Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Another Win on the Books – Now to Finish Said Book


I did it. I won.

Oh my aching fingers!

Ever since the calendar flipped to December 1, I’ve felt like breaking out in song: “It’s the most wonderful time of the year!” 

At least, that's what I imagine it feels like for many writers across the globe right now.
November is over and it feels like I can finally get my life back! This monster known as NaNoWriMo has taken over my life for the past 30 days. But for the second time I crossed into the National Novel Writing Month winner’s circle by successfully penning 50,000 words worth of a novel in just one month’s time.

That oh-so-wonderful 50,000th word was written November 30th at approximately 8:53 p.m. Upon realization that I had crossed the magical word count threshold, I promptly jumped up from my computer desk, grabbed my cat and danced with her around the house for a solid three and a half minutes (or until the song on the radio was done, at which point my cat decided she didn’t really like her dancing partner and I decided I should get back to the task of finishing the novel).

But upon sitting back down to my desk to continue the not-yet-finished-story, a rush of emotions overcame me that anyone would expect upon coming out the other side of such an audacious task as a winner.

Saturday, November 29, 2014

On Deadline – A NaNoWriMo Update


Hey there internet and happy Saturday! I know what you must be thinking:

“Whoa! What’s this, an update from Amanda in November? But isn’t there, like, that thing going on?”

This blog post is brought to you by Procrastination! Keeping you from getting stuff done!
Well, yes, there is in fact that one thing going on. That thing called National Novel Writing Month, that which has consumed my very being since 29 days ago. Almost every spare second of my time has been dedicated towards writing my novel The Light Within the Darkness.

I know it’s the day before the deadline and while I haven’t validated my novel yet, a little bit ago I crossed the threshold of 45,000 words on my project. That means I have just under 30 hours to come up with 5,000 words in order to win this year.

So why am I over here on my blog writing an update to you my lovely reader?

Monday, November 10, 2014

"What's Your Story About?" - A NaNoWriMo Update

Almost two years ago, I moved from my childhood home to my current residence in a town called Webster. I’ve always liked my new home’s name.
 
I mean, really. I’m a writer who lives in a town called Webster. Isn’t that awesome? (I’m currently trying to petition the need to change our motto to something like “find your definition” or “define yourself.”) What’s more, a neighboring town that I visit often has the tagline, “write your story.” It would seem I live in a writer’s paradise.
 
That’s what I’m attempting to do this month, during National Novel Writing Month.
 
I write a weekly column in the local newspaper where I am employed as a journalist and last week I wrote about and explained to my readers what NaNoWriMo is. On the few occasions I have been out of my house since then, people have stopped me to ask how my noveling is going – something that is very encouraging to me.
 
But then comes the question that causes me to cringe inwardly.
 
“What is your story about?”
 
My reply: “Uhhhh...words, and stuff?”
 
You see, because NaNo snuck up on me this year and I didn’t have much time to do my normal thing – outline – instead, I’m doing what WriMos call “pansting,” which is making up the story as you go along. While it’s true that the idea for this particular story has been roving around in my brain for several years, it involves a complex concept and storyline that I haven’t quite figured out yet.
 
Besides that, since my work is a tale of fiction – something my newspaper readers may not readily associate me with – I also usually don’t know how to reply or even begin telling them what my NaNo novel is about. I’m classifying it as a Young Adult Modern Fantasy Fiction. It’s not quite High Fantasy, but there are just enough elements of magic to distance itself from the realm of normal fiction.
 
Upon a brief and hurried attempt at an explanation to a well-meaning church lady who asked that question after services Sunday, she finally said, “Oh, so kind of a ‘Lord of the Rings’ kind of thing?”
 
Close enough, I thought.
 
I’m still working on that description for you guys. I’ll share it when I’m ready, but for now, I’m concentrating on word count alone.

Saturday, November 1, 2014

So It Begins!

It's here, the first day of NaNoWriMo 2014 - welcome to the madness!

If you're here at my blog, I'm going to assume that you already know what National Novel Writing Month is and that I need not explain it further to you. If you have never heard of this craziness that is writing a book - 50,000 words - in a single month, bless you. You probably got a full night's sleep last night and will sleep just fine tomorrow and the night after. At the very least, you will not find yourself at a single point this month sleep deprived due to worrying over the lack of words you have put to a page in the pursuit of telling a story on a deadline.


This year will be my third attempt at completing NaNoWriMo. My first year, in 2012, I won. My second year, last year, I was unable to complete the task.

The first year, I knew what story I had planned to write as far back as two months before the start. I spent that time before the first of November plotting, outlining and writing character sketches and background stories. I made plans and told family and friends that I was undertaking the task of writing a book in a month and did my best to catch up on my sleep before the strike of midnight on All Hallows Eve.