Thursday, August 30, 2012

Reflections on my #CampNaNoWriMo Experience

It's official, the August CampNaNoWriMo is over - finished - complete - done - fini - over and completely done with! I survived but did I finish? And what did I learn? What would I do differently? What would I do the same way? Here are my reflections and thoughts on the experience.

  1. I'd always known that I work better to a deadline and this opportunity proved no different. I physically wrote in nineteen days (not all consecutive, life does still go on) when I hit my 50k.
  2. I found that I did much better at pantsing than I would have ever thought. I really enjoyed letting the characters and how I felt or thought at the time influence what I was writing.
  3. That said, I found it was critical for me to keep a running timeline in a text file. It helped me keep track of the days and what was happening, that way nothing fell through the cracks (I hope).
  4. I started with Scrivener and Dropbox for syncing files between my two computers. That was dropped quickly because of the lack of Internet access at home. I ended up using a 64GB flash drive to store and transfer any new files from computer to computer.
  5. I used text files for each chapter as well as one long running version of everything (backup purposes). I absolutely love the word editor program, Jarte. It let me have plain text files for my writing but rich text files for my characters. I found a photo for each person in the book and added background information as needed. Dates were a big thing since the timeline was important to the mystery.
  6. I write better when I am not at home, too many distractions and interruptions. About 75% of my writing was done at McDonald's, the rest at home. I have less shoulder pain from writing at home, nestled on the reclining loveseat, than I do at McD's, sitting in a booth or at a table. My left shoulder gave me fits, I know it was the typing height.
  7. I made the right decision in getting my Samsung Series 9 Ultra-notebook. The size and weight (or lack of) made it perfect for long stretches of writing. The portability is amazing. The only downside is that I was unable to ever get it to talk to the free Wi-Fi at McD's. No idea why, no web searches were any help. Just would not connect even though it saw the networks. Thank goodness for my aircard.
  8. Why McD's and an aircard? I discovered that I really need Internet access when writing. I end up with research needs popping up unexpectedly, a real frustration when I was at home with almost no signal for the aircard. (We now have DSL...whoo-hoo!)
  9. I tried three different cabins during Camp and never found a good mix for me. I used a Facebook Group for support and that worked out the best. I think the camp needs a regular forum or bulletin board, more like a campfire. I haven't found many folks that used the cabin approach successfully.
  10. Would I do it again? Absolutely and I may seriously consider doing it in November which is the BIG NaNoWriMo month. We'll be in Tennessee and there is a NaNoWriMo chapter in neighboring Cookeville.

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Quote Challenge – Day Fifteen

Your favorite quote.

I had no problem with this one, ever since I first read it, I knew it was for me. Life is too it!
"I want to be an outrageous old woman who never gets called an old lady. I want to get leaner & meaner, sharp edged & earth colored till I fade away from pure joy." ~ unknown
This is your last chance, day 15, post your favorite quote or a link to your blog or anything else you want. In another week I should be back in Internet range and posting on a more regular schedule. I hope you enjoyed this quote challenge.

PS. Tomorrow is the last day of Camp NaNoWriMo. Wish me luck in hitting my 50k word target!

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Letting the adrenaline high abate....

Well, I did it. I wrote 50k words in a month, or to be more exact I wrote 50k words in nineteen days. I got my validation from Camp NaNoWriMo on Sunday. It was exhilarating and exhausting and the novel still isn't completely written. I think there is still another 10-15k before the first draft is done.

Then comes the fun, I figure with one month to write it, I'll spend three months in the editing/proofing of it. A lot of work ahead but my goal is to get it published on Amazon sometime in November. Phew!

My time is still not all my own. Like today, I'm not really here at home writing this blog. No, I'm off to pick up my motorcycle - two new tires. Of course that means I need to ride a bit. Then tomorrow I work on what we call de-oozing. When your RV is parked for a while, things sort of ooze out of place and have to be put back before you can move.

Friday we're moving, headed from our property in TN to an RV Rally in OH. Those five days will be filled with friends, seminars, eating, laughing and lots more...not much writing time at all. After that we'll move up to Elkhart, IN for a couple of weeks. I'll have more writing time...finally...while we wait to get some repairs done.

So in the meantime, I'll just continue to let my Camp NaNoWriMo adrenaline rush abate a bit. It's going to take a while to get back into the old daily routine - emails, Facebook, Twitter, blog reading, blog writing, and so on. Bear with me!

Monday, August 27, 2012

Quote Challenge – Day Fourteen

A quote about something you love.

Besides my large extended family, I have two major passions: writing and motorcycle riding. So I decided to chose a quote that applies to both of them as well as life in general.
"A journey is like marriage. The certain way to be wrong is to think you control it." ~ John Steinbeck
What is your passion? Do you have a quote that expresses how you feel about it? Jot it in the comment box or if you're running through the 15 days with me, leave a link to your blog.

