Tuesday, December 6, 2005

TGIO Party: Dec. 2, 2005

We had our Thank Goodness It's Over party for all the Springs Wrimos at a private home last Friday. I carpooled with a friend of mine who was also doing NaNo--I found out a week or so in that she was doing it and that was very cool. There were about eight or nine of us there all told. A nice sized group for a gathering of people who mostly don't know each other except from the NaNo forums. It was really funny, we were introducing each other by our user names. I can't tell you how fun it was to say, "Hi, I'm MangyCat."

Laurie, the hosting ML, served a delicious spiral ham and the rest of us brought sides and desserts. I made some outragous brownies that, if I may say so, totally rocked. ;o)

We shared stories of our NaNo journeys and read excerpts. It was really cool to hear what everyone else had been struggling through during the last 30 days. We were all in it together, but we each had our own muses we tried to wrangle.

My friend Sara read my Chapter 1 from Imaginary and at the end, everyone's mouths were hanging open, like..."Is that IT? Where's the rest?!" In fact, someone actually said that. I had them so pinned, they forgot to clap. Ah, the sweet taste of victory.

Anyway, that party was very good for me. I've been feeling this sort of letdown all week. You know, the letdown that happens after some major events or holidays have passed. That's what I've been feeling. Sort of draggy and depressed. But it was good to connect with other Wrimos and feel like all that time spent sweating words in November actually meant something.

Sunday, November 27, 2005

And the beat goes on...

I just had to share this... One of the gals on my teen writing forum started a topic to "Congratulate MangyCat." After role playing the set up of a virtual party, she actually made me a banner to "hang" in the room.

Thanks, MightiMidget! I feel so honored!

I did it!

This afternoon, I finished my NaNoWriMo novel and have verified my word count at 50,110 words--including "the" and "end"! Hooray! After verifying my count on the NaNo site, I was taken to the winners' page where I was able to download this lovely winner's icon as well as a nifty certificate that I can print out, hang on the wall, and smile at with my plump and happy ego. ;o)

What a wonderful experience this has been! Such a challenge but worth every ridiculously insane moment.

And by the way, I did actually finish the novel, if you didn't get the hint above. My last two words were THE END.

Thank you to everyone for their support, especially the ladies at the CleanPlace teen writers' forum! And many huge hugs and thanks to my husband for his sacrifice of time so that I could go and write like a madwoman. Oh yeah, and finally thanks to the folks at Einstein Bros. Cafe for letting me occupy their booths for inordinate amounts of time.

Final Stats from my NaNoWriMo Report Card:
Total Words Written 50,110
Total Hours Spent Writing 34.21

Avg Words Written Per Day 1855
Avg Hours Writing Per Day 1.27
Avg Words Per Hour 1464
Avg Morale Per Day 6

Number of Words Remaining 0
Number of Days Remaining 3

Hooray! I wrote a 50,110 word novel in 27 days!

Saturday, November 26, 2005

Almost there

This will just be a quick post. I am so close, I can taste it! I wrote for 2 hours this afternoon and finished my climax point in the storyline. Nothing left but the wrap up.

Wrote 3,557 words, and I have roughly 1,700 remaining. I plan to write again. With 1 to 1-1/2 good hours, I may actually complete NaNoWriMo tonight!

Wish me luck...

Late night frenzy

Okay, so it's officially after midnight from November 25, so I must truthfully count the writing I just did for Saturday's count. That would be 1,670 words and two supernatural deaths later. Whew--what a night.

Layne still has four demons to destroy, and we must reunite her with Jesse before time runs out. And the clock keeps on ticking...

Words to date: 44,686
Words to go: 5,314
Days left: 4

Friday, November 25, 2005

The final countdown

Today is the day the NaNoWriMo site launches its official Word Count robots. The numbers will be pouring in. Unfortunately, I'm not yet at that 50,000 word count, but I plan on getting there as soon as humanly possible.

The holidays have been busy and made me too tired to stay up late writing. Last night, with my Word problems, I couldn't get a single letter written. But this morning, I've come back to make up for last night's pathetic mishap. In less than an hour, I pounded out 1,459 words. Not much, but at least I have saved some face for having a completely unnecessary zero day.

I'm going to write more this afternoon or evening. I'm 86% done and on schedule to finish November 29.

Words to date: 43,016
Words to go: 6,984
Days left: 6

Thursday, November 24, 2005

Word is evil today

I'm having some major Microsoft Word problems this evening and with 20 minutes left, it doesn't look like any words are going to get written today. Curses! Hope to have the issues resolved before the end of the night though.

Wednesday, November 23, 2005

Last minutes before zip

I managed to effectively procrastinate until 11 p.m. this evening, and therefore only got to write for just under 60 minutes. No matter, I still wrote 1,724 words.

