. Then I spent an hour with my kickball co-coach on the first day of our school’s kickball team tryouts. Then I rushed home, picked up my younger son, got us all fed, and back to San Francisco for Family Math Night. We didn’t get back home to San Bruno until 9 p.m. I was so tired, I only managed 183 words. I kept falling asleep sitting up at my laptop.

I gave up, updated my pathetic word count for the day on the NaNoWriMo website, and thanked my lucky stars for the word buffer I’d been able to build up so far this month.

I got back on track on Thursday with 1,731 words. Friday, I was very tired, and only wrote 1,045 words. I figured I’d easily reach my wordcount goals on Saturday and Sunday, so I could slack off a bit on Friday.

It was also a good day at school on Friday. Two of the girls in my class have already reached their word goals for the month. I filled in the progress chart hanging up in my classroom for both of them, and gave them their First-Class Novelist buttons. I hope they both keep writing until the end of the month.

Do I really keep track of how many words I wrote each day? Yes, I have an Excel spreadsheet where I do just that. (Yeah, I’m really that nerdy.)

Right now, it’s early Saturday afternoon and I’ve already written exactly 1,600 words. I’ll write more this evening after dinner. I’m shooting for about 2,000 words again today.

Tomorrow, I go to the Night of Writing Dangerously. I’m so excited. They reached the goal they wanted, with $50,587 raised. There have been 327 people fundraising for NaNoWriMo, with 216 of them making it to the Night of Writing Dangerously. I’m honored to be one of them, and so grateful to everyone who contributed. I’m sure I’ll have lots to say about the Night of Writing Dangerously.

Who knows? I might even post a blog entry from the event itself.

NaNoWriMo Update – Day Thirteen

I had my best day yet. I wrote 2,513 words today. I am currently at 23,759, which is 47.5% of 50K.

I thought I’d do a little data comparison today.

According to NaNoWriMo, I’m averaging 1,827 words per day. Young Writers Program (YWP) says 1,828.

NaNoWriMo says, at this rate, I should finish on November 27, 2011. YWP says November 28, 2011.

NaNoWriMo says I need to write 1,458 words per day to finish on time. YWP says 1,544.

I think I have figured out the discrepancy. Both sites agree that this is the thirteenth day. NaNoWriMo says there are 18 days remaining, while YWP says 17.

NaNoWriMo Update – Day 12

I write like
Neil Gaiman

I Write Like by Mémoires, journal software. Analyze your writing!

So, I tried I Write Like this morning with what I wrote this morning for my NaNovel. Interesting. Maybe I should read some Neil Gaiman. All I’m familiar with so far is his work on the Sandman comic, which I loved. And I’ve got The Graveyard Book on my wishlist.

Yesterday, apparently, I wrote like Kurt Vonnegut.

It’s now about 12:30 in the afternoon and I have already hit my wordcount for today. I wrote 1,812 words today, with a running total of 21,246.

I’ve been over 1,667 words per day for nine days in a row now. I’m averaging 1,770 words per day. At this rate, I will hit 50K on November 28th.

NaNoWriMo Update – Day 9

They have the wordcount widgets up and running at the NaNoWriMo website. I’ve put the basic Participant Widget in the sidebar on the right.

I like the My Month widget, but it’s not working now, so I’ve taken it down.

Obviously, I need to write more today to reach my goal. I’m currently at 16,327, and I need to reach 16,667 today. I only wrote 362 words this morning before work.

[updated 11/19/11 because the My Month widget hasn’t been working for the past couple of days]

NaNoWriMo Update – Day Seven

I’m currently at 12,103 words, which according to the stats on the Young Writers Program website, puts me at 24.21%. Oddly enough, the NaNoWriMo website doesn’t have exactly the same stats; it doesn’t tell you your percentage.

They also don’t have the word count widgets up and running with their new website yet. I’m not complaining. The new website is clean and fast. I just miss the widgets. I like to include them in my blog posts, and I haven’t been able to do that so far this year.

I attended my first write-in on Monday (yesterday). There’s one close to me at a Panera. Got there a little late, but was there for over two hours.

My story is proceeding nicely – and I’m having fun.

NaNoWriMo and Field Trip Update

The field trip was great! We’re already talking about doing it again next year. I hope it becomes a tradition for the fifth grade students at my school. ¬†There were two other schools there at the same time we were there. One was a group of Muslim girls from Sacramento; they’ve been going there for eight years. And I think one of the teachers from the other school said they’d been going there for seven years.

It was a great experience. I learned a lot about watersheds – and I hope my students did too. The people at the Marin Headlands Institute were awesome. The Field Science Educator with my group, Casey, did a great job. Jen, our coordinator, was attentive and helpful. And everyone was pleased with the food.

As a vegan, I can count on just about any restaurant having pasta with marinara sauce. I’ve had it everywhere – and then some. I must say the marinara sauce I had in the dining hall at the Marin Headlands Institute was probably the best I’ve ever had.

While I enjoyed the visit to the pond to collect samples of macroinvertebrates, the night hike to the beach to listen to the waves with “animal” ears was great. And only superseded by digging in the sand to find bioluminescent plankton. That was really cool!

I did get some writing done. The students were to stay in their bunks quietly until 6:45 a.m. I woke up earlier than that, slipped out of the dormitory and headed over to the Owl’s Roost around 5 a.m. or so, my usual wake-up time. The Owl’s Roost was the room set aside for adults, a little child-free sanctuary. There was a little kitchen just down the hall with coffee, and comfy chairs in the roost itself. I wrote both mornings we were there.

On the first, I only wrote 1,485 words. To win NaNoWriMo and reach 50K, you should write 1,667 words per day. On Wednesday, I wrote in the morning again at the Owl’s Roost, and then again in the afternoon after arriving back at home: 1,701 words.

On Thursday, I only wrote 1,535 words. The good news that day was that I had a smartboard installed in my classroom. The bad news was that they installed it over my whiteboard, which I wanted moved to another wall. And since I haven’t received any training yet, I had to jump in real quick to be ready to teach on Friday. I didn’t even use it on Thursday itself. The students had a couple of tests, and we took it easy after the field trip, plus we had some grade level planning time.

Again, I didn’t write at all Friday morning, still familiarizing myself with the software for the smartboard, and planning some lessons. But this afternoon and evening, I put on my new fedora, my writing hat, and cranked out 2,022 words. I am now at 6,743 words, just slightly ahead of my word goal of 6,667.