Voting and May 2016 Wrap Up

Hello, everyone! I’m cheating the system today. Instead of having this post just be my May Wrap Up, I decided to enlist your help first.

Camp NaNoWriMo is right around the corner. Again. The new session starts in July. As you know, I’ve been busy with my detecitve series as well as April’s Camp NaNo, The Lost Girl.

Of course I can’t resist writing during a NaNo session. So I want to write something. But seeing as George Florence and The Lost Girl are in the editing stage, I can’t really work on them.

Last year, I had no idea what to write so I added a poll and you guys voted on what I should write. I decided to do that again and I hope you all take a moment to read each summary for my three novel choices and then take a second to vote on your favorite one. I’d really appreciate it!

Hunter (The Hunt, Book 1)

This was the novel I added into the poll last year and it won with the most votes. I ended up winning that Camp session with 50,096 words. The novel is not complete yet. If it wins this year, I’ll be “rebelling” and adding on to the 50k. Here’s the summary:

Cat Webber is the daughter of big-shot Charles Webber, founder and owner of X-Terminate; a company that rids of mutants off the streets to keep humans safe. Raised as a Hunter, Cat believes all mutants are bad simply because they’re different from humans. However, her morals are questioned when she gets to know some mutants; especially Brandon Hurst.

Brandon Hurst is a mutant who can teleport and bend time. He knows some secrets about X-Terminate and Charles that Cat doesn’t even know about. Cat is curious to find out what Brandon may or may not know. It’s not until she discovers her father is killing off the mutants that Cat struggles with taking her father’s orders or if she should stand up for what she believes is right.

Far Away

This novel has also been started and is currently at 20,522 words. I would just add onto this as well. Unless those 20k words are really bad, then I’ll start over. It’s a romance, not something I typically write.

They say it’s hard to keep up with your high school friends. They go to different colleges, they move away, they make new friends. For Gina and Logan, they swear that will never happen.

Gina, Logan, and their group of friends are ready to graduate high school, and can’t wait for the new chapter of their lives to begin. For Gina, it’s striving to be an actress. For Logan, it’s becoming a police officer just like his late father.

But being an adult isn’t as glamorous as it may seem. Logan has to move unexpectedly across the country when his mother passes away. Meanwhile, Gina has realized that being an actress isn’t what it’s all chalked up to be.

Told in both points of view, Gina and Logan go through the ups and downs of life as they wonder if they’ll ever meet again.

The Blank Page (Writers Group, Book 1)

Again, this is novel has been started as well. It’s only at 11,518 words. Like Far Away, I may start it over or I may just add onto it.

There’s a well-known website catered to writers dedicated to all things writing. It’s to help writers, to support writers, to meet other writers, and anything else you can image.

A new feature has been added to the site to create real life writing groups. If you so choose, you can sign up for the feature, fill out a quick questionarie, and the website will see which other writers you’re compatible with. From there, the group can meet how often they want in real life to write together, discuss writing together, or to just be friends with something in common.

There’s Dominic, a 25-year-old quiet business man. He’s unsure what to write, though he’s written bits and pieces of mystery before.

There’s Justin, a 27-year-old laid-back English teacher. He’s writing a young adult drama and has the novel planned out perfectly.

There’s Adair, a 22-year-old spunky freelance writer. She’s working on a fantasy novel and is completely winging the plot.

While each one of them has a lot to learn about writing, there’s something they can all learn from each other.

Again, please and thank you for voting on while novel I should write for July’s Camp NaNo session! The poll will close in one week. I’ll announce the results June 16.

Now onto the wrap up…

Reading

I read most of the books I planned to this month. I got a late start, but I did read about one book a week, which is what I planned.

You can get out my Reading List for the books I read and links to their reviews.

Writing

I made slow progress on George Florence. I got some planning done on the first book. I also planned out a good chunk of the series since I needed to know dates and such like that.

Other than that, I didn’t do too much writing or editing. I was kind of in a slump, but I think I’m in a good place now.

Blogging

I got a head start on my June posts and did a lot of brainstorming and planning for July and August. The summer is going to be pretty busy blogging-wise, so that was a big help.

