Tag Archives: Camp NaNoWriMo

The Answer Is

142.

That’s how many words I have for Camp NaNoWriMo so far. And that means I have to write 1572 words per day to finish on time. I can do this! That’s less than the 1667 words per day for NaNoWriMo in November.

Only it’s going to be more than that because I’m not going to get 1572 words written today before I have to go to work. I need to finish this blog post, set up my Rainbow Snippet post for tomorrow, and catch up on last week’s Rainbow Snippet blog hop.

Hopefully I can get some writing done at work tonight. (Maybe even that 1572 words I need to aim for so I’m not falling too much further behind.) I’m going to try, at any rate, and at least I seem to be regaining energy and interest and want to get back to it instead of avoiding it like it’s housework or something.

Outside of that, we’re in for another heat wave this weekend, with temps near 90F so tomorrow we’re going to go look at air conditioners.

Oh, and the grass still needs cut. I just haven’t had time to do it before work. Maybe I can stay up long enough when I get home tomorrow morning to get at least part of it knocked down.

 

 

 

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Too Tired

Well, so much for the weekend.

Friday night was a total bust. I didn’t get a chance to sit down and chill until 2:30 (night shift is 10:00 pm until 6:30 am), at which point I couldn’t really chill as I still had over half an hour’s worth of paperwork to do to get caught up on the first half of the night. And the interruptions just kept on rolling until suddenly it was time to get everything ready for day shift.

Saturday night was better but I hadn’t slept very well, had a killer headache, and no focus.

Last night I finally managed to get some words written but in long hand and I haven’t had a chance to type them up yet to see where I stand. I know it’s not much but at least it’s better than it was.

Today? Today has been my only day off until Saturday and it’s been worse than Friday night, as evidenced by the fact that it’s 10:30 pm as I’m writing this.

So far today (after getting up a little after 2:00 this afternoon and running on about 5 hours of sleep, maybe a little less) I have done two loads of laundry, washed dishes, took my dog (and myself) to the chiropractor for adjustments, drove through McD’s (Riley got a cheeseburger), and took Riley to visit residents at the nursing home where I used to work.

Came home, sat down to relax a bit until the temperature dropped a little then went out to mow the lawn which is waaaaaayyy overdue.  (If hay is growing as fast as our grass is the farmers should get half a dozen cuttings this year.) (That’s a bit of hyperbole – three is the maximum I’ve seen.)

Anyhow, I couldn’t get the mower started. Engine was primed, blades weren’t in the grass, engine wouldn’t even try.

Banged mower down on sidewalk. Nope. Blades not fouled.

Checked gas tank.

Empty.

Swore.

A lot.

Gas can was also empty so I went to get gas and by the time I got back it was too dark to see to fill the tank.

So, the grass still needs cut and I still have to type yesterday’s written words and I’m too tired to care.

And there you have it. The life of a nurse: too tired to care.

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Camp Progress

(Or the lack thereof.)

It’s Friday, six days into Camp NaNoWriMo, and I have written exactly zero words.

The weather has been hot and miserable (we had a heat index in the triple digits on Wednesday, which is almost unheard of here) and I think my mind melted.

That’s not to say that I haven’t been THINKING about writing, because I have. I have some hastily scribbled notes about stuff to go back and add to what’s already written. I think I’m going to end up with a very disjointed 30,000 words by the end of the month.

Anyhow, the weather has cooled off some so my energy level is picking up. And I’m on night shift this weekend so I’m hoping to make up some lost time (and words) between now and Monday.

I doubt I’ll get all 9k written by then, but I’ll be happy with 6000 words. Or even one thousand at the rate I’m going.

(At the rate I’m going, even one word would be progress!)

 

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I’m Building a World!

(Man, if those words don’t give you a god complex I don’t know what will!)

So, anyhow, I did some world-building this weekend. (See what this series of blog posts is doing to me?)

Not for my Camp NaNoWriMo project, mind you, (although I did work on its outline a little) but for an idea that’s been kind of kicking around on a back burner for a while now.

Settings are usually my weak point, but that’s what this one started as – just a setting. No people, no plot, just a place.