My bed is decidedly not as good a place to write as Einstein's Cafe. It gets too hot, and the TV is noisy when my husband is watching. Oh well. We take what we can get. I'm lucky to have a house, a bed, and a TV at all. Not to mention a husband who is home and awake when I am. ;o)

I breached 200 pages (double-spaced) tonight, and check out my words remaining. Whoa. Once again, I am amazed by the power of a deadline.

Words to date: 41,577
Words to go: 8,443
Days left: 7

Tuesday, November 22, 2005

Power Hour

I only had two hours set aside for writing today. One hour, I gave to NaNo. The last hour, I had to devote to my other novel, the one I've been cheating on. *sob!* I didn't have anything for my crit group, and I couldn't show up without anything. That's just not something I like to do. Pooh on that.

But I had a powerful 60 minutes anyway--2,174 words! A couple good fast-moving scenes showed up in which Layne is constantly in motion, trying to rid her fellow hospital mates from their demons. Today, she dispatched three of them!

Words to date: 39,833
Words to go: 10,167
Days left: 8

Monday, November 21, 2005

Goodish day

After much debating about where I would end up, I decided to come back to Panera to get my writing in. I've written for about an hour and have lost steam, but the count is good today: 1,752

Not great, but not bad for one hour. :o) I'm almost to that 40,000 word count. So close I can taste it.

Words to date: 37,659
Words to go: 12,341
Days left: 9

Sunday, November 20, 2005

A write-in!

I posted on the NaNoWriMo forum that I was going to Panera Bread to write and lo and behold, NarniaPrincess appeared! I had already been there writing for about 30 minutes or so, so I had racked up several hundred words already. We chatted and did some timed writings. In the end, I came out with 50 words over my goal for the day. Meaning, 3,050 words. Hooray! Helped after having a zero day yesterday.

Yay for having company whilst we press on through November.

Words to date: 35,907
Words to go: 14,093
Days left: 10

Friday, November 18, 2005

Bit by massive bit

I came to Einstein's this afternoon and have written for an hour and 45 minutes. Two cups of coffee, one shmeared bagel, one dream sequence, and one demon murdering scene later, I have come out with a nice, plumpy word count of 3,712 for the day's writing. Woo hoo! *does the over-3,500-words-in-one-session dance*

The gap between my "words written" and "words remaining" counts gives me no end of pleasure.

Words to date: 32,857
Words to go: 17,143
Days left: 11

Thursday, November 17, 2005

Shoving on

I actually had no internet access at home Thursday, so my procrastination was thwarted in total. ;o) Reluctantly, I started writing at 9:15 p.m. and plowed for a whole hour. The words didn't come very quickly at first, but eventually a relatively exciting scene emerged, and I managed to get 1,651 words written as I lay in bed eating a chocolate cookie.

My page count is positively dizzying to me--143 double-spaced, 12-point. How did I get that much written in just 17 days? Oh yeah, I remember. I have developed that Einstein's Cafe addiction. Yep. That'll do it.

Words to date: 29,145
Words to go: 20,855
Days left: 12

Wednesday, November 16, 2005

A flurry of typing

Did I say before, "It's amazing what can be accomplished in an hour"? Something happened today, actually an attack on my main character by demons, that just got the words flowing. I could barely stop!

When I did stop, I was a mere 250 words away from hitting 2,000, so I decided to continue on to see if I could make up the final bit and pass the mark. Final word count for an hour of writing tonight: 2,239

Words to date: 27,494
Words to go: 22,506

Woo hoo! I now have more words written than I have to write! (Hmm...does that make sense?) ;o)

Tuesday, November 15, 2005

Pidley count

I managed to type in 212 words tonight, but the last page I wrote with my eyes closed. Doesn't put me behind though. Eh. Just one of those nights.

Words to date: 25,255
Words to go: 24,745


This is on the signature of one of our NaNo participants. It made me laugh:

My plot ran away with my muse and eloped in Las Vegas and now they won't come back to help raise the child they created with me!

Monday, November 14, 2005

Back on Track

It's amazing what you can do with 60 minutes. My husband came home in enough time for me to slip away to Einstein's Cafe for a little over an hour. I was the only one there and tap, tap, tapped away until 5 after 5. Final word count for the night? 1,727 Huzzah!

I am now officially 50% done...

Words to date: 25,043
Words to go: 24.957

Sunday, November 13, 2005

Two zero days, one comeback

I did write somewhere around 550 words after midnight Saturday morning, but absolutely no writing got done for the rest of the day. Sure enough, things got too busy and before I knew it, midnight had come and the day was gone. At that point, I was officially behind in my count, having used up all my extra words to make up for my two zero days. But really, who can blame me for being distracted on the day my friend's daughter dies, and the day of her memorial service?

