The 85K90 Writing Challenge

2019 is going to bring a lot of new and fun things. I’m excited about what I have planned and I can’t wait to share them and implement these ideas and try new things in general.

One new thing I’ll be trying is the is 85K Writing Challenge.

85k90 Writing Challenge | I'm Participating | Creativing Writing | RachelPoli.com

I had originally heard of this challenge from Ari a while back. It was something I had looked into from time to time always telling myself I’d do it and then I never did. In 2019, I’m finally going to do it.

What is the 85K Writing Challenge?

This is a year-long challenge catered to writing, editing, and publishing a book. Of course, I supposed you don’t need to participate in the whole year. If you already have a novel needing editing, you could only do those months if you wanted.

Here’s how it works… every step of the challenge is done in 90 days, which is three months.

January, February, and March are “Write” months. This is where you get your writing done. Duh. You have 90 days to outline (if you outline) and write the first draft of your novel. April is used as a “Finish” month in case you need some extra time or you’d like to take a break.

May and June are the “Edit” months with July being the “Finish” month. So, you have two to three months to get your editing and revising done plus room to take a break before you move onto the next step of the challenge.

August and September are known as the “Prep” months while October and November are known as the “Publish” months. This includes all your planning and prepping for publishing, actual publishing, along with marketing and the like.

December is then, of course, a “Finish” month. Whether you’re finishing up your publishing step or you want to take a break before the new year and a new challenge.

Yeah, so? What makes this so special?

The 85K Challenge website has blog posts, forums, and a writing tracker to aid you along the way. There’s encouragement and support on the website but also ask around and see if anyone you know on your social media and within the blogosphere is doing the challenge.

We’re all in this together and it’s great to have others keep you accountable. Having a website and a tracker definitely helps as well.

Why am I doing this?

I need to get into a better routine with my writing. I know I say this a lot, but I always try different routines and none of them end up sticking. When I said routine, I mean I need a timeline and deadlines for myself to get things done.

I have so many different ideas and want to do them all. Sometimes I end up working on multiple projects and ones that are close to being done get pushed to the back burner. I need something to keep me accountable to follow through for every single novel I write through the end.

This writing challenge starts at the writing stage and ends at the publishing stage. With this, I could have a book a year out.

This is my first time doing this challenge, so we’ll see how it works for me. I’m eager to start though! I can’t wait to get into a better timeline and have deadlines throughout the year. I make deadlines for myself, but… sometimes I don’t always keep them because there aren’t any true consequences.

What about NaNoWriMo?

I still plan on participating in Camp NaNoWriMo and NaNo. Those months are April, July, and November. April and July for the 85K challenge are “Finish” months. So, it won’t exactly be a break for me but it’ll be a break from that current project. I can work on my Short Story Sundays or Wattpad.

November is a “Publish” month for the 85K challenge, but again, I can work on other things while I do the technical side of publishing for the novel I can work on something else.

Ambitious, I know. But I always give myself way too much to do, so the tradition needs to continue.

I have five days (holy crap, 2019 is in five days!) to come up with a plan of action for both the 85K challenge and NaNo throughout the year. I need to figure out my self-publishing schedule along with Wattpad because I do want to stay active on there.

So, I’ll be coming up with writing goals for the new year. That will be its own blog post though in the new year… which is in just a couple of days… so you’ll know it soon.

Are you participating in the 85K writing challenge in 2019? Have you done it before? Are there any other challenges you do? Let me know in the comments below. If you liked this post, please share it around.

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NaNoWriMo 2018 Wrap Up

NaNoWriMo 2018 Wrap Up | Creative Writing | Blogging | NaNo 2018 | RachelPoli.com

Usually when I do these updates for NaNoWriMo I’ll list my daily word counts. Except I don’t have any word counts for this past week.

Well, that’s kind of a lie… I was determined to reach 50,000 words by Thanksgiving and I did exactly that. On day 21 I wrote 3,802 words and on day 22 I binged writing in the morning and wrote 3,952 words which gave me a grand total of…

50,121 words!

