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!

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.

Gearing up for NaNoWriMo!

It’s been a while, hasn’t it?

I tried Camp NaNoWriMo again in July and failed miserably at it. Wrote hardly anything, possibly because a series of health-related issues among the parental units kept me on edge. In August, my husband and I went to visit those same parental units during a two-week long trip to points north. (We celebrated our 30th wedding anniversary the first week.) I came back sick with a cold that hung on for a couple of weeks. Since then, I’ve tried to catch up with the housework and gear up for … yes, it’s NaNo season again!

This year’s theme is superheroes and it got me thinking about my writing. I realized, no matter whether I was writing fantasy or fan fiction, I was always writing about superheroes. Whether they used magic or technology, it was always superheroes! (A possible exception would be The Door to Anywhere.) So, before I even knew what the theme was, I had planned on actually writing about superheroes–comic book style heroes with colorful outfits, capes, masks, the works!

I’ve also decided to be a “plantser” this year. Normally, I’m a “pantser”, someone who writes by the seat of their pants, as opposed to a “planner”, someone who plans everything out. This time, I’m going to do some prior planning–character sheets, a bare-bones plot outline, and a bit of world-building as well. Maybe then I can make it to the actual end of my story and finish draft zero!

This is my 10th year as an ML for Greenville. I have a new co-ML in Tyffani Clark Kemp, a writer with her own publishing company. The library system has filled our month with write-ins; seven branches in all are participating. Tomorrow I have a table waiting for me at the Main library’s Southern Author Festival. It means I have to get up early to make sure all my ducks are in a row. So, until later days, y’all!

Tough week!

This has been one tough week! We had three write-ins in a row, each at a different library branch. (I have one more tomorrow morning at the local independent bookseller.) I’ve had physical therapy on two of those days and a doctor’s appointment on Thursday (before the PT and the write-in). I’m still getting used to a new medication and totally forgot to take my bedtime meds on Wednesday night, which meant little or no sleep for Thursday. Still catching up on sleep even now!

Despite all that, my word count is right on target at 30,275. And I got several lovely messages and posts at the region’s Facebook group and official NaNoWriMo regional page for ML Appreciation Day on Thursday. Thank you!

Continue reading “Tough week!”

One of those brief updates.

At the halfway point in the month, I am at 25,647 words! Right on track and halfway through!

The newest library branch to welcome us had a “Halfway Through” write-in on the fifteenth and we had a special guest: a Wrimo from Boston! He liked how we actually rested and talked between word wars and he ended up blowing us all away with his word count during our last, twenty-minute word war–over 1100 words!

There are three more write-ins this week. Next time I update, I’ll talk about the Hex Majestorum.

Almost caught up.

Current word count is 7877. Not quite the 8333 listed for day 5, but nearly caught up. I have a bit over 2000 to reach 10K, which is Sunday’s goal.

Had a really well-attended write-in at a coffee house in Simpsonville. Thirteen people (other than myself) were there. One drawback: we couldn’t get online. This isn’t normally a problem but when you’re supposed to be having a virtual write-in for every physical one, you’re not sure just who you’re disappointing. I did get into the zone, even if my spelling and other writerly mechanics suffered mightily for it. When I have some time, I need to look into the physiology and anatomy of various reptiles (and a few amphibians). My fire drakes are based largely on our reptiles, along with some of the traditional dragon, wyvern, and wurm body types, on a world where no reptiles have existed up until now. I think this is going to be the most difficult of my three books simply because I’m throwing a lot more science and pseudo-science into it.

Hm. I’ll either talk about my newest character, Lucanthea, or I’ll talk about some of the social structures I’ve set up in this world.

Oh, I got the nicest NaNo mail from one of my Wrimos thanking me for my recent regional pep talk! Gave me the warm fuzzies, so it did!

Well, NaNoWriMo 2016 has begun!

And we started off with a bang! (Not literally, of course.) Day One and we had a write-in at the local Panera. Not too many showed up but at least one newbie discovered the charms of a word war. I was under the eight ball from the start; not only did I have to come up with a new prize tote (the original one smelled to high heaven courtesy of a few old glow bracelets) but I forgot to download my IRC client when I upgraded my Scrivener and Open Office. I hope taking the paper, rubber, and cloth items will allow them to air so I can use them later this month. The stuff that had been in the stinky tote still smelled strongly enough to me that I felt nauseous during the write-in. I sprayed the tote itself, a really cool antique-looking oval case with a leather handle, with too much Febreeze and put it out on the front porch to air.

Current word count: 1774. You can find my official word count widget on my home page if you’ve a mind to follow my progress. Fortunately, I don’t have to spell well at the moment. I have the most horrendous typos!

Also, you probably all think my only interesting characters are women. Well, that’s not true. I’ll post something about one of my male characters tomorrow.

Now off to do a bit of research into some titles from my previous novels!

Countdown to NaNoWriMo 2016

Yes, it’s less than two weeks until November 1st when the madness which is NaNoWriMo begins in earnest. My co-Municipal Liaison and I have all our ducks in a row as far as write-ins are concerned. The lounge is up and running with introductory threads and sign-up for the Kick-Off party on October 30th. Four branches of the county library system are working with us to provide write-in spaces and two are holding pre-NaNo plot parties next week. Lots to do on the way to that 50K word count!

