Monday, 17 September 2007

Novel Racers Take Stock

The Novel Racers have been going since January if you count our time on Kate H's blog. We have grown from a few to quite a few. When we started we all popped by the others blogs during the week and left encouraging words and had coffee once a week over different topics. Then the Novel Racers moved here and we still have coffee and discussion as well as posting things here as they happen so to speak. I personally still try an visit all the blogs weekly but rarely succeed and with growing numbers this is becoming harder.

So what now need is to decide how to proceed as our numbers have grown. Currently we are 35. We need to decide if and when we cap the membership as it were. Do we set up a wait list as some members currently listed haven't been active in a while. What do we feel is the most important part of the Novel Racers as we have grown so big. Also we need to plan ahead for next year's 'race'.

So a few questions:

How many racers in total?
Do we cap the number - if so how many?
What is the criteria for participation with our new larger size?
What of those racers who haven't checked in for coffee a while? If or when should we give them a prod?
Wait list? Worth while or not?
What of next year's 'race'?

Thinking about the 'Racers', I thought of a few obvious points:

1. we should all be writers striving to write a novel no matter how fast or slow or what category or genre
2. we are a support group and therefore positive
3. doesn't matter whether published or unpublished (or should I say being positive pre-published)
4. the Friday coffee morning is our key means of communication

5. the blog allows all of us to share our finds, our joys, our sorrows, etc.

6. the blog is open for anyone to comment

So let's here what everyone thinks. The above is just one racers attempt to try and find the issues. I am sure there are more........


Jen said...

Well, I must confess that I don't manage to get to everyone's blogs all the time. Like B.E., I don't expect people to visit mine just because we're members here. If we visited 40 blogs and day and commented, then re-visited to read comments to our comments, we'd never get any writing done!

I do think a limit wise though, otherwise the Novel Racers will lose its supportive oomph and become just another anonymous writing community which is presumably NOT what we want?

(Sorry, have already said this on Friday's post so cheated with copy 'n' paste. You're not going mad, really!)

Unknown said...

Thanks for that reassurance Jen :-)

Zinnia Cyclamen said...

I too can no longer get round all the blogs even once a week - I just about managed that until we got over 30, but it takes too long now. One of the original criteria for participation was that every novel racer would link to all the others from their blog; are we dropping this? If we decide not to cap the number, we may have to; my sidebar is getting verrrrrrry loooooong! If we do cap the number, we might want to consider closing the blog with a password-protection system (Blogger offers this option) so only we can read it, to save frustrating people who want to join and can't. Then again, if we decide not to cap the number and to drop the sidebar requirement, it may end up being self-selecting, as it'll be easier for people to dip in and out. I think on balance that would be my preferred option, as it's the one with the highest level of democracy and the lowest administrative load, but I'm very happy to go with the majority vote, whatever that turns out to be!

Jen said...

Zinnia, I'm ashamed to say that, having accidentally obliterated my sidebar, I simply replaced the endlessly changing NR blogroll with a link to this blog. I do visit other Novel Racers' blogs but I visit them because they're a good read, rather than out of duty.

I'm unsure about password protecting this blog - we have a lot of info that is useful to other writers. I'm sure we must have lots of lurkers.

On the other hand, I think Novel Racers worked so week initially because we were small and really did care. I'd hate us to become yet another sprawl of voices like other writing communities.

Helen said...

When we initially had this conversation some months ago, I was one of the people who was quite relaxed about the number of racers, or whether people commented on others blogs and so on...but I have to say I've had a change of mind. This little novel racing community is brilliant. FACT!!

I would never have got as far as I have without everyone's support. But I have got support because people have the time. If it is a big anoymous community I would hate it.

With this in mind maybe we should cap at 40, or even the amount we have now.

However if we do this, and have a waiting list then everyone has to be in agreement about the rules for people being 'poked' if we haven't heard from them in some time. And we have to make it clear if, say after 3 months (I'm clutching a number from the air here) we haven't heard anything then they are dropped and someone else can take their place. I know that sounds harsh...but if people say they are going on a long break and we all know that to start with, then we can leave their place open for longer?

So I guess my point is that yes I would like to cap the numbers. Not because I don't want to let others in - we've had some lovely people starting recently - but because I would like it to remain a small community where we have time to support each other.

Sarah*G* said...

