A Gift For One of The Writers in My Life

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Last Christmas I was trying to get creative with my gift giving as well as shopping local as much as possible.

I am lucky to have other writers in my life, and two of them are my closest friends. When trying to come up with gift ideas for them, I decided to do something “writerly” for them. Now, I won’t share my original idea as I might do that for Christmas 2018 for both of them. 😉 But I would like to share a part of  what I made for one of them.

My friend Jo-ann from Inspiration Pie and I had been out for coffee one afternoon, and she was talking about feeling stuck, being in a rut and whatnot. Later that day I was in my office looking through craft supplies when an idea struck!

I found a mini Smashbook I had bought ages ago. I was saving it for the perfect project. And I found it! I am a sucker for a homemade gift.

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With the help of stickers, washi tape, printouts I had and *Pinterest, I made her a mini survival kit. 🙂

I tried to include as much as I could. One important thing was inspirational quotes, to help keep her motivated on a bad day. 🙂

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Another important thing I wanted to include was some writing prompts. Some I made up, while others I found online. I did several pages with prompts.

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Of coarse, I also included various writing tips for getting unstuck.

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I searched old hand outs from writers group and online for other tips for world building, characters, etc…

 

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I had a lot of fun making this for her, and she was genuinely thrilled when I gave it to her. I used to make handmade gifts a lot, but got out of the habit. I think I will get back into that old habit, at least a little bit.

What writer themed gifts have you given/gotten?

*Pinterest is my Google. I give full credit to those whose posts I printed.

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Nanowrimo Wrap Up

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Hello fellow writers and wrimos!

I had good intentions-as usual- to write a post before Nanowrimo started, and to update during the month.

However, life was a little hectic in October. Mr. C was prepping to go away for work, so we were spending time together, mentally prepping and doing laundry…so much laundry. (We had no clue what he should pack or how much for his six month stint away).

After he left, I jumped right into Nanowrimo mode and was writing and focusing on it as much as I could.

I was a Nano Rebel this year. I decided to write short stories instead of a novel. I haven’t decided yet if that was a good idea or bad, haha.

I failed to hit 50k. However, instead of hating myself for “failing”, I am looking at the positives.

I wrote more in November then I would have if it wasn’t for Nanowrimo. I also have three…maybe four…short stories in progress. One is mostly done. (Although I realized the other day I need to change a lot at the beginning but it is for the best).

I attempted Nano and in my own way, I won. If you didn’t get to 50k, don’t beat yourself up about it. You didn’t fail. You started something, and now have something to work with in the coming months.

It also helped me get back to my writer brain. I have ideas for other stories, plus I want to get back to unfinished works and edit first drafts. I have also been reading articles and tips to write better fiction.

I lost my writing mojo for awhile. I think I might have found it again.

How did you do in November? Did you crack that magic number or fall short of your goal?

Making A Plan And Making Writing A Priority

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It is really easy to put things off. I am the Queen of Procrastination. It isn’t that I don’t want to do certain things, but the phrases “I am going to start this soon” or “I will get on that tomorrow”, become easier to say. And tomorrow turns into the next day and so on.

I have been doing a lot of thinking lately about my writing. I am kicking myself for wasted days and being lazy. I’m not as prolific as I used to be. I’m not happy with that, so it is time for a REAL change.

I’m not the type of person to write every day. Some writers are. Even during NaNoWriMo there are days I don’t write. Either because life is simply too hectic that day, or I need to give my brain a little bit of recharge time. (Although I only do that if I am at least a day or two ahead of schedule.)

While I am not a person to write every day, all week, all year, I know I can write some of the week. So I am making myself a schedule of sorts.

I am vowing to write four days a week. If more, bonus! But unless life takes some major curve ball, I know I can write (or edit) even a page or two that much during the week. I have no real excuse right now not to do that.

I have last year’s Nano to work on, plus a new project I have been dying to get at. So I have a great starting point for my work.

