Thursday, May 31, 2007

May is almost over.

Wow, that was fast.

This is a problem/interesting thing for me in more ways than you might think. I may have mentioned before that on May 1st, I officially dropped The Story That Wouldn't Work and switched to something that's been going strong ever since.

Not strong enough, apparrently. I'm just tapping 30,000 words (that's seven and a half chapters, as I write them). I need - really NEED - to have this thing finished by June 22nd.

That means doing the equivalent of a NaNo.

In 22 days.

Which just happens to be my record.

Fun stuff, huh?

The good thing is that in as of Saturday, my daytime schedule abruptly clears up. The bad thing is that my daytime schedule abruptly clears up, and I have to actually write during it, not sleep in or play endless rounds of Mah Jonng.

In short, motivation.


Like I've said, I've done it before. And tomorrow is the first of June, so I can get myself psyched up tonight. But it'll be different from NaNos past. I'm already a third of the way into the book. The second third is generally the hardest. Once I push through won't be easy, but it'll look more doable to me. Helping me here is that I really love the story and I think it's the one I should be writing. Hurting me is that, well, I'm bad at keeping myself motivated. But to quote Erica, "If I want to be a professional writer, I have to act like one."

So. 2273 words a day.

For the next three weeks.

I'm game. No, better than that. I'll eat it for breakfast.

Well, no, I won't. Not until my mouth heals up. I'm getting my wisdom teeth out on Monday.

But still.

What are your plans for June? Do they include craziness like this? Would anyone like to join me in my demented mini-NaNo?

Also, I've been tagged by Robin to either list 8 odd things about myself that y'all don't know, or list four things that were new to me in the last four years and four things that I want to experience in the next four years. I think I might go for the 8 odd things. I have a lot of them. I'll try and post that tomorrow or Saturday.

Wednesday, May 23, 2007

At a Total Blogging Loss

Yep. I have no clue what to say.

So time to go to an old standby: books!

Awhile ago I started a mini-meme on the anatomy of a bookcase. Well, that took off as a picture meme instead, which is awesome! So, a bit late, here's a picture of my lovely bookcase:

Now then. A serious question.

What are you interested in getting from this blog? I feel like I should update more, but I rarely have anything I feel would be worthwhile to say, and I think I'm getting to where I have enough readers for this to potentially be a problem. So, shout it out. What do you think I should blog about? Life? Writing? Specific eras of history? (I'm always up to a research project, as long as I don't have to write up a double-spaced formal report on it. -shudder-)

If you recognize any of your favorites on my bookcase, please mention it! I love talking books.

Saturday, May 19, 2007

Today is a sad day.

Miss Snark, literary agent and one of the most astounding and clever industry folks on the Web, is retiring from her blog.

She'll be missed.

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

The First Deadly Sin of Writing

(Because I'm on a seven deadly sins roll lately. Blame Fullmetal Alchemist.)

But anyway. When you read the post title, what came to mind? Besides plagiarism, I mean.

I bet was something about stopping before you were finished.

As someone who started roughly 200 stories before my first NaNoWriMo in 2005, three of which made it past page 9, I know what it's like to not be able to finish something. Most of those weren't thought out at all; I just sat down and wrote until I ran out of words (which happened quite quickly), and I really didn't think anything of it. If I ever knew what to write next, it would still be there, because I never, ever, ever delete anything. I've said it before and I'll say it again: I'm an unrepentant packrat.

Since NaNo '05, when I first found out I really could finish something, and quickly (the first thing I ever finished was a fanfic, but we don't speak of it), I've been trying harder than ever to actually stick with stories until they're done. I haven't had a whole lot of success, but I've actually been trying.

Well, just before NaNo '06, the plot I'd had since January got, for lack of a better word, usurped by a new idea. It seemed interesting and fun to write, so I went with it.

When I was consistently dragging myself to the computer just to get the minimum of daily wordcount for the first week, I excused it as NaNo's sophomore curse. Stupid of me, I can see now. But I kept going.

I finished out the month with flying colors--71,004 words, with two days of more than 11k apiece. But I still couldn't finish the thing. I took a hard look at it and realized that my MC had no personality, and I set out writing it from a different, more involved character's perspective.

Forty-five thousand words later, I looked at the computer screen and thought, I can't do this anymore.

That night (April 28th) I couldn't sleep. I had too much bouncing around my head. Eventually (this was around 12:30, so technically April 29th), I pulled out a pad of sticky notes and wrote plot points out on them in the glow of my clock.

The next morning, I had the skeleton of a story I started a year ago and loved, all ready to go.

I took the next two days to really think about what I wanted to do, and on May 1st, I made the official switch. I'm 23,000 words into it and loving it still. I really think I can finish this one. In fact, I know I will. More than I've known that for anything before. Seriously.

So, there's my confession. I would feel guilt for committing the first deadly sin of writing...except that this story had gotten to the point where it was a writerly sin to keep writing it. I hated it that much.

Questions (because I am a nosy soul): Have you ever just flat-out refused to write another word on a certain story or project? How many stories did you start before you finished one? If this isn't your first deadly sin of writing, what is?

Also, thank you for the Mother's Day and birthday wishes.

Sunday, May 13, 2007

Happy Mother's Day!

Hope y'all treated your moms right today, in your thoughts if there's nothing else available to you.

I've fallen off the face of the blogosphere for a while now, haven't I? Not much to say, I guess.

Also, today's my birthday (it was kind of neat, having a birthday on Mother's Day this year. Appropriate, yes?). If anyone would like to guess which one, I'd be interested to read...and if anyone guesses right, I'll gladly confirm it. (Robin, you don't get to say until and if it becomes apparent that no one else is even close. Sorry.)

So. What did everyone do for their moms today? I like to think I was very classic: big box of chocolate and treated to a frappe from Joe Mugg's in the Books-a-Million (they're better than Starbucks. Yes, really).