April Camp Nano

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Camp-Winner-2015-Twitter-ProfileSo, the April session of Camp Nano has closed, and I find myself reminded about how many different people there are in the world. So many different people that are also writers like myself. Camp Nano is a unique experience from November Nano, for those that have never played, in that you can be assigned to a cabin (think chat room/forum) of other writers for the duration of the competition. You can also make a cabin of your own friends, if you wish, but you don’t have access to everyone that is participating, well, not immediate access anyway. So, if I choose a random cabin assignment, and my friends from November Nano are assigned to somewhere else, the only way I can see their progress is to search their profiles, and if I care to chat with them through the site, it is only through the onsite email. This is not ideal for me, because I love meeting new people and getting to talk to other writers about their process.  However, I also enjoy the support I have found with my current friends that are regular Nano-ers, so during Camp Nano I can’t have my cake and eat it too.

What I do like is that I can set my own word count goal. There are two sessions of Camp Nano in the summer, one in April and one in July. I try to do both (see previous post about loving deadlines). This keeps me going strong through the months when life can take over my otherwise scheduled writing time. I have school aged kids, the weather is only really nice for about four months in Montana, family tends to vacation and travel because of aforementioned reasons, etc. So, having two months that are dedicated writing challenges, helps to remind me not to let other things I love to do derail my writing.

April Camp was a success for me again this year but i set my goal low knowing that spring is busy. I barely made it to the total I had set for myself. At last glance, none of the dozen others in my cabin did (validation may yet be possible for some due to time zone differences) and for some reason this session i feel like i have let my cabin down. Could I have spent more time encouraging my fellow writers? Would it have made a difference if I had spent more time in the cabin chat? I’ve been in cabins in the past that nearly all the writers completed the challenge and we chatted a lot. I have had a couple where no one talked at all and those seemed to be the least successful as a group. If you participate in Camp Nano, do you find this to be true for you? I’m thinking that next session in July I might just go cabin-less or a cabin of chosen writer friends, but I hate to lose that chance to meet and chat with new writers around the world. I feel  as though Camp Nano allows me to set realistic goals for myself and so I expect it does for others as well, but the ratio of completed to not-completed seems low. Perhaps if i could see more than 12 people participating like we can during November…

Anyway, it’s done, and i am that much further into the new book. Up next, 30k by July 1st (when the next Camp begins) so i can finish the first draft of The Reality Makers in July!

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