I haven’t written anything since. Thanksgiving was busy and then I went away for the weekend. I didn’t write at all the past couple of days because I was catching up with other work.

According to NaNo, my lengthiest novel was from 2016 at 52,000 and change. I’d love to beat that which means I’d have to write another 3,000 words or so by Friday.

I’m not sure if I’ll get the chance to do so. Thanksgiving is over and the Christmas festivities haven’t quite set in, yet this week has been kind of busy. So, we’ll see what happens. I’m not going to validate my win on NaNo just in case.

Short Story Sunday 2019

Thanks to NaNo, I’ve written 52 shorts for my Short Story Sunday in 2019. So, that’s great! It’ll save me a lot of time next year. Some of the stories are certainly better than others, but I’ll edit and proofread them before they go live and it’ll all be good. Hopefully.

Overall, NaNo went well for me this year. I’m pleased with the work that I got done. I have to admit, I’m glad it’s over for another year though!

How did you do with NaNo this year? If you liked this post, please share it around.

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NaNoWriMo 2018 Update Three

NaNoWriMo 2018 Week Three Update | Creative Writing | Blogging | RachelPoli.com

As most of you know, my daily goal is to write 2,000 words a day. If I write at all I always hit at lest 2,000. Thought I have skipped a few days here and there.

Word Count

Day 15: 2,193
Day 16: 0
Day 17: 2,080
Day 18: 0
Day 19: 4,148
Day 20: 2,048
Day 21:
Haven’t written yet this morning!
Week Three Total: 
10,469

Week three wasn’t too bad. It was busy since the majority of it was me trying to balance writing, blogging, and prepping for Thanksgiving. I’m definitely in the home stretch now though. I’m hoping to hit 50k words today and take a break over Thanksgiving weekend.

Projects

I spent the whole week working on Short Story Sunday 2019, which is 52 shorts/flashes – one for every Sunday of 2019. These will be under my Short Story Sunday category next year. I’m just about done with the whole year, which means 2019 will have about 50,000 words word of flash fiction.

NaNo Week Three

Week three is officially over. It’s hard to believe NaNo has one week left. It’ll be here before we know it.

How did week three go for you? Let me know in the comments below. If you liked this post, please share it around.

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Writing 10k Words In One Day [NaNoWriMo]

Each year, during NaNoWriMo, I always aim to write 2,000 words in one day. This is for two reasons: I like even numbers and I go away Thanksgiving weekend, so I lose writing time. I aim to finish my 50k total by Thanksgiving and a great way to do that is to have a 10k day. Writing 10k words in one day isn’t easy but it can be a lot of fun.

Writing 10k Words in a day | nanowrimo 2018 | creative writing | writing | RachelPoli.com

Give Yourself The Whole Day

Whenever I decide to have a 10k day I always choose a day where I know I have nothing else going on. Usually, for November, this happens on or around Veteran’s Day. I don’t have to babysit and Kris doesn’t have to work. So, we usually plan the day to write a lot. We typically go in with a plan as well. Sometimes we’ll write for about an hour and then take a break for an hour and so on. Other times we try to get as much done as possible in one sitting before taking a break.

Start Early

I meant it when I said give yourself the entire day to write the 10k words. Starting early is the best way to do it. I’m an early bird and work best in the morning so this isn’t usually a problem for me. However, no matter what time you wake up in the morning, give yourself an hour or two first thing and write. You’ll get a good chunk done and you’ll still have the majority of the day left.

Take Breaks

This can be easier said than done, especially if you’re on a roll with your writing. However, it’s important to take a break and give your eyes a rest from the computer screen. Not to mention give your fingers and mind a break.

Plus, you want to give yourself time to relax, eat and hydrate. Maybe a take a shower too. That helps.

Do It With Others

Writing is always fun when you have other writers to do it with. If you’re going to commit yourself to writing the entire day away and aim for 10,000 words, then its much better (and easier and more fun) to do it with friends. I have my sister Kris to do it with. We keep each other going throughout the day. We check in with each other and even sometimes compete against each other a little. A little friendly competition never seems to be, but we’re encouraging and supportive nonetheless (because that’s how it should be).

