Posts Tagged ‘Nanowrimo’

Last year I was so good about writing multiple times during NaNo. It rather kept me going, you know, feeling like people were enjoying keeping up with my progress, whether it was true or not. 🙂 This year. Well, I got a very good start, as you know. And I was actually quite good at continuing. I was ahead in my word count almost the entire time, until last Sunday. Then I was out late and woke up sick Monday morning and everything went downhill from there. A week later and I’ve not written a word. On the up side, I am finally feeling well again. Mostly, anyway. I am at my in-laws for the week, where I will now be attempting to balance teleworking with family time and writing. I was going to give up on NaNo. But two things are keeping me going:

  1. Daniel. Apparently he doesn’t think I should quit.
  2. Stubbornness. I just don’t like losing. So, I am going to keep trying.

Anyway – the short story thing seems to be going fairly well other than the previous week. It is nice to have shorter goals. To begin and end things fairly quickly. To increase my creativity by forcing myself to come up with multiple story ideas. I really feel like this will be good for me in more ways than one. Here is to hoping all of you other NaNo writers out there are doing better than I!


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It is officially NaNoWriMo! So,to celebrate it,  I am sharing the November 1st NaNoToons – because they are the best. And, although I was up past midnight last night, no I did not start writing. But I don’t feel guilty. You know why? Because Daniel is bringing me to a wine/coffee bar tonight specifically to get a good start on this year’s book! I’m super excited about it. I think it will be a great time to get going, and I am going to trust that the words (and story ideas!) will come. I’m such a Pantser!

It’s November 1st! Huzzah! The writing has begun! Yes, I’ve changed the look again. I made it match the NaNoWriMo facebook cover. For those of you new to NaNoToons and don’t know who Mel and Tala are, their main arc started last year. I probably should explain all the characters. And update the cast page. […]

via 2016 – November 1st — Nanotoons

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One more day to NaNoWriMo!!! Am I scared, you ask? Why yes, yes I am. Terrified that I am going to sit in front of my keyboard and have absolutely  nothing to say. But I’ve won NaNo twice in a row now, and I am determined to make it a third! And if there is anyone more determined than me – it is my husband. Yup. He insists (as you will also see if you visit Once Upon a Story) that I am going to do it, and that I am going to actually keep up on my wordcount this year so I am not trying to cram 5,000 words a day in the last week of the month. He has grand plans for how to accomplish this too – apparently, he is going to play video games every evening after dinner until I finish my word count so that I can’t be distracted by him. And he knows how much I hate to feel ignored when he plays video games for an extended amount of time. So it will probably work. Oooh, and I came up with a great way to get ideas for short stories, since I’m kind of drawing a blank right now, but you’ll have to visit Once Upon a Story to see it, because I don’t feel like typing it all out again. 😛

Daniel and I did a photo shoot yesterday! A mutual friend (someone from college) has decided to go into photography (is there anyone left who hasn’t?) and asked us to model for her to help build her portfolio. In exchange we will get a few free pictures and have the option to purchase the rest at a flat fee. Even if we just stick with the few free pictures, I think it will be nice. We had fun shooting pictures, too – at least until a sudden storm sent us scurrying into the underground mall, cutting it short.

Oh, and you should be proud of me – I already ordered our Christmas cards for the year! I know. So ahead of schedule. Let’s hope I get them out on time now that I worked so hard to order them in time.

And in case anyone is still reading this and curious about my progress on Ethrill. . .I am unfortunately not going to make it to 100,000 words before tomorrow. I gave it a good go, though, and am at 88,000. My hope is to make it to at least 90,000 and then I will feel like I actually wrote a decent amount and will probably have to split it into two books anyway – so it counts as finishing, right? As nervous as I am to start the short story series for NaNo, I am that excited to start editing Picture of the Past- I know – who would have imagined excitement to EDIT your book? But I am so eager to have a finished book – and I know it will be way more work than I think it will be right now – but I think it will be worth it. Plus, I do like having an excuse to research historical fashion and events – and this not only gives me the opportunity, but further ingrains it into my memory because I’ll have to implement it into the book. The main thing I need to do, I know, is to integrate one or two other story lines into it so the book isn’t so completely focused on Elizabeth. I need more depth. I’m kind of nervous to figure out how to do that, but I’ll give it a good try.

