The Perils of Writing

Had this brilliant idea today. I figured I would go to a coffee shop in a city that I normally do not go to. The first five coffee shops were packed to the gills. Decidedly, it is a sad day when a writer cannot find a coffee shop to write in. I was heading to a familiar business, Panera Bread, having struck out on the coffee shops when I remembered there was a small coffee shop in the shopping center I was near. It wasn’t too busy and had ample available seating. Oh happy day! The only problem with Good Measure Coffee & Tea, in Louisville, CO, is the lack of outlets for computer. This lack means I was unable to stay as long as I would have liked. There was a power strip but, for some reason, my computer refused to acknowledge the power coming though it. Nevertheless, spent a decent amount of time writing while enjoying a Turtle (chocolate & caramel) latte.

As I was getting ready this morning, the verse novels decided to chat it up. I was ecstatic until I went to write. They stopped their incessant yammering as soon as I picked up a pen and/or came near the laptop. Little bastards. I would really, really like to finish at least one of my novels this year but they are being mighty uncooperative. At this rate, I will never finish any of the novels even though the concepts are fantastic.

Three poems so far for today to go with the two I wrote yesterday afternoon. Not feeling overzealous with the writing right now but this is common for the start of WriMo. My writing mojo is good for the first day or two then a lull followed by a whole lot of progress later in the month.

Been looking for some new music and one of my cousins (who has the same first & last name as me – there are three of us!) suggested New Kids on the Block. Sorry but I did not care for them in their heyday and I still do not care for them. Never really enjoyed music from any of the boy bands.

NaNoWriMo 2012 – Day 14

I had promised myself that I would post every day for NaNoWriMo but, clearly, my promises are meaningless when it comes to me, myself, and I.

Had some very bad and lackluster days writing days during the past week. Two days with zero words and three more with far less than the suggested minimum for each day. I was almost three days behind but the twelfth day was very fruitful with 3240 words and the thirteenth also had a very decent showing with 2106 words. Most of the writing seems to be free writing right now. A bit exhausted creatively and not in the best of health. There’s a cold circulating through the local NaNoWriMo writers and I fear that I have contracted this bane.

Today is going slowly and not sure how it will end up. In regards to poetry, it is a much better than yesterday as yesterday was all free write and no stand out verses. Today, there are three poems so far. There may be more as the writing progresses into the evening.

As of this posting, I have written 78 poems since NaNoWriMo’s start. 28 for Unlined & Undertakers, 49 for Ink & Ice, and 1 for Danse Obscura. This brings Ink & Ice to 61 pieces total and Unlined & Undertakers to a total of 54. Of course, there may be a good 15 or so additional poems trapped in the mountain of words known as the ‘Free Write’.

Roses Red did throw out some ideas and questions a few days back but has returned to ignoring me.  Reaper’s Moon continues to be angry with me. The characters seem to not understand that death is inevitable no matter what, and that the deaths in the story’s beginning are the ‘tip of the iceberg’. I plan to re-read Reaper’s Moon tomorrow in hopes of getting them talk to me again or give me a better starting point in segments where I do not deal with the main characters directly.

In order to make 50,000 by the 30th, I need to write 2000 a day, every day. Not sure if I will make it but it has been an interesting ride thus far.

December

Now that NaNoWriMo has come and gone (which I finished on Monday with 50,888 words), it is time for more pressing matters…perhaps.

I spent most of the day curled up under an electric blanket and a purring Anubis cat because Colorado’s weather decided to drop 40 degrees and bring 7 inches of snow to the Front Range. Factor in a spiffy new bout of the common cold and pure exhaustion, I was happy for a day in a nice warm bed.

About an hour ago, I managed to pull myself away from blanket solace in an effort to clean up the office/living room as I continue on the mass purge of household contents. A purging that I foolishly started during November. So far, I’ve made a decent chunk of change for 30+ books and 15 music CDs. I found a home for around 30 YA books and will be helping make the holidays happier for a 12 year old girl. I’m also sending a lot of bead working items and fabric to her. In the grand scheme of things, I’ve recycled an unbelievable of paper and put a rather embarrassing amount of stuff in the local landfill.