Being a newbie on here myself I am not sure how much I can comment on this. Since I joined a couple weeks ago the inspiration and determintation I have gained from here is immesurable. Whilst yes I don't get to all blogs all the time I do try to get round them even if I don't always leave a comment. I have 2 small children too and they have an aversion to my laptop. So maybe a cap would be a good idea. Not sure what that should be though. I think those who have been here longer than me will have a better idea as to what will work. I will go along with anything really. I just wanted to say thanks for letting me join and thanks for being here!

Lazy Perfectionista said...

I think a limit to the number of members is reasonable - it's not as if we're the only writing community on the net! That way, we can stay effective and friendly. Maybe we could have a post to check on numbers every couple of months, where everyone who still wants to be involved comments, and anyone who doesn't (unless we know they're on a blog-break or something) gets an email to check if their place can go to someone else. Or something. It's a tricky one!

Flowerpot said...

I agree that a limit is reasonable and I certainly don't have tim eto read everyone's blogs, much though I'd like to. It's all writing time. I'm open to suggestions, being a newbie myself.

Rachel Green said...

I love the Novel Racers. I don't post here often (if at all) but I do visit as many other blogs as I can and comment. I'm currently trying to get everyone on RSS feed so that I read everyone in one place.

I do think we should cap at forty. I'm on a few writing sites that have 100+ members and it's the same few that post all the time (I'm one of them on four of those) so many more would leave us with dormant members.

I hate keeping a wait list though I can see the necessity. Someone will have to keep maintenance on posting which is a horrible task.

As for the 2008 race. I won't win because I'm a plodding writer but I love to cheer success.

Lane Mathias said...

Thanks for the post Liz.
As another relative newcomer I am happy to go with the flow but to add my two pen'orth...

The number as it stands seems just about fine. Maybe forty tops.

Perhaps a note could be added to the header or sidebar inviting anyone who would like to join to add their name to a waiting list.

I like the fact that the blog is open for anyone to read and comment. As Jen said, there are probably lurking writers and there's always helpful info here.

Criteria for participation? Yes a poke after a couple of months unless they have given prior warning of absence. (Sounds a bit 'oficialspeak' but you know what I mean). This blog is obviously becoming popular so this only seems fair.

I actually enjoy a mosey around everyone's blogs. If I didn't, the names here would be just that - names.

Cathy said...

As a fairly new member I don't really feel very qualified to comment...but will anyway!

Firstly the sidebar...I agree that the list is already very unwieldy, in fact I just link to this blog...but have put it on its own rather than in my normal blogroll, so it is a prominent link. I thought this had been discussed when the group moved here and agreed that it was OK to do that...if not, please let me know.

Numbers...that is tricky. I was so pleased to be allowed to join late...had wanted to join at the start but didn't, because I knew that at that point in my life I just didn't have time to visit everyone's blogs and/or write. Now I think I have visited every blog, some more frequently than others, though I do not always leave a comment. I think as groups grow larger they tend to perhaps split into smaller sub groups of people who 'click' anyway. Is that a bad thing? I don't know.

I suspect that if we are going to cap numbers we will need to make it password protected. Could other people still read, even if they couldn't leave comments? Because if so we will continue to get people wanting to join...also people seeing the Facebook group will ask about us. Would we actually want that or would we prefer a private environment, where we can be more honest and open?

No really strong opinions, just throwing thoughts into the melting pot.

CL Taylor said...

I'm in agreement about capping and 40 sounds as good a number as any to me (or even if we just stop at 35 - though I think there are a couple of people who said they'd like to join in a previous post and it would be unfair to shut them out now).

I try to read everyone's blogs at least once a week and I love how, even though I haven't met any of the novel racers, you all have a very distinct personality and image in my head. BTW my blog link is woefully out of date (I think the last person I added to it was KateK) and I need to add the more recent members. Any more and my blog page would scroll into infinity!

Maybe we should do away with the waiting list completely and just close it at 40? That way no one will be responsible the waiting list or for prodding people to post. If people DO start to fall away and go quiet and we feel like we need an influx of new blood we could always post a message saying we're open to new members again.

I don't think we should password protect this page as, as someone else said, it's still useful for other writers to browse.

Leather - I'd love to learn how to do an RSS feed. That sounds the perfect way to keep on top of all the blogs. I don't suppose you fancy posting about how we'd go about it do you?

KayJay said...

Hi - Please, any chance of fitting me in before you close ranks? I've been a-lurking here and on quite a few of the member blogs and have been meaning to ask to join for a while now! It seems like a great community and I'd love to be part of it - I'm serious about my writing and I'd love to contribute.