Sunday, August 26, 2012

EIGHT Award Winning books - Get all for under $8

Readers! Eight award winners in the 2012 eFestival of Words "Best of the Independent eBook Awards" have grouped together to offer you an amazing opportunity. They've reduced the prices of their award-winning novels to 99 cents for August 27 and 28th!

Whether you like to read mysteries, romance, horror, young adult, women's fiction, or fantasy, this group has it. Are you a writer yourself? Do you want to learn all about digitally publishing your next masterpiece? They've got you covered there too.

Get all eight award-winning ebooks for the price of one single paperback!

Award Winners:
Best Mystery/Suspense: Dead is the New Black by Christine DeMaio-Rice
Best Non-Fiction: DIY/Self-Help: Let's Get Digital by David Gaughran
Best Horror: 61 A.D. by David McAfee
Best Romance: Deadly Obsession by Kristine Cayne
Best Young Adult: The Book of Lost Souls by Michelle Muto
Best Fantasy/Urban Fantasy and Best NovelThe Black God's War by Moses Siregar III
Best Chick Lit/Women's LitCarpe Bead'em by Tonya Kappes
Award for Best Twist ("I've Been Shyamalaned"): The Survival of Thomas Ford by John A.A. Logan

Here's a one-stop shopping link for your convenience:

Happy reading!

Thank you to Tonya Kappes for her guest post today.

Saturday, August 25, 2012

Quote Challenge – Day Thirteen

A quote about cats.

I got a giggle when I read this one. I know there are dog people and cat people and even some that love both. But this quote captures the essence of the differences...and from one of my favorite authors.

"Women and cats will do as they please, and men and dogs should relax and get used to the idea." ~ Robert A. Heinlein
Are you a cat person? Even if you're not, I'll be you've got a quote in the back of your mind about cats. Love to hear it...drop it in the comment box or post a link to your blog if that's where it is.

Thursday, August 23, 2012

Quote Challenge – Day Twelve

A quote about friendship.

Wait, didn't I just do a quote about friendship? Oh, that was about love. Okay, time for a favorite friendship quote. I thought this one quite interesting, what about you? Oh, and don't forget to drop your thoughts and quotes in the comment box below!

"Eros will have naked bodies; Friendship naked personalities." ~ C. S. Lewis

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Quote Challenge – Day Eleven

A quote about love.

Love, the great, that's not my quote, just my meandering mind. There are a gazillion or maybe a bazillion quotes about love but there is one that I "love". There is so much truth in this one....

"Love is friendship set on fire." ~ Jeremy Taylor

Feel free to chose your favorite of the gazillion, bazillion quotes about love and post it in the comments below. If you've been doing your own quote challenge, just post a link to your blog.

Quick update from Camp NaNoWriMo

I now have DSL on our property. WOOT!!! Means I can write from home, no more McDonald' least not as a requirement for interner. LOL!

Oh, the book is coming along, too. Should hit my goal of 50k in plenty of time to qualify as a winner at Camp NaNoWriMo. Then the hard work starts....editing. ;-)

You can see that I have been staying pretty much on the necessary daily average. I've written on 15 actual days for a current total of 35,490 words. Today was a really slack day, had insomnia last night so napped off and on all day. Tomorrow will be a better day.

So what have I learned so far? I learned that I can write without an outline but I do need to keep a running timeline from the first sentence. Otherwise I lose track of what happened on what day. I also need to keep notes of things to not forget - don't want to leave any characters hanging.

I've added a dead body, arson, a surprise visit from an ex-fiance, a pregnant teen and more. Oh, and I already figured out the dead body for the next book as well as the title. Yup, definitely having fun. Maybe I'm more of a pantser than I thought.

I appreciate those who have continued to stop by and read my pre-scheduled blog posts as well as leaving their favorite quotes. Thank you!

Sunday, August 19, 2012

Quote Challenge – Day Ten

A well-known quote.

I have two favorite well known quotes so I'm breaking the rules again. (Hey, this is MY sandbox...) I hope you'll take a minute and comment with a well known quote you like. Just drop it in the comments or if you've been tackling the challenge along side me, drop a link to your blog.

"It takes courage to grow up and become who you really are." ~ e. e. cummings 
"How old would you be if you didn't know how old you were?" ~ Satchel Paige 

Friday, August 17, 2012

Quote Challenge – Day Nine

A quote from someone you know personally.

I'm thinking this doesn't have to be someone famous, just someone we know personally. I spent some time going through all the quotes and phrases of my extended family and wide range of friends. What I ended up with was a quote from my almost six year old grandson while we were observing the birthday of an aunt in her early 40's. Enjoy!

