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Monday, November 19, 2007

Help on NaNoWriMo

Not really cheating, just being creative when you're stuck for words or if you need a few extra words.

1. Contractions, who needs 'em. Go with could not instead of couldn't and get an extra word.

2. Periods don't count as words but "and" does.

3. Stuck in the middle. Kill all your characters and have two new characters come in to investigate the murder.

4. Not writing a romance? Make one happen between the least likely pair of characters. That secondary character that's been trying to steal the show and the president. Why not?

5. Writing romance? Kill off one of the main characters and then have the other mourn, but bring back the one you killed.

6. Put a genie in a bottle in your story. Have your character find it and start making wishes.

7. Everybody loves flesh eating zombies stories and think of all the description you could add.

8. Flat tire. Of course, this has to happen when the character must get to wherever they are going now!!!

9. An evil knight steals your heroine and locks her in a tower where the hero must rescue her before the time runs out on the hourglass or she'll have to marry the evil knight.

10. Have your characters get into a debate about anything: cats vs. dogs, peas vs green beans, soccer vs basketball, blond vs brunette. Oh and don't forget to keep bringing it up every time they get angry.

11. Have a character that uses the f-word. A lot.

12. Have a character who likes to pick pocket for fun. Lots of suspense and they could find out stuff about the other characters and use it as blackmail.

13. Do a major no-no. Have your character sit down with a cup of tea and think about everything that has happened up to this point in her LIFE and what it means to her. Don't forget to interrupt her thoughts with more tea description. Then have the male character do the same. Or even simultaneous. Sitting across from each other sipping tea not talking but thinking of everything the other should or shouldn't know. You could go on for hours.

14. Lock your main characters in a room and see what happens. Especially fun in a romance.

15. Waste time writing on your blog and checking e-mail and everyone else's blog. Oh, wait, that's what I do. :)

Added because I laughed out loud when I read Kristi's additions:

16. (The late Robert Jordan's favorite tactic, IMO) Describe in detail the clothing of everyone in the room. Even if you just did it in the last scene.

17. Name every character with multiple names (John Jacob Jingle Heimer Schmidt) and use all of them every time you mention the character (a search and replace in Word will do this rather quickly if you've already gone down a simpler path....

18. (Especially for a historical romance), use a longer phrase such as "Bloody Hell" or "Hell's Bells" instead of the blah (and short) "damn". 2-for-1.

19. Add a completely gratuitous kinky sex scene involving your story's villain (s&m, multiple partners, prostitutes, vegetables, all of the above if you're so inclined). Doesn't matter what genre you're writing, call it "character building".

I'm going to add because what the hell I like even numbers:

20. Add a prologue or two or five, everything you made up in character development throw in the prologue. Include an epilogue too. Or five. One for a year later, one for a year after that and so on until the characters finally die. Throw in a sideways-logue too. Don't know what it is, but if you figure it out let me know.

5 comments:

Kristi said...

16. (The late Robert Jordan's favorite tactic, IMO) Describe in detail the clothing of everyone in the room. Even if you just did it in the last scene.

17. Name every character with multiple names (John Jacob Jingle Heimer Schmidt) and use all of them every time you mention the character (a search and replace in Word will do this rather quickly if you've already gone down a simpler path....)

Is the tea thing really that bad? What if your protagonist has coffee instead of tea? Hmm...there are a few authors that I've read lately who hadn't heard that....

Kristi said...

(I forgot one)

18. (Especially for a historical romance), use a longer phrase such as "Bloody Hell" or "Hell's Bells" instead of the blah (and short) "damn". 2-for-1.

Kristi said...

19. Add a completely gratuitous kinky sex scene involving your story's villain (s&m, multiple partners, prostitutes, vegetables, all of the above if you're so inclined). Doesn't matter what genre you're writing, call it "character building".

Cynthia said...

These are priceless, I nearly snorted my coffee on a couple of those (especially the sit down and have tea one). Great ideas all around.

Thanks for dropping in over at my place, I'm feeling better about the work. Oh and sorry I never added you over at Nano, by the time the search function came back up - I'd quit.

Kristi said...

Glad to be of service :)