November 6, 2012

NaNo Update

As most of you know, this month is kind of crazy thanks to a little thing called NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month and henceforth referred to as simply 'NaNo'). As such, it's going to be tough to get in a whole lot of blogging. Thankfully, the wonderful Katy Upperman came up with a way to check in and to keep from going AWOL for the entire month of November.

Progress (word count or a general status update)
With the exception of yesterday, I've managed to beat the daily word goal every day so far. I'm now sitting at just over 10,000 words. That's about half of what I managed to write during NaNo last year, so I'm thrilled. And I'm especially proud of myself because I've been doing this while revising another WIP I'm hoping to start querying this week. Crazy!



Current Mood
Meh. Not about my WIP, but about sitting down and writing again today. I'm finding it challenging to switch gears from revising one story to writing a totally different type of story. It's working, but I've got a bit of the brain drain going on.

Inspiration
“No tears in the writer, no tears in the reader. No surprise in the writer, no surprise in the reader.” - Robert Frost

If I'm bored, my readers will be bored. Ergo, stop writing boring words. That's my mission and I choose to accept it.

Goal as of Today
This is sort of the same as Katy's: Write 2000 words Monday through Friday and 1000 words on Saturday and Sunday. This is where it differs: IF I manage to write more on any of the days I can reduce another day's word goal or take it off altogether. Because sometimes I just need a break, you know?

Recent Favorite NaNo WIP Line(s)
I wouldn't say this is a favourite, exactly. And it's not an overly important scene in my WIP, but since it made me snicker, I thought I'd share. Bear in mind, all of this is unpolished and unedited and may not stick around:

When I walk in the door the others are starting to rise, in various states of awake and Montauk Monster-esque disarray. Charlie, in particular, looks the most frightful of the bunch, his hair standing out in spiky tufts all over his head. He looks like the sea urchin we ate for dinner at his place the other night. Well, before it made it onto our plates anyway.
“You are planning on taming that mess I hope.” Maura pats down his sandy blond tufts with her palm.
“Nope. This is the look I was going for. You know, that whole sexy bedhead thing.”
“Dude, there’s nothing sexy about what’s going on on your head right now.” Harry thumps him on the back before flopping onto the sofa. He runs a hand over his own cropped black hair.
“Like you’d know. Your jarhead do isn’t exactly en vogue, you know,” Charlie shoots back.
“Says the guy who just used the phrase en vogue in casual conversation.”
“Touché.”
“You can’t help yourself, can you?”

NB: Do not Google Montauk Monster. It's nasty, I promise. But if you insist... CLICK HERE!

Non-NaNo News (because life DOES go on)
For months now, I've been trying to boil down WIP#1 to a single sentence. Fail! Yesterday, after nearly going QWERTY face a few times, I managed to write a logline that sucks somewhat less than it did in earlier attempts. And this morning I entered my logline and my first 250 words in the Baker's Dozen Agent Auction. Nausea ensued.

In My Downtime (ha!) I'm Reading
With Remembrance Day* rapidly approaching, I wanted to spend some time reading books that have some connection to remembering and the wars. I've been meaning to read Between Shades of Gray by Ruta Sepetys and Markus Zusak's The Book Thief, and I figured that this was the perfect opportunity given that they both deal with the events surrounding WWII. I'm currently reading the former, and while the subject matter is tough to handle, it's definitely worth the read. 

You Should Read This Blog Post
Why I Love YA Lit by Bookshelvers Anonymous because it sings the praises of YA, and I couldn't agree more with it. Big confession: I haven't been spending as much time lately on the blogs. But I have read some other NaNo update posts. To see how some other bloggers are doing on their NaNo stories, check out Katy Upperman, Liz Parker, and Jess Silverstein.

Gratuitous Photo
Would you like some ham with that cheese? Seriously goofy photo aside, these NaNoWriMo shirts are awesome. The sizing is a little weird on the NaNo site, but in my experience they run true to size. It's a quality shirt and very comfy. Also, for those of you who can't handle super short sleeves digging in your armpits, the sleeves are a bit longer, so no armpit wedgies here. As for this case of too much information? You're welcome.