" You still look too young to be aged up" ~ Joshua Yeaw, age 6

Got a good quote from someone you know personally? Drop it in the comment box for all to enjoy.

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Quote Challenge – Day Eight

A stupid quote.

Hmmm, a stupid quote. Stupid may be in the mind of the reader so I decided to not take this one quite so literally as you will see. You take it any way you want is a challenge after all. Feel free to post a "stupid" quote in the comments or if you're partaking of the challenge on your blog, leave a link to it.
"We are all born ignorant, but one must work hard to remain stupid." ~ Benjamin Franklin

Monday, August 13, 2012

Quote Challenge – Day Seven

A quote you disagree with.

Research, can you say research! I had to hunt for this one because I don't save quotes that I don't agree with, well, unless they are humorous like the Demotivation quotes (always good for a laugh). I have to admit that I was a bit shocked by this quote, maybe it was more a sign of the time she lived in.
"A large income is the best recipe for happiness I ever heard of." ~ Jane Austen

Saturday, August 11, 2012

Quote Challenge – Day Six

A quote from a song.

Oh my, so many songs to choose from. I went with my ringtone song, one that always makes me smile. Thanks go out to Travis Tritt for singing and Darrell Scott for writing, "It's a Great Day to be Alive".
And it's a great day to be alive 
I know the sun's still shinin when I close my eyes 
There's some hard times in the neigborhood 
But why can't every day be just this good?
Yes, this is a hard one but I hope you'll leave a comment with a quote from one of your favorite songs or at least a link to your blog if you've joined in the quote fun this month.

Thursday, August 9, 2012

Quote Challenge – Day Five

 A short quote.

This one should be easy, right? Wrong - what is short? One word, two, three? Egad. I could go with the well known quote:
Be obscure clearly. –E.B. White
But I decided to dig a little deeper for this one:
“Be yourself – everyone else is taken.” ~ Anonymous.
What's your favorite short quote? Post it in the comments or leave a link to your blog if you're playing along.

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Quote Challenge – Day Four

A quote that makes you laugh.
Now this is one I like, I subscribe to the Humorous Quote of the Day and often find good quotes to say. Today's favorite only took a little digging. Since this is a writing blog, I stuck with a quote about writing.

“I just sit at a typewriter and curse a bit.” ~ P. G. Wodehouse

Sunday, August 5, 2012

Quote Challenge – Day Three

A quote from your favorite book. 

Another tough one since once again I have more than one favorite. This time I'm bending the rules and I'm going with a movie quote. The movie was based on the Stephen King novella "Rita Hayworth and Shawshank Redemption". Can you pick just one favorite book with a quote you love? If so, feel free to post it in the comments or post a link to your blog if you're playing along.

"Get Busy Living or Get Busy Dying" ~ Andy Dufresne, "The Shawshank Redemption"

Friday, August 3, 2012

Quote Challenge – Day Two

A quote from a favorite writer.

I have a lot of favorite writers so it took a little time to find my favorite quote from a favorite writer. I'll be interested in what YOUR favorite is, so feel free to post it in the comments (or a blog link if you are playing along).

"In three words I can sum up everything I've learned about life: it goes on." ~ Robert Frost

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Quote Challenge – Day One

A quote that describes you.

This was actually tougher than I thought, I have several favorite quotes and found myself hard pressed to choose just one. So I didn’t….LOL. I hope you'll post a quote about YOU in the comments, or if you're playing along post a link to your blog.

The first is MY quote, written in a public forum shortly before I went full-time RVing. It still stands as true.
"I refuse to sit around waiting for the perfect tomorrow, I'll continue to enjoy my imperfect todays." ~ Donna Yeaw McNicol  6/2007
The second comes from my other passion, motorcycle riding.
"I may be lost, but since I'm riding, I don't care!"  ~ unknown

The Summer Splash Blog Hop Winners Announced

First, thank you for joining in the Summer Splash Blog Hop. I had over 170 entries in a week, pretty good for a newer blog. I really appreciate you spreading the word as well. I hope you had fun and I hope you found some other good blogs to follow.

Here are the winners, please join me in congratulating them on their wins.
Dream Bracelet - Michelle Bledsoe 
$25 Amazon Gift Card - Loretta
$10 Amazon Gift Card - Betty Barnes
eBooks Set of Five - Tobi Hoffler Helton 
eBooks Pick One - Lynda Dickson 
eBooks Pick One - Lyric James 
Books Pick One - Kathy Detweiler 
eBooks Pick One - Karen A Einsel 
eBooks Pick One -Catrina Barton 

So now I'm heading back into Camp NaNoWriMo mode...see you in a month!