NaNoWriMo Day 30 – FINISHED!!!!!!

Word count – 7,266.  Yes, you read that right.

Final word count  – 76,212.

I AM FINISHED.  The first draft of Tunerville is done!

I wrote all day and my hands are killing me.  There is a lot of rewriting to do, and I still have some stuff I’d like to add.  But the rough draft is complete.  It has a beginning, a middle and an end.

Thanks very much to everyone who encouraged me to do NaNoWriMo and for those who were kind enough to comment.   For those who participated, I hope your work went well, even if you didn’t finish.   Keep on going.  There’s no reason to stop now!

Now go celebrate!





NaNoWriMo Day 8 – Asleep at the Post

Word count:  1,023.

Too tired to continue.  I wrote two articles for a guest post gig today, took a hard walk, and looked for jobs on the internet.  Tomorrow I have an interview.

During tonight’s session, I ran into a common conundrum in Writer Land, that of the Mysterious Changing Plot Device.   I had something already written for a pivotal event, but now I have to scrap it.  With the changes I’ve made, it just doesn’t make sense.



I was kind of bummed, but it happens.  I usually keep a file for cuts so I can pick their bones later for useful bits.   There is some good stuff in there I can salvage, so it’s not a total loss.

The good part is that I was able to sit down and force myself to write, even though I’m really tired and I didn’t feel like it.  That’s the mark of a real writer.  I may end up being one yet.

Time to stop now because I can’t see the page anymore.  Good night.

NaNoWriMo Day 7 – Back on Track!

Day 7.

Word count -




I finished a new scene, a pivot point before the third act.  Not only that, but there are things that were vaguely contradictory that are now beginning to work themselves out.

In a book where there are speculative elements, your world rules have to be very clear in order to allow suspension of disbelief.  You must set them up in the beginning, and not deviate from them.  It doesn’t matter how outlandish the world rules are.   If you present them as truth, and keep to them, the reader will be able to accept what happens in the story in the context of those rules.

You’re just dying to know what this story is about, aren’t you?  I don’t dare divulge it at this point.  Maybe once it’s finished and I start querying it.

If I told you, I’d have to kill you.

Image:  Stuart Miles /

Since I started NaNo, and it actually seems to be working, I have come up with a plan.  If I can finish this book by the end of the month, and hoping like hell that even worse things don’t happen in my life (pleez no moar!), then I can get the first edit done by February.  If all goes well, I can quite possibly have it ready to query by the time spring rolls around.


Sorry, but so many agency screeners get hit by crappy first drafts, and in January, New Year’s resolutions (“I’m gonna dust off that old thing and send it in this year!”), or so I’m told.  You really should be presenting no less than your best, polished work.

Time to go watch X-Files reruns for the evening.  Later.

Happy Halloween and NaNoWriMo 2012

Happy Halloween!

Here’s my first attempt at shaving a pumpkin design.  I used a free template I found online.  I think it turned out rather well for a first try.  For those who aren’t Doctor Who fans, it’s the head of an evil robot called a Cyberman.

“You will be upgraded.”

Photograph by Elizabeth West

No matter what you’re doing this year, please remember to stay safe.  Watch those candles around costumes, and never leave them unattended.  If your kids find the stash of candy you saved for yourself, don’t kill them.  Just steal some from their bags.

From last year, but damn funny:

Tomorrow is the beginning of NaNoWriMoI told you earlier that I would be participating this year.  I’m not formally signing up, because technically, you’re not supposed to use NaNo for something you’ve already started.  But I have to do something drastic, or I’ll never finish.  This has been unequivocally one of the worst years of my life.

Because, you know, chaos.

Image:  US Navy- Aaron Peterson / Wikimedia Commons

I’m creating a category—NaNoWriMo 2012—and I’ll probably only be posting updates this month, especially if I find a job.   I’m not restricting myself from publishing any other posts if I think of one, but all NaNo materials will be under that heading for easy reference.  If you’d like to follow me on Twitter, I may be tweeting things there as well during this time.

Good luck to all other writers who are NaNo-ing this year!

Writing When You’re Not Writing

It was wrenching to write the first words of this post.  Why?  Because I don’t want to admit I’m not writing.  Maybe you surmised from an earlier post that things aren’t going very well right now.

But you’re blogging, you say.  That’s writing.  Sure it is.  I’m talking to you in written form, telling you something.  So it’s writing.  It’s just not the kind of writing I want to be doing.

Anne Wayman, super freelance guru, wrote a post about writing even when you are horribly distracted.   She says, in essence, that writing helps keep her mind off things.

I have the opposite problem; I can’t NOT think about it, because when I’m upset, I tend to bang out little Notepad diary entries about how pissed off I am.  At least they’re digital, and I can delete them before I die and someone finds them.

Note to self: burn this old thing….

Image:  vada0214/stock.xchng

How the hell do you write when life blows up in your face?  Here are my conclusions.

Take a break

Sometimes, you just have to.  If you have freelance clients or a deadline, you might not have the luxury.  At least cut back, if you’re able.  Put as many projects on hiatus as you can while you deal with things.

Write something that pertains to whatever is distracting you

Turn it into a project, by golly.  At most, you might even get a sale out of it, if you can find an intriguing angle on the subject.  At least, you’ll discharge some of those feelings and sort your thoughts.

I have no clue what the hell this is supposed to be, but it cheered me up for a minute.


Use the time to do research

I’ve been trying to do this a bit.  Of course, the whole insomnia thing makes reading material very difficult.  I’ve actually had to *GASP* put the computer aside and rest my eyes.

Research is easy.  You read some stuff and take notes.  No pressure. If you act like it’s no big deal instead of life or death, you may dig yourself out of a dead end.  I think I’ve found an answer to one particular problem in the current WIP that’s been plaguing me.

Write somewhere other than your hidey-hole

Get out of the house.  Take your laptop to the library.  They have wi-fi in case you need to look up giant sloth toads of Madagascar, or watch a YouTube tutorial on binary star systems.  Wear headphones so other unemployed lurkers don’t hit on you.

Once you start writing in earnest, disconnect.

For God’s sake, stay away from the button!


Go back to a previous project

When I’m brain-dead, pulling something out of Ye Olde Writing Trunk is soothing.  I’ve said before that I much prefer editing to writing first drafts.

Hence the re-edit of Rose’s Hostage   I’ve got a few more queries to try before I bury the poor thing.  At least it will give me something to do.  And you never know.


I dearly hope you are all surviving this ridiculous excuse for an economy we have lately.  And the drought.  And the unemployment.  And the global warming.  And the religious wars.

We all have to hang in there.  There’s nothing else to do.  Except, maybe, write about it.