Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Yeah, The Slight Of My Hand Is Now A Quick Pull Trigger

Pumped Up Kicks - Foster The People

Ah, Tuesdays, update day!  Well, first things first then!  The new beginning that I added worked out nicely, so nicely that I only had to do a few changes to the old beginning to weave it into my novel.  Of course I will have to rewrite most of it to flow a little better, but that is for my second draft/edit, whichever you want to call it.  So that brings my shiny word count to 13519.  I feel this is good considering everything that has been forced onto my back this month.  I have barely been around my computer for practically the first three weeks, then I bought a netbook.  And now, even though I have this cute little netbook, I have about 10 minutes to myself before something demands my attention throughout the day.  I also have my college courses to complete, and just last week we were issued our final projects, so that has taken a lot of time away from my novel also.  Though, no excuses, I will finish this one, partly because I can see the map of it in my head, and partly because I am so sick of not being able to finish one, even though I've probably started a few hundred.  Shitty that I keep putting one of my dreams on hold like that, but I feel like it just wasn't meant to be, maybe some space and time dimensional God felt like I wasn't ready, but regardless if that God wants me to finish or not now, I want to!

Second off, I would love to thank Elizabeth Poole and Charity Bradford for creating the Birth of a Novel.  I have meet some wonderful people that I am happy to have met.  (I know we still have one more Tuesday, but just in case someone doesn't read it next week, I want to make sure they read it now!)

Thirdly, I have some pretty exciting ideas for my blog which I will be implementing come December.  I will keep the update Tuesday thing going, simply because I like this, it's a kick in the pants to get out to the world that I will not be quitting.  A great way to keep motivated even if in your head your not.  I will also continue with the whole NaNo mindset of quantity over quality while writing.  I read somewhere that the first draft is just about the creative process, getting your story out; adding description, depth, and your inner editor to your novel is what the editing process is about.  I've taken that advice when I wrote for a paycheck, and it still rings true to this day.  More to come on what I have planned for my blog probably next week sometime. 

I thank you for reading, and I hope everyone has a great week novelizing/blogging!

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Get your head out of the mud, baby. Put flowers in the mud, baby

- U2, Zooropa

I sorta have this time thing going now, well really it's me getting used to the new found changes in my life. Unfortunately, I also haven't found much time to write, but I think that is the least of my problems at this point. My homework is done for the week, (and looks like my next chapter due is Nov. 29th)which will leave me a full (well almost full) two weeks of straight concentrating on writing. Granted I still have someone that requires most of my attention during the day and into the early night, I still can write while she's sleeping or watching television.

As far as writing goes, I maybe typed a few hundred words over the course of last week, due to homework and things, so it wasn't a great week my no means for the novel. I finally invested in a small little netbook. (And when I say little, I mean tiny tiny!) Though it does the job. I thought I would have troubles typing on it because it is so small, but I actually like it, though if my fingernails grow any longer, we might have a problem. (Nothing that a nail clippers couldn't fix though)

On to my story...Well, what can I say. It's basically the second week finished, and I am really feeling the self doubt. Granted I haven't written that much, what I do have down is crap. It is flat, unexciting and going really slow. At around 7,000 words, I'm still on chapter 1, with almost no plot happening and seems like we are just following my main character around in her daily life. (I started like this to give a bit of back story, but who likes back story or who even cares about someone they really do not know. Also, not really working on it almost all of last week, really gave me time to think about it. And I really don't like it, I think I would have put it down within the second or third page or so, and for me that's a lot because I usually give a book the first chapter, than if I'm still not interested, I will put it down. Quite frankly, its boring.

So what should I do? I decided that I'm just going to start over. Last week, I had a little bit of time before I went to bed, (actually, I couldn't sleep) so I started plugging away at the keys and I think I have a better start. Is it perfect? No, it is only the first draft, but it is a lot better than the previous start. I wouldn't mind giving more details, but I think I'm just writing for speed right now trying to meet some deadline for NaNo. If it turns out to be semi-decent, then I will rewrite it, and edit the crap out of it.

With the help of my new little computer, and the slack of school over these next two weeks, I hope I will have enough time to type away and maybe catch up? I know that is a tall order! 25,000 words are supposed to be done by today, and that is definitely not happening! I guess I could somewhat cheat, and add the previous start to the one I have now, but I would know I didn't do it, but I did type those words in the time frame given, so we'll see.

Good luck to my fellow NaNoians! I hope everything is going smoothly for you and I can't wait to read your updates!

