Camp NaNoWriMo

CampNaNoWriMo April 2015

Well, yesterday was the last day for Camp NaNo for April 2015. How did you all do? Were you able to meet your goal? Exceed it? No? It’s okay. Don’t worry about it. Any words you were able to produce during Camp NaNo are progress. It’s no small feat writing a book so don’t be hard on yourself. I am proud of you for trying but now that Camp is over there is no reason to stop writing. Yeah, it does give some incentive to write daily I’ll give you that. But we should be able to carve out even small ten minute sections of time to make a little progress toward a bigger goal every day. Maybe rewarding yourself in some way when you reach a milestone in your writing will help.

As for me, you may be wondering how I did this round of Camp. Well, I exceeded my goal of 50,000 words but only by sixty-eight words. Still, I pushed last night with about a half hour left to make the 50,000 word mark. I would have had more time but I kept dozing off at the computer. Now who hasn’t done that before?

So I have I good amount of a first draft to work with. I do have to some restructuring and some rewriting to do. I am going to rewrite my story using some elements of fiction like dialog and inner thoughts to help bring my story to life in a more interesting way. I don’t want my book to be just another matter-of-fact I have this, here’s how I discovered it, ect. Boy, that would get boring so easily! Certainly don’t want that to happen.

Well, I guess it’s time to get started on some editing and get this baby into a well organized and well written second draft.

Cheers!

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Camp NaNoWriMo

Camp NaNo Wri Mo Day 17

Number 17

Today is day #17 of Camp NaNo!! How are you doing on your project?

I must admit that yesterday I didn’t do much writing. Instead, I printed out my book and I plan to go through it and reorganize and rewrite it. Yes, I know. The Inner Editor is having time in the spotlight BEFORE the whole books is even in a first draft. Well, let’s just say I tried to make the book go the direction I wanted but found I was repeating a lot of what was said and I was just getting so confused. I had to make that decision to stop moving forward. Trust me it wasn’t an easy decision. It was quite painful. But you know I’ve decided to look at Camp NaNo as a stepping stone. It helped me get to where I am so I have something to work with. Plus, it gave me motivation.

I did some research on how to structure a memoir and often I kept running into the same information about how to decide what to write about out of our life and how to get started. I didn’t need that. I was looking for something a little more in depth and just before I was going to give up searching I stumbled across Wendy Dale’s blog. She has a great piece on how to structure a memoir and the different methods other memoirists have used.  This has been so helpful to me and I finally have a way to write my memoir that can be exciting and draw readers in instead of just the plain chronological chain of events. I was getting bored writing that way. Just event after event. Now I know of more interesting ways to write my book. Now I just have to decide which way I want to go.

Wendy broke things down into Act 1, Act 2, and Act 3 and tells us what to write in each one. So helpful and clarified a lot for me. If you’re writing a memoir, or even thinking about it, I encourage you to check out Wendy’s site.

So that is where I am right now. Rewriting and organizing my book.

Well, it’s time for me to be off and my daughter off to school. Best of luck today. May the words flow forth and fill the blank pages before you.

Camp NaNoWriMo

Camp NaNo Wri Mo Day 14

Number 14

Another sunny mild day here in Maine. I was up early this morning walking the dogs and listening to the birds just as the sun’s light was creeping over the horizon. I could have just closed my eyes and sat on the deck listening to the sounds of nature. So awesome and relaxing.

But I had to make sure the hubby was off to work and my daughter off to school. The house is currently quiet with everyone gone and the dogs have nothing to bark at. That could quickly change though.

So let’s see. Today is day 14 for Camp NaNo and if you’re writing a 50,000 book this month then today you should have at least 23,338 words. I have 47,305 right now but I am stuck. I have about five chapters written which of course will probably change. One of these chapters could easily be two but I’ll work about breaking things up later. I have come to a point in my story where I think I am going to have to rewrite the story before I can move on. But, I think before I go ahead with that idea, I am going to print out what I have typed so far and take a look at it. Maybe there is a way I can continue on without having to sacrifice all of the work I have put into the book so far.  As it is I have already deleted several thousands of words and could have been done with reaching my word count goal. I had to make myself STOP editing! That is so extremely hard especially when you get to a place where the flow of the book isn’t what you were planning on and that does change how you can continue on to reach the conclusion of the book. However, perhaps a wise thing to do is simply make a note in the manuscript that I am switching gears so I can continue writing and head on to the direction I want the book to take so I can reach that conclusion. Hmm….

I guess it is in these struggles that we learn the tips and tricks that will aid us in other writing projects.

I’m curious… What little tricks have you learned, or discovered, while working on your own projects? Feel free to leave comments. I would love to hear from you!

Best of luck to all you creatives out there!