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NaNoWriMo WINNER 2015

It is official! Against all odds, I have won NaNoWriMo for the second year in a row! Oh, the book is by no means done. No, apparently I don’t write 50,000 word novels. I just start with that. Because based on how the story is going, I am pretty sure I am only halfway done. I am not sure on that though. I will have to check in with my characters and let you know for sure. They keep taking unexpected turns on me. Ah, the frustrations of a writer! However, I figure in celebration, I will share a small excerpt of my ill and hastily written first draft with you. Quick, before I change my mind!

Excerpt from Ethrill

I entered the dining room, the young woman immediately leaving me and saw that the table was set as generously as the evening before, but was lit only by candlelight this time, and there were two places set. One at each end of the very long table. I began to head to the darker side that was set, which had no candles at the end, partially because I suspected I was supposed to go to the one that was fairly well lit with candles. I had not gotten further than two steps however before Bandah was at my side.

“This way please Master Jack.” I reluctantly turned and followed Bandah to the well-lit end of the table where he seated me, and Deke and the young woman again appeared out of nowhere and silently served me, this time focusing on the foods that I appeared to have favored the previous evening.

I perceived at the other end the table – probably a good several yards down the room – a large shadow that was even darker than the blackness of that side of the room.

“Damanius, I presume?” My heart quavered a little at my audacity in speaking first, but I steeled myself with the thought that he had imprisoned me against my will all day.

“Master Jack.” The voice was loud, though he appeared to be speaking in a whisper. It was low, gravelly, and almost came out as a hiss. It was altogether frightening to listen to, and I quickly lost my appetite. What type of man had a voice like that? I forced myself to slowly chew and swallow the bite of meat I had on my fork.

“So you deign to know the names of your prisoners.” My voice trembled despite my attempt at bravery.

“Of course. I do apologize for the necessity of delaying you. I do so enjoy company and I was detained last night and unable to join you for dinner. Please forgive a lonely creature for wanting to visit a little.”

Slightly mollified by his pleasant and apologetic, if a bit slimy voice, I found myself backing down a little. “It was not necessary to lock me in. A simple invitation to stay for the day would have been sufficient. In any case, were you unable to get away from your business in time for breakfast or lunch as well? Was it really necessary to keep me all day?”

“Again, I must offer my apologies. I only go out during the day when necessary. I have not the most attractive features, and I find that I am very sleepy during the day as well. Evening is a much better time for me.” He shifted in his seat a little, and I was startled at how large he appeared to be.

“And I have not always found that passersby are as accommodating as you when it comes to – waiting for me to meet them. I appreciate your understanding. Please feel free to keep eating as we have our conversation.”

Despite my lack of appetite, I forced another bite down my mouth and washed it down with a sip of wine.

“What brings you to my area, Master Jack, if I may be so bold as to ask?” I repeated the rehearsed story that I had given Bandah, as I was becoming more and more certain it was not necessarily safe in Ethrill to advertise I was from the dimension of Earth.

“Come now, Master Jack.” The voice turned sickly sweet and developed even more of a hissing sound, with a hidden edge that shook my nerves even more than they had been previously. He really sounded just as I would have imagined a snake sounding had snakes been able to talk. “We both know that is an altered version of your true story.”

Had he been next to me instead of across the room, I could easily envision him running a hand along my shoulders in a deceivingly gentle touch that was meant to threaten.

“You have a different accent than any I have ever heard, and I can assure you, I have heard – I have closely experienced – virtually every accent in all of Ethrill. Your story makes little sense. You come from the Wilderness, and yet are here to experience the Wilderness. You are taken aback by magic, admire castles, though they are fairly common, and, accordingly to my sources, come to see this part of the world with no coin in your pocket and no change of clothes. There are several elements of your story that are missing. Would you care to fill them in for me? I am really quite curious.”