Here's hoping...


Rowan Coleman said...

hello every one.

I really enjoy the novel racers, and i think we should keep it small enough so that we can all get to know each others work and provide realy support to eachother. I haven't blogged in about a million years or commented on blogs largely because my heavy work load this year doesn't allow for it, but I am always at coffee morning and I really enjoy reading all your writing thoughts and feeings. A cap at 40 seems fair and I agree with CT that maybe we don't need a waiting list. I'd be sad to see this blog password protected, I like the idea its for everyone even if they are only dropping by.

p.S I will blog again one day!!!!

B.E. Sanderson said...

Mornin' Everyone.

Thanks for doing this, Liz. My general thoughts on the subject are:

Forty sounds good and yes, cap the number. I'll leave the waiting list idea to someone who wants to devote the time to keeping one.

You have a good list of criteria there in your points. We should stick with it. The NR should be writers (either pub or unpub) who are working toward completing a novel (hence the name), and not just playing at writing (not that anyone currently here is like that, I've just seen it at other 'writing' communities). All members should be positive and supportive to their fellow racers.

Any racers who haven't checked in for a while should get a gentle push. Ask them if they are sure they still want to be a racer, and let them make up their mind. If they can't take a second to answer an e-mail, then perhaps they're not as committed to this as potential new racers would be. We're all busy people, but we seem to find a few moments to take care of NR business when it comes up. Right?

I don't know what I'll be working on when next year's race comes around, but I'm always up for a little competition. ;o)

Have a great day everyone!

Graeme K Talboys said...

As a new boy, I hesitate to add my two penn'orth (I can hear all those who know me well fainting at the novelty of the sentiment). I can only say that I wanted to join because it was a small group of enthusiastic and supportive writers. I'm still getting up to speed on people's blogs, although I visit when I can. If it gets much larger I do feel it would lose its personal touch.

Kate.Kingsley said...


I've been guilty of a fair bit of absenteeism of late (far far too much real life occurring right now), but getting back on track so normal service should be resumed any day now!

My thoughts on this are:

How many racers in total /
Do we cap the number - if so how many? I think 35 is fairly reasonable number ~ its a good mix of writing experiences and styles, and I think very many more would make it unweildy & rather anonymous.

What is the criteria for participation with our new larger size? I am undecided ont his one, I'll need a bit of a think on it.

What of those racers who haven't checked in for coffee a while? If or when should we give them a prod? I think the 2-3 month non-participation deadline sounds workable ~ it allows for hols & mini life crises!
Wait list? An idea, but i'm not sure who/how that would be administered?

Also, Liz, I am in agreement with the six points you raised re group criteria, and thanks you for raising this issue ~ it had been on my mind too, but I didn't want to look like i was being a mean old clique-ster!
Best wishes
Kate K

Rose Red Art said...


I don't get round as many blogs as I'd like to so I'm all for capping at 40. My blog list is getting a bit too long (and I'm sure I'm missing a few, sorry! I'll sort it!)

I'm not sure about the waiting list but I like Cally's idea of posting a message when we're able to accept new members.Cally-"If people DO start to fall away and go quiet and we feel like we need an influx of new blood we could always post a message saying we're open to new members again."

I love being part of the Novel Racers and would be totally lost without you guys! If I wasn't a member I would lurk here as the info on this blog is amazing!

I don't post here very often(if at all) as I do feel slightly intimidated by everyone's writing knowledge and worry that my post will sound a bit pants but I do comment when I can.

Liz-I loved the 'pre-published' line! Very positive! :-D

Kate Harrison said...

Hello lovely racers,
I know that, for reasons I outlined a few posts ago, I have been absent for really rather a long time, though I hope to return from October (so please don't remove me if possible!).

I wasn't sure whether I should even post a comment as the Novel Racers have grown and expanded hugely beyond the original race that Lucy and I first imagined when we began writing on January 2 (only 9 months ago!). Our baby has grown up, left home, gone to Uni, made some new friends, had some hangovers and settled down very nicely into the new Halls of Residence. Is that a Che Guevara poster I see on the wall?

The way we initially envisaged it was as a completely open, rather anarchic and fluid community - a place where the only qualification was a) some form of blog and b) a desire to write a novel. This fluidity and informality appealed to me because I wanted people with all levels of experience to be able to join the journey and to feel valued and respected. That's happened so much more warmly and generously than I think Lucy and I could ever have predicted.

