NaNoWriMo Day 13: Checking In

Hello everyone! I know it’s been a few days since I’ve checked in, and I thought the start of a new week, and the Monday after a long holiday weekend, would be a good time for it. Well, I’ve just finished writing for the day, and although I didn’t quite make the NaNo recommended minimum, I’m still a little ahead of the game. I’d like to have a bigger word count cushion, and more days like I did on the 10th when I cranked out 3,500 words in three hours.

Perhaps I need the delicious scent of chili bubbling away in a crock pot to inspire me. Who knows. Thing is, I’m not quite sure if it’s the characters giving me a hard time, or the scenarios I’m putting them in, or some other outside unseen factor. I know that yesterday during the first library writing session I’d scheduled with M, I had a hell of a time writing the first scene where my guy and girl meet. I knew they weren’t going to get along at first–you know, fine line between hate and love and all that–but I really had a problem with the confrontation.

I eventually got past it, but I have to tell you, this thing isn’t moving as quickly onto the page as I’d hoped. Maybe it’s because I’m starting something new instead of sticking with the familiar. Maybe I’m hearing the voices of Novels Unfinished calling to me and I’m having trouble tuning them out. Maybe this romance isn’t as “simple” as I thought it would be. Whichever of these is the answer, I’m hoping it’ll all work itself out.

I can tell you that once again I will be nowhere near finished with this novel by the time I hit that 50,000 mark at the end of the month. But every word written today is more than I had yesterday, right?

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NaNoWriMo Day 3: Not Too Shabby

Hi everyone! How was your writing today? For me, it was my second day of double writing sessions, one during lunch and then one after work. I’m once again ahead of the daily minimum count, although I didn’t quite write enough to surpass my bestie. (Yes, we’re that competitive when it comes to word count, LOL.) I can live with that, considering I’ll still have a big chunk of Saturday after ceramics class to put words on the page, not to mention the marathon writing session M and I have planned for Sunday.

If you can believe it, we’re going to head out for breakfast at 8 AM, then write as much as we can until it’s time for a late lunch. Sound familiar? It should. It’s very reminiscent of our retreat schedule. I’m hoping it means I can crank out some serious word count and put myself ahead by a lot. A lot, a lot.

Next week is also a holiday week with the observance of Veterans Day, so I might get to sneak in an extra session of writing even as Mom and I take advantage of my day off and add an extra ceramics class as well. Ooh, I just realized that my heroine’s best friend herself is a veteran, so I’ll have to give her a shout out next week.

As it is, with my evening writing, I finished chapter three. I like it when I can end the day in such a nice fashion. I don’t know about you, but it bugs me when I’m so completely tired and over the day that I have no choice but to quit in mid-scene. That also happens at work when I’m on a time limit and I really want to keep going but the Powers That Be require me to get back to work.

I suppose that’s just another reason for me to get one of these novels finished so that writing can be my permanent day job! =]

Happy writing, friends, and until next time!

NaNoWriMo Day 2: I Didn’t Give In

Well, I hope that you guys had a better writing day than I did. I found myself battling one nasty headache for most of the day. You know the kind I mean–the one that feel like someone’s standing behind you tightening a vise on your head, and it throbs so badly that you can barely think?

It wasn’t until that second dose of ibuprofen about 4:00 that it started to let up a little. While I waited to see if it was a momentary reprieve or if it was going to return, I checked my word count from yesterday. Turns out because I did pretty well yesterday, I only needed 370 words in order to meet the minimum Day 2 total.

Thank the gods for small miracles.

So I got myself a diet soda and my favorite chips from the vending machine and got to work. Or tried to. I think the first ten minutes was me staring at the blank page underneath the words “Chapter Three” trying to figure out how exactly I was supposed to start.

Throwback Thursday: a Southwest Airlines flight attendant from 1972 – I really want those boots…

Yeah, sure, I have an outline, but the transition to this chapter also meant a location change. I’d already had to tweak the beginning of Chapter Two because it started exactly the same way as its predecessor, and I wasn’t about to go for three.

That’s when the memory of one of the humorous arrival announcements I’d heard on a Southwest Airlines flight home years ago popped in my head.

