Friday, December 2, 2016

November Update:

And it was NaNoWriMo month!!

I knew going into the month that I would not start writing on the first. I was totally cool with this.

I finished up a content editing job and readied to dive into writing Christmas Warmth. I thought it would be neat to dive in while at Panera Breads, different scenery and all. Until I was sitting at Panera Breads looking through my flash drive for the document...and couldn't find it. Eep! I raced home, panicked as to where this novel could be. I looked through all my computer hard drives (one desk top and laptop again) then looked through the flash drive again, finally finding the right document. Phew! I was panicking but trying to stay calm, knowing if I let myself panic that I would not find it. The worry was that I'd set up the novel in Scrivener with lots of notes. I had taken a lot of time in making folders for chapters and placing scenes in order with details and descriptions for writing. I was worried I lost it all. But I found it!

It's been a hard month to keep up with NaNoWriMo. I didn't get writing in every day. I didn't get started until the 7th as I had pay work. Pay work always comes first, it helps keep things going around here. Then we had lots going on with Kiddo and college searches and tours along with a few events since he's a senior this year. Lots of time tied up in the traveling and such too. And we can't forget about a holiday, which I didn't get the Friday after off this year. And car issues, so I didn't get to stay home all the time as I had to pick Kiddo up or drop him off for work.

It was a bit hairy for a while. There was a time I didn't think I'd hit 50,000 words. I was okay with this too, at least I was getting words. Life kept happening. But I hate losing and was determined to hit the word count. I found an extra wind and drive to keep going. The house may have been a bit messy a few days. I may have skipped out on watching a movie. But I got those words in!

I pushed through and finished on the last day with a 3 hours to spare.

That's right! I won NaNoWriMo 2016!

Is the book done, you ask. No. Not by a long shot. I still have a few scenes to add in or add to. There are all those drafts of re-writes to be done next. So lots of work still ahead of me. But, the bones are in place to work with.

What are the plans for December? Rest. Well, not that much rest. I guess I need to get the house ready for Christmas. But in the way of writing, I want to add what I skipped over in order get done and win NaNoWriMo, those few scenes missing or missing a part. Then it's to re-writes of the first Christmas novel I have here. It's just the bare bones of a story and has a lot of work needed to fill in the gaps of things I left out when racing to write it.

Monday, November 7, 2016

September & October Update:

I'm late getting this post up. *sigh* Life has been moving fast with Kiddo playing football and going to college tours on Saturdays. The days are limited.

But, I'm thrilled to announce.... I finished my re-writes! The steampunk story is done with re-writes. Took me longer than I intended, sure. But they are done! I had sections I had to completely re-write, sections I added to, and new sections added all together. And there are those words that got removed because they just didn't fit. All's good because it worked out!

The story has come out to be about 86,000 words total. Amazing right!? This story had started as a simple little thing to maybe hit 40,000 about a young woman. It grew to over double that with characters and plot. I love what it became! And how it's lead into more stories to follow.

My plan for October.... to re-read Christmas Spirit (working title) in preparation for writing Christmas Warmth (working title) during November for NaNoWriMo. Exciting plans! Now to keep life on the calm so I can get everything done, including content editing work coming in.

See you next month!

Do you believe I had that short section for September done but never posted it!? Yea, that seems to be the way life's been going. We've had football games and gone on college visits. And tried to keep up with the house in all that's going on. LOL! That's funny!

So, did I get to do what I wanted in October... Sort of. With all that we've been doing with kiddo for his senior year this month it's been packed full. But I am about half way through a quick read through of Christmas Spirit (working title). This works because Christmas Warmth (working title) is from a different characters POV and her story at Christmas time.

I finished out October with a content editing job and will finish up the first week of October. After that I'll dive into NaNoWriMo. I'm good with starting a week late because I usually finish a week early with the required goal of words to win.

So here's to creating all sorts of words!

Thursday, September 1, 2016

August Update

It's September 1st and I'm slightly bummed with myself. I didn't get done with the book as I had hoped. Not for a lack of trying through! I've found a lot that needed work and feel the story is stronger for all the work these last two months. I shouldn't be upset with myself, there have been a few big events this month that slowed me, one being surgery and the other is school starting for kiddo along with football - those both pulled days from my writing schedule.

I've also found that with all else I do in a day, I need to have a schedule. So I usually only work on writing for an hour a day, some days more if I have the time with kiddo out and such. But mostly with working full time, cooking dinner, and all other things in life, an hour is what I can squeeze out most evenings. I also take breaks. I can't stress over it as I find I start to clam up on the words.