With the proviso that I know I may sound a bit like the Novel Racer's mum, trying to make suggestions long after it's anything to do with me anymore, I do think it would be a shame if people were excluded from the openness of the community.

However, equally I do see that in a sense it's become a victim of its own success and is unwieldy for existing racers. I definitely thing that the blogroll doesn't need to be compulsory now that we have this separate site. I always found it a teensy bit arduous, partly because my HTML really ain't all that...

So, as someone who probably isn't even entitled to 'vote' any more (but as someone who hopes to rejoin the fold very soon), I wondered whether you might consider a) allowing the site to stay open and un-password-protected for other writers to read and b) perhaps setting up a page from the sidebar suggesting how other people could set up Novel Racing Communities of their own? If you capped this site at 35 or 40, then perhaps new would-be racers could be encouraged to start up Novel Racers 2 (and 3 and 4 maybe - unless I am turning into a megalomanic), with a few nice experienced Racers to mentor and hold the hands of new members until the community is established?

I know this involves extra work and maybe that's too much for anyone else to take on, but I can't help feeling that this is a good model for other writers to follow and at the very least it would be nice for people to be able to see what happens here so they can try it too?

Do feel free to disregard me - maybe I am struggling to cut the apron strings...

(Slinks away in case you all want to throw eggs at me for daring to pop up after my terrible absenteeism)


Caroline said...

Ok ...
And I didn't want to post another post until this one was dealt with.

I want to say a HUGE thank you to all of the novel racers. I started in January, with 16,000 words I think. Today I received an offer for the novel that I wrote as a novel racer. It will be published in 2008.

I am overwhelmed and I know that I couldn't have done it without the 'guilt induced writing' feeling that being a novel racer produced in me.

Thank you all so so so so much. And Kate - I think you're a genius!

I have another novel to write, so I am happy to be part of the racers and happy to carry on.

Caroline x

Rose Red Art said...

Can I just add that I love Kate's idea of starting Novel Racers 2! I think that would give everyone who wants to join to do so.

Unknown said...

Just jumping in to say how awsome Caroline. I'm so thrilled for you. I poped over to your blog and it wasn't posted yet - or it might. You see things don't refresh quickly here - in fact it takes at least half a day. So i post and don't see it on blog for half a day.

Any way i digress. Awsome news!!!!!

B.E. Sanderson said...

OMG! Caroline! That's too awesome! Congratulations!

Oh, and to stay on topic: I don't think you're being a pushy 'mom' at all, Kate. Thanks for the input. =o) I love your suggestion about teaching others to make their own races, so they can have a home to call their own. One thing about these writing communities is the support they provide, and I think all writers need that.

Also, I meant to put in my two-cents about the whole password thingy. I don't think we really need one. Lots of people lurk and learn, and they may leave comments that contribute to the overall wisdom here. =oD

KeVin K. said...

Wonderful, Caroline! Well done.

My thoughts:
>A cap of forty.
>People who don't show up for three months given emeritus status -- we'll treat their spot as open and send them a note asking if they'd like to be dropped from the roll.
>Membership should be activity-based -- as in every member should be working on a novel and every member should come by here and update us on how they're doing at least once a month ('nuther "yay!" for Caroline). Comments, too . of course, but nobody's going to track those.
> Drop the sidebar link list requirement. (I have never managed to get everyone listed. I have the link to this site and say very nice things about y'all at every opportunity so folks'll want to drop by.)
> Visiting other blogs greatly encouraged but not required. Truth to tell, I only remember visiting about half the blogs here, and I seldom comment when I do. (I usually have a mini-frenzy of visiting after someone here drops by my live journal.)
>Leave the blog open so anyone who drops by can read, because there's a lot of encouraging material here.
> Link with instructions/encouragement for setting up Novel Racers 2-436.

Anonymous said...

As another new member, I feel rather out of my depth to comment. I have visited various blogs on the side bar and have to say how inspiring some of them are. I am honoured to be a member of NR and will go along with whatever is decided.

Crystal xx

Juliette M said...

Evening lovely racers all,

Following on from my previous comment the other day (which sadly was anonymous as I had no blog at that time) I would still love to join the Racers, and now I actually have a blog to write upon. I realise I may need to be on a waiting list, but I am hoping that is not the case.

I have linked to a few of you on my page (I hope that is allowed) and really enjoy your blogs.

Looking forward to hearing more from you,

Juliette M

Helen Shearer said...

