October Update: Beefing Up after a Much-Needed Hiatus

gin fizz sazerac

Well, a lot has happened in the last 10 days. First of all, Future Wife finally became Present Wife. The wedding was amazing and the honeymoon was awesome. That photo above is a taste of what we experienced (and tasted) in the Big Easy — the best damn gin fizz I’ve ever had, and a damn good Sazerac, courtesy of the bartenders at Bourbon O bar on Bourbon Street. Yes, Bourbon Street was the all-day adult frat party we sort of anticipated. And we enjoyed it anyway.

So that’s where I’ve been.

And Writing Life Continues

  • I had one post featuring the questions I sent my alpha readers last week, and then a big fat 0 for Friday. I thought I might be able to throw together a quick post during our honeymoon adventures, but I didn’t even try.
  • I heard back from Five on the Fifth regarding my short story submission, and it was not accepted. Kind of sucks. But I’m going to email the editor I know over there to see if there were any issues with my submission that stuck out. Then I can tweak my draft a bit more and  submit it for their December issue.
  • I also did not finish reading through Manuscript: Alpha before the wedding… or after. So I still have that to tackle.

I quite enjoyed not checking email, WordPress, or social media for an entire week though. It allowed me to step back and assess this whole author adventure I’m on, and now I’m ready to look ahead once more.

October is Here!

And October means… NaNo Prep, of course! It’s a little strange to come into NaNo season with revisions on the brain, especially since just one year ago I had only a few chapters and a grand idea for The Warden of Everfeld: Memento. Those few chapters will be changing drastically by the way. Such are the burdens of the revision process.

With National Novel Writing Month comes the still-daunting task of writing 50,000 words during the month of November. I recommend you join if you’ve never tried it out, and then add me as a writing buddy!

I’ve been saying for months that my goal for NaNo 2016 will be to hammer out the foundations of a first draft for my second novel, code name WoE2. However, with 70-some pages still to review for my first read-through of Manuscript: Alpha, I’m beginning to reconsider… I need a pros/cons list!

Pros of Writing WoE2 for NaNo

  • having 50k (ideally) words of another novel
  • probably being more motivated to finish WoEM
  • having a better idea of where my story is ultimately going

Cons of Writing WoE2 for NaNo

  • being too distracted from WoEM
  • making significant changes to book 1 and having to reformulate book 2 later
  • wanting to continue writing WoE2 beyond NaNo when I should really refocus on WoEM








Tough decision. My alternative for NaNo 2016 is to just use the month to focus heavily on my revisions. This ruins the point of NaNo in a way, since I would not be writing for raw word count, but rather reworking what I already have.

So here’s my plan for this NaNo Prep Month:

  1. Finish my damn read-through by October 16 and organize my notes for my Grand Master Revision Plan (which I just made up).
  2. Use the final two weeks of October to outline and prep whatever it is I end up working on for NaNo.

That’s all I got. Whatever I decide, rest assured that I’ll keep up my new schedule of write-days, marketing tips, creativity sessions, and updates throughout NaNo season. Stay tuned.

Steve D

8 thoughts on “October Update: Beefing Up after a Much-Needed Hiatus

      1. You know, I’ve never done a “traditional” NaNo. How does the “writing buddy” system work on the NaNo website? I know I really respond to a little peer pressure! 🙂

      2. When you create your account, you’ll create a “novel” which is your stated project for November. Then you can add “buddies” to your profile to track each other’s progress, actually much like following someone on WordPress 🙂

        Let’s be writing buddies! (I always find that a little external motivation pushes me farther.)

  1. Don’t kill me, but I’ve never “actively” participated in NaNo season. I mean, I write EVERY day. If I COULD write a book in a month, I ABSOLUTELY would, though I doubt Quintessential Editor would thank me for that much reading. I write, and I love the idea of NaNo, but I sort of consider EVERY month NaNo. I hope that makes sense. You made the right call letting the writing, blogging, and emailing sit until after the honeymoon. You’re a married man now, and that’s awesome! So congrats. I’m glad you had fun, and I look forward to your posts and updates!

    1. Thank you! I do not regret my hiatus one bit 🙂

      I’m just about the opposite I think. I would write every day if I could, but life tends to pull me in several directions at once. In that way, NaNo is a challenge for me. From “winning” NaNo last year, I know that I can write 50k words in a month, but I also know that if I were to focus that heavily on my writing all the time, a lot of other pieces of my life would fall by the wayside. And I woudl definitely burn out. To be honest, I do want to start writing more frequently again now that wedding season is over for us. So if nothing else, I’m using these two months as a springboard to get back into the habit of writing consistently, even if that’s just in a few spurts per week.

      Thanks for checking in!

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