* Remembrance Day (formerly known as Armistace Day) is a Commonwealth memorial day on November 11th of every year. It has been observed since World War I in remembrance of all the men and women who have served in the armed forces. In the days leading up to Remembrance Day, people wear poppies on the breast of their coat. The emblem was chosen because of the poem In Flanders Fields, penned by Canadian physician and Lieutenant Colonel John McCrae.

38 comments:

  1. I love your NaNo shirt, Jaime! And your snippet is fantastic... It seems diaglog is one of your strengths because what you shared was so natural and snappy and fun to read--awesome!

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    1. The shirt's great, but I promise I'm not wearing it every day this month. That would be gross. :P Thanks for the compliment on my WIP snippet. I was seriously nervous about sharing anything because it's all so rough. :)

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  2. I did not take heed and I looked at the Monster - augh! That is freaky.

    P.S. Your shirt rocks!

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    1. Isn't it creepy and disgusting? I had set part of my WIP in Montauk and happened to Google something and SURPRISE! there it was. Blech. It managed to work its way into a couple parts of the story, so I guess having to see that thing wasn't totally awful. :)

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  3. Yay I'm glad you're doing well. Keep it up. We're all rooting for you. :D

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    1. Thank you! :) I'm struggling today to get anything really done. I think I'm sitting at between 300-400 words so far. O_o Oh well.

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  4. Oh my gosh, that monster is INSANE! What the.... It's like the Psammead! Only option! The snippet is really cool, sounds like you're doing really well :D Go hard Jaime!

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    1. Isn't it weird? I think it's just some kind of gnarly malformed animal, but it does have a bit of a 'monster' look to it. O.O

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  5. This is such a fun post!! Yay for progress! :-d

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    1. Thanks, Valia! :) Progress is definitely good. I had a decent lead on my daily word goals and then yesterday I tanked a bit, and then again today. So far I've written about 300-400 words and that's it. Oh well. Maybe tomorrow will go better. :)

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  6. I got such a sense of who your characters are from that snippet! Can't wait to meet them for real. And fingers crossed for the Baker's Dozen Agent Auction--eek! Between you and Elodie, I think all my fingers are crossed right now!

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    1. Thanks, Jess. :) I wasn't sure I wanted to share a segment because it was so rough, but I figured I might as well. I'm struggling today to get anything done, though. But I did manage to blog and enter the Baker's Dozen thing, so I guess the day isn't a total write-off. :)

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  7. I remember reading about the Montauk Monster! So creepy even though it was probably just a gnarly raccoon. The NaNo shirt looks great and no armpit wedgies is a major plus. You know I hate armpit wedgies. Love the segment from Only Annie! And just think, now you can write more today seeing as Days of Blood and Starlight is apparently not available in Alberta or Saskatchewan yet for some insanely stupid reason. Grr. Let's move somewhere book releases happen on time!

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    1. As much as I love Canada (and it's a lot) there does seem to be an issue with new releases. I was in Cavendish, PEI the day the final Harry Potter came out. Now, Cavendish is teeny, but it's also a kidlit mecca (it's the real-life Avonlea from the Anne of Green Gables books!) We checked literally every store in town. Not a single one had the book. HARRY POTTER! We had to wait till we got back into Charlottetown the next day. Maybe I should move someplace out of the way in Canada and start that kids' bookstore I've always dreamed of...

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    2. Erin: Yeah, I remember the Montauk Monster too, but I forgot that that's what it was called. Imagine my surprise when I googled 'Montauk' and that thing popped up. Argh! As for the armpit wedgies, I was totally speaking to you when I wrote that. In fact, I almost added (*cough* Erin *cough*) after mentioning it, but didn't want to expose your armpit wedgie neurosis. :P As for DAYS OF BLOOD AND STARLIGHT, it seems to only be available at Ontario Chapters stores. Vancouver doesn't even have it. Drives me bonkers. Hard to shop at brick and mortar stores when they don't actually carry what you're looking for.