Hello all,

I, too, am new to the Novel Racers community but I have been lurking from the beginning and I have to say, this group has been a big source of encouragement and inspiration, even before I was a member. I think it would be unfortunate to deny other lurkers the privilege of popping in and leaving a comment. Having said that, I understand that the group is getting big.
I think the NRII idea is brilliant, as long as we all have visiting rights.
I won't comment on the cap idea seeing as I think I'm number 35, and it would be horribly selfish to say 'Yep, that's it. Stop after me.' And there are a few people who expressed an interest in joining this week.
I think that a having a sidebar link to the group should be mandatory. A large part of supporting each other should be promoting each other.
I have managed to visit a number of the blogs this week and I will get through them all soon. I am already immensely entertained.

A great big congratulations to Caroline! Your success just illustrates the value of this group. Can't wait to read it.


Unknown said...

Great discussion so far. Before I try and compile all the feedback i will try and pop round all the blogs and ask everyone to stop by and give their feedback. We have heard from 20 racers so far so only another 15 to chime in :-)

Jenny Beattie said...

Sorry guys, I only saw this late last night and I was too tired to compile my thoughts.

I think it is essential to cap it somewhere - our strength is in the knowing each other (I know I don't visit absolutely everyone regularly, but go to where 'I fit' best, but that's life. I do go everywhere and check them out, without always leaving comments) BUT I feel really strongly that without the generosity of more experienced racers, I would've floundered. So I love Kate's idea of having NRII, and some of us acting as mentors. Having 'sister' (sorry, not very pc, sorry men!) groups doesn't mean we can't cross over into other blogs to cheer, but at least we will have the strength in a smallish unit. Cap, I feel, should be no more than 40.

I can't decide what I feel about side bar - 40 is huge if you've then got another list of those you like that may be unrelated to NR. I don't think I have a problem having a link to this blog, and not the whole list...

Sadly, I don't think it's on to not participate. If you want to be part of this, you have to give something back in order to receive. I don't mind that I never see some people on my blog because I know they are involved in other people's blogs, and on this one. But I do mind the ones that want their name up and link on our sites and never give any thing back. I think that three months without a word and they should get a prod?

It's great that we are open and welcoming to anyone with intent and desire to do this, but people need to want all of this too.

That's my two penniworth.


KeVin K. said...

Hmmm. Feeling more than a bit guilty about the visiting of everyone else. I did an honest check of the list and realized I've only been to see twenty-three of you. Oi. I'm going to set myself a deliberate rotation of visits and stick to it.

Nichola said...

There are so many comments on this post I'll have to come back later to read them all!

I think a cap on numbers is probably a good idea, but as has been mentioned, the question is how many?

Regarding the sidebar I've deleted mine as it was sooooo long and I've replaced it with a link to this blog; I mentioned it to a couple of other racers at the time and it seemed an okay thing to do, to save space on my sidebar.

I'm not sure if the idea of a waiting list would put people off but with our numbers growing it might be something we have to look into!

Unknown said...

OK, most of the rest. we've heard from 21 racers. I have popped by and visited or emailed the rest. A few we won't hear from because of weddings, travel, rugby and breaks so that leaves six to hear from.

Tommorow morning when I wake up I'll compile the results as it please pop back tomorrow because there will still be choices to make!

Lucy Diamond said...

Hello everyone

Long time no chat! Sorry to have been so quiet; I have been immersed in new house, new life syndrome for the last few months (and must confess to not having produced a huge amount of words since I was last here.)

I'm not blogging at the moment so I'll step down from the Novel Racers so someone else can take my place. It's been fab. All the best to you and your novels!


Unknown said...

Not sure as joint founder you can step down Lucy......... well only if you really really want to..... (I'm keeping fingers crossed that you'll reconsider - please)

Helen said...

I think you're right Liz. I'm sure it is there in the rules that joint founders aren't allowed to step down...!

Fiona Mackenzie. Writer said...

I very much liked A Writer's idea. I think Kate's is good also but would that increase the founders' work load? That sounds very Star Trekie dosn't it.
I am just grateful to be here and will go along with anything as long as there's no maths or geography homework involved.

Kate said...

