Monday, November 27, 2006

National Novel Writing Month - National Novel Writing Month

On my vacation I spent some of my downtime (mostly my airline flights and some time in the middle of the night and such) on my PDA, stitching together the various source documents I've put together over the past month. Rather to my suprise the end result is a lot above the finish line. My wordcount right now is 72364,
well above the 50k required.

My novel is 13 chapters right now, with three appendixes and almost ten pages of endnotes. It's the longest work I have of my writing (the previous record being a nonfiction work that was lost, and then last year's NaNoWriMo, a novel called Prisoner N at about 51k).

On the unfortunate side, the story has a lot of problems, and is probably at least a few months of work from being really readable.

Also, Google Docs turned out to be inadequate to the task. I ran into multiple problems, including formatting, footnote/endnote functionality, multi file problems, and some accessibility problems. I have made numerous suggestions to the Google Docs team, and may be haunting the newsgroup for a while, as it was almost a very useful tool.

I think it was a good exercise to participate, and I'm going to continue working on this novel (unlike Prisoner N, which I never wanted to see again), and it's given me some ideas on my work process as well.

As a side-effect, I've gotten better with the Frogpad, as using the PDA pen-entry was too painful, and it synched up with my wireless keyboard (barely).

The Frogpad is vastly superior to pen entry, and comfortable on the road, but it's still slower and more unreliable than qwerty or dvorak wired keyboards(perhaps I'll get a USB version this christmas).

On the home front, I'm back in the thick of things at work, where we had some interesting visitors, and will be making a hiring decision soon. Heady stuff!

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