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

What Seemed All Unknowing And Candid

The Age Of The Understatement - The Last Shadow Puppets

Well, this week has been less than stellar for me, someone that I care about deeply went into the hospital and now I am currently taking care of her from the time that I wake up to the time I fall asleep.  I'm so very happy that she is still with us, but that also means, I can barely get anything done in terms of writing.  (Only time I can write is when she is sleeping and only after I finish my homework, which I haven't done this week yet.  No worries though, it's not due until Sunday)

I'm lucky I am actually updating the blog, though I will be falling asleep pretty soon; waking up at 3:30AM will do that to a person.  I will have more time on Sunday because someone else will be watching her, which hopefully I will read everyone that is involved with the Birth of a Novel's blog, and leaving comments of encouragement like so many have done for me!  (I am also hoping that I get in a few hours of writing Sunday also, I really have no idea how parents do this, time management is quite hard!)

Before Sunday hits, and for all of you out there reading this, I hope your novels are going as smooth as butter (butter that is room temperature that is, if its refrigerated, that stuff is pretty hard!)  And hopefully, I will be reading your blog in no time!  Happy noveling NaNoians!

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Here You Are, You Are Breathing Life In A Ghost Under Rocks Like Notes...

Ghost Under Rocks - Ra Ra Riot

Well, After one of the worst days of my life that involved Paramedics, hospitals and a surgery, I am happy to announce it seems (as of right now) everything is going to be fine!  (Actually, they are expecting it to be better than before which is even better news)  Though it was really scary!  That being said I did not do to much writing on my novel yesterday.  When I did try, my mind kept wondering to what was going on, and it was totally hard to concentrate, so I took the day off.  I didn't want to, I thought I had a pretty good start and I didn't want to lose that momentum, though I suppose that is one of the reasons why we work ahead, so if an emergency comes up or if we have some plans we simply cannot miss, it will be ok because we are ahead.

That being said, my novel is coming along alright.  I'm still on the first chapter though.  I have a good "cliff hanger" to transition into Chapter 2, though I fear it might be to far into the story.  (My stupid inner editor talking, I told him to go on vacation for the month, but I suppose he loves his job too much, maybe I should have told him it was mandatory!)  And the more that I think about the story, the more little scenes I see in my head which is fantastic to say the least.  I hate those stories that I start writing and get absolutely no scenes in my head after I start writing it.  It creates a dull, lack-luster few chapters in which I give up.  (I also don't like it when my mind thinks of too many "scenes" and the book starts feeling crowded)  Maybe after NaNo, I will post some helpful tips on how I combat either problem!  *Makes mental note*

Well, I'm going to start writing my novel now; now that I know everything is going to be fine and my mind doesn't have to think about that anymore.  Happy noveling!

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Everyone's So Focus Clearly With Such Shine

 - Lazy Eye by Silversun Pickups

Hello fellow NaNoians!

I thought that title was appropriate tonight.  Considering the last post received a comment about liking the Silversun Pickups and the song is great.  Plus with the start of NaNoWriMo I believe everyone is focused clearly with their shiny new novels.

Today I didn't know when post, being its the first day of NaNo which just happened to land on a Tuesday.  Tuesday is the update day for Birth of a Novel Blog Chain (ran by Charity Bradford, and Elizabeth Poole.)  I was busy writing all morning hitting 2,000 words even before lunch.  Then life happens, and I couldn't get back to writing until after dinner, but here's the twist, I took a nap.  And this wasn't some "I'm going to lay down for little while" nap, oh no, this was an epic nap sleeping over four hours!  (I guess my body just needed it)  I will get back to writing more tonight (I'm a well versed night-owl) though I did want to update the blog with my word count.  (I also have two quizzes for school to take, but they are not due until Thursday, but I feel the sooner I get them done, the better)

Tonight I will give you a small synopsis (though a lot still needs to be worked out) of the story I'm writing.  It's going along fairly good, with little to no speed bumps.

It's about a woman, Justine, that that lost her child three years ago.  "He" (I haven't figured out a name for him yet) was kidnapped and murdered.  During the time "he" was missing, her marriage broke apart having both parties involved blame each other.  Now she's bitter, afraid to love, and wanting her revenge.   Only one little thing about that is the killer committed suicide when he was on trial.  Can she learn to forgive the killer?  Can she accept that her son was killed?  And can she learn to love again and find the happiness she so truly deserves?

I haven't figured out the answers yet, (or even a title for that matter) but I feel that is a good start.  Of course there is a twist (or two) with her journey.  As you can see it is a very character driven plot but I'm more comfortable with those types of stories.  Usually with external conflicts I feel that I lose some of the story, starts being something other than what it was supposed to be, something I didn't intent and I'm not sure why.