Hello hello. Profession lurker here. I'm really pleased to be included in the Novel Racers, and being one that hates to be rushed hurried or harassed I like the easy feel to the group. So I'm all for some pretty relaxed 'rules'.
A cap at 40 sounds reasonable to me, though the blog's popularity will almost certainly attract more people so perhaps branching out into different chapters ie Novel Racers 2/3/4 etc would be a good idea if 'someone' would like to keep track of some kind of waiting list.
In any large group its not unusual to have a few people who post more than others. I, myself, feel quite shy about splashing my thoughts all over the place (even in real life group situations I'm always pretty quiet), so a very gentle prod every 2-3 months or so wouldn't be too bad. Anything more than that and I'd probably start to feel like this is a chore. But thats just me... I like things free and easy.
When I gave my blog a make-over I reduced my sidebar list to a link to the NR blog because I couldn't keep track of who was joining etc, and all the lists on other peoples blogs weren't fully complete too, so for the sake of consistency it would be best to replace the list of everyone's blogs to just a NR link. Saves my sidebar from being longer than a piece of string! Though I wouldn't want to limit anyone, we should be able to have separate links for other people's blogs too if we so choose.
I feel like I'm rambling.
And I also feel like I'm slinking out on the housework but really, i'm easy with whatever the majority go for.

KayJay said...

Hi - I know as a non-Racer (although fingers are still crossed I'll sneak in!) my opinion doesn't count for anything, but...

As a Racer-Wannabe, the appeal of NRII is not so great. I'm attracted to being part of THIS community, with the personalities and blogs I've been following and cheering on for the last few months. It wouldn't be the same to be striking out with a bunch of other newbies.

Also, I'd still want to keep up to date with the original NR crew - this would mean yet more time away from the novel!

Anyway, just a (slightly cheeky) thought...

The Moon Topples said...

Hello, all.

2 more cents to add, if it isn't too late, and if that expression exists outside of America.

Weighing in, I think that's more universal...

Anyway, having read all of the comments above (congratulations, Caroline!) and thinking about it some inside my headspace, I have come to the following conclusions:

1. It seems that most people support a cap. While it makes me a little sad to think of excluding people who want to join a community like this, I can agree with the sentiment that a group like this is centered around the members being able to get to know one another, and swelling the ranks makes this a difficult task at best. As one who has guiltily been introducing myself less and less to new members, I can see how easy it would be for us to become just another more or less anonymous writing site. 40 seems a reasonable number, for all the reasons that others have shared.

The idea of NR2, etc. does seem to dilute the original premise somewhat, especially as the creation of a community such as this is not a wildly difficult task.

I think that if even one writer has been lurking and gaining anything at all from this site, then it should remain open and not protected by password. Should a writer come along and feel frustrated by an inability to join, this might prompt them to create a community of his/her own. Even should we choose to cap membership, I think allowing anyone at all to come and peek in is a valuable thing to try to maintain.

I say all of this knowing full well that should you begin to lop off members, I would certainly be a candidate for the chopping block. My own lack of participation, while not exactly deliberate, is a chronic problem. Apologies all around.

Chris Stovell said...

Phew! Time I hope, to chip in after a flying visit to the big city that is Cardiff! I'm echoing much of what has already been stated but my thoughts are:-
1. Sadly I have to agree to a capping the number for practical reasons. It's taken me long enough to visit everyone here and there are racers I still don't 'know' as well as I would like. With that it mind I feel it's somehow easier to comment, commiserate and celebrate - well done Caroline! - in a smaller group. I think I'd make less of an effort if the group was larger.

2. I think a cap in the number would help to establish the group in the sense that by getting to know each other we'll learn each others areas of expertise etc and, hopefully create some really dynamic discussions instead of runing over the same old, same old.

3. For that reason I'd chose to stay with this group! I have no problem with new Novel Races but, hey!, I like it here!

4. Re Password - Let's keep it open. You never know what serendipity might bring (if that doesn't contradict what I've said above).

5. If you're in the race then you should bring something to it - we're all busy and we're all writing so, ilness and personal disasters aside, we should all contribute. I certainly don't expect everyone to read my blog every week not least because I can't reciprocate but we should be sharing our thoughts and useful information here.

Okay, I think that's it. As for next year? As it happens I'm aiming to start a new book next year but everyone's timing is different, I think so long as you're working on a novel that's fine.

Sorry if this is less than elegant but I'm ever so slightly pooped!

Emily Hendricks said...

I know I'm one of the people who don't frequent here often enough... I'm hoping to fix that now. I suggest we look at one of two options:

1. Cap it at 40 or 50.
2. Seperate us into "Group A" and "Group B"... Either by geographical location or by what we're writing.

Does that make sense?