Posted in Writing

Camp NaNoWriMo Tag 2017

This was my first ever YouTube video and the audio is a bit low on it, something I’ve fixed in my newer videos. If you’re not a video person, you can read the transcript below. There’s also (non-auto) captions.


Hey, I’m Hayley. Camp NaNoWriMo starts tomorrow and Burgess Taylor has put together 10 questions for a Camp Nanowrimo 2017 tag that I thought would be a good topic for my first ever YouTube video.

1. What are you working on for Camp NaNoWriMo?

I’ll be writing the first draft of my New Adult Urban Fantasy novel. So it’s about people hitting the university/college age…but with magic. The magic mainly manifests as an ability to use and learn known spells. But the presence of magic in the world is leading to the emergence of magical beings.

I’m using mostly Norse and Sumerian mythology but not in a literal way so you’re not going to see Loki turn up in my book. Unfortunately. ’cause I’d like Tom Hiddleston…in my book.

2. What’s your goal for Camp NaNoWriMo?

I wanna write eighty thousand words before the end of the month and then I want to move on to outlining book two. I’ll link my blog post about my writing schedule in the description below.

3. What’s your favorite (or go to) survival item for (Camp) NaNo events?

So I haven’t heard anybody else say this yet but um for me it’s candles. I find candles relaxing but they also help me think. So sometimes if I’m having trouble with an idea or I can’t quite see how to solve a problem I’ll light a candle and just kinda stare at the flame.

4. How long have you been participating in NaNo events? Nano? Camp?

I did NaNoWriMo, like, over ten years ago. The November one. I’ve never done a Camp NaNoWriMo. In fact, it didn’t exist the last time I was doing NaNo.

5. What (writing) software do you use for writing?

I outline in Google Sheets and then I transfer everything into Scrivener for drafting and editing. I’m actually hoping to move to Novlr but it’s a monthly subscription that you have to pay and I’m on a moratorium for subscriptions right now until I rein it a little bit.

6. Do you handwrite your novels?

I do a little bit of handwriting for outlining and taking notes.

  • This is my bullet journal. I do have a notebook in here for writing ideas down so I use that sometimes but this is more of a constant, on-the-go thing than anything that I would sit down to actually purposefully brainstorm in.
  • That’s where this bad boy comes in. That was a whiteboard, in case that wasn’t obvious and it just looked like a big white thing.
  • Various print-outs and scribbled notes. With amazing drawings on, because I’m *such* a talented artist.
  • I have my clipboard.
  • Index cards.

So I mentioned before about using a candle if I’m struggling to work through something, um, another trick that can work for me is changing the medium that I’m working in. So if I’ve been doing a lot of stuff digitally, then I’ll move to paper and if one type of paper isn’t working then I might switch to putting stuff on index cards, or I might try the whiteboard.

7. Plotter? Pantser? Or somewhere in between?

I’m definitely a plotter. If I try and free-write, everything just dries up. I end up feeling completely uncreative and like I have no ideas. When I purposefully try to pin down ideas and work from a very structured place I actually find I’m a lot more creative. That’s just how my mind works.

8. How long have you been writing?

About two months? No, I’m kidding. Like most people I was writing when I was a kid, um, although more so when I was a teenager and it was mostly fanfiction.

But when I got to my early twenties, it just wasn’t happening, the writing wasn’t coming. Then last year I started listening to writing podcasts and that was where I learned, not just about outlining, but about all the different ways that authors do it. And I was finally able to start getting ideas again and writing.

So even though I’ve always wanted to be a writer, there’s been a massive gap of like eight years where I haven’t written and it was only, soft of, the end of last year that I really got back into it.

9. Best writing advice?

Figuring out narrative structure has made a huge difference to me.

Whether it’s a traditional three-act structure or Joseph Campbell’s Hero’s Journey or Dan Harmon’s version of the Hero’s Journey where he’s stripped it back (links below). Or Blake Snyder’s Save the Cat Beat Sheet or my new favourite, Larry Brooks Story Engineering, er, four part story structure. Super catchy name. I’m not sure what it’s called but it looks kinda like a ‘W’ so I think of it as either the 4-part or the W.

And that knowledge of story structure and how it applies to all the books and media that I love has been super useful in helping me write things that I can finish. From stopping me getting blocked in the middle or having to delete a load of scenes and wasting the words.

10. Favorite part of (Camp) NaNo?

Well, it’s not actually started yet, unless I’m super slow at editing this video in which case it might have started. But so far, my favourite thing is that there’s loads of activity on the hashtags. I’ve also been obsessively stalking YouTube videos by people who are talking about what they’re doing to prepare and their survival kits and I’ve really loved all that content.

So that’s it for me, if you’re doing Camp NaNo too, consider yourself tagged.

And if you liked this, my first ever YouTube video, leave me a Like, please!

Thanks for watching, bye!



Multi-purpose geek. Mum. User Experience Designer. Retired WoW player. Reader and writer of Science Fiction and Fantasy.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s