I hesitated, but could see no way around the discrepancies he had pointed out. It was obvious he had done his research, and I was quite unnerved. I tried a defensive tactic. “I – I really do not see how where I come from or what I do is any of your business. I did not even ask to come to your castle – I was invited in.”

“Very well, then. Shall I fill in the pieces for you?”  I apparently had angered him by refusing, because the sweet, low tone to his voice disappeared and in its place was a voice that, though not shouting, was nonetheless reminiscent of thunder in its ferocity.

He moved again, and I saw, to my incredible alarm, that he was not sitting in a chair at all, but had simply been sitting – or standing – on his own. He came around the edge of the table and headed toward me and as his size grew, so did my alarm.

As he began to emerge into the soft light, I could not stop the squeak of fear that escaped me.

His huge, oval shaped, yellow eyes, scaly skin, snout as long as a normal table, and head with horns showed all too clearly that the master of the castle was not a man at all, but a dragon.

As he continued emerging into the light, I stood, dropping my wine glass, and backed up, as though it would make any difference.

He was on all fours, and there were raised spikes along his back. His body, completely covered in scales, glinted maroon and green, depending on how the candlelight struck them. His legs were as round as the tree trunks in the redwood forest and I could not see the end of his tail, even when he was completely on my side of the table. I had the random thought that I now understood why the rooms in the castle were so large.

His yellow eyes flashed as much fire as I imagined his stomach held as he continued to speak.

“What is it, Master Jack? Do you dislike my appearance? Where is the brave man who sat here a moment ago?” His forked tongue flicked in and out as he spoke, creating the hissing sound I had heard from his speech before I had seen him. “You do not like my face? You are, after all, like all the others. Only, after all the generosity I have shown you, you see fit to break my things.”

My eye fell to the wine glass that had shattered as I had stood.

“Well, well – do not worry about it. You shall make amends, I assure you. Now. Allow me to fill in the story that you so unkindly chose to withhold from me. I, who ask so little in return for a tour of my home, a good meal, and a comfortable place to sleep.”

I gulped and continued to back away, mesmerized by his size and his eyes, and quite aware of the fact that he could likely wrap his tongue around me and swallow me  in one place, if he so chose.

“Please, stay where you are. Your constant movement is irritating to me. It makes me feel as though you are not enjoying yourself.”

I stood as still as I was humanly capable of.

“To continue. Dragons – I am sure, as perceptive as you seem to be, you know by now that I am a dragon, since you appear to not have known so previously – but as I was saying, dragons are excellent at deductive reasoning. Consider your accent, and the direction from which you travel, and the fact that you are going toward the Mountain of Shadows, I deduct that you are a mortal, from Earth. Is it not so? Have the Beings allowed yet another mortal into Ethrill, to defile it with their strange ways, to marvel at us as though WE are the oddities, to ask and probe about Ethrill’s secrets, only so that they can go back to earth and reveal them to all who dwell therein? It is not fair, I tell you!” His voice rose in anger, and with it, I saw flames licking the insides of his mouth, as though if he lost his temper any more they would come out of their own volition. He must have sensed my increasing fear or felt the flames himself, for when he spoke again, his voice was quieter, if not less infuriated.

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NaNoWriMo Woes

Okay, am I the only one who begins a novel, with only the vaguest of ideas as to what I want to do? I know that I want to place this guy in the fantasy world. I know I want him to go through a bunch of fairytale-like adventures. A castle, a dragon, a troll, etc. I know that I want him to realize that, as fun as it is to read about fairytales, living in a world where you constantly have to deal with another dimension (magic), nothing is as it appears, and creatures have powers you don’t have to understand, is really not fun, and we are fortunate to live in the world the Creator made for us instead. The problem is, i have no idea how I want to accomplish any of this – how he is going to go through any of these adventures or what is going to come out of it – and I am moving forward in writing completely blindly. I feel like a fool and I think that the full plot should have come to me by now. Why can’t writing be as easy as so many people seem to think it is? How do I accomplish what I want to do when I have no idea what I want to do???


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This makes me wish I had a friend nearby who also liked to write. Granted, we might just spend the evening commiserating on how we aren’t writing anything and will never make 50,000 words, but still – it is the thought that counts!



