Tuesday, January 02, 2007

The Great Novel Race: Rules of the Game: Update

The rules below still stand BUT the Novel Race now has its own site so go over there and post a message to join:


(Info below is slightly out of date now but I will keep it for posterity!!! Kate, July 07)

Well, things are shaping up rather nicely on the Great Novel Race. This is about the only race many of us writers have ever stood a chance of doing OK in. I was the world's worst at PE at school. Truly terrible. I can't run for toffee and have no co-ordination so eggs and spoons would part company without milli-seconds.

Consquently I am very excited about this. We are a laid back bunch but we have decided there must be rules of the game, so here goes:

  • The race is mainly for motivational purposes, but Lucy and I will be working out a prize for the winners...(updated June 07: our prize has been awarded to Liz but we're carrying on the race anyway!)
  • If you’re going to take part, then leave a message in my comments.
  • Ideally you need to have a blog, however embryonic, to take part. It's easy to set one up with Blogger and can take as much or as little time as you like, but it's here that people can visit you.
  • Updated June 07: the Race is a flexible beast, and it's up to you how often you come to the Friday Coffee Break or visit the other blogs (though obviously, like your head teacher always told you, the more you put in, the more you get out). BUT as we'll all be linking to YOUR blog, please do link to the other Novel Racers from yours.
  • Most of us are aiming for 100,000 words or so. Of course, we’ll all have different word targets, but a typical full-length novel is between 80,000-100,000 words. If you’re writing for a market or publisher with lower word count requirements (e.g. Harlequin Mills & Boon) then you might like to commit to writing two!
  • If we use word counters like the Zokutou word meter or the Evolution Progress Meter, then we'll be able to see at a glance how we're doing.
  • You don’t have to be published or contracted to take part – in fact, the more experienced I’ve become, the slower I’ve got at writing books, so newcomers may be at an advantage – but you do need to be pretty serious to come and play…
  • Finally, do share tips or good links on the subject of productivity and feel free to cheerlead or shout from the sidelines if you’re not doing the Race yourself.

On your marks...get set...GO!



Blogger The Moon Topples said...

Looking at your list of participants, I see that this seems to be a feminine exercise. Might a body of a differing gender take part? I just last night decided to chuck my 10,000 word start and begin anew later today, and would love some external motivator like this one to help me keep going.

So can I? If I promise not to "male" up your challenge with all my testosterone?

If so, I'll build a new link section. If no, I'll root along from the sidelines.

7:10 pm  
Blogger Kate said...

You're on, the Moon Topples. So long as you can cope with our girliness? Actually, we're not THAT girly. For example, I don't bulk buy shoes.


8:06 pm  
Blogger Kevin said...

I followed you over from Romancing the Blog.

My project is a bit different -- okay, a lot different -- from chick lit. It's media tie-in novel, which is to say it's set in a universe owned by someone else. In this case a game company. And the game itself is military science-fiction. So not much overlap with chick lit. My contract is to deliver a 80,000-word first draft on Friday, March 30. (My personal goal is to deliver on Monday, March 26 -- my wife and I are leaving for our first child-free vacation in 25 years on the 30th.)

The way media-tie-in write-for-hire works: I was given about 500 words of instruction on what the editor wants the novel to cover on January 22. I was also given the mss to novels 26, 27, & 28 and the outline for novel 29 at that time. (Mine is #30 in the series.) (I also wrote #22, WolfHunters)

I should have delivered a 5-7k chapter-by-chapter outline by yesterday, but I'm a bit behind. I will not get the go-ahead to write until my outline is approved, so my word counter may not move for a few days.

But, if you don't mind having a media-tie-in hack join your merry band, I'd like to play along.

-- KeVin K.

"It's your dream; make it work." -- Valerie K.
It only looks random.

10:32 pm  
Blogger the grump said...

Sounds like great fun. Wish I had some fiction that fit into the process to get me to write faster. Unfortunately, I'm sweating the last chapter of the third book in my "in house" trilogy. I know what I'm going to write next, but have to finish my vegetables first before I can play in another world.

Still, I would like to thank all you blogging writers. Since I've discovered you, I've learned a lot.

The Grump

11:59 pm  
Anonymous lawmummy said...

I'm late to the ball, but I'd love to participate!

I started book #2 during Nanowrimo with the best of intentions but three kids, a traveling husband, the holidays and more meant that I only wrote a few words. I started up again last month and I'm not terribly far (@7k words)... Can I use that one?