So, let me tell you a little about what my novel this year is about.

Most fantasy novels are written in trilogies (or more) these days and I guess mine is no exception. My first story–still unedited and unpublished–takes place on Majere of the two moons, in a time when dragons (called fire drakes) are considered long dead and gone. The main character is a healer-empath who is recruited by a shady character to resurrect a long-dead shape-shifter knight from an extinct order. There are lots of shenanigans, of course, double-crosses, power hungry clerics, mysterious caverns full of unnamed dread–oh, and vampires, werewolves, and merfolk as you’ve not seen them before. The first written story is actually the third in the series and my second written one goes back to the time when the fire drakes invade Majere and how one young woman helps the magical folk of her day to cope with the emergency. She gathers them together and founds the Hex Majestorum, a definite player in the third book.

This year’s book comes chronologically after the first and deals with the founder of that extinct order we learn about in the third book. The hero is a wizard (called majii in the books) but she is more interested in science than her magic and applies to the Covenant, the cutting-edge learning institute of her continent. There, as the fire drakes lay siege to at the western border mountains, she tries to find a way to kill them before they can get past the edges.

Here’s my current summary at the NaNoWriMo site:

The fire drakes are decimating Majere, spreading slowly across the continents, killing majes and commoners alike. In defiance of the Hex Majestorum, Covenant-trained shape-shifter Lucanthea looks for a weapon using the one thing the Hex forbids: science.

In the meantime, the Covenant makes a deal which may save the peoples of Majere–for a price.

So, what do you think? Working title is Rebels of the Hex. I hope I can get an interesting proto-cover for it, too!

Fall is here, or is it?

That’s what I keep asking myself every time I go outside. Yes, the calendar says, “Autumn!” My outdoor thermometer says, “Summer!”

One good thing about autumn is National Novel Writing Month (aka NaNoWriMo). Jo, my co-Municipal Liaison (read regional volunteer), and I will be making plans and setting dates for the various write-ins and parties that go with “30 Days of Literary Abandon!” This year we have four branches of the Greenville County Library System offering our members space to write as well as plot-planning events before NaNoWriMo even starts. Last year it was three branches; next year, who knows? I’m certainly looking forward to November, even if I don’t have an idea for a new novel. Yet.

However, that gives me just a smidge over a month to get some of my older writing finished. I’ve already sent a chapter of Moonstrike! off to my betareader, and I found a partial chapter from Overtures lurking in my works-in-progress file. To help me with the latter story, I may start editing the first novel in my “Friends of the Family” story arc and post it along with posting more chapters of The White Winds. (Chapter 15 went up tonight; I’ll slap it up at Archive of Our Own in a few days.)

All of this would be easier if our house was in some vague semblance of order from a number of projects (including a full bathroom remodel) and if I hadn’t broken a rib from my second fall in as many weeks. My doctor said no driving while it heals and my kids are talking about Mom-proofing the house. My poor husband is really feeling the pressure, I’m afraid.

More later as I work on edits and wait for the temperatures to fall. I really do love autumn; I just need it to stop feeling like summer!

It’s almost the halfway point!

So far, I’m keeping just above the daily word count goal. The story has developed a romantic turn, to an extent, and when this is through, I’m going to have a helluva lot of research to do! Right now, I’m just pantsing along as usual. We’ll see if it actually turns into something I want to publish, here or elsewhere.

I did meet someone at our library write-in who is publishing his story to fictionpress as he writes it. Since he’s rated it as “M” (think a movie rating of “R”) it’s not getting the traffic he would like. Hopefully, when he’s finished, he’ll be able to reconsider the rating. One of his plot twists is hilarious: he made one of his characters a lycanthrope but a specific type of dog lycanthrope instead of the traditional wolf. So the character has dog traits. You can imagine what some of those are!

Thursday was also ML Appreciation Day. Some of my Wrimos chimed in to tell my co-ML and me how much they appreciated us. The staff always sings our praises in e-mails and on the ML’s private forum. But I actually got a gift from my daughter, the artist. She had been working on a series of avatars for me to use online, basically a picture of me (looking much better than I in real life!) enjoying some of my favorite fandoms.

Here’s the base picture:

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Here’s me as the Fourth Doctor, he being my Doctor (and having a scarf like his, too).

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Here’s me in four different Thunderbirds uniforms: the original series, the 2004 movie, the new Thunderbirds Are Go! show, and as Dr. Dianne Tracy, my RP character from International Rescue: The Next Phase.

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But what kept me chortling from the moment I saw it was my ML one!

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I shared it with all the other MLs in the chatnano ML room, and for the first time in 11 years, I changed my avatar on my NaNoWriMo profile! The Girl told me today that the shirt–which you can’t see very well here–is an amalgam of my navy ML signal shirt and a sketched skyline of Greenville, including the Liberty Bridge. So much fun!  There’s a Girl Genius one yet to come, but she says that will take some time to figure out because she has to change just about everything, including the glasses.

So, that’s the scoop as I wrap up week two. Write-ins tomorrow at M. Judson, Booksellers and the Augusta Road branch of our county library system. After that, I should be on the downhill slope to 50K!