Sunday, January 30, 2011

923 Words and a Cheese-tastic Scene

My characters are accidental spies of sorts, and I just wrote a scene where they find themselves in a coat closet. To escape notice from some menacing pursuers, they pretend to be making out when the bad guys throw open the closet door.  I told you I was a sucker for those things.  I like to watch them on TV shows and read about them in books.  And apparently write about them too.

No kissing yet. This is YA, folks!

Words Written: 923
Total Words: 41151
Listening to: "On a Night Like This" by Dave Barnes.  Yessss
Obsessed with: Ohio

Saturday, January 29, 2011

2176 Words and Mired in the Middle

This entire chapter - these two chapters -  SUCK.  I feel very much like I am just slogging through the middle, uninspired, and struggling for solid plot points.  I know my characters, where they started, and where they're going to end up, and the very most basic of conflicts in the middle, but I hadn't through those conflicts, and how they would play out.

To be honest, all I really want to do is write the mushy-gushy scenes.  These practical, 'moving' sections of the story are what are tripping me up.  I just like to write about beautiful people kissing and falling in love.  While I listen to music about beautiful people kissing and falling in love.

But I buckled down, put Scrivener in the distraction free mode, and hit my goal of passing up 40,000 words today.  Rule.  I'm also almost halfway through the draft now, plot-wise.

I want to pause for a moment before the daily wordcount to give a shoutout to two other aspiring novelist bloggers who I think are awesome.  Not that it will help them at all because I have between 0-3 daily readers, but I want to mention them.

First: Gina, for commenting on yesterday's post and encouraging me exactly when and how I need to be encouraged.  Her blog is pretty awesome and actually offers writing tips and book recs as opposed to being 99.8% self-centered like mine.  Which is admirable.  Thanks, Gina!

Second:  The Hack Novelist posts a daily wordcount on his blog, too, which I unabashedly stole for this blog.  Unlike me, though, he actually writes interesting posts.  So, awesome.  Check him out.

Words Written Today: 2176
Total Words: 40228
Listening to: "World Spins Madly On" by the Weepies (Husband is home today and managing the children which means I got to blare my headphones, so even though "Despicable Me" was playing in the undercurrent, my music pretty much blocked out kidsounds.  YAY!)
Obsessed with: Ohio.

Last but not least, here is a photo of my kids splashing in the water yesterday, because the weather was uncharacteristically wonderful.  Yay!

Friday, January 28, 2011

960 Words and Mood Swings

I wrote a bunch of incoherent crap today.
Half sentences, possible plot directions, unpunctuated dialogue.
I blame it on this post by Janice (who rules, by the way) that is supposed to help us by providing a basic plot structure complete with examples.  Which of course made me freak out and (internally) scream OHMYGOD IDON'TTHINK I HAVE A PLOT WHATAMIGONNADO!??!?!?
I went from seriously doubting my ability to write any coherent plot at all to having a soaring self-confidence that this was going to be the best. book. EVER.  The confidence would come from the flashes of insight I would get as to what the plot should be, but I literally can't type quickly enough to get them all out of my head fast enough. I am so type-A that this bothers me.  But one of the things I was loving about this whole project was my ability to just let the story come on out.  Now somehow the need for so much planning is stressing me out.  Only a little, though.  I need to focus on trusting in the length of time it takes to write a coherent draft, and believe that all these important points will come back to me.  Or better ones.

Words Written: 690
Total Words: 38052
Listening to: Iron Man *sigh*
Obsessed with: Ohio.

Thursday, January 27, 2011

440 Words and Some Other Stuff Going On

It's funny how hard it is to write amidst the other stuff of life.  We got some news yesterday that, if it pans out, could really change things up around here, and my head has been buzzing about that for the last twelve hours.  I couldn't even sleep last night.  Anyway, it took me a full hour of surfing the net (how's that for anachronistic?) till I got down to writing.

Words Written: 440
Total Words:
Listening to: "Hands Down" by Dashboard Confessional
Obsessed with: The Slate XX Gabfest.  Love those ladies.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

320 Words on a Tumultous Day

Ugh.  Naptime was curtailed today by two petulant children.  They only were relatively quiet for an hour and fifteen minutes.  I also had an important phone call to prepare for, and then after that phone call, my husband had an IMPORTANT PHONE CALL that may impact our family pretty seriously.  We're still talking about it.  So no real writing today.

Words written: 320
Total Words:36920

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

88 Words - My First Double Digit Day was a bad day. Just a bad day.  I'm amazed I wrote that much.  Thanks, Evernote.

Words written: 88
Total Words: 36600
Obsessed with: the minestrone I made for dinner tonight.  So cold outside.

Send me your vibes for a better day tomorrow.