The place now has some people (well, two named people) and a history and a (main) religion. And the start of a story line. (There are people in the story line, too, but they don’t have names yet.)

Unfortunately, the story line probably isn’t enough for a novel so I’m still not sure what’s happening with the whole idea, but at least it’s a start.

And even more unfortunately I think there are two novels set there – one back when the place was new and one later, after things got codified a bit more. And, actually, it would lend itself well to a series of short stories.

(No, it doesn’t have a name. The working title is Sanctuary. (Or Haven or Refuge or Oasis. Apparently I can’t make up my mind.)

As much as I want to start working on this story (because it’s shiny and sparkly and oh, look, a squirrel!) I don’t think I’ll start writing it yet. It needs some pretty intense world building.

The city (or whatever it is) is a melting pot of different races and nationalities and cultures and religions and what-have-you, and I need to know about all of them.

Will the reader know about all of them? Probably not. At least, not all at once.

But I need to know.

And for once I would like to have everything settled and sorted before I start writing.

Just to see what it’s like.

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The Glamorous Life of a Writer

It’s been… a week.

I worked Monday, was off Tuesday (and was surprisingly productive).

I was supposed to work on Wednesday but woke up about 7:30 in the morning with a pulse of 165, bilateral jaw pain, and a heavy feeling in my chest. It went away and since I’d only been in bed for about four hours I went back to sleep. (I’ve had these symptoms before so wasn’t too worried.)

So a couple hours later the dogs (who think that I am the only two legged member of the household who can properly open a door) got me up to let them out. I still wasn’t feeling right, but, stubborn person that I am, I ignored it for a while and got ready for work.

But since I was still feeling light-headed and “off” I left early and detoured to the Emergency Room, thinking they’d pat me on the head and tell me I’m fine and come back when it’s actually happening next time.

Nope.

They plopped my ass into a wheelchair (never mind that I drove myself there, apparently I was now unable to walk) and then into a bed where I was hooked up to an EKG and then a monitor, and then was sent for a chest x-ray.

After much stabbing (blood draw, two tries for an IV), and a CT scan, it was determined that all the cardiac tests were normal, it looks like I’m getting my third round of bronchitis for the year (this is getting really old!), and there were no blood clots in my lungs.

Diagnosis?

Probably SVT (Supra Ventricular Tachycardia). Not life-threatening, not heart-damaging, so they sent me home with orders to follow up with my primary care physician in three to five days and to not do anything too strenuous.

Anyhow…

I came home, changed clothes, and began a serious hunt for my thumb drive that I could have sworn was on my computer hutch.

It wasn’t.

It also wasn’t downstairs with the stuff I dump from my pockets when I get home from work. (Never ask a nurse what’s in her pockets.)

(This is the thumb drive that has the latest version of edits of Book Five. Losing it would probably make me cry. A lot.)

I had a sickening feeling that it might have fallen into the garbage bag by my computer hutch so I got a second bag and began transferring garbage from one bag to the other.

Ah, the glamorous life of a writer!

I found it, though.

Anyhow, I was still feeling “not right” the next morning so called off again. (My boss said the whole department is falling apart this week.)

Symptoms eased up in the afternoon so, since I don’t consider painting to be an overly strenuous activity, I painted the second side of a lattice board panel and three 1×6 plank (8, 10, and 12 feet).

This morning I cut the grass, got the planks and panel nailed up, and planted a yellow rose bush that’s been on my back porch for a month. Oh, and did laundry.

Writing-wise I haven’t done too much (other than a panicked search through garbage for my thumb drive). I have done some work on pulling notes from the manuscript and pasting them into the outline doc so I can work on the outline for Camp next month. I’ll be saving it onto my rescued thumb drive before I go to work tonight. (I created my project and opened a cabin, too, so other than the outline I’m all ready to go.)

And how was your week?

 

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Sunday Snippet, April 1, 2018

Camp NaNoWriMo has begun and I’m back to work on the sequel to Song and Sword, so here’s an excerpt from the first day’s writing. (Warning: it’s still pretty raw.)

They’ve been discussing whether or not it would safe for Inizi (Torisden’s Intended) to be with them outside of the Elven homeland of Alur’va’sia, and Dakkas suggested more Elves moving into the Drow country of Raes’drao-V’len.

