Snow Day!

My mailbox and fence in the front yard.
My mailbox and fence in the front yard.

Blizzard 2015 (that’s what they’re calling it) has hit us hard. Everyone stayed safe (as far as I know) and it gave me a snow day from work. So go Blizzard 2015!

We got about 2-3 feet of snow… maybe more. I’m not entirely sure. As you can see from the picture above my fence and mailbox was just about buried. I took that picture earlier this morning, so it’s a bit worse now.

I charged all my electronics last night (Kindle, phone, 3DS, Wii U controller, and laptop) just in case. My co-worker said, “Isn’t it sad that our first thought of a power outage is to charge our electronics?” It’s not worrying about food spoiling, heat, or anything like that.

Yes, we are human and we have our priorities straight.

The snow started at 12:30 PM yesterday (Monday) and is still going strong. It’s not expected to stop until about midnight/one o’clock in the morning, which would be Wednesday. It’s kind of crazy, but cool at the same time.

It was nice not to have to go to work today. I got a lot of homework done. Two out of my four classes are done, one class I just have one more assignment to do, and my other class (Spanish, if you couldn’t guess…) has a quiz and a project left. I’m hoping to get the rest done tomorrow because I have another snow day tomorrow! Yay! They’re not optimistic they’ll have the snow cleaned up by tomorrow morning for school to resume, so I get to sleep in again and have another pajama day. Fine by me.

In addition to homework, Kris and I played video games. No surprise there, right? The Legend of Zelda: Majora’s Mask and Super Mario 64. Two games from the Nintendo 64… we’re going old school because we’re cool like that.

I did write today, so I actually did something. I typed up about 14 pages of Detective Florence 2. I’m about halfway through the manuscript now so I’m hoping to finish by the end of the week. Then I can outline the next part so I can write the next part in February. I think that sounds like a good plan, yes?

Tomorrow will definitely be helpful since I don’t have to spend six hours of my day at work. If I can get my homework and another chunk of writing done, then the rest of the week will be a breeze writing-wise… even with work and babysitting thrown into the mix.

Anyway, I hope anyone getting hit by this blizzard is doing well… I hope we’re all warm and all have power in our houses.

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Yesterday

Via Pinterest
Via Pinterest

The only form of writing I did yesterday was post on my blog. I wanted to write more than that, but of course I didn’t. I could have edited a bit, but I didn’t. No, yesterday I went back and forth between playing Mario Kart 8 and binge watching Pretty Little Liars. My Wii U was certainly tired by the end of the night. I didn’t go to bed until 12:30 a.m.

I kept complaining to Kris that I wanted to write, but I wasn’t sure what to write. I don’t even think it was that I didn’t know what to write, I just had too many ideas that I wasn’t sure where I was supposed to start.

When I lost my flash drive about a year and a half ago I lost so many novels. Some finished, but the majority of them were only halfway done. I accepted my fate and decided to make the best of it. I told myself I was going to finish everything I started so I wouldn’t have so many unfinished manuscripts. It worked for a little while and then I got back into my usual groove of not finishing what I start. I am, after all, a Virgo.

So, I was flipping through all my novels yesterday trying to figure out which one to work on, despite the fact that I now have six novels that need to be edited. However, I was in the mood to write yesterday, not edit.

I tried to figure out what to work on and discovered that I have 15 works in progress at the moment. Yes, 15. Where did all those novels come from?

I have a list of story ideas and I think the amount of novels on the list is roughly about 90. It’s a lot. Will they all get written eventually? I don’t know… I all ready went through the list a few weeks ago and knocked off some ideas because I couldn’t remember them. I did keep the titles and I wonder if that was why they were on the list to begin with; they were just decent title ideas. Of course, the new list–with 90 novels on it–are all legitimate plots that I remember and have many ideas for.

Needless to say, 15 out of 90 isn’t bad, I don’t think. If I had 50 out of 90 started, but not finished I think I would be concerned. Maybe I’m just making excuses for my lack of focus.

Either way, I think it’s time that I start getting something done every day and not just during the NaNo months. Whether it’s editing, writing, or a little bit of both.

Day 15

Pep Talk…

The first game.
The first game.

 

Well, it’s day 15 of 30 for NaNoWriMo. We are wrapping up the end of week two and this day also marks halfway through the month. So, let’s talk about our novels some more to celebrate making it through the first half of the month.

What inspired your novel?

For me, this is an easy answer. I don’t usually know where my ideas come from. I tend to come up with title ideas and spin plots based off of the titles. However, I came up with this novel idea a long time ago, but it was completely different from what I’m making it be now.