Sunday, January 23, 2011

1480 Words and Another Chapter Ends on a Cliffhanger

I pulled off a stellar 1480 words today, and ended chapter 6(!) on a cliffhanger.  Which I think is fun.

Words written: 1480
Total words: 36,512

880 Words and Running in Heels

I am a big ALIAS fan.  Yeah, I know that totally dates me, and I don't even care.  I always loved ALIAS because it was a show about a girl who totally dominated, and who always got what she wanted, no matter what.  And she did it in style.  You can bet every other girl spy out there kicks off her shoes to run, but Sydney?  She could sprint in heels.

There's a little bit of spy to this novel, and there's a little bit of Syndey Bristow in every girl I'll ever write about, ever.  Including myself.  My MC?  She doesn't have a lot of skills, but man can she run in heels.

Words Written: 880
Total Words: 35029
Listening to: Darkening Sky by Peter Bradley
Obsessed with: Matched by Ally Condie OMIGOD YOU GUYS THIS BOOK RULES GIVE ME THE SEQUEL NOW!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

1560 Words - Low Word Count for a Saturday, but Decent Considering....

This Saturday only saw 1560 words, but that was waaay more than I thought I'd get considering I did a 9-month photo shoot for my daughter and edited 40 pictures as well:

IMG_8725 5x7copyIMG_8688IMG_8680

I also had to go to work for 2 hours in the morning.  But my husband did a LOT of the household chores.  I don't think I touched a dish yesterday, so that's how it all worked out.  I wrote the skeleton of a really emotional confrontation scene and an awesome scene where my character runs in heels.  Rule.

Words Written: 1560
Total Words: 34149 (WOOT!)
Listening to: Saturday morning TV, blech
Obsessed with: Matched by Ally Condie.  INCREDIBLE, and totally worth the $10 I balked at spending on it.

Friday, January 21, 2011

740 words in the Face of Abounding Procrastination

This morning I sat down early, before anyone else was up, to write.  I had a cup of coffee, challah dough in the bread machine, and a quiet house.  And what did I do?  I poked around Google Reader for an hour.  By then, my three-year-old was up, and I was fending him off with hot chocolate, sweets, and streaming Netflix.  Shamefully, yes.

At least Ziggy just wrote a post that tells me I'm not alone.  Hopefully more people will comment with their support and we're not the only two folks in the universe who procrastinate doing something we love.

Nevertheless, 740 pivotal words were written.  Now the challah will get braided and the children will be dressed and fed, and no one will be (much) the worse for wear.  Right?  Right.

Words Written this Morning:  740
Total Words: 32,442
Listening To:  Dora the Explorer.  Shoot me now.
Obsessed with: Soft Peppermint candies in my tea.  (And I wonder why I can't lose the baby weight...)

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Okay everyone, I'm having a problem.  I may be forming a habit where it takes me sort of a ridiculous amount of "lead time" to start writing.  I'm surfing Facebook, bulletin boards, and even Googling random stuff for 45 minutes to an hour before a really get started writing.  By that time, there's only about 45 minutes left of Naptime.  Yesterday I got 680 words down in that 45 minutes, but think how much more work I could be getting done if I broke away from this pre-writing procrastination nonsense.

What should I do?  Should I do anything?

Words Written today: 680
Total Words: 31,697
Listening to:  "Delicate" by Damien Rice
Obsessed with:  Minestrone and elbow pasta

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Words written today: 530
Total words written: 31,012
Listening to: "When the Stars Go Blue" by Ryan Adams
Obsessed with: The snow. I love it when it's falling down and I'm warm inside.  Also, my baby eating chocolate cookies.  Yum.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

466 Words and *Gasp* Doing Something Else

Today I only got 466 words written because - gasp - I had something else to word process today!  The 466 were good words, though - the skeleton of a dramatic scene near the end.  Yessss.

Words Written Today: 466
Total Words: 30,444
Listening to: "Hands Down" by Dashboard Confessional
Obsessed with: Oatmeal.  It's freezing!

Monday, January 17, 2011

1150 Words and a Good Habit

I netted about 1150 words today, in just over two Naptime hours.  I also took a look at my words-per-day record and saw that for the last ten days I've averaged just over one thousand words per day, which is twice my goal.  It's encouraging that even if I run up against some writer's block I should be able to eke out a few hundred.

Words today: 1150
Total Words: 29, 978
Freak out of the Day: What do you mean I can't use adverbs?!?!?!?'
Obsessed with:  My new Kindle, especially the new case.  My husband loves me.

Sunday, January 16, 2011

1900 Words, and When You Know

I schvitzed over what to write today for probably 45 minutes.  Then I realized I had to write a natural continuation from a scene I'd written awhile ago, and I was off and running.  1900 words and three ignored baby dinnertimes later, I felt completely spent.  Today I learned you know what you have to write and you know when you can stop.  You just know. (Ideally, I guess.  I talk like I know what I'm talking about.)

