NaNoWriMo Prep 2

 

 

 

 

Last week was horrible. Between kid activities and the hurricane, I’ve accomplished next to nothing. I’m still working on Origins. I had hoped to have this round of edits finished before NaNo, but I’m not so sure that will happen. I’m 3/4 of the way through, but I have to change POV. I’m going from 3rd person to 1st. It’s tedious to say the least. But it works much better this way. A quick shout out to K. Nebity, she recommended I read The Phantom Tollbooth. I did. I enjoyed it but not as much as I would have if I had read it as a kid. Thanks for the recommendation.

NaNoWriMo 2017

October is Perptober. I didn’t know it had an actual name:)

I have the main idea of the story (spark) and the two main characters. I still need to finish fleshing these characters out and finish with the ghost rules.

This week goals:

  • complete character inventory sheet/back story- I like to delve deep into my main characters. So this is a must this week.
  • Sign up on NaNo website- I need to do this. I did buy this year’s t-shirt. And it’s already arrived 😉
  • Work harder on finishing Origins.
  • Think about the major plot points for NaNo. It’s a ghost/mystery story. I want this started soon because I will need to do a little research at the library later.
  • Finish setting out Ghost rules (from last week)

If you are going to participate in NaNo this year, Click here to read more information and sign up. There are also Twitter sprints that take place once NaNo starts. I love those. Sprints really make you write. There are also other groups on different social media sites.

A few sites with NaNoWriMo Prep ideas:

Boho Berry has printables and links. She has a beautiful NaNo bullet journal. Yes, I’m jealous.

Storyist has an in-depth page on NaNo prep. It would work for starting a novel at any time.

Better Novel Project has an outline.

Here is an October schedule for NaNo.

There you go. A few resaurces to help you along.

How is your planning going?

-CK

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NaNoWriMo Prep 1

I know it kind of slipped up on me too. But November is just around the corner, like 29 days away. That’s right. It’s time to get your little monsters in a row.

I sat down this morning with my calendar and came up with a weekly goal to help me prepare for NaNo. I know from experience, the more prepared I am the better chance I have of winning. Meaning completing a 50,000 word novel.  Along with the regular prep work, I have a novella I am halfway through editing. I need to finish that. It’s hard to concentrate on NaNo with other projects looming. I still hear the aching call of last years unfinished NaNo novel. Poor thing.

Week 1 Tasks:

  1. Find that spark– The idea that is big enough to spark your creative juices to write a full length novel. I have mine. One that has been itching on the edge of my brain for months. But an idea is not a story. Nor is it a plot. It’s just an idea.
  2. Decide on main characters– I have two characters already. I’ve started fleshing them out, learning about their back story. I hope from this I will know where to go with the story. I’m not too concerned with the minor characters at the moment. Those can come later. Is it novel worth or just a short story idea, the characters will tell me.
  3. Location– This is the hard part. I know where the story takes place but I think it will be in two time periods. Possibly now and the 40s.
  4. Rules– It’s a ghost story. So I need to cement the “rules” for ghosts. What they can and can’t do. Who becomes a ghost? Things like that. I’ve got it started and once I get to work on the plot I’ll make addictions or changes.

Those are the 4 things I need to accomplish this week. Anything else will be brownie points.

Are joining NaNoWriMo?

-CK

 

 

Writing Rituals

While recovering from wrist surgery this summer I accomplished very little. No writing. Lots of reading and TV. I watched YouTube more than I should admit. Not all cat videos I promise. I discovered several writers. One, Kristen Martin had a recent video on #WritingRituals . I think it was created by Kim Chance. I’ve since watched several, then decided to try my hand at it. Sans Youtube.

Writing Ritual Tag

  1. When do you write- time/day?

I haven’t written much of anything all summer. It’s hard to type in a cast. I’m slowly getting back into the swing of things. Because I live in a tiny house with loud teenagers I write while they are at school. It’s very hard for me to get anything accomplished on the weekends. So 8:30 am weekdays I try to write/edit for a couple of hours.  I can do research, readings, and light critiques in the evenings and weekends. But real writing is when the kids are away.