My old office is now mostly cleared out thanks to purging – I still have two disassembled beds and a desk in there that need to be moved. Unfortunately, the rooms for the beds are still “congested” and I need help moving the desk once the beds are gone. Tomorrow begins work on the scariest room in the house – the storage room. I haven’t been able to set foot in there since September 2008 or so…I think. Most of the content are actually boxes of fabric and the intent to donate a lot of the fabric and sell the rest is the motivation for starting that room this week. Part of my brain thinks I should do the easier rooms first and forget about donate fabric but that would be the easy way out, a way to procrastinate. This procrastination is why I haven’t really been in that room for years. No more procrastination.

I was suppose to go somewhere tomorrow evening but may end up opting out. I really do not feel well. I have to keep stopping the cleaning process every 5-10 minutes because I feel nauseated and dizzy. How I am getting anything done is a mystery to me. Being put into a social situation for several hours is highly unappealing. I might feel differently tomorrow but, for right now, I am thinking there is no way in hell I will survive social interaction.

I went to shovel snow from my walk this afternoon. Much to my surprise and happiness, someone was kind enough to shovel it for me. No idea as to who did such a wonderful thing for me but I am most grateful. I loathe shoveling snow so much so that I let the sun do most of the work as I live in a south facing house.

I finished the edits to The Soul of Winter on Wednesday while at the final NaNoWriMo write-in. I plan to start formatting it and get it ready for publishing this coming week. While most of my week involves household purging, I’ve set aside a day for work on my books and apply some more advertising avenues for my editing business.

My goals for December are as follows:
– Get all the content written during NaNoWriMo organized and placed in their perspective work files
– Get the whole house purged and reorganized
– Get a few more editing clients
– Get The Soul of Winter ready to publish in January
– Do more work on Reaper’s Moon, A Hundred Flames and Midnight Red.
– Read the remaining 33 books to get to the yearly goal of 500 books read.

The Aftermath

I did not succeed in the 11.11.11 challenge but I did get caught up and move ahead by a day in word count which makes me very happy. Part of me is also glad that I did not force myself to complete the challenge. My brain and body’s response to the 7.25 hours of solid writing time and 7,817 words – all in verse – was 13 hours of non-stop sleep afterward. Totally kills productivity for today but attempting it anyways.

For today, I find myself having to say a certain mantra over and over again. November is for writing, December is for salvaging and editing.

Word Sprints are fantastic for word count but highly questionable on usability and that fact drives editor me insane. Since yesterday consisted of non stop word sprints, editor me is throwing a giant hissy fit. Wanted to spend today sorting through the first 20,000 words to figure out where everything was, were everything goes as the work covers several different novels and projects.

November is for writing, December is for salvaging and editing.

While apparently capable of 7,000+ words a day, I don’t plan to write that much again per day if I can help it. I will confess that it makes 2,000 words per day seem easy-peasy. Not intimidated by 2,000 words anymore.

Today’s game plan to put down another 2,000 words so I can hang onto my lead for a time when writing isn’t an option later on in the month. Thanksgiving and the day after are the most likely culprits. I also need to figure out what to post for New Poetry Wednesday. A whole lot to choose from but not sure that any are ready for their public debut.

November is for writing, December is for salvaging and editing.

NaNoWriMo: 11.11.11

Over in NaNo Land, there is a challenge for today. 11,111 words and/or 11 hours of writing time. I’m going with – what ever comes first. 50 minutes in and I have accomplished 1144 words which is impressive for me. 11,111 words seem extremely far-fetched and a somewhat asinine accomplishment for me but I’m going to try. Not only would it help me catch up, it would put me slightly ahead. On the upside, my cold – which has kept me rather sidelined – is starting to let up thus making word count easier to achieve.

