NaNoWriMo for the Win. The Authors Collection.

Greg Enslen
Greg Enslen

My last book, “A Field of Red,” is currently being serialized on Caleb and Linda Pirtle, so check it out if you’d like to sample it. I’m pretty excited about the response to the book and I’ve started working on the next two books in the series. If you’ve had a chance to read it and would like to send me some feedback, just visit my website and use the “Contact Me” button. I’d love to hear what you think!

NaNoWriMo is Over!

I love NaNoWriMo, but it’s over for the year. And I’m happy to say that I “won” the competition! Okay, it doesn’t actually mean I won anything — you win if you manage to write 50,000 words on a book or other work during November. I stayed with it and wrote all month and finished up the month with a little over 51,000 words.

To keep folks honest, NaNoWriMo requires people to upload a copy of your book and they do a quick word count to make sure you measured up. I uploaded my draft on November 26 as I finished up my 50,000 words a few days early.

The Gathering Storm

Now that it’s all done, I can sit back and look at my annual NaNoWriMo effort to concentrate on The Gathering Storm.

I got much of the first two-thirds of the book rewritten and replotted, organizing my thoughts and getting everything updated.  I actually wrote much of this book back in 1997 and 1998 and the “big bad” in the original version of the book was Y2K — ha, ha, remember that? Wow, what a bust that was. Anyway, because I needed an “impending event” to freak everyone out, I needed to rewrite the book and introduce some new and overarching plot elements.

Field of Red coverThat’s all done, and the first two-thirds of the book is done. And, as I said last column, I was trying to figure out what to do with an extended, multi-chapter flashback. While the book takes place in 2017, the flashbacks are all centered around World War II and the events immediately following the war. I now know that they can’t go in the book the way I had them — they simply break up the book too much and trash my narrative flow. There’s nothing like reading along, getting excited about something, and then have the plot stop completely so we can go back to 1944.

Now, I’m leaning towards grouping them all together near the middle of the book as an extended flashback or, better yet, move them to the first part of book 2. I think they will work well as the first 50 pages of The Rising Tide, my working title for book 2. As usual, we’ll see! But I think it reads better to start book 2 with the back story, then move to pick up the plot threads from the end of book 1.

Wrapping it Up

Overall, I’ve very happy with where I ended up with NaNoWriMo and this rough draft of The Gathering Storm.  And while the title and other aspects of the book might change, I’m pretty sure I’ve nailed down the first 180 pages. And I’ve gotten the plot on track and I know where we’re headed. Now, I just need to focus, get the last 100 pages written, and then send it off to the publisher for review. I hope they like it!

About the Author

Greg is a Dayton-based fiction author and newspaper columnist. For more information about Greg and his work, please see his website at  To order his next book, “A Field of Red,” visit his website and join the mailing list or order directly from Amazon at

Please click the book cover image to read more about Greg Enslen and his novels.

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  • Caleb Pirtle

    The great thing about NaNoWriMo is that it forces you to sit down and write, and anyone who turns out 1,500 to 2,000 words every day becomes a better writer long before he or she realizes it. The discipline becomes a habit and finally an addiction.

  • Darlene Jones

    Congratulations. I don’t think I’d want to subject myself to an undertaking like that. I admire you for doing it.

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