This year we even went out in the morning and met up with a couple members from our writing group and we got the day started with writing then. It was a fun time. We wrote, we chatted, and we got out of the house for a bit. A change of environment is good for writing as well.

Overall, it’s not easy to write 10k words in a day. It’s doable though if you focus and put your mind to it. You feel really good after it too.

Have you ever had a 10k day? What’s the most you’ve written in a day before? Let me know in the comments below. If you liked this post, please share it around.

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WIP Wednesday [November 2018]

WIP Wednesday November 2018 | Work in progress | creative writing | writing | nanowrimo | RachelPoli.com

I’ve been making great progress this month with the help of NaNoWriMo.

Word Count

Day 8: 2,551
Day 9: 2,008
Day 10: 2,022
Day 11: 2,276
Day 12: 10,231
Day 13: 0
Day 14: 0
Week Two Total: 19,088
Overall Total: 31,898

All of those words are for Short Story Sunday 2019.

I was pleased I was able to give myself a 10k-day. My sister had work off that day so we got together with members of our writing group early in the morning. I ended up writing about 4,199 words with them at the cafe. I took a break when we got home, but then I wrote some more. I took another break and then hit 10k by 9:00 pm.

I was exhausted by the end of it and I really had to push myself, but I was determined and I did it. I also beat my “wordiest day” from November 10, 2017 which was 10,103 words. Next year I’ll plan on writing 10,232 words (at least) to beat it again.

This month, so far, has been great for my writing. I’m looking forward to continuing it throughout the month.

How’s your writing going this month? How was week two of NaNo for you? Let me know in the comments below. If you liked this post, please share it around.

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NaNoWriMo 2018 Update One

I have no intro for this. The past few years I’ve been updating my weekly progress for NaNo. So, I’m doing it again. Here’s my NaNoWriMo 2018 Update One.

NaNoWriMo 2018 Update 1 | Creative writing | writing | patreon | short story | flash fiction | RachelPoli.com

My daily goal is always to write 2,000 words. I like the even number over 1,667 words. I also try my best to get it done by the time Thanksgiving rolls around at the end of the month. Here’s how I’m doing so far.

Word Count

Day 1: 2,203
Day 2: 2,125
Day 3: 2,175
Day 4: 2,114
Day 5: 2,061
Day 6: 2,132
Day 7:
Haven’t written yet this morning!
Week One Total:
12,810

Not bad, right? I had a steady stream of words each day. Day 3 was Saturday as well as Double-Up Day. I don’t know why I thought Double-Up Day was later in the month, but I wasn’t planning on that. When I found out I had decided to attempt 4,000 words.

I ended up not getting the chance to write until much later at night. I usually write early in the morning but I didn’t make my word count that day until around 10-10:30 at night. It just so happened that other things were going on that day (good things, of course) and I had decided to put my attention towards that instead of focusing on writing.

I thought Sunday, November 4, would be a good day to write 4,000 words and pretend I did it for my own Double-Up Day, but that didn’t happen either. I was at church for a few hours, got my 2k in, and then had other work that needed to be done. Maybe this weekend I can aim to give myself a mini writing marathon.

Projects

I spent the whole week working on my Short Story Sunday 2019 project. That is, if you don’t know, 52 shorts/flashes – one for every Sunday of 2019. These will be under my Short Story Sunday category next year.

I also put the last finishing touches of November’s short story for my patrons. They’ll be getting their exclusive story from me on Saturday, November 10. If you’d like to receive a patron-only short from me each month, then please join me on Patreon for only $1 a month. If you want to see what it’s all about, you can check out my Patreon page here.

I’ve also been working bit by bit on Sunday Morning. I’ll have more information on that as soon as I can, but if you’d like to be the first to know, then Patreon is a great place to be.

