NaNoWriMo 2018 day 1

Well, I’ve started my story, Superhuman Rights, which is a sequel to last year’s Superhuman Resources. Same main character, Jessamine “Nimiety” Spaulding-Welch. Different setting at the moment. She’s retired and helping out the first responders in her town as a sheriff’s officer. I have the idea that some kind of weaponized virus is killing supers in her old place of employment and she’s the one who has to go in to find out how and why. I also want her to take a trip to the Caribbean island where her best friend is from. Sort of a superhero response to Hurricane Maria, if you will.

NaNoWriMo this year will be really busy for Upstate South Carolina; we have several write-ins every week, some even more than once per day! All this and my husband is going to visit his parents the first full week in November. Fortunately, I’m able-bodied so far (knock on wood) and can drive myself.

Back from the first write-in and I’ve got 2213 words! Great start!

Linda, you’re famous!

A good friend said that to me when I posted a link to a blog post I’d written for NaNoWriMo! They do a “Road to NaNo” series leading up to the start of NaNoWriMo and ask Municipal Liaisons from a variety of areas to write them. I said I’d be willing and they picked me!

Here it is!

My co-ML and I are getting things ready for the 2018 season. I’ll be writing a sequel to my superhero novel of last year. Not sure how well it would go; I have one starting scene in my head and a vague direction to go but no ending… yet. As usual, I’ll just wing it.

Working title: Superhuman Rights

Two more days to go!

And only one more write-in. I’m up to date on my word count (as of 11/28) and the story is sorta starting to peter out. Not that it’s finished, I think, but my strongest scenes are written, for the most part. A problem with pantsing a story instead of planning it out. I need to start copying it to a text file for validation purposes so I know exactly how many words I have. I also want to run spell-check for the more egregious of my typos. It’s not turning out so much to be an action-adventure story so much as a story of family, both by marriage/birth and by choice. There’s still a load of description to put in, especially when dealing with what people are doing as they speak. I’ve gotten worse at that over the years; this is a chance to consciously think about what they’re doing–use my visual take on the whole thing to make things clear to the reader.

One thing I’ve found has worked really well is using the 20/10 method espoused by the website and book, unfuckyourhabitat (pardon the language but that is the name of the site). They suggest it for cleaning; I’ve adapted it for writing. During the day, I’ll hop into our NaNoChat room and queue up what’s called a chain war. Timmy the word war mech (the chat’s weird AI) will set a 20-minute timer for me and space it automatically with 10-minute breaks. I type as fast as I can in those 20 minutes and after three or four of them, I have my daily word count. At actual write-ins, I’ll specify 15 minutes instead of 20; five of those takes around an hour and a half, which is a great length of time. It may be something I have to do after NaNoWriMo ends.

On the physical side, I’m pretty much confined to a wheelchair until after the New Year. Turns out my Lisfranc injury is an old one and is stable. Good news on that front. However, x-rays taken today at my orthopedist’s office shows I have not three but four broken toes. They’re developing new bone but will have to do a whole lot more healing before I’m back to driving and walking.

So, two more days to go and I’m on track to win!

Here I am at day four.

I’m going along pretty well so far. I’m over halfway to day five’s goal and hopefully tomorrow I can write enough to put me a day ahead. The story itself is moving along, too., with a sizeable bit of world-building coming into focus. Our write-ins have been okay in terms of attendance, though the bookstore which waived the fee for us to use their community room told us we couldn’t have any chairs (as they have to rent them, apparently, and charge what they do to cover costs). There were padded benches and folding tables so those who attended did have places to sit, but I don’t think we’ll be using the bookstore again next year. Sad, really, considering that we’re literally writing the books they have on their shelves. (My co-ML, Tyffani Clark Kemp, is a published author whose books are on their shelves. So ‘literally’ is the word.)