 

Pashevel nodded thoughtfully. “That’s might not be a bad idea. It would let more of your people get to know their brethren, now that more of them seem to be open to the idea. And it would let Inizi stay in Raes’drao-V’len with us.”

“Maybe,” Devrin said softly, “we should stop deciding where she stays or goes and let her have a say in it?”

Pashevel laughed. “Good point. I certainly don’t want to start off on the wrong foot with my future queen.”

“Your future queen?” Torisden stared at him. “You already have a queen.”

“Yes, as does Dak and as will you. But when all three kingdoms merge under your rule then you and Inizi will be our King and Queen.”

Torisden could only stare at him. “No,” he said softly. “I could never be your king, Pash. Or yours either, Dak. I… It wouldn’t feel right.”

“Nevertheless, it will happen,” Pashevel said, smiling. “But as I said before, we’re not ready to step down just yet.”

 Song and Sword cover

Blurb:
Pashevel: a simple Elven Bard — and the Crown Prince

Marlia: a Paladin of Arithen, the Elven God of Justice – seeking vengeance for the destruction of her village

Dakkas: heir to the Drow throne — if his father and elder half-brother don’t kill him first

Kashrya: raised among a tribe of nomadic Humans, she is unaware of her true heritage — or of the prophecy that made her mother an outcast

Their goal: build a bridge between the Elves and their outcast brethren, the Drow, reuniting them and undoing the damage caused in a time so far gone that history has become legend and legend has become myth.

But first, they have a problem to solve:  how do you stop a war that hasn’t started?

Available for Kindle at Amazon

and at Smashwords for everything else

 

Find more great reading
at the Sunday Snippet group.

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So Much For Writing

On Tuesday I noticed that Riley (one of our boxers) was acting… not right. I decided to see how he was on Wednesday and the answer was “worse” so I called the vet and the got him that afternoon.

He has a slipped disc and is on prednisone. (Fortunately he’s really good about taking pills.)

He’s also now seeing a chiropractor.

He’s doing better. He’ll go down the steps to the yard now and he wouldn’t on Wednesday. He’s also starting to eat.

But meanwhile, I’ve been spending my time downstairs with him so he didn’t have to climb the steps to be in my room with me. (The dog is my shadow. Seriously. At the chiropractor’s this evening I got up to go to the restroom, leaving him with my roommate. As soon as I was out of sight he started barking, so I went back to get him and take him with me.

(Owning a boxer means you never pee alone.)

Anyhow, tomorrow I’ll be getting up early so we can get on the road to bring home two more wiggle butts (see Monday’s post). Helping them settle in will take up most of the rest of my time tomorrow and I’ll be home alone with the foursome on Monday, then Riley goes back to the chiropractor that evening, and the sisters (the new additions) have an appointment with the groomer on Thursday.

In short, the month is half over and I may never see my monitor again.

Okay, so that is kind of an exaggeration. I’m sure that it won’t be long before all four dogs follow me up to my room to hang out with me. (Riley and Jazzy already do.)

Now, with all this focus on the dogs (and considering how much I love animals) I have to ask myself one question:

Why have I never given my characters pets?

(Well, in Hedge House there is sort of a pet, although I’m sure she’d take exception to that term.)

Something to think about…

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Increasing Count

I spent most of yesterday in a car getting lost on a road trip to Ohio.  (I don’t know what Google Maps was tripping on when it gave me directions but it sure wasn’t PA and OH roads, that’s for sure.)

So word count didn’t go up, but body count did.

No, I didn’t kill my roommate.

Nope.

We were taking the dogs to a pound in Ohio. (We live in Western Pennsylvania.)

And, no, we weren’t dropping our dogs off there. Jazzy and Riley came from a shelter and have a forever home with us.

Nope, we were going there to meet Laverne and Shirley.

They are 10 year old sisters that I learned about via a boxer rescue group on Face Book (Boxer Rescue of America).   They were surrendered by their elderly owner because she was no longer able to care for them. Laverne is the fawn (on the right) and Shirley is the brindle.

