NaNoWriMo Day 16

The Words: 643 written today.

I was at work for 8 hours today, which was at least 3 hours longer than I expected to be there. By the time I got home around 9, I hadn’t eaten anything all day, I had about another hour of work ahead of me that needed to be done tonight, and I have to get up early for other work tomorrow.

I am happy to have written at all!

The Story: I managed to figure out how to continue the fight scene that began to make a little more sense in my mind. I got right to the point where Nathan had to decide if he could kill Vin, even as Vin was about to kill him.

Total word count: 60,209

Don’t forget to check out today’s NaNoToons if you haven’t already: 2017 – November 16th

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NaNoWriMo Day 15

The Words: 1869 written today.

The climax to this story has been in my head for years, but always in this nebulous form where the heroes confront the bad man, defeat him, and then march triumphantly home. Now that it’s more than that–that the “bad guy” is more than a simple villain, I need it to be more than just, “they fight and the good guys prevail.”

But I’m struggling with how much of the fighting I need to show. I really dreaded picking back up where I left off yesterday. So I’m stalling. I wrote all 1869 words on my Neo, writing letters from Vin.

And now I can’t find the cable that connects the Neo to the computer. It’s a good thing the Neo has a word count feature built in.

The Story: I wrote 2 letters from Vin to the pastor today, and no other story. The second letter was pretty long. It turned into Vin explaining a bit more of his overall plan, after his entire purpose of coming to this place was a failure. But he’s confident that he will get another chance at it (and with good reason to be), so he still expects his overall plans to happen someday.

His overall plans are pretty much to be the next Jesus, by the way, but with his own agenda at the forefront.

Total word count: 59,377

Don’t forget to check out today’s NaNoToons if you haven’t already: 2017 – November 15th

NaNoWriMo Day 14

The Words: 1837 written today.

I got done with a #1k30min, for which I skipped past the talking my characters were doing, drawing out the scene before the climax, at least partly because I wasn’t absolutely certain who exactly was going to be part of the climax.

But I skipped by all of that and went straight to the climax, making a quick decision about who was going to be there. Then after that sprint, I realized something–my story is going to end way before the end of the month. I don’t want to be done that early.

I still have 5-6 letters from Vin to write, but if they’re like the others I’ve written, that will give me maybe up to 3-4000 words. And the climax might go on a bit, plus there’s the wrap-up. But it’s only the 14th. So I’m going to try to slow down. I’m not sure it’s any more fun to stop when I’m on a roll than it is to push myself to write a lot in a day, but I don’t want to run out of story on the 20th. Unlike 2015 when I had a 2nd story on the backburner that I started when the first novel ended on the 15th or 16th, I have no back-up plan this year. (Though I could fill the month in a bit with some written brainstorming, because I feel like I left a lot of this story unexplored.)

The Story: Nathan, Clark, and in a strange twist, Justin (the man I hadn’t even planned to be in this novel) headed to a hidden, underground lair to try to find Vin. They succeeded in finding him, and then he put most of his cards on the table. There was some discussion, as Nathan in particular tried to talk Vin into giving up his crusade.

But then they started fighting. Fight scenes have always been a problem for me. Add to that the fact that most of these people have grown past the limitations that their local region has placed on Power, and this fight scene could go just about anywhere. So I skipped it for now.

I summed up what would likely happen during the fighting, and then wrote a moment during which Vin had been subdued temporarily, and the others discussed what to do with him. Nathan wants to turn him in, but Clark doesn’t think any jail can hold him.

Unfortunately, I have made the good guys too strong, because I need them to feel that it is absolutely necessary to kill him. I may have to think about that issue.

Total word count: 57,702

Don’t forget to check out today’s NaNoToons if you haven’t already: 2017 – November 14th

NaNoWriMo Day 13

The Words: 2326 written today.

I got a very late start tonight, so I am happy to have written these words over the course of 2 sprints.

The Story: It’s a common thing for me during NaNoWriMo to have my characters spend too much time doing one activity that seems important, but sort of stretches on. That has happened in this story as the group of now 6 people are just reading and sorting through journals and other writings by Vin. There were a few revelations I thought needed to come up during this time, which is why it’s dragged on, but I’m hoping that when it comes time for editing, I can find a way to either shorten it or make it more interesting (or both).