I don’t have the wheelchair yet; the Girl and I waited for three hours at the dealership to get new tires for the truck. I miss driving, but I always have when something like this happens.  My favorite sister-in-law has agreed to take me down to get it Tuesday. (Which is really poor timing because the write-in that night is in the same town where I’ll be getting the wheelchair…)

The first day of NaNoWriMo 2017 was a success!

Well, it was for me and my region. We had a midnight virtual write-in in our ChatNaNo room with four to five people in there starting off the month with word wars and chats. Then a really well-attended write-in at Greenville Technical College’s Barton Campus library. It was our first time there and the librarians and English professors made us feel very welcome!

The Kick-Off was last Sunday at our usual park pavilion and it wasn’t as well-attended as I’d have liked–possibly because it was Sunday afternoon and probably because it was cold and windy out! Still, we gave out 10-12 goodie bags and had lots of food (there’s still lots of pumpkin dip here but we finally finished up the pumpkin chocolate-chip mini-muffins. Those are addictive!)

My superhero novel, entitled Superhuman Resources, is coming along. I still need names and powers for quite a few cast members, but my main character is shaping up nicely, I think. No one has been able to create character art for her yet; most of the artists in the NaNoWriMo Artisans forum do younger people, as most of the novelists write about younger people. Having a middle-aged superhero is something different and hopefully unique.

Speaking of superheroes, the theme this year is exactly that and I got my daughter, stripeysharpie, to do a superhero mascot for our region!

We’re still looking to name this character.

And… after all this great, gushing news, something that has put a definite crimp in my style as a municipal liaison: three broken toes and a Lisfranc injury. I’ve been told to “baby” my foot (the right one, as per usual) and I have a wheelchair to pick up tomorrow. Yes, you heard it. A wheelchair. I won’t be able to drive for at least four weeks and probably much longer. Which means the family will have to chauffeur me around for the foreseeable future–and I can’t make any daytime write-ins, which is really frustrating. They also are responsible for the housework, which is frustrating in a totally different direction. Had to print out a “how to wash your wife’s clothes” for Hubby after he put my favorite embellished jeans in the dryer (the tag says “line dry” for a reason!). So, the only thing I’ll be doing during the month of November is letting the dog in and out and keeping the cats from following (besides my usual sedentary stuff like paying the bills). That should leave me plenty of time to write, right? We’ll see.

Anyway, word count for Nov. 1st: 2226.

Questions you may have…

Did I reach my word count for Camp NaNoWriMo?

Uh, no. I didn’t. (Which is part of the reason I’ve taken over a month to update anything.) The story I set myself to, after finishing the Flash fanfic, just gave me no joy. It’s a story I want to tell but I may have taken too long to tell it. I mean, The White Winds finished in 2010 and this was supposed to be a sequel. It may be too late to go that route.

Have I posted the final chapter of the Flash fanfic?

No. I wanted to give myself some space before editing it and still haven’t gotten around to doing so. It shouldn’t take long to do, really. I’ve just found other things a priority–like housework.

Will I be doing Camp NaNoWriMo in July?

I plan on it. My physical therapy should be finished by then and I can actually spend some time going away from home to write. Trying to write here with the pets and the responsibility of keeping the house clean is difficult.

One thing I’ve discovered about myself, however, is what I tend to write when I write original stories. For the past few years, whether I’ve written fantasy or science fiction, I tend to write superheroes. This hearkens back to my early days as a budding girl geek, when my favorite show was Batman and my favorite character was Robin. Back to the time when I collected comic books almost religiously. There’s something about them that fascinates me. I started daydreaming about a character for another fix-it fic for the Flash but this time, instead of bringing an already established DC Comics canon character into the universe, I wanted to write an original character. However, by the end of the season, all the reasons why she would be needed were answered (sort of) and I thought, why not write her in an original story? So, barring any unforeseen circumstances, that’s what I plan on doing. Whether I write her tale in July for Camp or start building my cast of characters and my world for November’s main event, that will be my focus.

