goals and not meeting them

*sigh*

I figured I’d update my word count over on the Dreamwalkers page, just to keep track of how well I’m doing on my resolution of writing 500 words a day.  Unfortunately, this forces me to acknowledge that I’ve only written 1,679 words this year when I should be up around 6,000.  I managed to write about 1,000 words on the 5th, and a little over 500 words yesterday.  Which means I’ve only written for about 3 days out of the year thus far.

I’m going to keep trying.  A couple of things popped up this week, but honestly, they shouldn’t have stopped me from writing.

I’m considering buying Scrivener.  I tried the free trial last year and I did like it, although it had a lot more bells and whistles than I’m used to when I’m writing.  Sometimes the effort of turning on my laptop and opening a document makes me want to write longhand.  But it does have a feature where it will keep track of daily word count.

I will keep trying.  Got my Word document open now.  I can do this.

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catching up

(and also a reminder: my two novels, Bethany Caleb and The Art Kids, are both free on Amazon all weekend!)

After the July 4th holiday kicked my ass, word-count-wise, I’m sorta back on track with Camp Nanowrimo.  At least, I wrote almost twice the daily recommended word count on Sunday, and have been able to write if not the 1,667 words each day, at least somewhere around 1,000.  So, that’s something.  While the stats page informs me that at this pace I’ll be finishing Scavengers around August 21st or so, I’m hopeful that I will get at least into the high 30Ks or low 40Ks by the end of camp.  Also, Janina took Hitchhikers on vacation and is finally now reading it!!  Maybe my dreams of self-publishing this series by the end of summer will come true!

freebie weekend, and hello from camp!

My two companions novels, Bethany Caleb and The Art Kids, will both be available for free this weekend, July 13-14!  (Of course, these are both always free for Amazon Prime members).  Also available are the print editions of both books.

scavengers ebook coverSo the long holiday weekend totally decimated my word count, but I am still writing at least.  I should be at around 15,000 words by the end of today and I am limping along at a little over 9,000.  I still think I will get a good chunk of Scavengers completed by the end of the month.  It helps that I’ve incorporated Camp Nanowrimo into my library summer reading programming, so I’m forced to do write-ins every Friday.  Last year, when I worked on Dreamwalkers during Camp Nanowrimo, I think I got maybe 10-11,000 words added.  (Note on the cover at right: This will not be the final cover of Scavengers, since when I tried to contact the owners of the various images used, I received no response… back to the drawing board…)

I think once I have complete drafts of both Dreamwalkers and Scavengers, I will publish Hitchhikers.  I may do it differently than I did for my first two self-published books.  I’m looking into Smashwords, since this allows more than just the Kindle platform (but includes the Kindle platform), and will also allow me a little more freedom in setting the price.  Createspace was kind of a pain in my ass, but I’ll probably still use it for print editions.  Kindle was so easy to publish with, I may still use KDP for publishing the Kindle edition.  Now if Janina would only finish reading that final draft of Hitchhikers

I win!!

Crossed the finish line last night!  And the story is “complete” – there was no skipping to the end and writing an epilogue.  Well, a lot of the last couple of chapters is telling not showing, but I have high hopes for this one and I’m looking forward to editing.  I even kept writing after I saw the word counter at the bottom of the screen go over 50,000, so I have a grand total of 50,289 words!  Yeah, I know, it isn’t that much over (especially considering Janina’s 61,000+ words… grumble grumble).

It has been a few years since I’ve felt this positive about a Nanowrimo story after I’ve finished.  The Nostradamus Project, Return to Ravenwood Manor, and Cabin Fever were all sort of slapdash toward the end.  Ravenwood Manor wasn’t terrible, and I did complete the story, but it didn’t exactly turn out the way I’d envisioned at the beginning.  The other two… well, maybe someday I’ll go back to Cabin Fever.  That one I didn’t really “finish” – it’s still listed under my “works in progress.”

Soon I’ll be adding a page for Ghosts of Circus Past, which will include some of the research resources I used and a playlist!  You can read a little bit of the story on my Figment page – the first 3 chapters or so.