2.  How do you seclude yourself from the outside world when writing?

Social media is a huge distraction for me. I don’t turn wi-fi off because then I wouldn’t beable to look things up online. We’ve all had instances when our brain fails and can’t figure out the proper spelling for ‘dynamite’ or how to use a comma. So what I do is: close the curtains, turn on some music, and turn notifications off. I can still use the internet but no text messages or calls get through or thousands of app notifications I have yet to learn how to block. I will take short breaks and check the calls to make sure nothing urgent was missed.

3. How do you review what you wrote the day before?

I will briefly read over what I wrote. Not to edit. That’s important. If I jump down the editing road I will never finish. I may add to what I wrote, but I mainly want to review the events, tone, and voice so that I pick up in the proper spot.

4. What song is your go to song when feeling uninspired?

I don’t have a certain song. Instead, as I plan and start writing a new project, I create a playlist for my story. For instance, my current project has a playlist called Superhero Mix. It includes movie theme songs and songs played in movies or inspired by super heroes. Yes, I’m a nerd. Guess what the new project is about…

5. What do you do when you feel writer’s block?

I’ve never really had writer’s block. Right now I lack motivation. I’ve been out of the habit for months and it’s hard picking it back up. Watching YouTube videos and reading writing magazines helps get the spark back. Also writing little things, like this blog post, helps with igniting the feeling of writing. There are times I’m unsure of where to go with a project or I’m uninspired about what I’m writing. I find it useful to change activities. Trying another creative hobby (drawing, photography, etc) or even a physical activity will help. I just need to step away and do something different.

6. What tools do you use when you are writing?

I now write/plan using Scrivener. I love the note card feature and having a place to keep research and character info close at hand as I write. I will print all of this out and keep it in a binder because well…I’m still old school. I don’t entirely trust the computer not to crash and lose everything I’ve worked on. Most of my older writing (unfinished) is in Word. For those projects, I still work in word. I also have a huge stack of writing/reference books I keep close at hand. Here are a few of them.

The emotion thesaurus series is very helpful. I know I tend to reuse the same expressions and phrases. These books help me break that cycle. If you write mystery/suspense or anything where a character may get injured I highly recommend a book on trauma and anatomy. Trust me on that. Also if you write about a real life location. Even if it has a fictional name, it is useful to know about the natural world. It adds a layer of believability. Trust me. The locals know when you don’t do your research.

7. The one thing you can’t live without while writing?

Music. I can not write without music. And Tea. I must have hot tea. And chocolate. Lots of tea and chocolate.

8. How do you fuel yourself while writing?

Again, hot tea. Sometimes coffee. I need something warm and caffeinated. I usually have something small to snack on. Clean finger food. Small pieces of chocolate, pretzels, or cookies. Shortbreads are my favorite. It’s not particularly healthy but it’s what I like.

9. How do you know when you are done writing?

I try to finish the scene. That’s a must. When my mind starts wandering to chores or errands I need to

What ya writing?

do I know I’m finished for the day. Sometimes I can pick back up after lunch but that’s rare. Once I walk away from the computer I am done.

 

And let’s not forget my writing buddy. She keeps me company as I type away.

There you go. My #writingrituals.

What are yours?

-CK

 

Three Weeks Until Summer

That’s right folks, three weeks until the kids are home… all day, every day. Pass the coffee. The end of school tends to be just as busy as the beginning of school. Everything comes to an end with dinners, parties, and programs. My calendar is screaming for relief. This past weekend we drove to Montgomery for the State Bible Drill, my youngest was in it for the first time 🙂 She did well. If you’ve never seen a Bible drill it’s hard to explain. In a nutshell, the students memorize huge amounts of scripture and then have 8 seconds to locate it in the Bible and recite it from memory. She did well, only missed 4 but that was enough to keep her out of the finals. Better luck next year.

On the downside, I am now the proud owner of a moving violation citation (running a stop sign) ;( Really! Okay maybe it was a rolling stop but the road was empty. My hubby had the joy of driving the rest of the day to and from Montgomery!

Let’s get on with this sad goal check.

