Monday, November 24, 2014

Note to Self

It's a bit early, but I've managed to squeak across that 50k NaNoWriMo finish line! The draft's not done yet, probably still another 20k to go. Hoping to have most of that wrapped up before the chaos of Christmas prep begins so I can let it simmer a bit over the holidays.

When I'm drafting, I don't fine tune as I go. Instead I leave myself notes on how to fix things later.

  • this is all telling
  • cliche alert!
  • this stinks, but the core of the scene is good
  • this isn't the right word
  • do a find search for probably & maybe
  • check to see how many days have passed
  • what colour is his hair??
  • add in some scene setting
  • does the doctor have a last name?
  • good place to add description
  • blech - fix this

Do you leave yourself notes as you go? Or do you have to stop and fix it at the time?


  1. haha I do the same thing!! Often it's simply, "FIX!"

  2. I don't leave notes to myself but that's a great idea. Good luck finishing!

  3. By and large I sail through and make notes.

    Congratulations on hitting the 50K! And so early! You were cranking out those words, Jemi!

  4. I've gotten so I make notes as well. Easier to fix later.
    Congratulations on beating NaNo!

  5. Congratulations, Jemi! Great news!

    I do leave comments in Track Changes in the margins whenever I realize a problem to fix later. :)

  6. Congrats!

    I tend to edit as I go, so I usually fix those things as I see them.

  7. Hi, Jemi,

    Congrats on finishing! I still have a ways to go. Yes, I do make notes as I go - in a notebook for plot points and in the ms for stuff like wrong word choices and details I haven't settled on.

  8. I don't leave myself notes, but it's a great idea. Happy Thanksgiving, Jemi.

  9. I do exactly that. My big one is the number of days passing.

  10. How funny, because that's what I do too, Jemi!

    But sometimes, the notes (I use post-its) fall off and get stuck on other parts of the manuscript. Tis about that time, I completely lose my mind :)

  11. Wow! Good for you, Jemi!

    If I am trying to get through a chapter in the rough draft, I do leave notes in it, too!

  12. Lynda - I've left that one too!

    Natalie - thanks! It's on the right track...mostly :)

    Jeff - thanks! I had a lot of bottled up stuff apparently!

    Alex - thanks! I'm enjoying this one :)

    Elizabeth - that's a great idea! I'm using Scrivener so it's a little different, but same idea :)

    Diane - I wish! My brain's often just not there :)

    Joy - I've never gotten the hang of using a notebook - sounds like a great way to do it!

    Thanks Karen - hope you enjoy your turkey day!

    Susan - yes!! That one always gets me too!

    Wendy - oy! That would make me completely crackers!!

    Kelly - thanks! Love those notes - although sometimes I wonder what exactly they meant later on! :)

  13. Congratulations on finishing before the end of NaNoWriMo.

  14. I leave a lot of notes, because when I'm drafting I don't want to stop and lose my flow.

    Congrats on finishing.

  15. Congrats on doing NaNo and getting so far! I'll write notes in parentheses of what I need to come back to fix and just keep writing otherwise I would get stuck in editing and never finish!

  16. Thanks Mason! :)

    Medeia - thanks. That's my strategy too :)

    Lynn - thanks! And isn't that the truth :)

  17. no, I just talk with myself :))

  18. Dezzy - well, you are a translator, so as long as you're keeping your languages straight, you're good!

    Thanks Teresa :)

  19. wow!! you are crazy fast! I think you exceeded last year, too, right? Love your spunk Jemi!

  20. I sometimes leave myself notes as I write- but I love this idea and definitely need to so it more. I can see how it helps you wrote faster. Awesome job making it through the finish line!

    Happy Thanksgiving-

  21. Hi Jemi -- I won't make it to 50,000 words for NaNo, but I was working on a novel I'd already startd some time ago, so adding a good 30,000 words (by the end of the month) really helps.

    When I'm trying to get a lot of words in and don't want to stop to edit, I use batches of Xs for a character's name or highlight in yellow where I need to add stuff or fix something wrong. As a binge writer, I need to keep going once I start.

  22. Tammy - thanks! I could first draft all the time! Love it :)

    Jess - thanks! The notes really help when I'm reading it through again :)

    Pat - yes! That 30k is awesome. That's one of the things I love about nano - we can tweak it to suit our needs. Sounds like we're kind of similar in that binge writing :)

  23. Wow, I'm so impressed! That's a lot of words for one month. Congratulations on getting a first draft done so quickly!

  24. Thanks Beth! I LOVE first drafts - could write them forever!! :)

  25. I stop and fix as I go along. That's why the thought of doing NaNo terrifies me.
    But I like your technique.
    Congrats Jemi!

  26. In the past, I've basically left notes. But, I've also stopped to research anything that is necessary for me to move forward.

    I'm going to try a different method with my new project, and will talk about it if it works for me.

    I love how we all work in different ways and still come up with the same product - a novel :)

  27. Michelle - thanks! I love nano :)

    Carol - that's one of the things I love about writing too - so many ways to do it! :)

  28. Hey Jemi,

    Note to self : "Must leave a comment on Jemi's wonderful blog site, eh!"

    Well done on the 50k mark, Jemi

    Yep, I also try to avoid cliches like the plague....

    Have a good one, eh.


  29. I'm so not a NaNo writer. I admire those who are and stick with it!

    Here's to that next book.

  30. Congrats on reaching 50k! I leave myself notes, too. Most of them are either "add description here" or "find better word later." ;)

  31. Gary - like the plague, eh??? :)

    Lee - thanks! I love nano - think I've written 5 or 6 by now :)

    Shelley - thanks! Those are like my notes too - especially with adding more description! :)

  32. Woo hoo! Congratulations for surpassing the 50k mark!

    I usually edit as I go, but am trying not to as much. If I have something that I really want to revisit, I change the font color to red. If I think something might need to be deleted. I change the font color to blue and try to move on.

  33. Congratulations, Jemi! Great news, well done.

  34. Odd. I remember commenting on this post a couple weeks ago. I think. But maybe not.

    I type notes into the text and highlight them in yellow so I can find them again. I'm sure someday I'll miss one and submit something with a note still inside.

  35. Ava - using the colours is a great idea! Might try that myself :)

    Thanks Nas!!

    Linda - I will probably do the exact same thing! :)