I also knew coming into the ending that it would need completely redone. In the last two read through's and re-writes I avoided the ending. I've made new short sections of things to touch on but didn't read it. I knew the story needed more work and without that work I couldn't even do the ending any justice. So now I'm at that ending. I'm pulling pieces from the three sections I've worked up and have notes on what additional needs to be touched on. Wow. It's a process! lol

I've learned one lesson this month:
In rewrites its not always how big of a section you get through or how many words you add or delete. No. Sometimes, it's what you realize needs done and how to add it in that's the major accomplishment. I found that out the first night in August. I didn't get through a large section but it dawned on me that I had a character that needs to be seen before I had him, at the end. And I scribbled notes on where to add him along with searched for a name for him. I had an idea of what his part is in the story but didn't really create him before.

So, I'm working through the ending of the story now. I feel much better with the direction of the story, though I know it needs a hell of a lot of work yet. I'm still going to be embarrassed to send it to anyone to read, but that's a step I'm going to have to overcome one day here.

For now, I'm working on this ending and hoping to finish the book in a weeks time (that's what I keep saying and that week comes and goes).

Thursday, August 4, 2016

July Update

I'm late with updating for July, but I have good reason! I do! Really! I've been busy, working hard on re-writes of my steampunk fairy tale retelling. YES! It's hard to believe, I know.

I've feared re-writes in the worst way for a long time. I still do. But after a few passes I wanted this to be a huge leap toward finishing. I'm going through the print changes I've red marked and making new and necessary ones now, along with adding new sections to make things flow better and fill in a few holes. No, not all holes are gone, I know that. But I feel as I'm getting through a great deal of them. And maybe, just maybe, this story is shaping up into something. :)  (I know, it's that glory feeling at the moment and it will fade very soon, like when it's crushed.)

I've actually grown the story from about 66k to 75k words, and still climbing as I'm not done! Exciting! (Again, this will most likely get cut down again when I go through it with someone who knows what they are doing and not a friend.)

I'm surprised that I'm actually having fun with this round of re-writes. I feel as I have a clearer mind in where the story is going and what the characters are doing. I might, eventually make changes of POV as I'm seeing things differently with this round of works. But, first, I want to finish this and send to a friend (who knows what she's doing in books) to read and discuss. I know the words are still rough and it's not the best of stories (my reader will probably laugh so hard she'll fall off the couch) but at least I took the next step in the way of words.

What helped get me going? I was free of editing work for the month of July and Camp NaNoWriMo was happening. So, why not? I proposed 50k words in a month for Camp NaNoWriMo. And I made it!

How did I count words for that? Well, with re-writes I was reading, rather detailed and slowly, along with adding and deleting words. So, I took the sections read and adjusted at their total word count when done with the section and added each section I completed. I actually finished at just over 52k for NaNoWriMo.

My next goal, to finish these re-writes by the end of August and starting into my Christmas Business series to do the same.

Here's to a great month in words!

Monday, July 11, 2016

The Story is Still Growing: May Update


In re-writes there are sections I work through and different thoughts pop into my head, some are good and seem are that it flows well (of course with touch ups). Other thoughts are like... Oh the holes. My goodness the plot holes, the character holes, the world holes. How on earth did I even think this?!?

Then the panic starts to set in. The worry and anxiety. I'll never fix it. I'll never get it to work together.

I have to stop myself. Remind myself. The story is still growing. It needs lots of work to get to a smooth flow and these are the pieces I need to find now. This is creating the whole of what I want to share.


Um... Where does the time go?! I didn't even realize June was passed until it was long gone. So needless to point out the obvious, but I will. Just so I admit it and face the cold truth. I got no new words in. No writing. No re-writes. Nothing.

But on the last day of the month I decided to join Camp NaNoWriMo to get re-writes done. My goal, to get through my steampunk story then move on to my 1st Christmas Business story.

Bring it on!

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Sunday, May 1, 2016

March and April Update

So, for those that do check this blog, you probably think I've fallen off the face of the earth. No updates in two months, that's not good. Well, in a sort of way it's all true...

It's been a rough few months in our house. My son had to go in for a third surgery, arthroscopic, to remove more scar tissue build up in his knee. Then he got botox shots to help with the hamstring that was spasming. And he got a new crazy brace that he had to wear. So we kept him home for 2 weeks to get all this done and really focus on getting his knee straight.