I took the hint, and after a teeny bit of research, I had my start. It’s not perfect, but it doesn’t have to be. It got me going and it’s a decent lead-in to where I’m going. Sure, it’s only half the count of what I wrote in my first writing session yesterday. The important thing is I didn’t give up or give in and say, “Nah, I’ll just make it up tomorrow.”

Score one for the stubborn.

That said, I am going to give in to this headache and go home so that I can write like a crazy person tomorrow at our first official work writer buddies write-in at lunch. Hope you guys hit your goals, no matter how large or small, and I’ll see ya tomorrow.

NaNoWriMo Day 1: It’ll Do

Meet Max, Frankie’s cute as heck six month old puppy

Evening, all. It’s 11:15 PM CST, and I just finished up my second writing session of this first day of NaNoWriMo. It’s been a pretty successful day, despite having my first scheduled write-in preempted by an all-day training session for my writer pals. I stuck to the original plan and wrote over my lunch hour, locking in almost the entire day’s minimum count.

Before I could write again, there was work, and dinner with Mom and a couple hours of choir practice for our upcoming Thanksgiving services. So when I got home at 9:15 I was pretty pooped, but I had those couple hundred words still needing to be written before I could quit for the day.

So for the second time today, I planted myself before a keyboard and knocked out another decent word count while listening to my novel’s playlist in the background. I also played with a little bit of conflict between Frankie and her mother, and Frankie and her co-worker, who fancies himself her next suitor. (She wants nothing from him except maybe a movie buddy now and then, just in case you were wondering.)

I’d hoped to finish in time to start season 10 of Smallville tonight, but considering the jaw-stretching yawns I’ve been having the last few minutes, I think Clark will have to wait until tomorrow. So I’ll leave you with a picture of Frankie’s extremely cute puppy Max, and my word count for the day. You can check my progress in the sidebar widget.

See you soon!

I’m back… and just in time for NaNo

Yes, it’s true. You’re actually reading a new blog post by little old me. I’m really back! The last time you heard from me back in June, I was preparing for July’s Camp NaNoWriMo and my first-ever homemade writers retreat with my bestie. Well, Camp itself was a bit of a bust, but what did go splendidly well was our retreat.

For me, it was a chance to see what life would be like as a full-time writer instead of an only-in-November one. I had a schedule, and I stuck with it: have some breakfast, write for four hours, have some lunch, then back to writing for another five hours.

It was, quite honestly, amazing.

I really, really liked the feel of those three days. Quite often I wrote past my stop alarm because I was that close to the end of the scene and wanted to get it done. I clocked in a word count of over 18,000 words in three days, but that last Sunday afternoon I struggled to add words to the count. It took me a good hour of only kinda sorta necessary research to figure out I was procrastinating. I also realized I’d reached the three-quarters done mark of my book.

Which meant I was almost done writing the first draft of a novel.

Which meant I was at the same place I’d been with Boyfriend Experiment the last time I stalled out and didn’t finish.

Which means I haven’t written a word since July 23rd.

Fast-forward to this month’s Preptober discussions with my bestie about what we’re going to work on for NaNoWriMo. I know I should pick up COC and finish it. I know this. Maybe it’s the excuse-maker in me, but I’m pretty sure part of why I procrastinated was I have no idea how to end the book. There are too many ways it could go, and I’m not sure which is the right one.

Prep_tober
Is your NaNoWriMo prep complete?

I don’t care what you say, endings are fracking scary.

Thus I took the path of least resistance and decided on traditional romance for November. I’m going back to the basics–no prophecies, no magic and no trying to remember where I put a certain plot point or added an important detail so that I don’t screw up the semi-complex story line. It’s set in my fictional Texas city of Kilcavan, and will include a boy and a girl, horses and a hurricane, and a little jealousy thrown in for kicks.

I’m sure this will be another good NaNoWriMo. I’ve set up numerous writing sessions with work and non-work friends. I’ve got a new bullet journal layout with a nifty grid of milestones to earn toward rewards at the end of each of its six levels that will track my progress along with my usual word count bookcase.

This year I also have Lois Lane of Daily Planet fame watching over me and inspiring me when I’m at home (click here to see my Instagram fangirl geekout over her arrival). When I’m elsewhere, I’ll have my ever-present companion Snoopy along with his new buddy Mars, a small toy statue that looks exactly like Cal’s mustang.