NaNo Week One

I can’t believe the first week of NaNo is already done. It was a good week though and I feel like I got a lot done. I’m happy with my progress and I’m looking forward to what I’ll get done in week two.

How did week one go for you? Let me know in the comments below. If you liked this post, please share it around.

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My First NaNoWriMo

I realized, being 2018, this is my tenth year doing NaNoWriMo. 10 years! That’s a long time. I’ll admit, my first NaNoWriMo was technically in 2009. That was my first story, but I did join in 2008. I just had no idea what I was doing. I spent that year exploring the website and checking in on the forums.

Either way, I’ll talk about the first story I wrote for NaNo.

My First NaNoWriMo | creative writing | writing | blogging | nanowrimo 2018 | RachelPoli.com

I know I’ve talked about this before, but it’s been a while so I thought I’d talk about it again. I wrote a story called The Others. If I remember correctly, this was my idea of the Pixar movie, Inside Out, long before it was a thing.

The Others

My protagonist had DID, though I barely knew anything about it. The POV was through the different personalities though not the actually protagonist. Each personality was based on an emotion. I remember there was anger, happiness, sadness, love, and maybe jealousy? I can’t remember if I included jealousy or not. So, yeah, I thought of Inside Out first. Thinking back on it, it was a pretty cool idea and I think I executed it well. Or, as well enough as I could have for a 16-year-old who did no research whatsoever.

Honestly, I wish I still had the story so that I could go back and read through it. Maybe I’d even comment on it on here like I did with my first fan fiction story a long time ago.

Then again, I don’t know if I’d be willing to share the story. It would depend on how “well written” it was.

I lost the story anyway. It was saved on my flash drive and my USB port on my old laptop broke. I put in my flash drive and learned the hard that it was broken and it kind of fried my flash drive.

I still have the flash drive though… I wonder if I should try plugging it into my new laptop and see what happens?

How many years have you been doing NaNoWriMo? Do you remember your first story? Let me know in the comments below. If you liked this post, please share it around.

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NaNoWriMo 2018

NaNo begins in two days! Two! Can you believe it? NaNoWriMo 2018 has come up so fast that I’m not sure what to do with myself. I’m usually more prepared but this year is different. I know what I’ll be working on and it’s nothing new, which is usually what I try to do.

NaNoWriMo 2018 | creative writing | nanowrimo | novel writing | Patreon | RachelPoli.com

The whole point of NaNoWriMo is to spend a month writing 50,000 words and just getting the basic bare bones of a first draft of a novel on paper. The challenge is also to start something new. You can prep, but you can’t do any writing until midnight November 1 and you keep writing bit by bit each day until the end of the month. I always try to start something new, but I haven’t the past couple of years. I have so many projects that I don’t want to bury myself deeper.

This makes me a NaNo Rebel.

I don’t mind though. The point is to finish something (or start something) and to make progress. Any progress is progress, no matter what you’re working on or how far along you are in it. Or eve how far you manage to get in a certain amount of time.

So, here’s what I’m working on this year.

Short Story Sunday 2019

I write my short stories in advance for my Sunday blog posts. I usually write them during a Camp NaNo session (because, as I said, I try to start a brand new novel each November). I didn’t work on next year’s stories though during April or July… I don’t know why. I honestly can’t remember what I worked on instead.

Still, I’m going to work on these quick flash fiction pieces throughout the month and get the majority, if not all, of 2019 written. It’s 52 stories. I’ve done it in a month before, I can do it again. I’ve already gotten all the prompts and the layouts down. I just need to write the stories.

Sunday Morning

Speaking of my Short Story Sunday, I’ll also be working on Sunday Morning. I have another round of edits to get through as well as publishing duties to do. Again, unless it’s Camp NaNoWriMo, I try not to edit. But this is something I need to get done sooner rather than later.

If you don’t know what Sunday Morning is, you can check out this post here. This book is being supported by my Patrons on Patreon. If you enjoy my blog and my creative writing overall, please check out my Patreon. It’s an exclusive community where you’ll get an inside look at my work and we can chat easier with one another as well. There are special rewards and, if you give $1 a month before December 9, 2018, you’ll get a special promo box for Sunday Morning when it’s published!