Overall

I didn’t get too much done, but I got a decent amount done at the same time. May was a pretty slow month, but now that it’s over I’m wondering where it went.

Posts to Remember

1. Work is Hard
2. May/June Writing Contests
3. How Am I Doing?
4. Guest Post: Creativity’s Invitation to Discovery and Wholeness
5. Guest Post: Keep the Inspiration Flowing

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Camp: Week One

camp nanowrimo april 2016 week one update rachel poli

Wow! We’re already a week into Camp NaNoWriMo! How did that happen?

I thought I would share weekly updates with you on my novel, The Lost Girl.

The Ups

So far I’ve been loving my characters. Grace seems well put together and while I’ve borrowed J.M. Barrie’s characters, I feel as though I’ve stayed true to their personalities as well as added my own twists to them.

The plot itself is moving along nicely. I think the novel may start off a bit slow in the beginning, but I can always figure that out when the whole draft is finished.

Description is something that I’ve always had trouble with, but I think I’ve been doing well with it so far. I think part of it is because it’s Neverland, a fantasy world. Whereas I can’t have my readers just picture their own houses in their heads.

The Downs

Honestly, I haven’t hit any bumps in the road (yet).

The plot is, as I said earlier, moving along nicely and I’ve been staying true to my outline. I’ve added a few things here and there, but the novel is going smoothly.

Favorite Quote

“How come you can leave Neverland and no one else can?” She wondered.
Peter chuckled. “I’m Peter Pan.”

Word Count

Day 1: 2,040
Day 2: 2,513
Day 3: 2,210
Day 4: 2,035
Day 5: 2,262
Day 6: 2,671
Total: 13,731

How are you doing with Camp?

NaNoWriMo Progress Report: Week Three

Week Three Updates

Daily Word Count:

16. 2,030
17. 5,028
18. 0
19. 2,299
20. 0
21. 0
22. 0

Week Three Total: 9,357

As you can see, week three wasn’t my best week.

I hit a bump in the road with my novel this week. I had a moment where I didn’t really know where the story was going. It got to the point that I was writing just to get more words for my NaNo goal.

I took a break from writing for a day and rested my mind. When I got back to writing the next morning, I had a better idea of where I was going.

This past weekend I didn’t write anything because I wasn’t feeling well. I planned on finishing Friday or Saturday, but oh well. Life gets in the way sometimes.

I have about 4,000 words left. So maybe I’ll finish tomorrow.

I need to do research as I don’t really know what I’m writing about when it comes to courts and trials, but I’m just going to do my best for now and leave the research for the editing process.

There’s a lot I have to do for this novel once the first draft is completed. I have to make timelines for my characters and do a bit of research before I can start the editing process.

It’ll be interesting.

NaNoWriMo Progress Report: Week Two

Week Two Updates

Daily Words Written:

9. 2,037
10. 4,065
11. 2,054
12. 2,037
13. 2,026
14. 0
15. 4,132

Week Two Total: 16,351

Second Chances is still going well.

Though, I have come to the realization that even though I’ve been doing well without an outline, I’m going to need to make a timeline of events that happened in Lesley’s life as well as Hunter’s life. Maybe Ezekiel, too. I’m not sure if we’re ever really going to find out more about him.

I mean, Lesley did ask him how he died and he told her it was none of her business, so…

Anyway, with that being said, the scenes in my novel are definitely going to be switched around in the editing process (or taken out, depending on the situation).

I think that will be the next step when the first draft is complete. Before editing, I will create a timeline of events for everyone.

My word count has continued to be steady. I’m proud of myself for continuing to write every single day. Normally I get ahead and then I’ll skip a day or two and then get back into writing without ever getting behind. I always end up finishing early, too.

I really didn’t want to do that this year (or any year for that matter). So I’ve been doing great keeping a good pace.

After explaining all this, I’ve sure you’ve noticed that I didn’t write anything on the 14th. That day was my sister’s baby shower. So it’s not like I just decided to skip because I knew I was ahead. I was out literally all day and was exhausted when I got home.

That is the only day I’m skipping this month, though.

At the rate I’m going, I’m planning on hitting 50k by November 20 or November 21. That’s if I keep my 2k-4k a day goal. I’ll be writing for the rest of the month after that, though. I don’t think the story will be finished at 50k.