I’m off to binge as many episodes of Smallville as I can between now and November 1 when writing begins, because once NaNoWriMo starts, no more TV until the day’s word count is met. :)

NaNoWriMo Novel Switch

Reese Llywellyn, aka Sir Rhys (Greyston Holt, Clayton Danvers from “Bitten”). I imagine him saying, "It's about time you got back to my story."
Reese Llywellyn, aka Sir Rhys (actor Greyston Holt, aka Clayton Danvers on SYFY’s “Bitten”). I imagine him saying, “It’s about time you got back to my story.”

If you caught my tweet from earlier today, you already know the jist of this post. So far, it’s been an interesting week. I started NaNoWriMo on Sunday writing Frankie’s story in a back booth of my local diner-esque hangout while freezing my fern off and wearing a tiara (and no, there are no photos of this phenomenon). My observant teen waitress discovered I’d left my writing mascot Mars the horse on the top of the napkin dispenser and returned him to me, so I didn’t have to wonder where he’d gone.

Monday introduced a new element, write-in lunch hours with a co-worker who herself is a NaNo veteran. I like this option, as it gets me writing at lunch and also adds the social aspect that is nice with other write-ins I’ve been to. That first day the lunch word count was pretty decent, so I thought I was golden.

Until Thursday came around and I was suddenly over my story.

The word count definitely tells the tale. As the week went by, my word count came in lower and lower each day, although at the time I attributed that to chatting too much. Then, on Thursday I got a lunch invite from my work BFF who will be going on maternity leave next Friday, and I didn’t even blink as I abandoned my write-in lunch to go out for enchiladas. To make matters worse, I’ve got a new obsession in bullet journaling brought on by my Michigan friend (I’ll say more on this later when I’m not supposed to be making word count goals) and I spent Thursday night prepping my new journal instead of flipping open my laptop and racking up the totals.

The fact that I could, at most, give a casual shoulder shrug that I wasn’t writing Frankie’s story told me I should perhaps rethink what I’m working on.

I think I knew last night what I planned on doing, as I’d already stuffed the necessary notebooks for last year’s “Curse of Camlann” into my tote to take with me today. After the car ride in and a chat with Meagan, it was official. Frankie’s on hiatus as I revisit Reese and his curse once again.

Fortunately for me, I’d printed out all chapters to date for an editing session some time ago — boy, are some of those pages RED — so I can read through the pages immediately preceding my pick up point to resume the story. That means I’ll be throwing myself right into the action as my hero, Reese, is about to put the hurt on the ex-husband of his lady. Even though he’s an immortal knight of Camelot and will conduct himself honorably, if the ex starts fighting dirty, it’s gonna be on like Donkey Kong.

Another successful NaNo Day

writeblockEvening, y’all! Day Two of NaNoWriMo 2015 went quite nicely. I had two writing sessions today, and that helped keep me to a sensible timeframe as for the first time, my friend Kelly and I joined together and wrote over our lunch hour. It was energetic and entertaining, and both of us got some good work done. Me, I hit the halfway point of my word count in an hour, checking in with 1,040 on the official site.

One of the “issues,” if you can call it that, is that when I write over a specified time deadline, I often end up having to stop in the middle of a thought or scene or some such. That was one thing that didn’t happen today. I got the new scene started, established the new setting and even managed to introduce another secondary character. When the hour was up, I was at the perfect place in the story to pause until I could pick it up again after work.

All in all, a good day!

Today’s Word Count: 2,091

Word Count to Date: 5,071

Writing Time Today: 3 hours and a little bit

Current Feeling: Relaxed and happy the day went well

Motivation/Inspiration: Starting the new lunch sessions with Kelly

Biggest Triumph: Once again moving past the 1,667 goal for the day to clock in over 2,000 words

Biggest Setback: Well, it was totally not writing related, actually. Silly me had forgotten to turn off the burner I’d used to cook the risotto, and instead had set on that same burner the dish the meatloaf had been cooking in, so by the time I was going back for seconds, boy was that pot a mess! Fortunately, the food was fine and is all packed up for lunch tomorrow.

Insights: I pay much more attention to my writing when I have music or a movie playing in the background. It acts much like white noise, and isn’t distracting at all. Tonight’s choice: Pitch Perfect, and for tomorrow, the pitches will be back for the sequel. *grin*