Now that I’ve said all that, I’ve also followed a new group on Tumblr called WIP Week. I understand the idea is to work on the WIPs (works-in-progress) in my catalog. It might push me to finish one of the Thunderbirds stories I started posting. We’ll see; like the story I picked up for Camp in April, these have been languishing for years. I still know where I want to go with them. It’s getting there that’s the problem.

Finally finished the third chapter

I have been so behind on blogging and writing. Partially because I don’t have the deadline of NaNoWriMo hanging over my head but also because there’s been a lot of personal upheaval in my life–from my mom’s kidney failure to my dad’s current hospital stay to my recent fractured leg due to another nasty fall.

However, I’m determined to get this Flash fic done and off to a betareader before the end of the month. Why? The first session of Camp NaNoWriMo is coming up in April and I want to try it for a change.

I don’t usually find the April session very profitable for me.  In the past, I’ve had kids in school who needed ferrying around. This year, absolutely no one is in school and I’m laid up with this fracture for the next several weeks (the orthopedist may have something more to say about that tomorrow), so I should have lots of time to write, right? The problem is motivation–and having a project to work on. I could go back and finish some of my Thunderbirds works-in-progress, though it’s hard to pick up the threads of a story that’s been dormant for years. I could finish off one of my original stories. Or I could strain the brain and come up with something new–maybe out-and-out superheroes. I guess I’ll see what piques my interest when the time comes.

Tomorrow, onto chapter 4 (and final).

At 9:01PM 11/29/16

nanowrimo_2016_webbadge_winner

Word count was 50017 to validate. I added another 100 or so words after midnight to get the “Update your word count for 30 days” badge.

One more write-in tomorrow night. I think I may work on my fanfic for The Flash fandom, just for a change of pace. Then the Thank God It’s Over (TGIO) party on Saturday and NaNoWriMo 2016 will be in the can.

I’m in the home stretch!

I reached today’s goal (45K) before midnight on Saturday, putting me a day ahead with 45751. I have four more days to write and three of them have write-ins! With the pace I’ve already set, I could reach 50K on Monday and have more words than that before the month ends on Wednesday.

One of the things I really need to do is sit down and name some of my characters and places. I have a map, made long ago on an older program called AutoREALM. It was updated in 2015 so may be usable when I swap towers sometime next month. (The Girl needs a new chassis to finish off her custom computer rig. Then I get her old tower with more processing power and Windows 10.) There’s a far newer program called Inkarnate that I could fool around with, too. Either of them would help me get my place names in order. I would then have to come up with character names. I have a couple of lists written down from days past and I can always hit up my favorite fantasy name generator at nine.frenchboys.net–“Guaranteed 99% pronounceable fantasy names”.  It’s just a matter of doing the work.

I plan on doing laundry (which needs folding) and bringing in some of our Christmas stuff so I can start decorating. Writing will take a back seat until the evening at least.

I was a day ahead…

Just before I posted this. As of midnight, Thanksgiving Day, I’m right on target at 40044. I plan on writing in the evening when people can be in the region’s chat room.

It’s becoming clear to me my story will go over 50K by a large margin before I can actually go through and start editing. It’s always this way, actually, which is partially the reason I haven’t actually published anything. I write so much stuff I know I’m going to have to cut and I run out of steam by December 1st. It’s a cycle I have to break if I’m going to be published.

This year’s book has been more difficult because I have the first and third books sort of weighing on me. More things about my world are becoming clear–such as the source of conflict between the Hex and the Covenant. But I still haven’t defined the governmental policies, given proper names to the continents and countries, developed a timeline for my events–there’s so much that goes into world building. Since this particular story started with that still-developing world, one character, and her basic conflict, I’ve found myself skipping things I should do–like naming secondary characters! So, when I get as much finished as I can here, I plan on printing out all three books as they stand and trying to pull everything together. I’m told seeing it on the page makes a book a whole lot easier to work with!