I wonder if I’ll write enough to finish the novel by the end of the month?

How is your NaNo novel coming along?

NaNoWriMo Progress Report: Week One

Week One Update (1)

Daily Words Written:

1. 2,036
2. 4,077
3. 2,016
4. 2,002
5. 2,052
6. 2,079
7. 4,045
8. 2,011

Week One Total: 20,318

My novel, Second Chances, has been going really well. The words have been flowing out of my mind like running tap water. It’s been great!

The best part is I don’t have an outline this time. I usually do, but it feels good to just let the characters run the show. They’ve been doing a good job so far, too.

My favorite part is my interpretation of Heaven and the way it looks and works. What it means to be a Guardian Angel, to get into Heaven from Purgatory, etc. I’ve been making up a brand new world as I go along and I’ve been doing a great job at it! Well, I think I am anyway.

My daily goal is to hit 2,000 words a day. As you can see from my totals, I’ve been keeping up with that. I write every morning before work for an hour and that’s where my 2k comes from. I got an extra 2k on the second because I had a write-in that evening. The seventh was Double-Up Day so I doubled my word count to hit 4k that day.

Aside from the write-in, I have yet write anything after work only because I’m so tired. But I’ve been getting my 2k done in the morning, so I guess that doesn’t matter.

Week two is supposedly the “slump week” where people begin to lag on their novels. I’m hoping that doesn’t happen to me. I don’t have to babysit after work today so I’m hoping to get an extra 2k done today. Tomorrow I don’t have work (but I still have to babysit in the afternoon) so I hope to get 2k-4k words again. Same with Wednesday: I don’t have work or babysitting. I’ll be doing last minute shopping for my sister’s baby shower, but I’m hoping to bang out another 4k. We’ll see.

Thursday and Friday will be rough. Thursday is my long day between work and babysitting. Friday I have work, babysitting, and then I have to go to the hall to set up for the baby shower.

I plan on getting up bright and early Saturday morning to get my writing done before my sister’s baby shower because that’s going to take up my whole day. Sunday I’ll be able to get back on track with a normal schedule, but then we’ll be onto week three!

How is your NaNo novel doing?

If you would like to add me as a writing buddy or know more about my novel, visit my NaNo page: Fiery_Sapphire.

For a summary of my novel, you can read my post called Second Chances. For an excerpt of my novel, you can read my latest Short Story Sunday.

Update On George

Back in May I posted Problems with Protagonists. I voiced my concerns about dealing with a protagonist who just doesn’t seem to want to listen to anything I have to say.

The protagonist I’m talking about is George from my George Florence series. I mean, the series is named after him… the least he could do is cooperate, am I right?

With a little help from my writers group, I came to the conclusion that the way I was writing the novel was just not working out. I was thinking of changing it for a while, but when other people noticed the same thing I was, I realized it was time for a change.

Considering I wrote a post about my problems and so many of you gave me advice, I figured I owed it to you guys to give you an update.

I’ve been spending on the month of June rewriting–not editing, rewriting–George Florence, book one. I decided to put books two and three aside so I can focus on the first book.

When I say rewrite, I mean that I changed the POV from third person-George to third person-Lilah. I always visioned the two of them to be equal protagonists. George, the main male and Lilah, the main female. Except Lilah was pushy and started taking over. George was a pushover so he allowed her to do this.

Well, Lilah finally has the spotlight and I have to say that I’m glad I listened to my characters. Here are some reasons as to why the novel is coming out better than the first time around:

1. The novel is flowing more freely, yet slower at the same time. George Florence is a mystery and they were finding clues and evidence way too fast not giving the readers time to think about it. Since Lilah isn’t a detective she needs to stop and really think about the cases. She has to ask George if there’s anything she doesn’t understand. This gives the readers a chance to really think as well.

2. George acts more like a detective. He’s just getting back on his feet after being let go from the police department and he’s having financial woes. He’s bound to be a bit shaky on his feet. However, he’s toughened up a bit and I think that’s mostly because he’s trying to help Lilah along. He feels as though he’s responsible for her.

