Monday, November 28, 2011

Instead of Cowboy Boots....

It's funny how things are meant to be...or so it seems.

About 18 months ago I was working hard on THIS BLOG while waiting for my daughter at choir rehearsal. A fellow mom (whom I did not know well at the time but has since become like a sister to me) asked if I wrote. I answered honestly, as I am prone to do even when it is inappropriate. In this case, it was a good thing. I said I was supposed to write but doubted myself.

[In a seemingly unrelated sidenote, I decide about that time that what I really want for my 40th birthday is a pair of cowboy boots, so I resolve to ask for money for said boots. I imagine looking all sexy in a dress and boots.]

A few months later the choir mom told me about an Artist's Way group she had just begun. I said it sounded great and that I should find one. She said "No, join ours." I took a risk and did that. It changed me for the better and I found my inner power in a new way. (Sounds dramatic but it is shockingly accurate.)

Then, sister-in-law (a Jennifer) tells me about NaNoWriMo last spring (or round about then) after I tell her how much I am getting out of my Artist's Way group and the NaNo seed is planted. It sounds crazy but I can't let go of the idea.

Artist's Way group ends. A dear friend, yet another Jennifer, tells me about a book that she thought would really speak to me. Stephen King's On Writing, in which he tells the story about how he became a writer and offers advice about finding your true voice. I read it right before jumping into the NaNo adventure. I love the book but don't really GET IT until I've been writing every day for two weeks.

November 1, 2011 - I am finally more confident and sure of myself than ever before. I am ready to "do this thing" as they say. And...I do it.

Today, I bought Danielle LaPorte's Big Beautiful Book Plan. Danielle is a blogger I follow only because another dear work friend (one of the few non-Jennifers in this timeline) encouraged me to read her work for inspiration. The BBBP just came out today, right after I finished NaNoWriMo, right when I feel certain there is another (bigger, better) path for me, and right when I became ready to work for what I want in life.

Take it all the way back...if I hadn't been working so hard on this blog (I concentrate very hard on most of my posts), if friends had not reached out to me to tell me about books/groups/blogs/crazy-efforts-to-write-50,000-words-in-30-days then none of this would have happened and I would be buying cowboy boots with my birthday money.

Which would, admittedly, be quite stylish and cute....but not nearly as satisfying as completing my very own book.

The cowboy boots will come and I'll probably be wearing them at a book signing in your hometown in the near future. (I can write like a confident diva in my blog because only about five people read it. Plus, you remember that issue I have about being completely honest even when it's not appropriate? Yeah. That issue ain't ending in the near future.) In the meantime, I'll be doing exactly what another sister of my heart recently advised:

"Get over yourself and go out there and save the world. Or write the Great American Novel. Or whatever. I believe in you."

I believe in me too.

Sunday, November 27, 2011


I did it! At precisely 6:01 p.m. central standard time (or round about that time) - I hit 50,006 words on my NaNoWriMo novel!! Thanks to my blog friends for pulling me through this. The novel is about as stream-of-consciousness as it is possible for a novel to be. Much, much work lies ahead of me before anyone will be able to read it (I haven't even finished the story yet!) - but I'll be taking a writing break from this novel for a bit before I come back to it. My plan is to read it in a week and see where it takes me....

Anyway - what matters to me right now is that I did it, I did it, I did it - and now it's time to celebrate!

Saturday, November 26, 2011


I have now passed the last status bar on the NaNoWriMo website that remains between me and victory at 50,000 words. I'll try to tackle a little bit more later tonight but right now it's raining and I feel like sleeping for a bit before I get behind the wheel of my car to drive out to my in-laws' house.

Thursday, November 24, 2011


Yes. I rock. I know.
Cooked an entire Thanksgiving meal (including pies because that's how you show your family you love them...baking fattening food for them) and managed to write just over 1,000 words today.
Now...the plot is going in about a thousand different directions and makes absolutely NO SENSE whatsoever...but the stuffing was fabulous.