9:30 pm  
Blogger A. Writer said...

Hi! I'd like to join in if that's okay!? I know I'm maybe a bit late to join. I'm an aspiring chick lit writer. I've got one book at the editing stage and I've started another. This is a really cool idea!

A. Writer

9:30 pm  
Blogger Nichola said...


I left a comment on the blog entry for Friday 16th February, asking if I could join in too, but wasn't sure if I should comment on any entry or if it had to be this particular one, so here I am, signing up.

I've just started completely re-writing something and need someone to give me a (metaphorical) kick up the bum. ;)

1:13 am  
Blogger Saoirse Redgrave said...

Hi Kate!

When is the race over or is it whenever the first participant finishes? I think I'd like to join in the madness, but was wondering about the details...I also was considering either building on a piece that I started last night, or doing an overhaul to a piece that's sitting at just below 15K...

Tell me what seems fair to you and I'll hop in. If it's too late for me to join, that's fine, I'll peek at others' progress.

Thanks a bunch!

5:26 pm  
Blogger Jay said...

Is it to late to join at this point? I could use the extra motivation.

6:30 am  
Anonymous Judith Auld said...

Hi Kate

Apologies if you have heard from me before. I did try to add a comment last night, but can’t see it now, so am thinking it may not have worked! I’m new to all this…

Anyway, just wanted to congratulate you on reaching your target! Brilliant! And so motivating for newbie writers!

I was hoping it not too late for me to join in with the novel racers? I’m writing my first Chick-Lit novel and have set up a fictional blog of the work in progress. ‘Poles Apart' is a fictional diary that follows the glamorous adventures of Mazie Millington (would-be sex kitten) as she turns to pole dancing in a bid to rekindle the sizzle in her tired relationship.

I look forward to joining you if it’s not too late!



PS If you get a chance to take a look at the writing on my blog, any comments would be really appreciated.

10:49 am  
Blogger Cally said...

Three of your have already finished your novels but really I hope I'm not too late to join the race? I've been reading all the racers blogs for ages and finally got started on my novel in February. I'm now 26,000 words in so I need to do a lot of catch up. I'd really appreciate the novel-writing comraderie and Friday Coffee Break chats.

Could I join?

10:15 pm  
Blogger DOT said...

Is it too late for me to join? I have been toying with a novel for sometime now (for sometime read some years) and it might prove the impetus I need to feel the hot breath of several other writers on the back of my neck.

My blog has just opened for business though its walls remain freshly whitewashed and devoid of all graffiti - a situation I shall rectify shortly.


5:42 pm  
Anonymous Rowan Coleman said...

Hello, it's May am I too late to join in? I only just found out about the race, and as i'm working on my sixth adult novel and have another teen novel to write this year too I could do with some extra inspiration!

2:27 pm  
Blogger Judy Merrill Larsen said...

I'd love to join up if it's not too late. . .

2:56 pm  
Blogger Kate said...

Hi Kate. My name is Kate too!

I may be late turning up, but may I join the Novel Racers too?

I've just started writing a new book (well, started planning it) and hope to be done asap! No title yet, but I'm working on it!


10:12 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi Kate,

I want to become a novel racer but am not quite sure how to join. Could you please e-mail me with the details.

My e-mail address is tallulah22@gmail.com



2:53 pm  
Blogger Lazy Perfectionista said...

I've been following you and your fellow Racers for a while now, and wondered whether there was still time for me to join in? If so, what do I need to do become a member of this merry band?

5:20 pm  
Blogger Victoria Hume said...

I know it's very very late in the game (June) but i'd love to join in the novel race. I know i've got no chance of winning, but i guess that's not really the point! Perhaps it will inspire me to get going and write a bit faster. Technically I only really started writing my book in the new year so i guess i'm elligible. Although i've only written a paltry 6000 words in that time. cheers x

10:15 am  
Anonymous peeledballoon said...

Am I to late?


let me know .......

6:49 pm  
Blogger Leigh said...

May I join the 2008 race, please?

I have one completed novel, which is currently 'awaiting recognition for its brilliance' by lurking in my bottom drawer (five rejections so far).

I really want to get a second novel written this year, before I forget all the painful lessons I learned from writing the first one!

My blog is here.

2:31 pm  

Post a Comment

<< Home