It’s that time of year. It’s when thousands of people sweat bullets and wonder if they will ever make it out alive. Nope, it’s not a Thanksgiving Macy’s clearance sale. Welcome to the wild month of NaNoWriMo. I swore I wouldn’t attempt the writing marathon again after an exhausting year. What sane person commits to a full-length novel in the span of thirty days when Christmas shopping looms and pumpkin pies need to be baked?
Well, this girl :). And it went swimmingly well. I got up at three in the morning with the dog and the family fast asleep. My Keurig chugged merrily along, pumping hazelnut coffee cup after cup. It seemed success would come bright and early. I had a lovely 20,000 words within the first week! And then reality hit, and this mama burned out.
I do believe the key to a successful writing run is to outline before the month of November. This is not the time to employ “panster” methods. Second, go slow and steady. After all, the hare doesn’t win the race. It’s the slow plodding tortoise who manages to take one step at a time.
Finally, forget the word count. Have fun and enjoy the process and your writing buddies. Connect with a group of writers who are likely experiencing all the joy and frustration you are. All to say, “I wrote a novel!” And that is a big deal. Currently, my project is at 40,000 words with one week to spare and plenty of time to bake those cookies.
So what am I writing this month? I can’t say too much, but for those curious . . . my WIP is a young adult fantasy where the female lead battles chronic illness but has a backbone of steel. She matches wits against a wicked young king and resolves to see justice return to her beloved country.
Those of you who follow this blog know I adore young adult fantasy. The females are usually the stronger variety in this genre. Lately, I’ve been thinking about how strength comes in many facets that go far beyond a woman wielding a sword or leading a rebellion. My mother was a breast cancer survivor and I always marveled at her strength of spirit when facing chemotherapy or radiation or surgery. I also greatly admire characters who find their strength in God, particularly when life becomes hard. Zecharia 4:6 is such a special verse for me and my mother.
So he said to me, “This is the word of the LORD to Zerubbabel: Not by might nor by power, but by My Spirit, says the LORD of Hosts.
And I don’t know about you, but I’m ready for more of these characters in ya literature.
Parties and Giveaways!
And in other news . . . drum roll, please! Rooglewood Press is hosting a special release facebook party on December 1st, Saturday from 7 to 10pm EST. With giveaways! Oh yes, there will be copies of Five Poisoned Apples to win and plenty of other goodies (such as the black feather ink set down below) for those who attend! I don’t know about you, but I love parties. And I love free stuff. Consider yourself cordially invited. We would love to see you there.