Sunday, November 15, 2009

What's missing?

I missed a few days on the blogging. So NaBloPoMo is basically done for me. I could have posted something quick and pointless but didn't want to. I didn't want to force myself to write something just for the sake of writing something. Yes, sometimes you have to push through and just write. Maybe it's good, maybe it's not. I do it with fiction all the time. But the stuff that sucks, I put aside and work on it another day. Sometimes I make it into something that's not too bad. Other times it gets worse. I just can't do that with blog posts. Well I could but putting them aside for later wouldn't get them posted that very day, so I would still be missing a post right now. So instead I didn't post at all because I didn't want to post the same thing over and over or something pointless just for the sake of posting.
Sure I had a few topics listed that I could have wrote about but once again I didn't want to write them in haste just to make sure I posted for the day. They deserve better than that and so do the few of the people who actually read these posts.
Instead I used the little time that I had to work on my fiction. And that went okay. I'm still behind on NaNoWriMo but even if I don't write another word on that story this month, I still have over 10,000 words of a new story, which I know is way more than I would have had I not joined NaNoWriMo.
The month's not over yet and I haven't given up on my writing goals. I'm just reassessing them and being more realistic about what I have time for given the fact that I have a job, errands, chores and most importantly, people that I have to make time for. If that means not putting up a lame post every now and again, that's okay. Just as long as it doesn't become a habit...again.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Another day wasted.

I just got back from a mandatory meeting at work. As if I'm not there enough. Tonight I had to go back just a few hours after leaving and sit there while I could have been home watching The Office or 30 Rock. By the time I got home from my day shift and ate dinner it was time to head out again. I just got in about ten minutes ago and I have to work in the morning also.
After my day shift tomorrow, I'm off for the weekend so here's everything I need to get done.
-Finish my short story, send it out to be critiqued.
-Finish making comments on friend's short story.
-Finish scene for writing group, read others stuff for writing group and then go to writing group.
-Catch up on NaNoWriMo, if that's possible.
-Post once daily.
Simple enough, right?

Wednesday, November 11, 2009


When I used to be a waitress, I carried around a notebook to write large orders on or notes about things I needed to stock. Most restaurants have gone to computers and gotten rid of the old school tickets. And when the crowd was slow or any of my tables didn't need anything, I would write notes or parts of stories, or really good lines that I heard or thought of.
That's just one example of how I've been able to fit writing into the jobs that I've had, even if it was just on my breaks.
At my current job there aren't any moments to jot something down. And I try to read and write on my breaks and lunch but since I'm only one of two people that could do certain things, I'm constantly interrupted. It doesn't really make it easy to get anything written down.
And then there's the people around me. The people who don't know what the word 'discrepancy' means. The people who don't read books. The people who say things such as "you so..." instead of "you are so..."
I guess what I'm trying to say is that if there were ever a job that stunted a writer, this is it. The only good thing is the really crazy things that the customers and the employees do. They could all make for good stories one day. I'll just try not to use words with more than two syllables.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

... until tomorrow

It's my week to work five days straight and today was my first of two nights to close. Before work I had to go grocery shopping and check on my sister's dog. After work I ate dinner and answered some e-mails. Now I'm posting before going to bed. And the whole point of this post is to say that I got absolutely nothing done today. I've fallen even further behind.

On the bright side last night I finished the book I've been reading. It's called "The City and the City" by China Mieville. When I first started reading it it took me a while to remember who was who because all of the names were unique to me. The story is an interesting idea but it takes a lot of thought to follow what's going on, especially in the beginning. It gets easier to understand further in when the writer has revealed more about how this particular society works but once I got to the end I felt a little let down. It's a murder mystery and the whole murder revolves around this huge and complicated idea but ends with such a simple explanation.
Although, to be fair I think I might have scanned over the last few pages a little too quickly. I was trying to finish it before falling asleep. Either way I finished.
Now I'm starting a new book by an author that's had work published in the magazine that I'm writing my story for. Hopefully, it will help with some insight.
Here's hoping tomorrow is more productive.

Monday, November 09, 2009

Just too nice outside

It was 60 degrees here today, which is pretty awesome for November in Michigan. I've been getting a headache from staring at the computer screen too much this past week and it was too gorgeous to be inside. So I took my notebook outside, sat on the porch next to my dog and wrote part of my short story. It's always hard to say how much I got done since long hand and computer typing is quite different when you're counting pages but I got something done. Now I just have to take the time to type what I wrote.
I just got done reading a short story that my friend wrote and now I'm thinking over what I read. I'll probably reread it again tomorrow and then write down my thoughts.
Right now, I'm getting ready to watch Castle. The awesome TV show about a murder mystery writer.
Then it will probably be off to bed. I'll read first and I think tonight I'll finish the book I'm reading.