George Florence & The Perfect Alibi

I won’t be working on this one as much or as hard as I probably should. However, the other two projects are going to take priority. I’ll still give this one a bit of attention though. You can be sure of that.

What are you writing for NaNo this year? Let me know in the comments below. If you liked this post, please share it around.

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Another Camp NaNoWriMo Session Has Arrived

2018 has been zipping by and we’re already into our second and final Camp NaNoWriMo session for the year. I’m not working on as much as I did during the April session, but my plate is still pretty full.

Another Camp NaNoWriMo Session | Creative Writing | Editing | Novel Writing | RachelPoli.com

I’m spending the month editing more rather than writing. I have so many projects that need some TLC rather than me adding a new project to my ever-growing list.

This month, I’m not even counting words either. I’m recording my progress by hours, which is something I’ve never done before. I’m working on two projects and have aimed to work one hour a day on each, which is two hours a day.

Even though we’re only 5 days into the month, I’ve already gotten behind. There has been a lot of life stuff happening so yesterday and today I’ve aimed to work for four hours instead of two. So far, it’s been working and I’m sure I’ll catch up in no time.

As I said, I’m working on two projects this month.

George Florence & The Perfect Alibi

Yes, this one again. I’ve changed a lot so I’m retyping the last draft I edited while editing it some more and editing my edits. I’m planning on one more round of editing before prepping it to be released into the world.

Secret Patreon Project

I’m working on something new, something that’s already in the editing stage. This is a special project for my patrons over at Patreon. Anyone who supports me over there, even if it’s as little as $1, will get an exclusive look at the project as I work on it as well as some fun goodies when all is said and done. If you want to know more, feel free to check out my Patreon. The money helps me keep this blog running as well as allow me to do what I love for a living. So if you enjoy my writing or any content I post here, please consider supporting me. You’ll get fun rewards based on your tier and it’s a great exclusive community for me to get to know you guys better.

So that’s that. Two projects are in the editing stages, both are almost done with the editing. (I think. We’ll see how it goes.)

It’s going to be a busy month, but progress is happening!

What are you working on this month for Camp NaNo? Let me know in the comments below. If you liked this post, please share it around!

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Wrap Up: April 2018

2018 April Wrap Up | Creative Writing | Blogging | RachelPoli.com

Reading

I’ll admit I didn’t get much reading done this month. Two of the reviews I posted were books I had already read at the beginning of the year and never wrote reviews for. I was on vacation for a week and Camp NaNo took up a chunk of my time. I’m sure I’ll get back into my reading habits next month though.

In the meantime, check out my Goodreads and Reading List on this blog to keep up with what I’m reading and their reviews.

Writing

My writing was pretty successful this month. Thanks to Camp NaNo, I outlined my next novel project, edited the next draft of my mystery novel, finished my Short Story Sunday stories for the rest of 2018 and got a head start on 2019, and wrote a mystery short story. All this resulted in over 80,000 words for Camp NaNo.

I feel pretty good.

Blogging

Blogging was slow. I was really into it at the beginning of the month and then I lost my groove after being on vacation. I thought the break would do me some good and while it did, I felt like taking an extended vacation from blogging. So I’ve only done the bare minimum for the blog pretty much this entire month.

Though I think I’m ready to get back into the swing of things for May and beyond. I ordered my new blogging planner (mine is July – June for some reason) so I’m eager to start filling that one up.

Overall

April was busy, but not in the way I expected it to be. I got a lot done and spent a good amount of time with friends and family, so who’s to complain? It was a great month and I’m sure May will be even better.

Posts To Remember

1. April & May 2018 Writing Submissions [Writing Contests]
2. A Million Dreams [Life]
3. Editing/Rewriting A Novel During Camp NaNoWriMo

How did April treat you? Let me know in the comments below! If you liked this post, please share it around.

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