NaNoWriMo 2013: Goodbye Girl

Dear NaNoWriMo,

I am breaking up with you. This isn’t a “he didn’t dump me, I dumped him” situation. I simply feel that we have outgrown each other. I won’t be hitting fifty thousand words in November, and I am more than okay with that.We’ve been going through the motions for a whole month, and that’s long enough.

I appreciate everything you did for me. Because of you, I can say that I have written two complete novels and am near completion on a third. I might never have found the motivation to undertake such a task without you. I learned things about myself and the craft of writing, and I met many new people in the time I spent with you.

You are too young for me NaNo, too young and too fast. You are courting younger writers behind my back, and while I am glad to see them getting opportunities and support, I am not getting what I need from our relationship. I need time to write with the quality and clarity I yearn to achieve. I want to write with other adults, who have life experience and are writing with purpose and direction. I am ready to write more than once a year, and if I don’t break up with you I know I will keep on saving up good ideas to use on you instead of writing them while they are fresh and exciting. I need support, motivation, and encouragement on at least a weekly basis, not one blinding month of tweets and e-mails and write-ins followed by eleven of darkness.

It’s for the best NaNo. You can get what you need, spreading your message far and wide. I will get what I need to write with depth. So long, and thanks for all the memories.


Skeggjold, no longer an ArmchairAuthor

NaNoWriMo 2013: Eye of the Tiger


Over the weekend I prepared to catch up by deep-cleaning my living room (like legit, I-dusted-the-blinds-and-windowsills clean) and having my husband deep clean the malware from my laptop. I did some great shower-thinking and talked out a couple plot concerns with said husband’s help. I even added a few new songs to the playlist to help me write the final scene: “Mad World” and “Bridge Over Troubled Water.” Last night between five and midnight I knocked out just over five-thousand words, putting me at 24k. Six days to go and I have more than half of my word count left.

Why do I feel so optimistic about it?

NaNoWriMo 2013: Two-Thirds Past

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Inklings, I’m gonna be straight with you. I caught up after my sinus infection! Eighteen thousand and some-odd words. Then I didn’t write anything for two weeks. Then my super pregnant writing buddy informed me that I couldn’t give up because she needed to live vicariously through my writing! Then I wrote a new scene, out of sequence, on a steno pad and it was gorgeous and I loved it. Then I lost the steno pad.

Still suffering from a complete and total lack of motivation, despite liking my characters and what I’ve written and knowing the direction things should be headed.

Ten days left and my word count is still at 18k. Thanksgiving break just started, meaning I should not end each day completely wiped out by classroom observations and my own course load. Can I catch up?

Stay tuned.

NaNoWriMo: One-Third Gone

Oh dear, Inklings. I am so behind. I came down with a sinus infection back around day four and spent two days in bed (missing classes and a group meeting as well as my word count). It took me until today to get over the blinding headache, nausea, and light sensitivity. My WIP is stranded around 8.5k words and par for today is over 16k. 

What am I gonna do?!

Eat a lot of these:



Seriously, they’re off the chain. And write a lot of these: 


Which I hope are similarly off the chain. Of course I also have lesson plans to write, a presentation to prepare, and discussion questions to post for my classes. So who knows what will happen. Thankfully, tomorrow is


Wish me luck and hug the Veterans in your life and maybe, just maybe, I’ll get this train back on track. 

I have three days to hit my goal of raising $250 for The Office of Letters and Light. I’m halfway there, thanks to supportive readers and a re-tweet from Margaret Atwood herself. If you’d like to donate you can do so here.

NaNoWriMo 2013: And They’re Off!

It is the second day of National Novel Writer’s Month 2013 and it has finally occurred to me what I should have done in the run-up to November 1st so that I would be ready to write this tale. Obviously it did not occur to me, but I do have a year’s worth of thinking and two chapters to get me going (I did not count anything written before Nov. 1st in my word count).

Here are the books I should have read in October, but checked out on November 1st:


The one bit of preparation I did manage was putting together a playlist and a Pinterest to help me stay in the right mood:

And then there was the ice cave I visited this summer in Austria, by way of novel research:


Maybe I’m more prepared than I thought.

Not as prepared as I’d like, then? Of course, given my druthers I would be J.R.R. Tolkien levels of prepared. A lifetime worth of study pouring into my novels. Then I’d never write anything! Luckily there is NaNoWriMo to kick my butt into gear.

Seriously though, I was feeling so incredibly unmotivated this year. I am excited about my project and where it’s going, but I felt no drive to write it…or even get ready to write it. Not great considering that I am the Unofficial Co-ML of my region this year. So far I have hosted two write-ins, both with much larger turnouts than last year. That’s encouraging!

I am still raising money for the organization that makes NaNoWriMo possible, along with a classroom writing program for children and teens, in the hopes of making it to the Night of Writing Dangerously. If you would like to help me out, you can donate here

I’ll try to keep checking in throughout the month. How is your noveling going? It’s not too late to start!