Sunday, November 08, 2009

Week one ends; week two begins

Today was my day off and it was a busy day. We had breakfast with my dad and my dad's dad. Then I got the yard raked. After that, I went to an exhibition game for the MSU women's basketball team. (They won by 35 points!) and I actually got some writing done too. Not as much as I'd like considering that tomorrow I go back to work for five days in a row. Two of those days will be closing shifts. My goal is to write, even if it's not a lot, every little bit helps me from falling behind.
This week my plan is to finish my first draft of my short story. Try to catch up on my NaNo novel and finish a section for writing group, which should meet next Sunday. And of course, make a post everyday.
And I'd like to finish the book I'm reading. It's been a hard book for me to read. The more I read it the more I understand what's going on but still it's taking me a really long time to get through it. Once again, I can't give up.
So that's the plan for the week. I think the first week of November went pretty well. I have over 11,000 words on my NaNo novel. That's not right on track but much closer than 0. I've posted everyday. I've started another story that at first I wasn't sure I could do anything with and now I have a lot of ideas. It's all progress, even if it's slight.

Saturday, November 07, 2009

Cool moment

*For the record, I am post dating this entry. I tried to post it last night but blogger was not having it. However, it was posted on my livejournal

I got my laundry done tonight but I didn't get much else done at the laundromat. I usually go with my sister so that neither one of us has to face the potential creepiness alone. Too many weird old guys have it in their brain that the laundromat is a good place to pick up ladies. Yikes.
Anyway, the only thing really productive that came from the laundromat was that my sister actually had a cool moment. She's been reading the Twilight saga because every one of the grown women in her department has fallen in love with it and won't stop talking about it. My sister's a moderate reader. She doesn't read a lot but she does read. So she decided that she would try these books so she'd know what the heck everyone was talking about.
I'll admit I've read all four but regardless of whether I like something or not, I will struggle through it. I tell myself it could get better or I could think on it a while and realize that maybe it was good. If neither of those things happen I call it a learning experience.
I'm not trying to rip on Twilight. It's got the young people reading instead of watching TV, which is good, but Harry Potter it is not. And if one more person calls it that I will scream.
The books are okay and I can see why young girls fall in love with them. But the last one was the hardest for me to read (*spoiler alert*) because it was completely boring and unrealistic. The main character ends up with everything. She's immortal but gets to keep her mortal family. She's rich, well-dressed, beautiful, has a child (half mortal/half vampire) and despite the fact that she's only been a vampire for mere months she manages to stand up to an entire coven of the world's oldest and strongest vampires and, surprise, she has a super power that protects her family and friends from them. Oh and she doesn't lose her best bud/other love interest because she's going to let him marry her daughter. So they all just live happily ever after. There isn't even a cool battle in the end. They all show up to fight and then talk it out. LAME!
To me it was too perfect. Real life has tragedy and if a writer completely avoids that I think it makes a book pointless. There's has to be downs for there to be ups.
I could really go on in a bit more detail abou the book and what I didn't care for but it's not really something I feel I have to do.
Now back to my original story. So my sister's cool moment came when she was in the middle of Breaking Dawn, the final book, she drops it to the ground and says, "will you just tell me how this crap ends because I can't stand to read it any longer?"
Of course, when you don't read all that much, you probably don't want to waste your time on a novel you don't really like. Regardless, she had the power to walk away and for that I commend her because it is not something that I can do.

Friday, November 06, 2009


Oh man. It's the day I was talking about when I close tonight and then open tomorrow. So the words that I'm writing right now are about all that I will be writing today.
Today is the first day that I feel I'm falling behind on my goals. I'm not getting any NaNoWriMo written and I'm not getting any of my short story written. I almost forgot to write this post.
Also today we decided that our writing group, which is suppose to meet on Sunday, will probably have to wait until next Sunday. That's almost a good thing as much as it is a bad thing. I wasn't quite finished with my section of Incognito, my comic turned prose, that I had intended on sending. I had put off rewriting that because I've been so focused on my NaNo and short story goal.
Well I open at work tomorrow, so the plan is to come home from work and write. I have to go to the laundromat sometime this weekend but that's what notebooks are for. So instead of watching my clothes whirl around in the dryer, I'm going to be productive.