But I went out to Einstein's Cafe right after church today and got 4194 words written. The story just flowed out of me. I'm completely caught up now--one good day will do that--so I need to focus on maintaining that.

For some reason, finishing this silly thing has become really important to me. I don't know why exactly, but if I figure it out, I'll let you know. It has less to do with simply accomplishing something great and more to do with that "something else."

Words to date: 23,316
Words to go: 26,684 (almost halfway there!)

Friday, November 11, 2005

Procrastination wins

Argh! This is my second zero day this week. Granted, I have an excuse. Today we had the Memorial Service for my friend's 6-year old daughter. Heart wrenching, causing all the tears I'd been in too much of a shock to shed.

My mind is still numb from the day, so I spent the rest of my evening surfing my teen writing forum. No words today. But I'm going to try to crank out something--even a little drivel is better than nothing--because tomorow, it's going to be rough trying to find time to write. The day is booked.

Thursday, November 10, 2005

Getting back on track

I practically had to drag it out of myself, but I committed 45 minutes and got 1,720 words written. That's okay. Actually, I had 1,619 words when I did my "final" count. I'd just finished a chapter, so my mind was a complete blank as to what to write. But I managed to get those few extra words out.

Hope things start to get better. I'm glad that I'm hanging in there.

Words to date: 18,539
Words to go: 31,461

Small, but something

I managed to get out for an hour and write for about 40 minutes. That got me 969 words--a pathetic number to be sure. But those few days that I cranked out more than enough for my count have been paying me back handsomely. Of course, those days are going to be limited! Fifty-thousand is still a long way off.

The thought of quitting NaNo crossed my mind a few times today as I have been grieving through the loss of my friend's child, and grieving for her loss as well. But a fellow NaNo writer, NarniaPrincess, and a friend in reality, encouraged me to try to stick out. She said that perhaps writing would be the one thing that kept me grounded and helped me though this. She was right. Writing this evening helped a lot.

My story involves angels, and though my head said, no don't even think it, my heart said, YES, just do it! So I wrote Savannah into the story. She appeared behind a receptionist in a white dress with a fluffy white tutu. She carried a magic wand with a star on the end and was as happy as she could be. That's how I see her--as happy as can be.

It did help to write about her. I don't know why. Maybe there's some therapeutic nature to writing for me. Well, yes, I know there is. But who'd have thought it would come out in my NaNo novel?

Total words so far: 16,819
Words to go: 33,181

Tuesday, November 8, 2005

Zero Day

It's 11:08 p.m., and I have decided that today is going to be a zero day. I wrote a lot on Sunday, so I'm not going to be set back too much. The reasons are grave however, so I think I can excuse myself for just one day.

I got some sad, sad news. My close friend's 6-year old daughter died suddenly this morning. I've known the mother for more than 5 years and have known her daughter almost her entire life. I'm in utter shock.

It's going to be a long journey of grieving, and I hope that the scriptures come true for both parents and the rest of their family--that God will turn their tears of grief into joy.

If you are the praying sort, please pray for their grieving process. Pray that they will find comfort in God alone. Pray that their friends and family will be a blessing to them. Pray that the funeral arrangements come out perfectly. Pray that they will be able to find comfort in the fact that Savannah did love Jesus so much and that she is dancing with Him right now. Thank you.

Monday, November 7, 2005

Rough going

From the moment I got up late today, the day was doomed. Late start. Busy morning. Frustrating lunchtime. Dull-heading afternoon. Busy evening. And who knew when I would get anything written for NaNo today?

As I sat there watching the last few minutes of "Restaurant Makeover" on the Food Network at 9:55 p.m., my husband said in that loving way, "Go write!" I turned the tube off at 10:00 and headed downstairs to find a snack.

Chocolate milk in hand, I wandered upstairs and looked around for a distraction. No TV. That was certain death if I wanted to get any amount of words written today. I turned on the computer and decided not to check my teen writing forums, but instead open up my NaNo Word file.

Ah, but while it's loading, why not pop onto the NaNo forums and see what's happening? After all, there may be two new posts I haven't read yet! :snicker:

So I procrastinated for about 30 minutes and by time 10:40 was rolling around, I thought, "I NEED to get started or just call it a zero count day."

I wrote and wrote until my eyes drooped. I do need to get up early tomorrow, so I might as well get some sleep. Hit 1,303 which isn't the minimum, but that's why I had such a good day yesterday, right? So that I could slack off this week if need be.

According to my NaNo Excel spreadsheet report card (yes, there IS such a thing for those of us who are obsessive compulsive), I'm 32% done. Not bad, I think for the beginning of week 2.

Total words to date: 15,850
Words to go: 34,150

Sunday, November 6, 2005

Writing bliss

What an opportunity today! My husband is taking our 2-year old daughter out on a date today to meet some giraffes at the zoo today. They left this morning, so I retreated to Einstein Bros Cafe, getting here at 11:00 a.m. After a mere 30 minutes of procrastination, I got down to some serious work.