Camp NaNoWriMo

CampNaNoWriMo Day 11

Ah, yes. Here we are on day 11! It doesn’t seem possible we are in this far already. The month is screaming by it seems. The sun came out today and the snow is melting away and forming streams down the driveway and roadways, rivers and lakes are rising, and mud is abundant. Yep. It’s spring alright. Once we get past the dirty part of it spring is quite beautiful with the trees budding and flowers and grass awakening and baby animals being born. I love this time of year. The fresh air ushering in wisps of inspiration.

I can picture me now, out on the back deck with a mug of tea, the dogs running around playing, birds chirping, the new leaves rustling in a gentle warm breeze, the sun beating down warming my skin. Ahhh… The outdoors…nothing like it!

Okay, okay…time to stop daydreaming. It’s not THAT warm yet and there’s still mounds of snow on the deck…but it’s shrinking! Won’t be too long and I’ll be able to take my writing outdoors. Are you more inspired to write outside with nature surrounding you, or do you do better indoors?

It’s time for me to tackle today’s word count. I have about four full chapters to my book now and working on the fifth. My story isn’t going like I really want it but I must hold that inner editor behind bars if I am going to get the framework for the novel down. That is always the challenge. (Don’t worry, Inner Editor, you’ll have your time in the spotlight. It’s just not now!)

The day is winding down but now that the house is quiet my creative juices are ready to flow (and less likely to be interrupted). So I must stop looking up how to structure a memoir and just write my story. Ugh! If it’s not the Inner Editor it is research that gets me. I need to put them both in a box and lock it and throw away the key if I’m going to get anything done.

So….here I go…………..

Camp NaNoWriMo

CampNaNoWriMo Day 9

Number 9

Nothing like the warmth of the pellet stove encompassing me as sit comfortable in my old red swivel rocker with my dogs at my feet, KLove on the radio and gluten free bread rising soon to be baked.

It’s day 9 of Camp NaNo and to be honest I’m not totally sure what my word count is right now. Ugh! I have had to edit and rewrite and still have a little to do. I know I know, the rule is to write it first and edit later, but sometimes editing is necessary when what you have written just stops the flow of the story not allowing it to progress, or you find information that needs to be updated such is usually the case with nonfiction. I still have some editing to do, but hopefully it won’t be much. Then I hope to update my word count on the Camp NaNo site.

Does that inner critic bug you too when you’re in the first draft? What do you do to combat it?

I found the below picture when I was looking for inspirational writing quotes. It fits perfectly!

Neil Gaiman - One Word After Another

Neil couldn’t have said it any better! And that is what I must do now. Get back to writing while I have the chance to do it. Take every chance you get to write, otherwise, you may not get the time. This is something I am trying to do. Time management seems so simple but the more you try the more realize just how much you can’t stuff into a few free hours. lol

Well fellow writers I am off! Good luck to you all!

Camp NaNoWriMo

CampNaNoWriMo Day 8

Number 8

The sun is shining bright but the temp is still rather cool with a windchill of 25 degrees Fahrenheit. I’ve done a bit of reading this morning in the Bible and in Joyce Meyer’s book Beauty for Ashes. Reading always helps me get in the mode for writing. Do you find reading helps you or do you have another way to get your creative mind going? I also have a writing buddy and we both take five minutes and work on a story together. She will write on it for five minutes and then after I read what she wrote, I pick up the story and continue it for five more minutes. This is also a great way to spark your creativity!

So far I am up to 14,000 words and I have not begun writing today but I am about to. How far have you gotten? No matter if you have 1000 words a day or 10 words, it’s all progress! Don’t be too hard on yourself if you don’t make the word count as you would have liked. All that matters is that you sat down and tried. Any amount of words written is progress and that much closer to finishing your book. Writing is not supposed to be stressful and to me, it’s not supposed to be a competition with other authors. It’s about enjoying the craft and sharing your work with those who were meant to receive it.

I’m not one for competition. I know some people thrive on it. Me? I find it too stressful and it totally kills my creative flow. Stress = 0 Creativity! But that is me.

So as the sun melts the snow outside, and the pellet stove roars behind me, I am off to continue work on Secret Anguish. I just have to try NOT to do any major editing and just write to get it down. I can always make it better later. I already know I have some things to change, but I have made mental note of them and have pressed on.

Off I go to float in the sea of words, fishing for the words to haul in and create a masterpiece.

Have a great day!

Camp NaNoWriMo

CampNanoWriMo Day 7

DCF 1.0

Today is day 7 of CampNaNoWriMo! How are you doing on your novel so far?

I haven’t been making a post every day here like I had planned. The weekend was far busier than expected so no writing of any sort got done on Saturday and Sunday. Trying to do some catch up now.