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    3. Jess: I can't believe they didn't have HARRY POTTER! That's completely bonkers. I just did a search through Chapters and it turns out that only Ontario stores seem to have gotten DAYS OF BLOOD AND STARLIGHT today. All of us losers out West have to keep waiting, I guess. I just went ahead and ordered it online. I suppose I don't have a whole ton of time to read these days anyway what with NaNo sucking it all away. :)

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  8. Replies
    1. Thanks, Ghenet! All of the cheering that people like you are doing is definitely helping motivate me. :)

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  9. Yay, your t-shirt looks awesome on you!
    Well done on your NaNo! I'm sure you'll be able to keep it up ;)

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    1. Thanks, Juliana! I had to do a NaNo tee pose like you did to show it off. It's super comfy! :) As for NaNo, I'm struggling to stay on top of it at the moment. I'm ahead of the game and could even skip writing today if I want, but then I'd just barely be above my goal. Hard to decide... :)

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  10. Good luck with the agent contest! And congratulations on NaNo progress. I'm about 1,000 words ahead of my goal right now, so I'm probably going to take today off. I think days off are good. :)

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    1. Fingers crossed that the agent contest goes okay. I'm not expecting anything from it, but if something does come from it, so much the better. :) I'm ahead of my word goal right now too, so I'm tempted to just pack it in today and research agents for my other WIP instead. I'm wary of leaving so little of a cushion for NaNo, but I'm just not feeling it today. My story's starting to suffer for it, so I think I might just need to step away.

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  11. Yay! Sounds like you're making such great progress! Keep up the awesome work!

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  12. Great job on NaNoWriMo! Looks like you're moving right along with it. I loved the excerpt, rough-draft or not. Sounds like it's going to be a fun book.

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    1. Thanks, Caryn! :) Though, the past couple of days have not been overly productive. I'm researching agents to start querying on another WIP, so I've been a little distracted.

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  13. I love that picture! :-D (and the shirt)

    Good luck with everything!

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  14. Love the pic!

    And I loved the inspiration...

    Gosh, Jaime... I don't know how you're doing it all... SO MUCH. But the excerpt is great---keep rockin' those words!

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    1. Thanks, Morgan. :) I'm struggling to balance everything that needs to be done to query the first WIP with writing my NaNo WIP. I didn't write at all today and the last couple of days were less than stellar too. Oh well. Tomorrow is another day, right?

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  15. :D If I'm bored, my readers will be bored. Ergo, stop writing boring words. That's my mission and I choose to accept it. --> YES!!!! Very well said, Jaime :D

    And huh, you know how much I want to read more of ONLY ANNIE and that excerpt made me smile, thank you for sharing it!

    Oh and great picture :D

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    1. I think I started writing boring words and that's when I hit a roadblock with my WIP. I'm hoping I can return to it with fresh eyes tomorrow...after sending off a few queries. O.O

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  16. Congrats on the NaNo progress, Jaime! I hope you continue to do well. I'm currently reading THE BOOK THIEF, and I'm really enjoying it. It's a little quirky, but it's written from Death's point of view, so it's bound to be. I think you'll like it. Of course, I haven't got to the end yet, and I know darker times are coming in the story, so take my recommendation with that in mind. :)

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    1. Thanks, Colin. :) Though, as you know, I failed miserably today at NaNo-ing. Oh well. We'll see how it goes tomorrow. After I send off a few queries, that is. O.O

      I just started THE BOOK THIEF this evening. I finished off Ruta Sepetys' BETWEEN SHADES OF GRAY, and it was a good read. Sad and awful, but good. All of it is a good lead-up to Remembrance Day.

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  17. Jaime, you peach! I'm sitting here reading this post in my email, humming happily over your NaNo progress, then TADA! It's my post! Way to share the YA love, amiga. :)

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    1. You are most welcome. :) It was a great post, and I couldn't agree more!

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  18. I found your blog through Erin L. Schneider - and I love your writing style and sense of humor! I'm a fellow YA writer and I signed up for NaNo this year, but then five million things happened in my personal life that pushed writing to the bottom of my list of priorities. Le sigh. But go you! Sounds like you're off to a great start.

    Also, this is awesome: "He looks like the sea urchin we ate for dinner at his place the other night." Tee hee. :)

    And the Montauk Monster? Ewwww. (Of course I clicked!)

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    1. Hi Bridgid! Thanks for dropping by and leaving such an encouraging comment. :) It's nice to meet other YA writers.

      NaNo has sort of slid a bit on my priorities list the past couple of days. I'm working to correct that, but my brain feels elsewhere (like on querying, for instance). So you're not the only one. :)

      Glad you liked the little snippet. I wondered how many people wouldn't be able to resist clicking on the link to the Montauk Monster. Just too tempting, I guess. LOL

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