A re-hashed tribute to the final Harry Potter installment

Entertainment

In honour of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 1 opening tonight, I’m re-posting a recap of the final HP book, which I wrote on my old LJ when it came out in 2007. Enjoy! [Please note: as this is basically a summary for the entire final book, it has spoilers for both parts 1 AND 2 of the Deathly Hallows movies. You’ve been warned.]

NaNoWriMo Midterm Report

Writing

[Cross-posted on OnWriters.wordpress.com.]

This is post is going to sound like one long excuse, but I’m abandoning my NaNoWriMo novel. Remember when I said I wanted to write something so I could enter it in the Terry Pratchett first novel contest? Well, I spent months trying to come up with a workable idea that fulfilled its requirements, and I thought I’d found one that was good enough to pursue, but after writing a little over 8,000 words this month, I’ve decided it would be a waste of time to continue forcing myself to work on an idea that I didn’t feel very strongly about. Writing is always incredibly hard work, but this was ridiculous; every sentence felt like pulling teeth. I just had no inspiration or motivation to continue. And now that I’ve decided to let it go, I don’t even feel bad about it; though I had put a lot of work into it, there was little worth salvaging.

Meanwhile, I’d been nursing a different idea for a sci-fi novel for a long time and I couldn’t stop thinking about it. Though I figured I’d just work on it once I finished this manuscript, I ultimately decided that it wasn’t worth it – especially since I had little faith that I could produce a readable 80,000-word manuscript by Dec. 31. So I dropped my NaNoWriMo novel, and I’ve been working on my other idea with no set deadline in mind – and so far it’s been going really well.

What about meeting my NaNoWriMo goal? What about confronting this challenge? Sorry, but I never really cared about writing a novel in a month. My writing goals for the contest just happened to coincide with NaNoWriMo. Besides, I’ve done it before, and though it’s a great challenge for a lot of people who don’t allow themselves the luxury of pursuing their creative writing interests on a regular basis, I wasn’t really getting anything out of it that wasn’t servicing my Terry Pratchett aspirations. Personally, the act of writing is somewhat diminished by pursuing the all-important Word Count. That’s just not how I work. I need to think about what I’m writing each day before continuing, which takes time. Otherwise I’m left with a novel that, even pared down to its bare bones, doesn’t even meet my standards for something worth editing.

I don’t want to put NaNoWriMo down. It’s a great challenge that encourages people who don’t usually write to make time to finally write the novel that’s been at the back of their heads for – very probably – a long time. Me? I’m looking to make novel-writing something I do every month, not just in November.

NaNoWriMoing

Writing

[Cross-posted on OnWriters.wordpress.com.]

For the third time, I’m participating in NaNoWriMo. The first time I did it, in high school, I didn’t finish. The second time, while I was doing my undergrad at York University, I was so swamped with schoolwork that it took me almost the entire month to write 10,000 words and then I pounded out the last 40,000 in about 3 or 4 days mostly because people didn’t believe that I could.

This year? This year, I want to write something so I can enter it for the Terry Pratchett Prize. Will I have a good shot at winning with something I wrote in just a few weeks? Maybe not. I have, however, put a lot of thought into the concept and outline, so I don’t think it will be terrible. In any case, my NaNoWriMo novel will at the very least be a good exercise in writing; it will get my creative juices flowing for whatever my next project is, perhaps.

In the meantime, this website really depressed me – though it may have some valid points – to the extent that I almost didn’t want to promote it by linking to it. In opposition to its general theme: writers should never be discouraged from the act of writing; though it may not always be literary gold, it has value in the act itself for the individual. It’s the job of the publishing industry to sort through the slush pile.