Thursday, November 05, 2009

The closing shift

Today was my first day working the closing shift since November started. I feel that the days I close at work are the days I'm least productive at home. I like to sleep late and by the time I get up and get ready it's time for work. Once I get home, it's late. I eat, check my Internet stuff and then read until I fall asleep. It just seems the whole day is wasted.
So I was worried that today would be the day I started to fall behind on my grand writing plan. That didn't happen though, I just finished a part of my NaNoWriMo novel. It wasn't a full 1667 words but it was enough to keep me in the game.
And while I didn't do much writing on my project story, I did give the first little part to someone to read and got a lot of feedback. We discussed a lot of ideas today and if I weren't about to fall asleep right now, I'd probably stay up and write some more.
Tomorrow I have another closing shift but it's the worse kind. The kind where I have to open the next day so staying up late to write isn't an option(well not a sensible one). I hope I can manage to hang in there. Once I get behind on anything I fear that I'll get too far to catch up.

Wednesday, November 04, 2009

The Notebook

I'm going to take a break from talking about my current projects and talk about my notebook.
Three years ago I bought a red three subject notebook with the intent of writing a story in it. Then I had a tiny notebook I would carry around for ideas. The only problem was that the tiny notebook wasn't good enough. It was too small. I would get inspired to write a scene and would struggle to fit it in the little notebook. That's when I decided the giant red notebook would go everywhere with me.
And over the last three years I have filled it with story notes, blog ideas, pieces of fiction, random lines, doodles, play lists, song lyrics and to do list. Then last week I noticed it was full. I went through and pulled out pages that went with certain stories and filed them away with my notes for each story. I went through to find anything I might need in the near future and then I filed the notebook away in my filing cabinet.
Two days ago, I started a new notebook. It's just one subject, not nearly as big as the old one but that's okay. I really don't think I need to be carrying around three years of notes anymore.
It's kind of fitting that it should be full now because I feel like I'm starting a new chapter in my writing endeavors. Over the past year or so I've put very little effort into my writing. But now I'm trying to get back on track and I think starting fresh with ideas and notes is just another thing that needed to change.

Monday, November 02, 2009

A new way

The next project that's on my list is a little different from my usual thing. I don't really have a title for it and the idea was not my own.
It all started when I bought a Writer's Market. Yes, last Sunday I went out and bought the new Writer's Market. I didn't buy one in 2009 but I bought one in 2006, 2007 and 2008. And in those years I took all the short stories that I had completed at the time and went through every magazine listed to see if it was a match. I then sent each story to every place it seemed to fit. Obviously, this didn't have a lot of success.
So I took this new Writer's Market with my when I went to meet a friend and he had an idea. What if, instead of trying to find a magazine to fit the story, we each write a story to fit a magazine. And that is the plan.
We went through the Writer's Market and found a magazine that we both were interested in and decided that would be our first goal. We are giving ourselves a month to write a short story that fits all the guidelines of the magazine. Then we're going to send it in and start another story for another magazine. If we get a rejection letter than we'll send the story somewhere else that it might fit but the idea is to write it with a specific place in mind.
My old way never worked so I'm hoping this goes better. It's also good because it makes me have to write. I have a deadline and a general idea of what I need to write. I know the genre and how long it has to be. It's kind of like being back in class with a writing assignment.
For this month I have to write a dark science fiction story that's around 4,000 words. Right now I have an idea. It's more dark than science fiction and I'm trying to think of a way to make it more science fiction otherwise I might need a new idea.

While I took a breather between meeting my daily word count on NaNoWriMo and working on my sub story, I added my NaNoWriMo profile link to the sidebar. I'm at 3680 in case anyone is wondering and is too lazy to click the link.

I get the next two days off from work so I'm going to be a writing machine. Bam!

Sunday, November 01, 2009

NaNoWriMo 2009

My goal for the next few posts is to write a greater explanation for each one of the writing projects I am working on this month.

First up is NaNoWriMo. I've participated in it two previous years, 2005 and 2006. I did sign up in 2007 but decided that the novel I started was something that meant too much to me to try and rush it.

This year, like all other years, I don't expect to write an entire novel in one month. 50,000 words isn't a novel and I'm not even sure I'll get that many words done.

In 2005 I had over 40,000 words by the end of the month and in 2006 I was just shy of the 30,000 word mark. In both cases it took me several months longer to finish the actual story.

And I'll admit that both of those novels were awful, but it was cool to say that I wrote a novel. I was no longer the person 'writing a novel' or with 'an idea for a really cool novel.' I was a novel writer even if it sucked.

Both of those years I had strict outlines and new exactly where I was going and what I had to do. I think a lot of the reason the novels didn't turn out so well was that I forced my story from one point on the outline to the next.

This year I'm doing things a little differently. I started with an idea. Just a scene that is kind of a vision I had one day. And I'm going to try and make it up as I go along.

I have a few ideas in my head of where it's going but what's going to happen and how it all ends is a mystery to even me. The only thing I know for sure is that it's a horror story.

Maybe it will be good. Maybe it will be bad. Either way the goal is to average 1667 words a day. It's day one and I've written 1499.