3. I have a better understanding of the cases George and Lilah are trying to solve. I keep a lot of notes and outlines with witnesses, statements, clues, the works. But I never understood what they meant. I just went along with it because it seemed to make sense. Now that George and Lilah are working through it day by day and George seems to have a lot more knowledge than he did before, I’m doing a lot more outside research. That was always something I was saving for the edits, but now I’ve realized that was dumb of me. Now I know what I’m talking about (sort of)!

Sure, the novel still has its problems just like every other first draft. But as first drafts go, I think this one is pretty good. It’s going much better than the other first draft (and that was the best first draft I’ve ever written!) so I think I’m making some real progress on this novel.

There will be more updates as I go along. I hope to finish the first draft by the end of June and edit it during August… along with writing for Camp NaNo. That will be fun!

So Far So Good

Via Pinterest
Via Pinterest

Here’s a quick blurb/update on my progress after losing my entire manuscript:

I wrote 10,019 words today on my new draft of my Camp NaNoWriMo novel Detective Florence (Book 2). It’s only a little after 2 PM in the afternoon and I have to say that I am proud to have written that much in such a short amount of time.

I am now 30,060 words into the novel.

I have 20k words left and two more days.

I wish I always had this energy to write so much in so many days. Honestly, if school didn’t end this past weekend and if I had homework this week…I think I would have been screwed.

More Than Halfway

30,000 Words…

 

Warning

 

 

Today was a fantastic, productive day for me! I wrote over 6,000 words on my NaNo novel and I got this week’s homework all done. The homework didn’t take me as long as I thought it was going to. Yes, it took me a few hours, but I probably would have been able to find time during the week to get it done before today. Then I would have had more time to write. Ah, well.

I didn’t plan on writing as much as I did today. But I learned a lot about my novel today and I think that’s why I kept on going. For example:

1. A few new characters were introduced. One of them being George’s brother and one being George’s former partner–I say “former” because George was laid off from the police department. Let’s keep in mind that George’s former partner, Detective Xavier Barron (this name was pulled out of my rear on account I was writing with the timer going), was never supposed to be in the story.
2. Speaking of Xavier, he is apparently now George’s rival. Every good protagonist needs a rival, right? Well, George has one now. Even though they used to be good friends and again, this was not planned…
3. Not only are the characters learning more about Lilah’s father, but I’m learning a lot more about Lilah’s father. This is good because Lilah’s father’s death is major plot point for the story.
4. Lilah’s elderly neighbor’s husband is deceased. The characters (and again, me) are learning a lot about him–his personality, his background, his death–when he’s not supposed to be a big deal in the story. In fact, this was how much he was not supposed to be in the novel: I didn’t come up with a name for him. But now that he apparently wants his story to be told…I still don’t have a name for me. I wasn’t able to pick a name off my back as easily as I was able to Xavier (and honestly, I think I only thought of that name because X-Men has been on my mind).

So there you have it. It’s the beginning of week two for NaNo and my characters have completely over-run the entire novel. Right on schedule. In other news, my left wrist is in pain. Even though it confuses me because it’s usually my right wrist, but again, right on schedule with week two.

Tomorrow is Sunday, which means I’m going to double-post. I’m going to update my progress and also post a tid-bit on my novel. Last Sunday I posted the summary for my NaNo novel, Detective Florence (Book One). Tomorrow I am going to post a character profile for my male protagonist, Detective George Florence. I hope you guys will look forward to that.

If you want more Writing Buddies, my NaNo profile is: Fiery_Sapphire and my sister Kris is: Winged_Spirit. We have very unique names (to say the least). 🙂

Today’s Word Count: 6,785
Total Word Count: 30,091
Today’s Page Count: 21
Total Page Count: 96

Monday Morning

Two Hours Of Writing…

 

Keep Calm

 

 

Yesterday was a very productive writing day for both my and Kris. We wrote our NaNoWriMo novels together and she was able to make it up to par while I was able to get myself way ahead. It must have been all that Starbucks. 😉

Anyway, I think what really helped us out was that we weren’t looking at the word count in the bottom left screen on Word. I took my Donny, my iPod, and Kris took her phone, and we leaned them up against the computer screen right in that spot. Then I took my phone, set the timer for 30 minutes and we kept going until the timer went off. The point was to see how much we could write in that amount of time. We ended up writing a lot more than we thought–we each banged out about 1,000 words. It made the writing process go by a lot faster and I think we got more work done that way than we would have if we were just typing while staring at the word count slowly going up.