Three hours, fifteen minutes later, I did my word count and WHOA--4,360 words for that chunk of time. It probably would have been more, but I had to do some research online about schizophrenia diagnosis and treatment. Still, even with the researching time, I took a good slice out of the total words needed.

I also came here planning to give some tender love to The Visitors. I have 45 minutes left and will be romancing those characters back to life before I leave today. Ah, what writing bliss!

Total Words: 14,547
Words to go: 35,453

Saturday, November 5, 2005

One Hour Challenge

The homepage at NaNoWriMo had a challenge for the weekend--to spend three 1-hour time slots for both Saturday and Sunday to get ahead on the novel. Unfortunately for me, today was really busy, so one one-hour time slot was all I could devote this evening.

I did come out in fine form with 1,764 words. I was telling a couple of my crit partners about my progress today, and Donita reminded me... Pride comes before the fall. May I be humbled by the words that God has put into my head.

Total Words: 10,187
Words to go: 38,813

Friday, November 4, 2005


Morale is high today. I give it an 8 out of 10. I'm sitting here at Einstein Bros Cafe and have just finished writing for today. I managed to bang out a whole chapter--2,675 words. I am enjoying this story the more I write it, though I still have a longing for the novel that I have left behind for this month, The Visitors.

I feel as though those characters are looking at me from behind the ice wall that has formed there. It's a thin barrier at the moment, able to be broken at any time, but they are crying out for attention. I'm still taking those chapters to my Tuesday night crit group though, so I have a lot of warmth left for them.

For now, though, Layne and Jesse have my attentions and affections. Their relationship is growing in my mind and, as Stephen King would say, the monolithic creature that is their story is being unearthed more each day.

I should breach the 40,000 words-to-go mark tomorrow.

Words to go: 41,606

Thursday, November 3, 2005

Procrastination fails

I tried my best to procrastinate my way out of writing tonight. Strange how hard it is to do something when you have a deadline. Procrastination is just a way of life, I guess! Probably a part of that sin nature thing.

After watching two episodes of Good Eats and one episode of MythBusters, I finally sat down with the intention of getting my writing done. I checked as much email as I could and even got on my teen writing forums before I finally plowed through.

Came out of the end with 1,885 words. Not too bad--and over the minimum. As an added bonus, I don't think all of it was complete drivel. ;o) Could possibly get massaged into greatness at a later date. After November, of course!

One of the Colorado gals on the NaNo forums posted today that she is already throwing in the towel. Noooo! It's been less than a week! I will try not to be shaken though. There are still many, many other writers who are hanging on. Seeing their words counts has inspired me to keep going. I saw one word count around 8,000 already. Whew!

Words to go: 44,281

Wednesday, November 2, 2005

You are getting sleepy...

I can't believe how tired I am, and it's not even 11 p.m. yet! Could the time change have affected me that much?

No "official" writing time happened today, just a sporadic 45 minutes of driveling whilst I sit up in bed. Got in a tad bit of editing and 1,172 words, but I'm not sure if it's any good. This isn't even the minimum (1,667 words per day), but I figure since I'm falling asleep typing, and I did manage to write more than the minimum yesterday, I can let it go for one day.

Not editing is starting to look better as it takes up SO much time.

Words to go: 46,166

Tuesday, November 1, 2005

Over the minimum

My husband, bless his loving heart, has agreed to come home early everyday this month in order to allow me at least a couple hours of uninterrupted writing time outside the house at Einstein Bros Cafe.

I went this afternoon from 3:30 to 5:15 p.m. and re-read what I wrote last night. A good deal of it was gibberish--which is okay. I couldn't help but re-write great chunks of the monstrosity. This worked out really well though because I ended up fleshing out the chapter a bit more, which means more words!

All in all for the first day of NaNoWriMo, I ended up with 2664 words. Verified that online at the NaNo site. With the editing, it think the chapter actually came out pretty well. I'm considering posting it as an excerpt on the site as soon as they finish the "sexy, new" flash profile pages. ;o)

Words to go: 47,338

The first words

I've written for a solid 30 minutes and produced 1375 words. That's not too bad for being dead tired. I tried to make an even 45 minutes, but I'm afraid that's all I have in me for this evening. Tomorrow is another day, and I will be at Einstein Bros Cafe for a little more writing then.

Until next time...
Words to go: 48,625

Monday, October 31, 2005

Let the games begin!

Only two more minutes to go before I may begin bashing out my 50,000 word novel for NaNoWriMo 2005. Trying to stay awake so that I can be ready. I have my first line in mind, but will stick to the rules and not write a word until the clocks ticks over to midnight. One more minute... Ah! I shall open Word and start myself a new document...

Here we go. Let the games begin!