My novel is called Detective Florence (Book One). It’s a mystery where Detective Florence gets laid off from the police department and starts up his own private detective agency. The daughter of his late partner gives him his first case with a robbery. But it soon turns into more than he bargained for when a dead body turns up.

I have never written a mystery before and I’ve never been too much into police work, detectives, all the law stuff. But a few years, my sister and I were on the shopping channel on the Wii Nintendo system and we came across a game called Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney. We bought it for the Wii Ware and decided to try it out. We fell in love with the game!

Coming from the couple of writers, we fell in love with more than just the game–the different plots from the cases, the characters, the dialogue, everything. Of course, we bought the third game not knowing there were too others before, but it was still playable. Some of the characters made more sense to us once we bought the first and second games and played those.

There are three Phoenix Wright games, two Miles Edgeworth games (except only one was released in the US), one Apollo Justice game, and they just came out with the fifth game called Dual Destinies. Kris and I are in the middle of playing that one now.

So my novel is based off of a video game and I’m having a pretty good time with it.

What inspired your novel?

The Babysitting Adventures of Rachel

It’s Gonna Be A Best-Seller…

Starting back in the summer of 2010, I started babysitting two boys. I only watch them during the summer as both of their parents work while the kids are at school, which is nice. They’re one of the few families that actually have the parents home when the kids are home that I know of.

So this is the third summer I’m watching them. The oldest, Jack, is now 13 and the youngest, Sam, is 11. The oldest has ADD while the youngest has ADD and a touch of Autism. They get along really well, but…you know, they’re brothers. Despite their special needs, Jack is actually capable of being home alone for a few hours and watching his little brother. However, he torments poor Sam half of the time. So instead of actually “babysitting” I get paid to “referee.” And it’s funny because last summer was horrible, but Jack has actually matured with age…for a boy. I honestly don’t think I need to be there. But I love hanging out with the two of them, so why not?

Anyway, the whole point of this post is to talk about what Sam wants me to do. We drove my cousin and her friend to their swimming lesson a few weeks ago. The swim lesson was only a half hour long so we stayed there to watch. Sam had his Nintendo DS and his Pokemon to keep himself company. I planned on playing my game, but I found myself caught up in watching the kids swim. But somehow Sam got a hold of my iPod and was looking at my calendar.

“Camp NoNoWr…what?” Sam stammered to read my July entries.

“Camp NaNoWriMo. It stands for National Novel Writing Month.” I laughed at his pronunciation and corrected him.

Of course, Sam has no idea what that is. So I explained the whole thing to him simply. Judging by the look on his face, he wasn’t all that impressed.

“Geez, Rachel…I knew you were a geek, but I didn’t think you were that much of a geek.” he scoffed.

Honestly, I was kind of surprised at how offended I got. Of course I was laughing, but I never really thought writing would be categorized as being a geek. That was certainly the first time I heard that, but I just don’t think Sam knew what to think about it.

“Hey, it’s writing. Writing is my career.” I replied and he stared at me funny. “Well…I want it to be my career. I want to be an author someday…sooner rather than later, I mean. NaNo is something that helps me get closer to that goal.”

From the look on Sam’s face, I now had his attention. And he seemed to understand, too. Yet, he was still confused because he knew I’m going to school to be a teacher and he knows I’m a teacher at a preschool. I explained I went to school for teaching as a day job just in case selling books doesn’t bring in enough money. But I am going to get my Bachelor’s in English. Being with children and writing are two of my favorite things to do. I can easily do both and if writing becomes more of a priority…well, my books are all picture books, middle grade, or young adult. It’s still kid stuff. He nodded an approval at my plan.

Then the wheels in his head began to squeak. Then they moved slowly and before I knew it, the rust was dusted off and the wheels were turning five miles per second.

“The Babysitting Adventures of Rachel!” he exclaimed. “You should write a book all about you and me and all the fun we have together! I bet you it will be a big hit!”

I found this amusing. Sam texts me throughout the school year every once in a while and when the summer nears and his mom and I start planning a schedule for me to babysit, he’s always calling me on the phone super excited. His mom tells me he constantly talks about me and she’s so happy by how much he loves me. If the child is not happy about the babysitter, then there’s an issue somewhere. But I was excited that Sam took an interest in my writing and he was trying to help me out. Although, at first I thought it was just him being 11, but then I realized he was serious.