I can fix the plot later. I can almost taste victory now...I'll be buying myself a NaNoWriMo winner's t-shirt within the week.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011


Tomorrow will be a day of cooking, of course. But I am determined to squeeze in both a walk and at least 850 words before I crash at the end of the day. Don't ask me why I am saying it needs to be 850 words because that number just popped into my B12-deprived brain. I'm off to bed so that I'll be fresh enough to make some seriously kick-A stuffing tomorrow.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011


Squeezed in about 200 words this morning before I took the kids to school. Alllllmooooost there........

Monday, November 21, 2011


...and I REALLY want to break 40k tomorrow. Now I wish I didn't have that church choir gig.

Damn. (Not very church-y of me to say that, is it?)

Sunday, November 20, 2011


I'm rocking along. Well, technically - I'm scootching along but it works just fine because I was totally rocking early on so I'm still ahead of schedule. I just found out that one of my characters is knocked up and she isn't married. Of course, she lives on a totally different planet and I'm not even sure there is such a thing as marriage there (although probably there is sort of old-fashioned). So this has been a fun adventure of hearing the voices in my head begin to criticize me and tell me that parents will disapprove of my book once it's published.

When, really, it's totally not my fault. I am so not in control of my characters. And I guess plenty of parents hated J.K. Rowling's books too. And Madeleine L'Engle's amazing work. So I suppose if they hate me too I'm in perfectly good company.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011


I failed to provide an end-of-day update yesterday, didn't I? But when I checked my blog today and saw two comments, my heart was all full of happiness...merci beaucoup, mes amis! I blew past that 30,000 stat line on the NaNoWriMo website and am now feeling a bit antsy since I have yet to write anything today...which just goes to show that this NaNoWriMo exercise is doing exactly what it's meant to do - force me into a habit (*obsession??*) of writing each and every day, at every spare moment.

Had a work-related nightmare over the weekend (horrible, horrible), then spent the morning realizing exactly how UN-empowered I am there. Less than stellar morning, to be honest. At home: I just got off the phone with my mom, planning holiday stuff which is mostly fine but maybe just a wee bit stressful and I had my first weigh in for Weight Watchers - did not lose an ounce. Needless to say, I'm not feeling too great about myself EXCEPT for my glorious 30,754 words. In that regard, I know I rock - so I'll just keep coming back to those words whenever I sink a bit.

Sunday, November 13, 2011


I made my goal for the weekend - I'll be doing a little work from home tomorrow but mostly taking a vacation day. I think the public library is probably the best place for me...I would go to a delicious coffee house of some sort but that would cost money and calories - neither of which I can afford to waste.

The biggest thing that has changed for me in the past 13 days is that I've stopped saying "If I write this book" and I'm now saying "When I'm finished with it and published..."

In a short 13 days, I've begun to believe in myself in a completely new way.

Saturday, November 12, 2011


Also known as 237 words away from the halfway point. That was my goal for Sunday night. Perhaps I already mentioned it. Feel free to let me know how amazing you think I am.

Oh, and I've stuck with Weight Watchers this week. So far, so good but of course I haven't been back on the scale yet.

Thursday, November 10, 2011

19, 546

New NaNoWriMo goal = 25,000 words by Sunday evening. I'm taking a day off of work on Monday to just write, write, write. I'm inspired and figure that if I can make it halfway there before I even get to my writing vacation day, then I'm in for all kinds of great success.

Tonight my daughter is spending the night with a friend and my son is having someone over. My husband will be at a Scout leader meeting until about 9:30.

Alana-Kyn (my new FABULOUS main character in the prequel - who seems to be dealing with a certain amount of Asberger's Syndrome as it turns out - not that I planned it or anything, it's just one of those things she showed me) and I will have a grand ol' time getting to know each other better for a couple of hours tonight.

Who am I kidding? She doesn't even know I exist. And if she did she'd say "...Whatever" and get back to her math.

Wednesday, November 9, 2011


Life works in mysterious ways. (Or maybe not, God is probably sitting in heaven right now saying: "Duh. This is how I work, girl.")

I had a great lunch today with my two artist friends who also happen to be recovering attorneys. Afterwards, as I was driving to HEB to buy laundry detergent and bananas, I was struck with a sudden inspiration that I needed to go back to the very beginning of my novel and write a prequel or Book One - which would give the historical perspective of why the planet is in the state it is right now. I've been frustrated because when I try to get my characters to explain things, it sounds stupid - I need to tell the story in REAL time - what happened before these characters came along.