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Update: It has been conveyed to me via a reliable resource that I need to clarify a couple things.

One: This is a giveaway just on this blog, not nationally – so if only one person comments on this post, they WILL get the e-book. If three people comment, then I will draw names between those three people.

Two: This is an advance copy of the book! It is not even available in stores yet! You will be one of the first to ever read it!

And, as a further clarification, liking the post doesn’t count as a comment – although I am tempted to count it as a comment. 😛 So, please make sure that you actually write a comment to be entered in the contest! Come on, you know you want to be one of the only people in the nation with exclusive access to an advance copy of the next bestseller!


So, in the spirit of NaNoWriMo and new authors in general, I am hosting an e-book giveaway! A friend of mine recently signed a book contract – yes, I struggled with jealousy too. Please take a few minutes, swallow your jealousy, imagine yourself in her place, and read on! 🙂 All you have to do is leave a comment – any comment – even “hi” for those of you as introverted as me, and I will put you in the pool to win the book!

Below please find a blurb, the first page of the book, and an author bio!

PlumPuddingBride_w12241_300 (4) (2)

Book Blurb:

Patience Callahan is twenty-five and fast becoming an old maid. But she’s spent most of her life dreaming over romantic European literature and wants a dashing d’Artagnan, not a bookish Bob Cratchit. Alas, the Colorado town of Gilman’s chock-full of Cratchit’s without a d’Artagnan in sight.

Peter Foote, the general store owner, has been in love with Patience for seven years. But every time he’s on the verge of proposing, she cuts him off; he can only imagine on purpose. This time though, dadburn it, he’s going to go through with it.

Ring in hand, he’s moments from touching knee to floor, when Patience pulls out a list of mail-order bride advertisements and declares her intention of marrying a backwoods stranger on Christmas Day.

He’s got two weeks to change her mind.

The first page of Plum Pudding Bride

There she was, the girl he’d loved for seven years. And she was sorting preserve cases at his store, as she’d done for the last four years. She stood not six paces from him, and yet so far away.

Peter’s fingers squeezed the ring box in his jacket. This time he was going to go through with it, no matter if she pointedly changed the subject, or hastily found excuses to be elsewhere, or pushed other eligible young women at him. Dadburn it, today he’d have his answer, a “yay” or a “nay” instead of living in this wretched bog of uncertainty.

The store had already closed. He just needed to grate the key in the locks while Patience tidied the shelves. The falling winter sun made long shadows on the floor between them. Now she had put down the strawberry preserves and taken an inventory list. She moved towards the mercantile section.

His heavy boots clomped on the hardwood floor, but his heart clomped louder. His fingers tightened around the red velvet box. It was a white gold ring and a miner’s cut diamond. Size six, as he’d discovered four years ago when he’d stolen her glove.

Patience’s brown hair twisted back around her ears. She always complained it lay too flat, and said her younger sister teased her about having a mottled complexion. But he’d never seen hair shine like hers, and her soft skin set off brown eyes that possessed a luster no girl in Gilman could match. And her smile. Oh, her smile. She could turn Antarctica into the tropics by just curving her lips.

A head-high shelf of baking perishables hemmed them in on one side while bolts of fabric made up the other side of the narrow aisle.

“Patience Callahan, will you,” Peter slid the box out of his pocket, and started to lower one knee to the ground.

Her gaze flicked to the ring box. “Why, Peter,” she stepped into him, blocking all attempts at kneeling. “I’ve been meaning to tell you my news.”

Her long fingers were slender. Yet, they could move lickety-split when sorting spools or organizing canned goods.

“I just received this.” Patience tugged a newspaper clipping out of her pocket along with a small daguerreotype. “This is Arnie Dehaven. He’s a Montana rancher. I’ve answered his mail-order bride advertisement and I’m marrying him.”

Author Bio:

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Anne Garboczi Evans is a mental health counselor, military spouse, and mama to an opinionated little preschooler named “Joe-Joe.” Her inspiration for Plum Pudding Bride came from moving to the Colorado Rockies. You can find Anne online at annegarboczievans.blogspot.com

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