Instead of just thinking about writing, I need to get off my ass and start DOING.

Have you made any new changes or goals for your writing? If so, what have you decided to do?

 

Writer Gears Are Rusty But They Are Turning

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With October around the corner, there’s a lot on my mind. I love fall and all that comes with it. And usually part of that is prepping for NaNoWriMo.

Until yesterday, I didn’t even know if I was going to do it or not. None of my recent ideas or projects I wanted to start interested me. With the wedding officially less then a year, I have a lot to do and get done for it. I feel stressed, and NaNo is for sure an added stress and time bandit.

I was at work, cleaning up and the like when all of a sudden an idea hit me. Something fun. Something I think I can get really creative with. And it excited me!

I haven’t written a heck of a lot this year. I’ve had personal issues and a lot has been put on the back burner. It made me sad that my ‘writer brain’ was sitting, getting rusty, and I wondered if I would ever use it again.

Right away I scribbled a few notes down before my next client came in. I don’t have a whole lot planned out, not even a full skeleton. But I have something to start with. A basic idea and two characters. That’s enough for me to get into my novel prep!

Over the next few days and over the coarse of October, I will build and create my main characters, and do some world building. I will work on character sketches, create a story board on Pinterest, a ‘Novel Bible’, and do a lot of brainstorming.

So, fellow writers, have you decided if you are taking part in NaNoWriMo? If so, do you have an inkling as to what you’re writing about, or still in “maybe I will just wing it” mode? Do tell! 🙂

NaNoWriMo hasn’t eaten my soul…yet!

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A big hello to everyone out there!! How are we all doing? If you are writing a novel this month, how goes it? And if you aren’t writing this month, what good things have you been reading? I need to make a list of books for the new year! (Even though I have 1.2 million novels on my book shelf I have to read…what makes me NEED more?!)

I have been taking part in Nanowrimo yet again this year. So far on day six, things are going pretty good. At least I think they are. I am trying really hard not to dwell on the EPIC CRAP I have written over the last six days because I know that inside it somewhere is a little nugget of goodness. (Fingers crossed it IS in there.)

In the first two days of the month I wrote over 10k. I was very happy with this, since I like to work with a little buffer. Yesterday I had a little situation pop up, so I was unable to focus properly. (All is good now though!) I just finished writing for the day, so I thought I would crank out a few more words and check in here. I am up to 16.806 words and feel my novel itself is coming along and developing well. I already had an idea for my beginning, middle and end before I had even started, so that does help. But I have been writing this novel much differently then in the past.

On day one I wrote the first two or three scenes and stalled. I realized that while I had some planning for my skeleton, the meat of the thing hadn’t been thought out as much as I had originally hoped. I had an “Oh Shit” moment. But I didn’t let that stop me. I began working on another scene, one that would take place in a few chapters into the novel.

And that trend continued. I wrote a few scenes, ones that didn’t connect, but then went back to fill in the gaps. I have done this in the past, but not to this extent. But my random scenes are now coming together and the story is filling out. Of coarse, there are a few scenes that are still looking very out of place, but in the days to come that problem will be solved.

One of the things that has kept me going through Nano now (and over the years) is the writing community, both online and in real life. So far I have been to two Nanowrimo events held in my area. Our first meet up was on Sunday, and Tuesday evening we had a two hour write in. (Bonus: Our Municipal Liaison brought chocolate. Yet another thing that keeps my brain going during the writing frenzy 😉 ) I love meeting fellow authors as well as getting together with friends. Everyone has been very friendly and supportive. It’s a great way to get inspiration and a kick in the pants if needed.

How is your word count going? Better yet, how is your novel coming along? Are you happy and still riding the wave of excitement, or are you debating on punching your computer (or notebook) in the face? If you are ahead of the game, good for you! Have a cookie. If you are behind, no worries! Have a cookie and keep going! 🙂