We continued to do that after realizing how well it worked. But every time I wrote for 30 minutes, I realized that I wrote exactly five pages, too. I decided that if it only takes me 30 minutes to write five pages, why not try to get my goal to be “write five pages a day?” (yes, I know the picture says one page…)

I decided that’s going to be my New Year’s resolution. Yes, I know that’s two months away, but I thought I might as well get started on it now. I can get myself into the habit of it so it might be easier to accomplish next year. Especially since it’s NaNo right now, I’m going to need all the pages I can get to boost my word count.

So I wrote for about an hour and a half to two hours this morning. I wrote while my cousins got themselves ready for school and I wrote after they left. I have about an hour or so in between the time they leave for school and the time I have to start getting ready for work.

But it was productive nonetheless. I wrote about six pages and 3,398 words. It was a good morning. I had to have two cups of coffee, but I can blame part of that on the weather (I think it’s in the 40s…ew).

Anyway, if you want to read the summary of my NaNo novel, here it is: Detective Florence (Book One)

Also, I stopped posting my NaNo username at the end of my posts, but lately a lot of people have been asking for it. You can find my NaNo profiles on the “Come Find Me” page of the blog or you can look me up: Fiery_Sapphire (you can also click my username to be brought to my profile). I love having Writing Buddies, so feel free to add me!

 

Today’s Word Count: 3,398
Total Word Count: 14,028

One Month

It’s Been Almost A Whole Month…

I fell off the face of the earth again, haven’t I? Sorry about that. Things have been so hectic lately that I haven’t had too much time to do things for myself…like write. Every since school and work started back up again, that’s all I’ve had time to do and to think about.

I got promoted at work. I am now a lead teacher in the classrooms. This also means I’m 40 hours a week. I work 10-6 Monday-Friday. I love it, but it makes me extremely tired at the end of the day. I’m not in the mood to do anything–write, homework–all I want to do is sit on the couch, put my feet up, and pig out while watching TV or playing video games. I don’t want to do anything that requires thinking.

School has been a lot…even though it’s not. I’m taking five online classes. I’m majoring in English, and so far it’s just been a whole lot of reading and no writing. It’s not bad…when you look at the assignments on paper, it looks like a lot, but it’s really not. The only bad thing about it was that school started September 4 and I just finished all my homework for weeks one and two. We just started week three. The reason for this is because my textbooks didn’t come…and I’m still missing one. So it’s not a lot of homework, but it kind of was because I had double homework. As soon as one of my professors found out I had gotten my book, he said, “Great! You should have no problem getting all the assignments done by tomorrow morning.” Um…I had to read like 600 pages, take a quiz, two discussion boards…it was a lot. How am I supposed to get that all done?

But now I’m hoping things will calm down a bit now I have my textbooks. Well…except one. I have five classes, all the homework for each class is due on Sundays, so I decided to work on one class each day. That would mean I would finish my homework for all five classes by Friday night. Not only would I get my assignments done and in early, but this will also give me Saturdays and Sundays off.

Sunday school started, too. Sunday afternoons are going to be spent preparing for the following Sunday. So I guess I really only Saturdays off to do literally whatever I want–whether it be writing or some sort of excuse to not write even more than I already have been not writing.

So, this is what my schedule looks like:

Sunday — Church 9-11:30, plan next week
Monday — Wake at 5:30/5:45am, homework, get cousins ready for school, homework, work 10-6, homework, dinner, homework, bed
Tuesday-Friday — See Monday
Saturday — Hopefully do whatever I want

Seriously, that’s why I have not been writing or updating this thing at all. My life does not include me having a social aspect or creative aspect to it.

With my textbooks and this plan I have for my classes and homework I should find time to write and such. I am going to be writing for at least a half hour a day, though. I have a half hour break at work so I decided to spend it by writing something–anything–in a notebook.

This is all the updates I have for now. I have to get ready for work soon. But I do hope I’m able to start updating this regularly again. I want to get back into the swing of things…that does not include school, but what can you do about that?