I am most pleased to FINALLY have turned the two novel writing challenges from Liberty Hall into exercises. They are freely available to ALL at Liberty Hall's wiki, located here: http://tinyurl.com/nfdedy
If you do the entire exercises, at the end of 60 days you will have the basic worldbuilding information to support writing your novel AND a novel outline in 20 sections. I suggest doing the exercises with writing partners.
Please feel free to use the exercises, with attribution if you post them online somewhere. Also, please let me know how they can be improved.
As one who went through both challenges to the very end, I highly recommend these exercise regimes.
My own recommendation is to start doing the world building first. Then when you need more plotting for the world building part, start the novel outlining exercoses and sort of interleave them as you go with most of the outlining occurring after the world building is done.
Mike's novel outlining exercise is a variation of the snowflake method and I found it very useful.
I did my own version of NaNoWriMo in July with the outlining exercise and wrote 53K in two weeks because of the pre-work. (I had my world building done ahead of time.) If you have intentions to participate in NaNoWriMo, I'd get cracking on these two exercises.
The world building exercise resulted in the creation of another novel idea that needs more of the outlining part (although some of that has been done during the worldbuilding part). That was well worth the effort.
I'd also try and work with a few people participating along with you. The feedback from doing it over at Liberty Hall in the forums was invaluable.
It's well worth it. Mike did a great job.
[This message has been edited by Owasm (edited September 17, 2009).]
I'm really starting to kick myself for not having looked online for writing resources sooner. I think, on some level, I just always considered it a solitary pursuit... I joined a couple writing groups when I saw flyers for them, but the stuff I'm finding now that I'm looking for it... Hatrack, Liberty Hall, the Black Hole (not encouraging)! Thanks for the link and the work that went into making this information available.
Posts: 29 | Registered: Sep 2009
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Yeah, it was the idea of trying Nano yet again without being prepared that got me started on this. Not that I think doing all this pre-work is the ONLY way to go, but for some of us, it helps a lot.
The outlining IS an extrapolation of Randy Ingermanson's Snowflake method. I made sure let him know what I was doing ahead of time so that he could object if he thought my interpretation was too derivative. He didn't have any objections.
Owasm, I know that each of the exercises was tough to get through, and you may be the ONLY person who completed them all. What do you think about my combining them into a single 45-day exercise instead? Interleaving the bits and pieces, as you did, and leaving out some of the critiquing? Focusing the critiquing instead on larger views instead of being as specific as I was?
A 45 day program would certainly work as there are a number of critiquing days folded into the plans and Sundays were catch-up. Some of the environmental aspects of the worldbuilding and the outlining might be combined as well.
As far as the critiquing levels, I thought the more detailed critiquing challenged my work, which was very good at the formative stages. So I would still request as thoughtful a critique as the critiquer has time to give. General thoughts are still great, but other people's comments can lead the writer to down paths they wouldn't consider on their own. It did that for me.
I can't emphasize enough the group aspect of the project. I would recommend at least three, but even if a writer has a spouse or friend comment on their work at each stage it would make the output better. The group comments really helped the process and, kept me at it.
For NaNoWriMo, a writer who has gone through the exercises, could just concentrate on writing.
[This message has been edited by Owasm (edited September 19, 2009).]