Nanowrimo Update: Week 2.5

Word Count: Above Par (34,484/33,333)

Janina is less than 5,000 words away from finishing.  I am consoling myself with the fact that I am keeping my head above water.

I am having a little too much fun with my deadly circus.  Since all the characters are dead, they can die over and over again in horrific, circus-related ways.  Most recently, the animals went crazy during the show’s finale, which led to: an evisceration, a decapitation, legs being crushed by an elephant, and a fire.  Previously there was a lion tamer attacked by his own lions and a flying trapeze act where the flyers plummeted to the ground.  We also discovered that one of the characters died in the Hagenbeck-Wallace circus train fire.

The one problem I’m starting to notice, as I have noticed in years of Nanowrimo past, is that I forget a lot of details from earlier on in the story.  My main characters keep flip flopping on their feelings about being in the Circus of the Damned, because I didn’t remember how I had written their original feelings.  I also keep forgetting character names… ah well, I suppose that’s what editing is for.

Nanowrimo 2012: Week 1 Update

Word Count: slightly ahead of target

Janina’s word count prowess has her in the lead, but we’ll see if she has the longevity!

I have already hit one point where I wasn’t sure where the hell my story was going and even contemplated scrapping what I had so far (roughly 5-8,000 words at that point) and starting my original 2012 Nanowrimo idea, the exorcism story.  When I met with the Townsend League of Extraordinary Writers (+1) on Saturday evening, I even announced to them sadly that my main character had no personality.

“You’ve got a Bella,” Tiger said wisely.

So I decided I would write my Wrimo buddies in the story: Janina ended up as an apathetic mermaid in the freak show, Tiger became a snake handler, and Jen was the nearly decapitated assistant to the knife thrower.  Still, I was stuck.

I spent most of one day writing out little blurbs of circus history – the real gory bits – to include at the head of each chapter, just because I had no idea where I wanted to make the story go.

Finally, I decided to make my main character, Lana Tate (last name might change…), have to overcome her lack of personality.  She’s spent her whole life being one of those obnoxiously good girls, listening to her mother’s advice, listening to what her friends think is the best course of action.  Which eventually led to her demise and her arrival at the Circus of the Damned.  So she needs to realize that she’s here and must become the performer she always could be, even though her mother always told her she shouldn’t want to be center stage.

I also threw in a romantic interest and some villainous folk, which spiced things up as well.  I’m rolling along once more.  Of course, I’m sure I will hit more road blocks along the way…

If you’re at all interested in reading, I’ll be posting up chapters on my Figment account.  Please comment or review!  Even if just to tell me it sucks!

and so it begins…

It’s November 2nd, which means Nanowrimo has started again!  Yesterday I managed over 1,900 words and my goal for tonight is to get to 3,500 before American Horror Story comes on.

Cabin FeverMy novel this November is called “Cabin Fever.”  Up until about Oct. 25th I had no idea what I was going to write about, so I went over to the site Seventh Sanctum and used one of their story idea generators, which gave me a plot about combining the legend of the Jersey Devil with something else (I can’t remember what it was, now).  Then I looked up the Jersey Devil on Wikipedia and it’s actually pretty fascinating – a winged creature with two hooved feet and the head of a horse that was seen by various people in the winter of 1909 in New Jersey.  Reading all the origin stories and about the sightings gave me this image of a family trapped in a house in the winter, hearing sounds on their roof… which reminded me of a story I’d started back in high school called “Cabin Fever,” about a family trapped in a snowstorm and how they all go murderously crazy.  I don’t know where that original story is, although I can remember scenes of wolves jumping up out of a frozen pond and attacking people, and family members freezing to death on the side of the road a short ways from safety. 

This time around, I have a mother who may or may not be mentally ill, an older brother with a fascination about sciences and becoming a surgeon, a flighty sister, and a little brother who has night terrors, trapped in a monster of a storm. 

You can visit my Nanowrimo profile to check out my progress – make me a writing buddy if you are a fellow wrimo!