Words Written Today:  1900 (!!!)
Total Words: 28,826
Word I'm proud I used today: "Undulating" (no, it wasn't sexy.)

Saturday, January 15, 2011

700-ish words, and some head breaking. Or Braking?

I added some things here-and-there today to a couple of different scenes.  I also moved around a scene where my protagonist unexpectedly gets to see someone she loves very much.  I think it's more serendipitous this way, but not sure whether it's good for whole book.  I'm loving Scrivener because it allows me to move my scenes around as I please, without cutting or pasting, etc.  I can move it back no trouble if I like.

This is a sci-fi, paranormal-ish romance story that partly centers around the idea of time travel.  The time had come for me to do some serious reading up on time travel theories to explain how my characters do what they do.

You guys?  I seriously broke my brain trying to read all these theories about closed time circles (CTCs, duh.) and quantum physics and parallel universes and block theories of time.  In so doing, I realized that it doesn't really matter how the characters travel through time.  In fact, the mystery of the whole thing is kind of the most intriguing part.  So while I'm not going to use the word "magic" at all, that's pretty much what it is.  Magic.  And it's a little bit scary and a little bit wonderful, just like anything else we can't really explain.

I'll write a few lines about it just so that anyone who ever reads it (IF anyone ever reads it) will know that I know it's pretty much a theoretical impossibility.  So they'll know I'm not entirely stupid, and anyone that really cares that much about whether a dinky YA novel's time travel fits suitably within the super slim theoretical reality in which it might be possible, then they should probably stop procrastinating and continue working on their PhD in physics because seriously?  They're killing my buzz.

Words today: 700-ish
Total Words: 26,913
Listening To:  Nothing. Not a quiet moment today.
Still Obsessed With:  Ascend.  Amanda, you're my hero(ine).

Friday, January 14, 2011

1453 Words Yesterday; 105 Words Today

Yikes!  What a disparity.  I usually am more than happy to ignore housework for writing, but today is Erev Shabbat (Sabbath Eve), when Jews go kinda crazy cleaning their houses and cooking, since we are forbidden from doing either all day on Saturday.  On top of that, my parents are in town for the weekend, so there was extra food to cook, more laundry to do, and more bedding to deal with.  I also did our grocery shopping for the week since they'll be with us on my normal shopping day.

I wrote today's words via Evernote while I was at a stoplight.  So, yeah.

Here's the scoop:

Words Written Yesterday: 1453
Words Written Today: 105
Total Words: 26,224
Listening To: "I'll Stay With You" by the GooGoo Dolls
Obsessed with: Ascend by Amanda Hocking.  Just came out , and I'm sad it's the last book in what has been a great quick-read trilogy.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

726 words in 24 minutes, 1152 words total

Today was one of those days.  I had an idea for a scene while I was doing my cardio and I couldn't wait to get to my computer to write it down.  It was 7:15 and I had to be out the door with the kids, who were still in their pajamas, at 8:15.  I sat down and frantically typed for 24 minutes, and came out with 726 words.  When you need to write, you need to write, I guess.

The next hour and a half of writing I did during Naptime (I capitalize it because it is holy...) only yielded 426 words.  Go figure.

Words Written today: 1152
Total Words: 24462
Listening to: "Give Me Strength" by Snow Patrol
Obsessed with: Microwaved Sweet Potatoes (did you all know you can just stick a sweet potato in the microwave, and then eat it ten minutes later??? Amazing.)

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

1117 Words - Snow Day #2

Today, I wrote at least two hundred words one-handed while enduring the excruciating pain of my hair being yanked with all the determination my nine-month old could muster.  She grabbed a handful from each side of my head, held each chunk of hair like a skiing pole,  straightened her pudgy legs, and screamed at the top of her little lungs while practicing her slaloming on my lap.
Then she plunked down, jabbed her fingers up my nose, and laughed at me for another hundred words.
Stephenie Meyer wrote entire passages with her kid attached to her like a monkey, so I figure I can only be on the path to success.

(baby boss taking over my desk)

But!  The words got written.  Just over a thousand words in a couple of solid hours.  (I had to stop to find some music, switch the laundry, and make some phone calls.)

Words Written Today: 1117
Total Words: 23052
Obessed with: Brett Dennen

Oh, and there was this.
Fullscreen capture 1112011 15319 PM.bmp

Monday, January 10, 2011


Snow Day, 957 Words, and Changing Genders

Kansas woke up this morning to a steadily falling snow that is still going strong at 3:00 PM.  I thought I would be ruined for today, as my baby went down for a nap at 10:00 and still wasn't up when the boys went down at 1:15.  But she is still sleeping, I think because she has a nasty cold, bless her.