They did find what they were looking for–an indication of where Vin might be hiding out. Now they’re discussing who should be the ones to confront him and why. (I’ll admit, for a long time, it’s always been Nathan and Clark alone who confronted him, but I’m also asking myself if that’s the best combination, and if so, why, besides simply because it works the most for the rest of the story.)

Total word count: 55,865

Don’t forget to check out today’s NaNoToons if you haven’t already: 2017 – November 13th

Also! This would be a good time to watch episode 3 of the NaNoMusical! I love the songs in this episode!!

NaNoWriMo Day 12

The Words: 1711 written today.

It seems to be common for me to write a lot less on the day after I reach 50,000 for the month. But that’s okay. I was determined to still make par, and I did. I had a long day away from the house, though, and I’m sleepy. I’m happy with my words today.

The Story: Clark and Cathy arrive where Penny and the others are. They explain briefly to Clark and Cathy about the journals and papers they’ve been going through, and then they work out a way for everyone to study and look for hints of Vin’s whereabouts.

Then Cathy finds some information that Vin was involved in a part of Nathan’s past that Nathan kept secret from all but his most trusted friends. Only it may have been a coincidence, because Vin didn’t necessarily know who he was back then. This will be the first time when the reader really finds out how much Vin has been up to (unless the letter he wrote to the pastor about this event comes into the book before this scene…I have no idea how that will all work out yet).

Total word count: 53,539

Don’t forget to check out today’s NaNoToons if you haven’t already: 2017 – November 12th

NaNoWriMo Day 11

The Words: 7810 written today.

I didn’t get started on writing until 3pm, partly because it was too easy to be lazy when kids were gone and the house was quiet. But Saturdays are the busiest day of the week at my job (escape room company), and while I was not working in-store today, as the director of operations, there is still a lot that goes on through a Saturday that I am involved with, even from home.

I had decided to try a reward system to get through a lot of words–1000 words written, half an hour of laziness, back and forth. That lasted through two or three sessions, and then I got distracted by work things. Then I did a #1k30min with @NaNoWordSprints, and the sprint leader challenged us to move forward or backward in time during our writing. I decided to use that time to write more of Vin’s letters, which are a different timeline than the rest of the story. That came out to 1800 words, and then I was one solid sprint away from 50k. I passed that mark at about 6:15pm!

I wrote a little more after dinner, but then decided it wasn’t a bad idea to stop after that, even though I had a solid 2 hours before midnight. It was a good day!

The Story: I wrote 6 letters from Vin to the pastor. Each of these letters represents an event in which Vin affected the grander story in some way, though 3 of the 6 today were smaller parts of one larger event. He has been a background antagonist in a few other books I’ve written or planned, and this is all of what he has done coming to light. He’s basically confessing all of this to the pastor as it happens. The pastor doesn’t know who he is.

Based on my timeline, there will be 5 more letters before the final one. So at least as it relates to Vin’s storyline, I am more than halfway through.

The main storyline took an interesting turn today. Nathan talks to the pastor who was unexpectedly at the church for just a minute or two, then returns to where Penny and the others are with the journals and papers he found in the locked room. They start to read through these writings and discuss how Vin could possibly know all that he knows.

Meanwhile, Cathy has been gone for a few hours, and we leave the others to follow her and see what she’s been doing. This was the 2nd large thing that came up during the writing that I was not anticipating at all. The inclusion of Justin in the story was the first thing. But I had never planned to follow Cathy, and had always expected it to be this big reveal when she showed back up with a certain person.

Here is where I admit that I am one of those people that is guilty of using the trope that “no one ever actually dies.” It’s not true that no one dies, but there are definitely a few faked deaths, or deaths that look real, and turn out not to be (like Rogan’s). There just happen to be 2 that turn up in this story, but to be fair, I’m pretty sure the reader will know that this one didn’t actually die in the book in which he appears to die. Hopefully that makes it less bad.