Well, I'm going to fight my mind by taking my quizzes, than get back to the thing I really enjoy, writing.  Happy noveling everyone  =)

Monday, October 31, 2011

Pumpkins Screem In The Dead Of Night...

Happy Halloween!

Hello! This will be quite the quick post due to the fact that I'm still doing homework and have much to do in peperation to start NaNo.  I'm also watching the Ghost Hunters Live show, I love that kind of stuff, though I watch the monitors every year I never see anything. Just once I would like to push the "Panic Switch"  I mean button!  (I love SilverSun Pickups)

I think (if I'm not to tired when I'm done with my homework) I might attempt a really rough outline.  I also have a few good ideas for different posts, and maybe on a day I'm not feeling very creative I will post here what my plans are for this blog.  I definitely will post what I am thinking by the end of November if not sooner.

Oh!  If you are going to do NaNo also, and want to buddy up you can find me by the username, Draculaura.  I troll the forums when I'm stuck or have a block or if my muse goes on vacation taking my mind with her, just to see what everyone else is up to.  

I'm really excited to start tomorrow, so with that, I must finish my homework so I'm outtie!  I hope everyone has/had (only an hour left) a great Halloween and I will update you tomorrow with my word count and maybe an excerpt.

Sunday, October 30, 2011

In the beginning...

I am really excited about this endeavor!  For years I have wanted to start a blog, but never really knew what I should blog about.  Yeah, I've started a few, one for reviewing games that I've played, but that soon fizzled out because I would only post like once a month or so.  I had another because I take odd writing jobs as a freelancer, and from the suggestions of employers I should start one.  The thing about that is the practice of SEO.  SEO is where a writer adds keywords into a description or a review of a product.  I found that in that blog I wasn't really writing for me, but for potential employers.  I was writing things how they would want to see it, not how I wanted to write to say the least.  I write from my heart so when you have to use a word in 4% of the review, it comes off like you're trying to sell that product.  Or if you have to insert a few keywords, the description or paragraph doesn't quite flow the same.  Well, that being said, I shortly gave up on that and I haven't looked back.  I'm still hired to do odd writing jobs so I think being blog-less hasn't hindered me to much.

This time I'm doing it right!  I'm doing it for me, without any restrictions on what I want to write, so if I'm having a bad day, I'm going to write about it, if I'm having the most super awesome day EVAR, I will be writing about it.  When I'm struggling with my novel you better believe I will be posting about it.  Which is the reason for this blog.

[Back story] Ever since I can remember I have enjoyed reading.  I read so much that in elementary school I tutored older kids in reading.  In middle school, I "worked" (more like volunteered) in the school's library.  I put away the returned books and sat at the counter to help students check out the books they wanted.  But most of the time, I would sit in that uncomfortable stool and read my ass off.  I had all the books I've ever wanted to read, and the best thing was I didn't have to check out the book, I could set it aside, hide it in one of the cabinets until tomorrow without worrying about another student getting a hold of the precious book I was reading.

I tried several times to write a novel in the past, but they never went anywhere.  I am a romantic at heart, love romance books, that's usually my genre of choice in reading and writing so it is easy to see the end of the story, happily ever after.  When I think of something to write about, a character, or notion of a character pops in my mind, like "Oh, that would be so cool to have a story about a chef" (I'm cooking dinner at the moment)  Then I think more about that chef like, is it a man or woman, what does the chef look like, soon I have this character, this chef that is a man, tall maybe with sandy blonde hair, maybe he's missing an arm.  Then I think, well why did he lose his arm?  Was he always like this?  Did he have an accident?  Maybe a horrible cooking accident that involved the meat slicer.  (which also makes me think he is either a klutz or disliked and someone pushed him into the meat slicer)  Then I think, well what kind of a woman would love someone like that.  Well, I'm sure you get the picture, so I usually have two characters, and scenes start to play out in my head.  Consistently, I think about these two people and see scenes in my head for days, weeks, sometimes even months or years.  I know they want their story told, but that's where I usually get lost.