The stress level was getting crazy high for me. I couldn't get to everything and take care of my family at the same time. So, writing did get put on the back burner. I needed to take care of myself and my family first.

Now, moving ahead to April. Kiddo's birthday is here too. But he's doing much better and we were seeing good results. This last week was a great response at therapy, if he stays at this level for the next week they will have him running then. Woot woot! This is what we are working for.

The stress level seems to have dropped a bit in the last two weeks. So I finally pulled out one of those stories I was re-writing and got back to it. I'm only working on it for about a half hour a day. I know, seems like not much but with all else going on in the day, this is what I feel I can do without stressing out over everything.

I'm taking steps in the right direction! I think I'll finish reading to right before the big finale and go back to type up all the changes. There are things that need to be revealed in the big ending so I want to have those listed and read to do the re-writes in that section, to do it right.

So, how has your months gone?

Tuesday, March 1, 2016

February Update:


First, I want to mention one thing... I have NO idea how authors accomplish so much and live a life! They are amazing! I've not made many words with life being as busy as it is with kiddo's therapy and exercises at home I help with, working full time, editing work part time, and sleep. I'm a sleeper and have to get 7-8 hrs of sleep at night. There just isn't enough time in the day!

Okay, what have I accomplished?

I've added all the notes on my plot board to Scrivener!

While I typed it up in Scrivener, I ran through the scenes in my mind. In this process I found a few scenes needed to be rearranged. I also found that I felt like I had written a few of these scenes already. I have notes on them but not completely done, it felt as it was complete in my mind. So this will make for writing the first draft easier. Right? I did come across a few scenes that needed to be added as I had a character pop into my mind that needed to be in the story to help things along.

I'm going to say, from the scenes I have listed, that the book will be a short novel at 60k words.

Now for the sad news.

This breaks my heart but I think I have to admit it. Something has to give these days. There is way to much going on at one time and I can't get anything done. So, I'm going to put writing on the back burner for a few months. I hate to say that and that I'll actually do it. But I'm stressing myself out over everything these days, and writing has been put last as it is.

Kiddo comes first. I have to be there for him to work through therapy and exercises at home. I'm his cheering squad and his whip. I will be there to get him through. I also need the spare money that content editing brings in, and that time is limited with all the work into getting kiddo's knee straight and moving again.

I'm hoping in a few months things will be moving better and life a bit calmer so I can relax and enjoy writing. I see that Camp NaNoWriMo will be starting April 1st. I wish I could say I would be doing it as I have a book all ready to be written. But I don't think I'll be ready by then. A few months... I hope.

Friday, February 12, 2016

January Update:

I created a plot board!

Christmas Warmth (working title), the second Christmas Business story, has started to form for me. It's come quick, for me three months is fast. They are short novels set around, as you guessed it, Christmas time.

I will say, this helped me see the story and elements I want present. I saw where I needed to add a few more scenes of problematic moments to heighten the story and really hit home what was happening. So I did some reworking and planning as I went. I also had elements I want present in the story as it has a Christmas sway to the character coming around to things. By having the story forming in front of me with order, I was able to add color sticky notes to represent those hints.
Now to remember all these items when I go to write the book... I'm hoping to have this board present (in person or in imagery on phone) to look at and remind me what I need at each scene. I'm hoping I can get the hints I need present in Scrivener.

I didn't get any words in for the month, but I did get the story designed. February has started and I'll work on setting up my cork board by chapter and scene in Scrivener. Preparation is almost done!

Sunday, January 10, 2016

December Update:


Once again, I'm late at posting about the month past. But with holidays it's hard! lol.

So I had planned to write my second Christmas story in the month of December with all the craziness that comes with Christmas. I didn't get to do that. The events of life, kiddo and knee therapy along with the go-go-go of the holidays disrupted the idea this year.

But that's okay!

Why? Because it gave me the month to listen to the seasonal music, and listen I did. I had the radio on constant Holiday cheer from Thanksgiving. And to get into the season so I could come up with ideas for the story. I now have a list of things that can happen. I also made verbal notes into my phone that would be the scene or part of a scene. I have typed those up and have those ready for when I get to planning and writing.

This is a step forward for me. These holiday stories come in a completely different fashion than other stories have. They are almost outlined in my head. Keep in mind, I don't outline very well. AT ALL. So this is something new for me.

My plans are to make a plot board for the book so I can keep track of all that is to happen and influences in the story by the 'holiday spirit'. I'll share that with you next month.

Here's to producing more words!