Monday, October 29, 2012

It's official, I'm signed up for NaNoWriMo

It's official. I just signed up for NaNoWriMo. I've started adding buddies and now I'm blogging about it so it's really happening.

Even though I've participated and crossed the 50,000 word finish line three previous years I'm a little nervous this year.

But as wise people pointed out, what do I have to lose and making progress is better than making none and the best advice- This could be the year you fall in love with your NaNo novel.

I really, really, really want this one to work out. So I've been plotting. I'm writing ideas for scenes on notecards and some other ideas about character arc and things like that in a notebook.

Even though it is still just an idea I'm walking through Writing the Breakout Novel so I can keep these things in mind as I write.

Good things have happened for me in NaNos past even though I haven't loved the finished products.
My first NaNo I really fell in love with writing again and realized I could write a novel sized thing. I also realized that writing a novel sometimes leads to a picture book idea.

I'm hoping that this is really the year that I love my "finished" product.

Also thank you for the encouraging from RTW a couple weeks ago on this subject.

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

A Million Yesterdays

This is a non-writing related post. But it is something close to my heart.

Yesterday I cried for three hours.

In Minnesota we have a terrible marriage amendment on the ballot.

I’ve gotten involved with the campaign. It’s easy for me to talk about something I believe in. I’m spending time on the phones for those of my friends who are unable to do so because I want to be able to protect them from experiencing more discrimination in their lives.  Small discrimination from people on the other end of a phone and big discriminations from a state amendment that limits their freedom.

I spoke with a grandmother who had two LGBT grandchildren and who was voting Yes. I encouraged her to talk to her granddaughter and see how she feels about this amendment. The grandmother became angry and refused to talk to her grandchild. It broke my heart to think of a parent or grandparent having the power to protect the rights of their child or grandchild and not protecting those rights. The impact of how hurtful this amendment is hit me so hard that I cried at the office and I am not an overly emotional person. Not an openly crying in front of strangers type person.

Yesterday was the worst day of the campaign for me. But I would rather take a million yesterdays than to have people I care about wake up in a world of hate.

This amendment breaks my heart because if it passes it has the potential to hurt people that I care about. It’s not only my LGBT friends that this hurts. This hurts their families, parents, loved ones. It hurts every person, gay or straight, who has made a phone call, hosted a house party, donated money, or gotten involved to make sure this amendment doesn’t pass.

Calling people I’m surprised at how many people are concerned about changing the “definition” of marriage. As if each and every marriage isn’t different and unique and special. Your marriage and the challenges you face are probably different from your neighbor's marriage. Each couple I know is unique. They each face their own joys and challenges in life but they face them together and with the support of friends and family. LGBT people are no different in this respect.

Voting No doesn’t change the law. Voting No doesn’t change the definition of marriage.  Voting No doesn’t take away religious freedom.

I love Minnesota and it’s hard to think that Minnesota could do something that could make me not love it, but to be honest if this amendment passes I won’t love my state and that thought terrifies me. 

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

RTW- To NaNo or not to NaNo, That is the Question

Road Trip Wednesday is a ‘Blog Carnival,’ where YA Highway's contributors post a weekly writing- or reading-related question that begs to be answered.

This Week's Topic is: Are you doing NaNoWriMo, or have you ever? Does having a deadline inspire you?

I've participated in NaNoWriMo three times and I love the energy of having a deadline. I love writing with other writers, connecting with other writers. I love that there are write-ins at area coffee shops. 

The thing I don't love is my finished NaNo projects. Yes, I've won NaNo three times but I've never been able to do anything with these convoluted collections of 50,000 words. The pressure of writing 1677 words a day makes me do crazy things. Like inserting song lyrics into my novel. The craziness of NaNo once had me writing a science fiction middle  grade novel even though I have no idea how to write a story that takes place of a space ship because I don't watch a lot of TV that takes place on spaceships.

I'm a slow writer

All that considered I'm still on the fence for this November. I love the energy and the deadline but I so far haven't loved my finished product. 

Anyone else NaNoing? Convincing arguments for either side?

Thursday, October 11, 2012

Writing book recommendation

Have you ever had an experience where you read a book or listen to an album and you know that you won't be the same person you were before you listened to or read it?

I feel that way about this book. I'm pretty sure after reading and re-reading this book I won't be the same writer I was before I found it.

I found this book earlier this summer and I've basically been reading it ever since. Sometimes I skip around picking an essay with a title that stirs my interest. Other times I read the shortest essay because that is what I have time for.

The best thing about this book is the excitement Bradbury has for writing. He doesn't spend much time talking about writers block and rejection. He talks about telling stories and how exciting writing is.

It might be hard to find but if you see it at a used bookstore or garage sale or whatever buy a copy.

Zen in the Art of Writing

I've read this book twice since I got it earlier this summer and I'll probably read it again.  Since reading this book I've been more excited to write. I ask myself "Am I approaching the page with as much excitement as Bradbury did?"

Wednesday, October 03, 2012

Loving Fall

I normally do Road Trip Wednesday on Wednesdays but I am an currently too much in love with fall to talk about anything else. So here's a list of things I love about fall

1. Pumpkin flavored thing. These have no place in August but I've spent the last two days on a search for something pumpkin flavored for my gluten free taste buds.

2. How have I forgotten that fall was so beautiful? Has it always been this pretty or is this fall just especially pretty?

3. Boots. Not snow boots but cowboy boots and frye boots that are really perfectly suited for the fall. Not winter when they get all icky and salty.

4. Sweaters and sweatshirts.

5. Temps in the 50s 60s and low 70s.

6. Last trips of the season to my favorite outdoor eating places like Tin Fish and Sea Salt.

7. Writing. Writing was my port in this busy sea of summer that was the summer of 2012. Excited to see what things I'll write this fall.

8. Theater. We are in full swing with a festival of plays at work. I'm excited for this new season. New stories to tell, new friends to make and old friends to catch up with.