  • Write 200,000 words. Still at 10,914 words. No new progress.
  • Edit 600 pages.  The total is still 301 pages. To finish Camouflage by June I need to edit roughly 5,000 words a week.
  • Walk 2,600,000 steps.  Yeah, I don’t think this thing is working all that well.My new pedometer says I am at 34,370 steps. I walked over a mile on Saturday and a mile on Monday.  Along with my regular walking. That means I only walked around 14,000 steps this week. Something’s not right here. My previous step count was 474,725. I think I will add the totals together at the end. I’m thinking I may need to ditch steps and change it to timed sessions.
  • Read 80 books.
    I am still reading Caravan of Thieves by David Rich and Hunter by Mercedes Lackey. I have mixed feelings for both of these which is why it’s taking me so long to read them.
  • Find the shipwreck at Ft. Morgan. (summer)
  • Complete devotional. I’m back on track.
  • Deep Cleaning. We have the yard sale coming up this Saturday. I’ve cleaned out both hall closets, laundry room, bedroom closet, and the massive lego horde. This is where most of my energy has been spent.
  • Submissions. Nope. I’ve barely had the computer on this week.

When I do my goal check-in’s I flip open my calendar. May’s is totally blank. That is not a good thing!

Excuse me I have writing to accomplish.

How did your week go?

-CK

 

Camouflage

Camouflage is the name of the project I am editing. I’m not telling you too much about it. I will say it centers on a mother and her three children after the death of her husband. The title is very fitting.

I decided I needed a playlist to go along with the work. So, here it goes. The top 10 in no particular order.

Camouflage Playlist

  • No Mermaid by Joan Baez
  • Building a Mystery by Sarah McLachlan
  • Caribbean Blue by Enya
  • Na Laethe Bhi by Clannad
  • May It Be by Enya
  • Son of a Son of a Sailor by Jimmy Buffet
  • Wicked Game by Chris Issac
  • Cry Me a River by DianhWashington
  • Hold On by Sarah McLachlan
  • Orinoco Flow Enya

Yes, it’s a bit moody. But it’s also full of surprises, hopefully.

What’s on your current playlist?

-CK

 

2017 Goals Check-in April

Happy Spring Break!

I love living near a beach. This weekend was perfect beach weather. Needless to say, I’ve not accomplished much. But that’s okay. I’m spending time with the hubby and wee ones. I am throwing in a little research, but that’s still a secret.

2017

  • Write 200,000 words. No new progress here.
  • Edit 600 pages. I’ve edited 15 pages this week. 282 pages total.
  • Walk 2,600,000 steps. Currently at 474,725. I left my pedometer at home most days. It’s hard to clip it to a swimsuit! Funny story- after returning from the beach I threw on a load of wash. I did not realize that my pedometer was still attached to my pants. Now I no longer have a pedometer. Must alter goal later.
  • Read 80 books.
    I finished reading As the Crow Flies by Craig Johnson. Very good. I need to start at the beginning of the series. I’ve started The Outsiders, which is turning 50 this year!
  • Find the shipwreck at Ft. Morgan. (summer)
  • Complete devotional. I’m a little behind, Spring Break.
  • Deep Cleaning. Nope, Again- Spring Break.
  • Submissions. The rejections are rolling in. I sent out 1 query this week.

How did you do this week?

-CK

Goals 2017 Revision 1

We are four months into the year. Here are the original goals. You can click here for my last check-in.

2017

  • Write 200,000 words.
  • Edit 600 pages.
  • Walk 2,600,000 steps. 
  • Read 80 books.
  • Find the shipwreck at Ft. Morgan. (summer)
  • Complete devotional.

I’m not really discarding any of these. I am just defining them a little more.

Write 200,000 words.

  • I want to write 8,000 words in Seams Like Murder before the end of May.
  • Plot a mystery short story.
  • Plot my ghost story.
  • write a “scientific sheet” on the mythical creatures in my fantasy stories. I don’t know why. It just seems like fun.

Walk 2,600,000 steps.

  • walk every other day at 8 am. I think I will have better luck first thing.
  • Alternate days continue with Tai Chi or calisthenics.

Edit 600 pages.

  • Finish editing Camouflage by the end of May.

Read 80 books.

  • I’m good here 🙂

Complete devotional.

  • This is a different devotional than I started at the beginning of the year. It focuses on the book of Mark.

Deep Cleaning.

  • spend 30-45 minutes each day on necessary house chores. I see a massive yard sale in my future.

Submissions.

  • Submit Stella to magazines.
  • Submit DITW to publishers/agents.  I’ve already started this for both of them. I have a list of places and deadlines. This works well as an after lunch activity.

There you are. Looking at my schedule and the chaos of spring break (next week), my first check-in will be April 19th. I’ll try for next week but with the kids home I doubt it.

-CK