Cathy’s very close friend, a man named…let’s called him Clark…is living a few countries over, hiding out, after being presumed dead. He is probably the most powerful man in at least the union that Pithea is part of, but came across this power highly illegally. So he’s hiding from the people in charge of the Power. But Cathy knows that if they do manage to find Vin, they will need Clark’s help. It took absolutely no convincing for him to agree to help, even though it would mean revealing his secret to at least a few people (one of whom–Justin–was part of the unit that was trying to bring him in before he “died”).

Wow, this story is complicated. Not just this one, but the entire series of stories. It’s just too much to try to sum up…

Total word count: 51,828

Don’t forget to check out today’s NaNoToons if you haven’t already: 2017 – November 11th

NaNoWriMo Day 10

The Words: 3655 written today.

I didn’t get started until around 9:00 tonight, and not a single sprint wasn’t interrupted by someone wanting something. Most of it was work-related–communications between people at work, from my boss to those under me, happen any time from 9am until midnight, and are more prone to happening up until midnight on Friday and Saturday nights, which are our busy days. And my boss and I are working on a project that is nearing completion, but stalled, and he had some things about that he wanted to discuss. But I needed to get some writing in. So I wrote…and stopped to text…and wrote…and read an email between sprints.

Anyway, it obviously didn’t hurt my word count, but it’s just not as enjoyable.

I am less than 6000 words away from 50k. My husband has secured me an entire 12-hour period all to myself tomorrow (through no request of mine), so I have a feeling I will reach that mark tomorrow!

The Story: Yesterday I let my summary of what I’d written get a little long. I’m going to try not to do that in the future.

Nathan told the others about what he found in the locked room of the small house in Taellyn. This has led to some discussion about why those three are the ones that Vin was tracking. Justin, who has always been quite the thinker, began to theorize about what Vin has been up to this entire time. Basically, they are finding evidence that Vin knows that Penny is a connection between Nathan (her husband) and another man who had great Power of his own. Nathan and this other man, Alexander, together, might be able to stop Vin, even with all of the Power Vin has. Or at least, that’s what they think is the motivation behind all of this.

Right at the end of my writing today, Nathan went to retrieve the papers from the house. He had taken them to a church in Taellyn, where he works under a pastor who is a very good friend of his. He wasn’t expecting the pastor to be there, so he was surprised to find the much older gentleman in the building when he went back for the papers.

Total word count: 44,018

Don’t forget to check out today’s NaNoToons if you haven’t already: 2017 – November 10th

NaNoWriMo Day 9

The Words: 5402 written today.

I was done with work earlier than normal today (around 4pm), so I had a little extra time to write. However, because that doesn’t happen often, I also just wanted to do nothing productive. So I compromised with myself. I decided that if I wrote 1000 words, I could do whatever else I felt like until supper time.

Then during my normal evening writing time, I was really into the writing, so I got through quite a bit of it. When I validated my words and saw that I had passed 40k, and there’s still quite a bit of story left, I realized that I could pretty easily hit 100k this year.

The Story: First, that thousand words I wrote in the afternoon were on my Neo. For some reason, I have relegated the writing of Vin’s letters to the pastor to the Neo, and when I’m at the laptop using @NaNoWordSprints and Scrivener, I write about Penny, Rogan, and the others.

Though Vin’s letters are going to be spread throughout the novel, I have barely touched them. I think I’m still intimidated by Vin and his dark nature. I did do some on days 2 and 3, but I didn’t like how they came out. They were unnatural, like I was trying too hard (well, I was). The thing is, I had multiple conversations with Vin durng NaNoPrep time. I’m not afraid to say it anymore. The plot for this story was difficult to pin down, especially when it came to Vin’s motivations. So every time I got stuck, I would go to my Neo and have a chat with Vin. I’ve never worked this way before, but it worked like a charm!

So in a way, I had to cancel out the first letters I wrote from his perspective (not delete them, because they still count, but just decide they weren’t going to be used) and tell him to talk to the pastor the same way he’s been talking to me, telling me what he’s been up to. So I wrote 3 letters from him today, and they came out so much better.