Now the words are pouring out of me again. I'll update my word count in the comments to this post before I pick my son up from school...but I think it will be awesome.

Tuesday, November 8, 2011


I started Weight Watchers today. And I'm worried about whether my kids are going to have enough self-esteem as they grow up. And also...even though I'm trying my best to keep our lives from being too busy - they just ARE.

But....did I mention I'm at 16,177 words as of 6:09 p.m. on November 8th? So even if I'm overweight, a mediocre mom, and profoundly exhausted - at least my stat bar made it over that illusive 15,000 line on the NaNoWriMo chart that shows how far along I've come.

Now...if I could just figure out where on earth I'm heading with this story...


I am sooooo tired. Perhaps I'm dreaming about my novel? I'm a little discouraged because I can't imagine what I'm going to have my characters do for that many more words...

I have a vacation day planned. Next Monday. All I plan to do is write.

Monday, November 7, 2011

13,193 Words

This sounds impressive but it is, in fact, just barely ahead of where I should be anyway with my novel. (On day 7 of NaNoWriMo, you should have at least 11,669 words.) I fear my writing is not as polished as I would prefer and I need to think of a few fascinating things to describe in great detail. I've had the explosion, and presumably killed off at least 40 people (although this has neither been confirmed nor denied) but it didn't take nearly as many words as you might at first presume.

Truthfully, I might have to create a love triangle. It wasn't what I wanted for my characters, but damn if that won't get some dialog and thought bubbles happening all over the place. I can pretty much guarantee that I could stretch "You kissed her?????" into at least 1000 words.

At 36,807 more words to go...I guess I need to build towards and include some smoochy face in this novel somewhere. My Tom Clancy skills are too sorely lacking to depend on action/adventure to pull me into the 50,000 word territory.

And I've got to find a way to pull the rich spoiled brat back into the story. She just doesn't fit yet - or else she's refusing to participate.

My characters are unruly children. Doing their own thing (in far fewer than 50,000 words) and snubbing their noses at me. 

Friday, November 4, 2011

11,097 Words

The number is now so big that it requires a comma. I've begun to dream about numerals...sort of mixed in with this character who I thought would be my main character but has refused to re-enter the story since I first wrote about her in Chapter 2. I think she's dissing me. But she's sort of a rich b**ch so that might be unsurprising when it gets right down to it.

I'm driving from Waco to Dallas tomorrow so I'm off to sleep for the moment. Who knew that writing 50,000 words in 30 days would inspire so many new blog posts?

Thursday, November 3, 2011


And...I'm now at 9762 words. That's 240 words away from my goal to hit 10,000 words before Sunday evening. I promised myself that if I did that, I'd let myself take a vacation day to write later in the month. It's a good thing I'm on a roll. My husband was teasing me earlier and telling me that I needed to get going with this writing business and stop messing around because he was ready to be obscenely wealthy. "Alrighty then" I said, "I'll get right on it."

If all of you promise to buy my Kindle book for $2.99 then I should be able to clear at least $12 before next Christmas.

So, here's the thing....

There's this guy at work who I thought liked my work but he's started to maybe turn on me because he sent a really snarky email today....or maybe I'm just too sensitive (imagine that). At any rate - when I felt attacked today all I thought of was "I've written 7,765 words in the past three days. What, exactly, have you accomplished?"


Wednesday, November 2, 2011

6292 Words, Ladies and Gentlemen

Or maybe just ladies. Not sure I have many guy readers although my husband and his friend used to read it every once in a while.

And yet, I digress.

6292 words - only two days into Nanowrimo!!!

I'm at La Madeline's, I just finished my first Nano Write-In, and the cold front just this second arrived. It's my cue to head home and celebrate my brilliance with a bubble bath and flannel PJs, don't you think?

4,586 words

It's November 2nd and I'm 4,586 words into my 50,000 word novel. I'm following Stephen King's suggestion to just put the characters out there and see what they do. They are certainly surprising me at every turn. Spending too much time in the Nano forums and am now obsessively worried that my computer isn't counting my words accurately and I'll have a nasty surprise when the Nano-bots count my novel at the end of the month. It's always something, isn't it?