As you can imagine, it's been a lazy day around here.  Lots of snuggling under blankets and sipping hot warm cocoa.  I could have gotten much more done today, but my two guys wanted to play in the snow, and I've never been known to say "no" to that, not least because of the sweet photos I can get.

(baby boys in the snow)

Big development today - I decided to change my villain from a gentleman to a lady.  She could change back, but for today at least she seems SO much more sinister as a woman.

Words Written: 957
Total Words: 21,855

Word I'm proud I used: "Prolific"
Listening to: "First Day of My Life" by Bright Eyes
Obsessed with: My baby girl's toes.  And orange marmalade.

Happy Snow Day!

Sunday, January 9, 2011

Another 100 Words, and Some Structural Work

My kids were total nightmares at the concert.  Most of the time, when you do something nice for your kids, like take them to the park or out for ice cream, they are sweet and you're so glad you did it.

Seriously?  You would have thought I was taking my kids to get their shots.  Or to get tortured.  The big one moped and cried, even during the songs he L-O-V-E-S, and the middle one was literally lying on the floor pounding his fists.

I'm so frustrated I have a massive headache.  My husband had to put them to bed.  I'm not cut out for this full-time mom thing, granted, but I can count on one hand the times I've been this angry with them.  Do you know how much I could write in two Sunday hours?  Or how much laundry I could have folded so I could write tomorrow?

Anyway.  I've just added another 100 expository words to that "how-it-works" scene, and done some structural work on the outlines of the chapters.    Almost every chapter is populated with a concept now.  I envision 14 chapters of about 5,000 words each, but that's a pretty large word count for YA.  It could be that some chapters are axed altogether.

Not a bad day, considering.

203 words - Tweaking a Homeless Scene

I have a folder entitled "Scenes without a Home."  A while back I wrote about 600 words that described how the whole science-fiction aspect of this book works, and it was pretty good.  I wanted to add a couple of points to it to make it even more intriguing.  I wrote these 200 words in 20 minutes, which is about the best I could have hoped for. 

Taking the babies to a concert at our JCC this afternoon...hopefully get more in tonight.
Words written today: 203 
Total words as of today: 20,618
Listening to: "Till Kingdom Come" by Coldplay (yes, again.)
Obsessed with: Sweet Gherkin Pickles

Friday, January 7, 2011

Project 365 for 2011 - A Novel, Why Not?

Last year I took on Project 365 for Photography.  The idea is that, if you do something each and every day for an entire year, you will get better at it.  If you work really hard, you will get much, much better.

I never fancied myself a writer.  When my first baby was born, I started a blog with his photos and updates on him to keep my family members posted.  After awhile, photos and descriptions like "Look at baby petting the goat!  He loves to feed them goat food."  began to feel pretty inane to me.  They didn't capture the sound of my boy's laugh, or the twinkle in his eye when the goat's lips touched his finger.  So I started to write more descriptively, more elegantly, and people started telling me I was a good writer.

It turns out that the writing I do on my family blog is very, very, VERY purple, but that's the way I like it and I'm not trying to sell it to anyone.  So it will stay, for the sake of my sentimental mother's heart.

I've always loved reading.  Unlike most adults, who left behind young adult fiction like an old  immature boyfriend when they left junior high, I kept reading.  Harry Potter, Twilight, Graceling, The Hunger Games - these books speak to the part of myself that believes in magic.  I disappear into their worlds and I feel enchanted, comforted, and at home.  It's been a struggle for to find more books like that, that grab onto me and don't let me go.  I always thought that maybe I should try my hand at writing my own, but I didn't have a story in my head.  I thought it best not to force it.

A couple months ago, I dreamed up a story.  And I love it.  And I'm in love with the characters.  So I started to write it down, a little bit each day, during naptime when my 3 crazy kids didn't need me that much.  I downloaded Scrivener, moved the bits and pieces of plot and character I had into there, and started to move them around, shape them into sections and chapters.  When I look at the bottom of the screen, I see that I have just over 20,000 words, which makes me think maybe I could do it.  Maybe I could write a novel.  And maybe it would be good.

I've declared writing my Project 365 for 2011.  If I keep up an average of 500 words a day, I should have something I can start revising in May.  Maybe it will be ready to query, or self-publish, by the end of the year.

This is my quiet little corner of cyberspace to keep track of everything - how many words I've written each day and anything else I want you to know. Thanks for visiting.

Words written today: 1376
Total words as of today: 20,411
Word that I'm proud I used today: "Diffidence"
Listening to: "Till Kingdom Come" by Coldplay
Obsessed with: Arabian Nights Candy Mix