Everyone lean back, take a deep breath, and have a few gulps of water (or maybe a whiskey). National Novel Writing Month 2020 is over. November was a packed month with a lot of different things going on, but I like where I’ve ended up, generally. Continue reading “December Write Day: NaNoWriMo 2020 Wrap-Up”
If there is one thing I have learned from NaNoWriMo this year, it is that I do not have time to write 50,000 words in one month. And that’s not a complaint or an act of self-deprecation, for which I’m definitely not known.
It’s just an acknowledgment that my life and my priorities have changed since the first few years I participated in NaNo with great success. I’m still happy to be participating, and I’ve made some real progress.
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October was a pretty good month. I started off with a long weekend vacation in Rehoboth, DE, which already feels like ages ago, and ended with a rapid turn towards winter weather the last few days. I’ve found it oddly comforting.
Writing was meh, and National Novel Writing Month is now in full swing, but we’ll get to that.
Last Month’s Goals
- Write 6,000 words.
- Prepare “Uprooted” for next steps.
- Continue yoga and workout routine.
- Read more.
So how did I do?
Write 6,000 words?
I honestly forgot that 6,000 words was my goal. I had just assumed it was the usual 10,000. I may have been more motivated for this one if I remembered that I shorted my own goal.
I wrote about 2,850 words in October for part 2 of “The Herb Witch Tales”. I’m kind of stuck on larger structural changes that I’ll get to in the next section, but that stymied my creative flow a bit.
Prepare “Uprooted” for publication?
Sort of. If by “prepare” we mean that I confirmed that “Uprooted” is nowhere near ready for publication. (That’s an important step in the publishing process.)
I sent my draft of 38k words to two readers for some feedback, one being Marcy and the other being my editor. I’ve gotten some incredibly insightful feedback, and it’s spurred a lot of note-taking on my part for improvements to make.
But that means I have another round of revisions coming. that’s not a bad thing. It just means it’s still too early to think about publishing right now.
One piece of feedback was that the end of the story didn’t feel like a true resolution — more of a cut-off before an inevitable sequel. That’s not how I wanted “Uprooted” to end. I want a true ending.
And it turns out, I may be in the process of writing that ending right now. Part 2 of this series opens not long after “Uprooted” ends and actually ties off a lot of the loose ends one of my readers pointed out. So the first few thousand words of part 2 may really be my ending to “Uprooted”.
That also means that “Uprooted” is likely to be in the 40-45k word range, much more in novella territory than short story. The more I think about this shift, the more it makes sense. I’ll just also need to shift where part 2 begins and maybe some of the early plot set-up.
Continue yoga and workouts?
Yes, mostly. I’ve definitely been doing yoga and working out more days than not, which is really the goal. I’ve also started doing longer and more intense yoga sessions, which has been a huge boost.
I’ve found myself sore in the day or two afterwards, which is a good feeling.
Yes! I finished two books in October (on Audible), including one that I will be reviewing next week. It’s still difficult to find time to read a physical book, but I’ve managed to work Audible listening into more daily activities, even if it’s just for 5 or 10 minutes at a time. That has really helped.
Goals for November
- NaNoWriMo! Rather than writing 50,000 words, my real NaNo goal is to finish the first draft of part 2 of “The Herb Witch Tales”, in whatever form it takes. I’m writing this draft in a journal, so even if I decide to shift part of it over to part 1, it would be amazing if I could bring part 2 to a meaningful close.
- Yoga and working out. I’ve been pretty good about this, so I just need to be disciplined and carve out the appropriate time during the day for longer yoga sessions.
- Not lose my mind. With work stress, election stress, and creeping holiday stress, I just want to have a good month.
It’s kind of ridiculous to think that I’ve participated in National Novel Writing Month each year since 2014. Only once have I achieved writing 50,000 words in one month, but I can’t not participate, even if it’s a last-second decision.
This year was another last-second decision, but I’m excited. Continue reading “The NaNoWriMo Plan, 2020 Edition”
I’m sensing a pattern here, in that each month seems to pass more quickly than the last.
This post is a week late because I wanted to finish “The Grand Mythos”, so we’re already almost halfway through December. Oh well.
November was solid. Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday, and we had a nice time with family, but I’ve also taken some interesting steps on the writing front.
Not only did I finish publishing my mythic fantasy series, but I’ve also started writing my short story. Continue reading “December Write Day: NaNo is Over, but I barely Noticed”
Halfway through November, National Novel Writing Month is going pretty well for me. I think I’ve started to figure out a real writing process in the limited writing time I actually have day to day.
And it’s only taken me five months to get here! Continue reading “NaNoWriMo 2019 Update – Week 2”
We’re a week into National Novel Writing Month, and I’m feeling… frustrated but optimistic. Continue reading “NaNo 2019 Update – Week 1”
The high school creative writing class I visited a couple weeks ago wrote a thank you card for me!Continue reading “On Actually Having a Positive Impact”
Much like September, October flew by. However, I am feeling much better mentally than I did the previous month.
I can’t claim to have had a productive month, but I enjoyed and was invigorated by a lot of what I did. Continue reading “November Write Day: Hours in the Day”
I got a very interesting email today from my editor. Most of our email exchanges have to do with my writing, as you might expect, but we’re old friends from high school, so sometimes we email just to catch up and ask each other why we haven’t hung out in months.
This morning, she emailed me to say she would be teaching a creative writing class this year — she teaches high school English — and she wanted to know if I would come in to talk to her kids.