At the end of my 50 minute crazy word sprint action, Anubis decided to come visit. I have an aromatherapy candle burning on the desk – the scent is suppose to help clear the mind and inspire creativity (it seems to help) – and Anubis jumped up on the desk then sniffed the flame. That’s right. He sniffed the flame. He backed off and ran away so fast that he was just a blur of ink and claws. (He’s fine. I think he lightly burned the tip of a whisker but he’ll recover.) Has my four year old cat never seen fire before? It baffles the mind. It ranks right up there with yesterday with a four foot tall stuffed duck had his hair standing on end. He was running around and hissing like the duck was alive and invading the territory. My cat – afraid of stuffed animals and sniffer of fire.

I should get back to the other writing even though I’ve been pretty much writing everything and anything but what I set out to originally write. I’ve only put down 1200 words or so toward Reaper’s Moon and another 1000 to Midnight Red. Twisted Fortunes has picked up a respectable 2000 words and The Yoder Girl picked up 500 words this morning. The rest of my current 13,334 word count has gone toward A Hundred Flames, general poetry and the tarot-inspired poetry project.

NaNoWriMo Day 1

It is finally here. NaNoWriMo. Not as prepared as I would have liked but giving it my best efforts.

Real life has greatly interfered with today so I find myself currently sitting at 505 words of the desired 2,000. There is still time to get that remaining 1,495 for which I am grateful.

Lys, the main character of Reaper’s Moon, has felt the need to wax poetic about her surroundings and how the surroundings have affected her mindset. She has a big mission ahead of her but is hesitant about having me write the mission. This hesitation is hindering the word count ability so I may move on to the second work, Midnight Red, I plotted out for this very type of occasion.

I’m technically working on 3 pieces for this NaNoWriMo because it is challenging to focus on one piece the entire time when dealing with verse. (10 of the poems in The Heart of Autumn were written during NaNoWriMo last year.) I still plan to finish the first draft of Reaper’s Moon this year but also hoping for significant progress on Midnight Red and A Hundred Flames.

I did learn some valuable tidbits today.

– Parking anywhere – even the library parking lot – in downtown Boulder costs money and is very hard to come by at 1pm. I do not see myself attempting to attend any other Boulder write-ins this year unless they are on the north side.

– The coffee shop 2.5 miles from the house is horrendously noisy and the chairs are extremely uncomfortable. Also, their drinks are not as good as the (exact same type of) coffee shop 10 miles south.

– My best bets for writing away from home are the local library (with free parking!) or the Panera Bread in Longmont.

Hopefully my writing locales can expand soon. My laptop’s new battery arriving this weekend. A properly functioning laptop battery is essential equipment for a writer on the go. It is amazing how a large number of coffee shops (and similar types of places) are not writer friendly because they do not have electrical outlets accessible to patrons.

Gearing up for NaNoWriMo

It is almost November which means it is time to prep for NaNoWriMo. Pre-NaNo Write-Ins have already begun and Kick-off parties are happening this weekend. Some folks look at NaNoWriMo with a sense of dread – ‘50,000 words in 30 Days! Oh the horror!’. Others looks at NaNoWriMo with disdain – ‘I write 50,000+ words every month, why should it be special now?’ or ‘Why are my fellow authors/writers only working on their books during NaNoWriMo?’

I find myself on a cusp of reasons. Yes, I should work on my books during other months – and I do slightly – but I enjoy the camaraderie that comes with NaNoWriMo. The Write-Ins are often really good at getting the creative juices flowing and it is nice to get out, have a change of scenery, and meet other writers. Writing can be a very lonely gig and even introverts need occasional social interactions. I also find the deadline (and the ‘you’ve fallen behind!’ graphs) to be most motivating.

This year, though, I find myself at a bit of a writing impasse. I want to get last year’s book completed but I have three others demanding attention too. I plan to ‘divide and conquer’ but have a primary focus on last year’s book. This week, I get to re-read last year’s work once more along with fleshing out the outline for it then finish up the rough outlines for the others. I also need to get my office/computer space fully prepped, the caffeine stocked and some minor housework things accomplished.

Come November 1st, I plan to “chain” myself to my computer and just write. When properly motivated, I can achieve 4000 words in a day. An impressive feat onto itself but take into account that it is all in verse, it is a monumental achievement. Not sure how I managed to accomplish 4000 words a day last year but optimistic that I can replicate it this year.