The evening writing continued with yesterday’s conversation between Penny and Cathy, where Cathy told Penny she had an idea to help them with the super-powerful man that they are trying to find. Cathy abruptly leaves, saying she can’t explain yet, but to not let Nathan confront Vin if he does track him down.

Then Penny is left alone, knowing that she couldn’t fight off Vin if he came after her. So she goes in search of allies. She goes to find Ari, and comes across Rogan instead. Then the two of them enlist the aid of someone who I had not planned to include in this story at all. He’s a secondary character in “Pithea,” and someone I do have other long-term plans for, but I’m pretty sure that at the time of this story, he’s just doing nothing (nothing crucial to another story arc, that is–just living life). And in fact, bringing him into this story will probably end up working nicely as the springboard into those long-term plans, so this has turned out perfectly.

I brought him in because I was searching my mind for characters that were already in my story that can use the Power in a way that would get Penny to safety if Vin attacked. Justin was actually there the first time that Penny and Rogan encountered Vin, or at least his underling, so his name popped into my mind, and thus popped into Penny’s mouth. I kinda love how organic writing the first draft can be! Yes, I have an outline (very vague, and stops soon in the story), but even as a planner, the plot and characters usually take on a mind of their own during the first draft.

Anyway, right at the end of my writing today, Nathan came back, with some very interesting news about what he discovered in that locked room, but he didn’t get a chance to share it, because I was done for the night.

Total word count: 40,363

Don’t forget to check out today’s NaNoToons if you haven’t already: 2017 – November 9th

NaNoWriMo Day 8

The Words: 4369 written today.

My throat hurts really badly right now, but I haven’t developed a fever, achiness, or any other symptoms that often accompany a sore throat for me (other than a small headache that may or may not be related).

So I was able to plug away tonight, over the course of two different 2-hour sessions, to get a great word count. I’m still writing with @NaNoWordSprints on Twitter for most of my writing. It’s amazing what writing alongside others, with someone else setting the times, and then tweeting your word count afterward, can do for motivation and focus.

The Story: Things did pick up today. I’m done living in the past, watching past plots come to life through my characters’ words, and am moving on.

With a little thought and some luck, Nathan finds his way inside the locked room in the house that Rogan woke up in, and Nathan comes across a mountain of evidence that Vin was tracking Penny, Nathan himself, and another man who died some time in the last year. He has notes on all of their lives in some degree or another. And Nathan makes a possibly startling discovery.

Meanwhile, Penny meets with her best friend Cathy, and fills Cathy in on everything that’s going on, because, as her best friend, Cathy knows all about the way that Vin had stalked Penny in the past (though as Nathan has discovered, they had no idea just how much Vin stalked her).  Penny expresses her concern that if Nathan does manage to track Vin down, how will they stop him? None of them are powerful enough. Cathy tells Penny that she has an idea. And that’s where I stopped!

(I should note that in my story world, everyone has access to the Power, which is basically a form of magic. Vin has found a way to control more Power than he should be able to.)

Total word count: 34,961

Don’t forget to check out today’s NaNoToons if you haven’t already: 2017 – November 8th

NaNoWriMo Day 7

The Words: 2100 written today.

I am really happy to keep making par these last two days. I am so tired today. After being sick for a week right before November started, I have had a lingering cough since then. Today my throat started hurting again fresh. I may be getting sick again, but I really hope not. Tomorrow will hopefully tell me more.

The Story: I cut short the story that started causing me trouble yesterday, the one Penny was telling about the events that took place during my NaNoNovel in 2015. That novel is still unfinished, and its events are a mystery to me (pun intended), so Penny telling the story got a little difficult. So I just stopped, ignored any need for a transition, and went right to Nathan, who had gone back to the house that Rogan took them to, planning to stake it out.

Then I accidentally skipped ahead and allowed him to make some progress at that house a day early. So I set aside what I’d written about that in favor of him returning home for the night, with the belief that the bad guy doesn’t have a reason to return to that empty house.

Tomorrow, I anticipate the plot really getting going, as long as I’m well enough to write much.

Total word count: 30,592

Don’t forget to check out today’s NaNoToons if you haven’t already: “The game is a shoe!

And it’s time to share episode 2 of the NaNoMusical!