It’s a little after 4AM and I’m sitting in front of the pellet stove with a raging fire and a my Chihuahua Brie at my feet. KLove is playing through my headphones while my hubby and daughter sleep. I have an hour before the hubby has to be up for work so what better way to spend time than to write when you can’t sleep. Well, I could sleep if wasn’t restless legs kicking in. Just one of the many fibromyalgia symptoms that are annoying. Oh, well. I’ve learned that when symptoms keep me awake it’s best to be productive than wallow in the “Why me?” phase and be upset that I can’t get the sleep I want to. What’s the point? Getting upset will only make me feel worse and can increase my symptoms. Yes, this is a topic for one of my next books after the one I’m currently writing, Secret Anguish: Discovering Celiac Disease.

With Secret Anguish I am currently working on chapter two and I believe I am almost finished with it. It’s exciting to see progress and that makes me want to keep on writing. I will be working on chapter three soon, perhaps today!

What about you? How are you doing with your novel? Are things flowing easily, or are you struggling with writer’s block? Do you listen to music when you’re writing? If so, what do you listen to? I’d love to hear from you! Feel free to leave comments.

Have a great day and Happy CampNaNo Day 7! 🙂 Good luck on today’s word count!

Camp NaNoWriMo

Camp NaNoWriMo: Day 2

Number 2

Here it is just a few hours shy of Camp Nano Day #2! I didn’t make much progress yesterday. I had typed up a few paragraphs but I just didn’t like how it was turning out. It was one of those instances that you have to correct because you struggle to move on with your book. So, I revamped what I did and now I am loving the way my story is going so far.

Here are the opening lines to my novel:

Food…it is essential to our lives. Our bellies demand it, or it rumbles incessantly. Who doesn’t love the smell of freshly baked bread or cookies, or a meatloaf cooking in the oven. My mouth waters thinking of those foods, especially desserts. But what if the food you’re eating, more specifically gluten containing foods, are harming your body and you didn’t know it? Such was my case for many years before I was diagnosed with Celiac Disease in 2007 at twenty-four.

I have over 5,000 words so far. So grateful to God for helping me out today. I am really trying to keep with this. You know how Self Doubt likes to butt in and try to ruin things. When I feel that way I stop and pray for as long as I need and take some deep breaths, do some positive self talk and when I feel pumped up again I hit those keys, or write long hand, whichever is working best that day.

What do you do when you experience self doubt and are tempted to just stop writing and throw it all out the window? I’m curious to hear what you have done that has helped.

So far so good on my end. How are you doing?

Feel free to leave a comment or send me an email at jisoucie@hotmail.com.

Camp NaNoWriMo

Camp NanoWriMo day #1! It’s here!

Number 1

Yes it is that time of year again! Camp Nano Wri Mo is here! Are you participating this month? If so, what are you writing about?

Today I begin writing on my book Secret Anguish… Well, okay so I did start writing a little on it already, so I can’t count those words toward this month’s word goal, but I can start writing new content today that will count. I’m feeling confident about this book though I know fears always rise like “Is this good enough?” “Is this in the right order?” “Am I REALLY sure about this?” “Did I do enough research?” ect. Do you have these kinds of thoughts? If you do, what do you do to get past them and to writing?

I find I have to do a bit of positive self-talk to get through those questions and then put those thoughts behind me and move forward. Fear and doubt can so often stop us from doing what we are meant to do, writing included! I have not published a new book in years but it is because fear, doubt and having lost sight of the value and significance writing can have. But today I make a new commitment and that is to focus on my writing and break through all fear and doubts. If I don’t do this now, I never will. With God’s guidance and strength I can do this and I will. I will not give up!

So without further ado I’m off to start up Scrivener and get writing!

I would love to hear your thoughts. Please feel free to comment or send an email to jisoucie@hotmail.com. Have a great day!

Camp NaNoWriMo, General Updates

Creativity In Full Swing!

I am just buzzing with creative energy lately and so many ideas. Oh, I can hardly keep my mind focused and my fingers taping on one project at a time! But I love feeling so creative.

About a month ago I joined Hope Alive Ministry’s team as the Program Manager and we are putting together a documentary about what “hope” means to people. I plan on recording my bit today.

Then I am inspired to create my outreach program under Voice 4 Society, Inc. Hope Alive Ministry is also an outreach under Voice 4 Society. I am still writing out my ideas and deciding what idea I’d like to start with. I’ve never done this kind of thing before but I am excited and energized about it.

Then, Camp NaNo is coming up and I have a book ready to go and have a book cover created for it. The title of the book is Secret Anguish: Uncovering Celiac Disease. Here is the book cover I have right now. What do you think? I’d love to hear your thoughts.

I have my profile and book info updated on CampNaNoWriMo.org. Just waiting for cabin assignments and then writing starts in eight days!!! Ahh! I really need to get some research done before that time. I have set a 50,000 word goal this time. I’m really going to try for it. It will give me practice for November. 🙂

Are you participating in CampNano this year? If so, what kind of genre are you writing in? What is your word count goal? Feel free to leave a comment. I’d love to hear from you.

Have an awesome day!

Janis

jisoucie@hotmail.com