Well, I jumped off topic quite well there.  I suppose I just wanted that off my back, its been pent up for so long and I'm very frustrated about it.  I have a million and one couples like that, that scream for me to write their story down, I just don't really know how to.  Being frustrated for so long about it makes me do two things, the first being, I just forget about it and move on.  That causes my writing to go in spurts, I can start a story years and years ago, forget about it, move on with my life, then by some sort of sick joke happen to look at the folder, (or spiral notebook) and say to myself "Oh yeah!  I remember this" then all the feelings with that story come right back to me, making me frustrated again!  I'd start the novel again, or continue where I left off, (mostly just rewrite the thing) only to get stuck again because I never really come up with a conflict, and if I do, its not enough, I want more struggles in the book.  So I stop, causing the viscous cycle to start all over again.  Did I mention that it's very frustrating? (I did?  Ok good, just wanted to make sure you knew that I'm frustrated!)

About a year ago, I discovered NaNoWriMo.  Where you have to write a novel of 50,000 words (or more) in a month, November to be exact.  (That's more of a novella, but call it whatever you wish)  It was the middle of the month, but I decided to join.  It sounded like fun, because it was more about quantity over quality.  Though I pretty sure writing the same word over and over again doesn't count.  So I started plugging away at a brand spanking new, shiny concept of characters I was thinking about at the time.  Only thing I knew was I wanted a vampire, (I love vampire romance novels, more on that to come I suspect) and a human woman.  And I had this awesome scene floating around in my head where he pushes the girl against the wall and smells her neck.  Its dark and wet from a recent rainstorm, the smell of car exhaust and fresh lifted oil stains in the air.  It seems like its in a parking lot where there is a very dim orange glow from a distant streetlight somewhere.  Yep, that was the scene that lived in my head for, well, it still lives in my head, but I decided to write about that idea.  So after a quick thinking session, I developed some characters that would fit into that scene and started typing away at the novel.  I didn't do to bad, by the end of the month I was 4,000 words away from the NaNo goal.  (I was quite pleased really, somewhat disappointed that I couldn't get the rest of it done, but I was happy nonetheless.  I never expected to have that much fun, or get that far)  Soon after NaNo ended however, that idea, that novel I was working on grew.  And boy, did it grow!  I now have several novel ideas built around and with those characters that I made up on the fly.  (It also means I would have to rewrite most of the story again, because the book doesn't fit with those characters anymore, they have bigger and better roles now)

Now, a year later, a lot in the way of that story has changed, and I have better planning (for the most part) for this year's NaNo, (and I know when it starts) so I'm in a good position to start.  There have been a few life changes since last year, I started dating a great guy, he has been warned about NaNo, and he's really excited for me to start, though he says he's going to miss me, <3 you Simon.  And I started taking online courses from a local technical college again, and I have one of the hardest classes I have ever taken, Individual Income Tax.  (Tax laws confuse me!) But I still think I have a great shot at making the NaNo goal this year, which is very exciting to say the very least.  And lately my muse hasn't shut up.  Well not even lately, over the past year since NaNo, she hasn't shut it.  Beckoning me to write, so (and because NaNo's coming) I started trolling the web in hopes to find some sort of magical novel helper, to get me through where I usually get stuck, or usually go off track and stop writing altogether.  In my searches, (no I haven't found the Magic Novel Writer) I have come across several really good sites to help newbies like myself.  (I've also bought a few books about plot and details, help books about getting started and getting it finished.  I guess I'm not the only one in the world to start a novel and come up short of finishing it)  In my serches I've come across several blogs also, one in which I really like by, Elizabeth Poole, Myself, Without the Shell.  I think her blog is very informative and she's actually quite witty.  (No, this was not a plug for her, I just really like her blog)  Anyways, she is joining the NaNo this year also, and her and a few friends (fellow writers) are doing this thing, its called A Birth of a Novel, which other NaNoians (I just made that word up) update their status about their novels (word counts) and maybe give an excerpt of two.  I think this is a great idea and ultimately want in.  But upon contacting her, it turns out I needed a blog and that is what pushed me into creating this one.

In the month of November, I will be posting about my novel, word counts and my frustrations about plots or settings or themes, I will try to do this at least three to four times a week.  But after that, this blog, though keeping with that theme, will be a little different.  I'm not sure how, maybe have a "Good Locations" day to link a few places in which I have found (or will find) helpful in my progress to finally complete a novel.  I hope some of you out there in internet land will also add links to cool helpful sites that helped you or that you find helpful with tons of tips and advice.  I really don't know, I'm going to wing it.  Maybe have a group day, I need a few writer-y friends to brainstorm with, maybe bounce ideas off, my boyfriend and best friend are tired of hearing about it.  One of them even said , just shut up and start writing it  >.<  Anyways, (dinner is ready) I would like to welcome all and any who enjoy writing or reading as much as I do to my blog.