“You can talk about me and you and Chance!” he continued on and on. “I guess Jack can be in there…maybe you can put Jackie and Katherine in there, too.” Then he whispers: “You know, just to be nice.”

–Let me stop to explain for a moment: Chance is his dog, Jack is his brother (as previously mentioned), Jackie is my cousin (the one who was swimming), and Kat is my other cousin (Jackie’s little sister). Continuing on…–

Then I asked a question I shouldn’t have (but I still thought he was joking): “How long should this book be?”

“Um…100 pages!”

Uh…what? Wow, he really thought this through in the past five minutes, didn’t he? Then he stuck out his hand and I shook it.

“What’s this for?” I asked.

“So I know you’ll definitely do it.”

Well, crap. Now I’m stuck. I have an 11-year-old wanting me to write 100 pages all about our fun together. How was I going to pull this one off? He had to be kidding, right? He was probably going to forget about this whole thing by tomorrow, anyway…right?

After I finished babysitting that day I thought long and hard about our conversation. I began laughing to myself and thought: challenge accepted.

A few days later (yes, he remembered), he told me that he wants it to be 256 pages now. Random number, right? I don’t get it, either. However, I did say challenge accepted, but I don’t think I’m going to be able to write that much about us. All we really do is go in the pool, play with the dog, and play Pokemon. Seriously. I’ll make the story 100-256 pages. No less than 100, no more than 256. But I doubt I’ll get to 256 pages.

I realized that I am probably going to make Sam’s life when I write this book. Of course I’m not going to write it ready for publication, but it helped spark a middle grade series idea (with the help of Kris when I told her this story) that I think I am going to write. And who knows? Maybe it will be the “next big thing.”

Wait, How Long Has It Been?

I’m baaack…

Wow. It has been well over two months since I was last on here. And I’m not coming back at a good time, either…yes, I am going on vacation next week. When I first started this blog, I had a goal in my mind that I was going to update this thing at least once a week. Well, I guess I had a good run at first.

The thing is, I just haven’t had the time. I took summer courses at school, which didn’t end until the end of July. So, needless to say, I did not beat Camp NaNo in June. I was too busy with homework. On top of that, the preschool I work at did not have a summer program this year so I have been out of a job the past couple of months…I have been babysitting like crazy. Speaking of NaNo, though…this month is another Camp, correct? Well, I’m not doing that, either. Sad, I know. I was away for my boyfriend’s birthday from August 4th to the 9th. So this is the first full week of August I have been home. I’m leaving again on Sunday for (drum roll…) DISNEY! Then shortly after that I have my MTEL test and then it’s back to work and school.

So that’s what I have been doing this summer. School, babysitting, studying for MTEL, trying to get teacher certified, learning how to drive, and preparing for the upcoming school semester while organizing my room and preparing for vacation. Notice anything missing from that? Huh? What is this “writing” you speak of? Oh, that…yes, I remember that. That’s right–I have not written a single word since June NaNo…June 6th, to be exact, which is worse because I didn’t even make it to the middle of the month.

So, I have a plan…that may or may not work, but I’m hoping that it works. The plan involves more writing. To put it simply, I am planning on writing at least an hour every day. However, it may be difficult because of my busy schedule this semester, but I’m going to try it out. I’ll go more into that when the time gets closer…if you’re interested. Then again, you read this far, so I am going to assume that you’re interested. Or maybe you’re bored. Either way, thanks for reading!

I am going to get back into posting on here…once a week at the least. But I may update a little more to catch up on everything since the last time I posted.

Right now, I’m focusing on getting ready for Disney. I’m leaving early Sunday morning (August 19) and coming home on Monday (August 27). I’m going down there with my two older sisters, my aunt, my aunt’s mom, my uncle, and my three cousins. Is was my and my sisters’ Christmas present from my parents last year. We’re tagging along with our cousins because they know what they’re doing and we don’t. We’re driving down there and driving back, so that is going to be very interesting. I would rather drive than take an airplane, though.

I’m hoping to get some writing done while I’m down there, too. Maybe I can write a little in the car or right before we go to bed. I would like to update this here and there as well. I will have wi-fi in the hotel, but I have no iPod or a fancy phone. I’m on the iPad now, but this belongs to my mother, so I don’t know if she would want me to bring this down there…so the only device I could use would be my Nintendo 3DS, but I somehow get the feeling that would be difficult to update something like this…

Anyway, I’m slowly trying to get my act back together from the summer. So I’m sure that things will get better when school starts…hopefully. I’ll keep you updated.