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Week four of NaNoWriMo Young Writers Program

Week four of NaNoWriMo Young Writers Program

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Our last meeting focused on what to do next with our novel drafts, how to edit them and become even better writers.

Our last meeting focused on what to do next with our novel drafts, how to edit them and become even better writers.

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Week four of NaNoWriMo Young Writers Program

  1. 1. NaNoWriMo Young Writers Program 4th MEETING NOVEMBER 30, 2020
  2. 2. Congrats on completing 29% of our shared word count goals for our classroom!
  3. 3. 112,100 56,936 It’s actually almost 51% of the original goal that we set on Nov. 2nd!
  4. 4. Congratulations! You’ve written a first draft of a novel! Now… let’s get to work editing it!
  5. 5. FIRST: TAKE A FEW DAYS OFF. Then, PRINT your story and READ it from beginning to end, to see if it makes sense.
  6. 6. Ask yourself: Would someone reading your novel be able to follow the sequence of events without any confusion or difficulty? Think about movie bloopers where something inconsistent or incoherent happens. Are there any inconsistencies in your novel?
  7. 7. A noveldoesn’thaveto berealistic,butit shouldfeel to thereaderlikea long,continuousdream. Is thereanythingyouforgottomention?Arethere placesinyournovelthatfeellikea disruptionof the continuousdreamyouarecreatingforyourreader? Anypartswhereyourreadermight“wakeup”andsay “Thatdoesn’tmakesense!”or“Huh?What?”
  8. 8. Is thereanythingyoucouldaddthatwouldmakethat long,continuousdreammoreVIVIDandLIFELIKE?
  9. 9. Nowdo it! Findone scene in yourdraft that needs more vividdetail, andadd that. Thinkabout what your character shouldbe seeing, feeling, tasting, smelling, or hearing. Ready, Set, GO!
  10. 10. Tip: Is thereanythingin your draft whereyouforget the maxim“Show, don’t tell”? Make sureyouare letting events unfoldina dramatic wayandreallyshowing them, insteadof just recountingthem.
  11. 11. Anyone want to share your revised scene?
  12. 12. Next, read your draft again, from beginning to end, but this time, READ IT OUT LOUD. (Audience optional.) 
  13. 13. In this phase, you’re listening for how your novel SOUNDS. • Does the dialogue sound believable, like real people talking? • Does the dialogue always move the story forward? • Do descriptions take too long, or take away from the action? • Is the pacing right? Are there spots that seem too slow or too fast?
  14. 14. Is everything accurate? Is there anything you might have gotten wrong? This is really hard and you may want the help of one or two readers you can trust. You want to make sure that you haven’t made any assumptions about society, nature, science, people or animals that are incorrect and easily disputed. • If your story has a dog in it, give it to a dog owner to make sure the dog’s behavior sounds realistic. • If your story is about a person from another culture, give it to someone from that culture. • If your story takes place in outer space, give it to someone familiar with science and physics so that they can make sure your scenes are plausible.
  15. 15. When you’re giving your story to someone, BE HUMBLE. BE GRATEFUL. Don’t argue with them. Take everything they say as a GIFT. It truly is a huge gift of their time and their trust in you, to be brave enough to tell you what they think of your story.
  16. 16. After you’ve fully investigated any inaccuracies or inconsistencies, and made sure your plot is believable yet suspenseful, you’re done with Draft #2. TAKE ANOTHER BREAK!! During this break, read at least: • 20 poems • 3 short stories
  17. 17. Immerse yourself in great literature that you like, and read it OUT LOUD. Listen for the lyricism of the writing. This is a good time to read “classic” or “award-winning” authors—universally acknowledged good writers, not beginners. Let these master craftsmen sink into your subconscious so that you will internalize their wisdom.
  18. 18. Joseph Brodky, How to Read a Book, 1988: http://www.nytimes.com/1988/06/12/books/how-to-read-a-book.html?pagewanted=all
  19. 19. CHAT CHALLENGE: List three poets that you like, and that you’re going to read during the break between your 2nd draft and your 3rd.
  20. 20. Can’t think of any? Here’s what your peers suggested – write these names down!
  21. 21. CHAT CHALLENGE: List three fiction writers that you like, and that you’re going to read during the break between your 2nd draft and your 3rd draft.
  22. 22. Can’t think of any? Here’s what your peers suggested – write these names down!
  23. 23. After you’ve read some poetry and stories, read your book again. This is the time to get out a thesaurus and look up some of your most common words and phrases to see if you can find a new way of expressing the same thing. Look for: • Clichés • Expressions you’ve heard before • Metaphors you’ve read before • Any words, phrases or punctuation you repeat a lot
  24. 24. Now, check for spelling and grammar errors.
  25. 25. Use different types of sentences. Highlight each instance of passive voice and consider maybe changing it to active voice. • The forest fire destroyed the whole suburb. (active) • The whole suburb was destroyed by the forest fire. (passive)
  26. 26. Change these examples! • The man was bitten by the dog. • The savannah was roamed by beautiful giraffes.
  27. 27. Proofreading symbols:
  28. 28. Once you’ve revised it this time, you’ll have a strong 3rd draft and it’ll be time to start seeking the opinions and feedback of readers! REMEMBER YOUR CRITIQUE ETIQUETTE. BE HUMBLE. BE GRATEFUL.
  29. 29. That DOESN’T mean that you have to revise it the way someone else tells you to. This is your book. You’re the only person who can revise it while preserving the original intent. If they say something is inaccurate or incorrect, fix that. But if they say: “Why don’t you write it like this…” DON’T. JUST NOD AND SAY THANK YOU. Then rewrite the way YOU would rewrite it.
  30. 30. Whenyou’rereadyto finda readerto give youan honest critique, use the “Forums”tab at the top of the NaNoWriMosite to findthe “Critiques and Feedback”discussionboard:
  31. 31. Again, congratulations on writing your first draft! Take your time with editing and revising it and let me know if you need help!
  32. 32. And don’t forget the library when you’re rich and famous! I know you all are very talented and will go far in your writing. I hope to see your published books in the library someday. 

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