The meet and greet went very well. None of the dogs showed any sign of aggression – not one hackle was raised, no flattened ears, no growls or snarls or baring of teeth, not even a guarded look. A lot of sniffing and going about their business. No cowering in submission from anyone, either.

So, we’re going to back on Saturday (sans dogs) to bring them home with us. (Laverne and Shirley are getting some blood work done this week.)

That’s going to give us four wiggle butts.  Two humans = four hands. Four dogs = one for each hand.

(My roommate wasn’t too sure about adding to the family, but Shirley kissed up to her and now has her wrapped around her little cigar butt tail. Literally kissed up to her.  She did the “Boxer Lean” and slobbered big wet sloppy kisses all over her face and Sue said, “They have to come home.”)

Anyhow, since I’m about nine thousand words behind where I need to be today, and since I’m probably losing most if not all of Saturday (and the days that follow as I help the two new additions settle into their new home) I had really better get myself focused on increasing word count.

And I will.

Right after supper.

 

 

 

 

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Unhappy Camper

Well, this hasn’t been going according to plan.

And by “this” I mean “Camp NaNoWriMo” of course.

And by “plan” I mean at least one thousand words a day.

It’s day three and as I write this I have written less than a thousand words.

What happened?

I wish I knew.

Saturday I had every intention (Yeah, yeah, the road to Hell is well-paved. I know) of writing three thousand words.  I managed a little over seven hundred.  (Soraine is being a very uncooperative pirate captain and is trying to do some sort of odd heroic thing that is going to completely mess up other stuff… But maybe I should just scrap the other stuff and let her go and do it.  But anyhow, I digress.)

I did have one hellacious headache all day, though, which didn’t help.

So, Saturday was a bust.

Sunday was even worse – I managed to scrounge up another two hundred words or so, despite the headache that staggered in from Saturday.

And so far today hasn’t been very productive either. I was running errands for a large part of the day, though, so at least I know where some of the time went, unlike the two previous days.

But still… How did I get this far behind already?

I think maybe part of it was the departure from what I had planned. I’m fighting against the natural flow of the characters and story, trying to force it into what I had planned.

Or maybe it’s that I didn’t really have a whole lot planned for this scene, but when it made a 90 degree turn from my expectations I still insisted that it needed to follow along my non-existent planned route.

Either way it seems that the problem is my reluctance to give up control and go with the flow. (Maybe because what I’m writing is an extra scene to a more or less completed (a beta reader wanted more added) novel that I’m trying to finish up?)

At any rate, the solution now seems clear.  Strike through a lot of what I have written (don’t want to lose the word count) and start fresh, letting the characters lead the way.

On Friday I’ll let you know how that works out.

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A New Adventure

As of eleven o’clock tonight I will be unemployed.  The long term care facility that I have worked at for the last three years has been sold and I have elected not to sign on with the new company. They’ve been less than forthcoming with information and what we have been able to glean just doesn’t sit right. Still, it’s going to be rough emotionally. Goodbyes are never easy and I’m going to miss some of the people, but I won’t miss the stress.

I have applied for a job at a different site with my current employer, but unless I get a call from HR today I will out of a job.

Scary? Yes.  I do have feelers out and some half-promises of a job but the uncertainty is unsettling.

On the other hand, the stress at work has been slowly sapping my energy and every shred of creativity. (I still want to do creative things, but they just haven’t been happening much.)

So, a new adventure awaits.

And what new adventure doesn’t have an element of fear and risk?

I do feel rather like my life is running along without an outline at the moment. Or maybe it’s taken a sharp left away from the outline.  Whichever, I am rushing to get caught up to it and get it back on track. Or maybe I should just pants it for a while and see where it goes.

I do know that at midnight tonight I plan to start writing for Camp NaNoWriMo. I still haven’t changed my goal from 31K for the month, but I might kick it up to 50K.  We’ll see how it goes.

I’m definitely going to be working on the extra scene for Onyx Sun that I have started, and maybe a couple other minor ones.  And then I’ll work on the Elven Bard novel. And I promise to ignore some rather insistent plot bunnies because I don’t want to start anything new until November.

Well, except for a new job. I would like to have one of those before then.

 

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