NaNoWriMo: Day 13 (81,953)
NaNoWriMo / November 13, 2016

I finally got my mojo back (or rested up enough) to get some serious wordage in yesterday. It didn’t start off the best, though. First, I went to an in-person write-in because I’m trying to be social for this event and I no longer belong to a certain group that has provided all my social interaction without leaving the house. Also, the in-person event had pastries. But mostly social, really. When I got there and set up all the way, I discovered I was missing all 1k words from Friday. Now it was only 1k, but it was a hard 1k. I fought for that 1k. I bled (just a little) for that 1k. I searched all three backup locations. No 1k. Then I had a thought: what if it was still on the home computer under autosave? So I left the write-in, took a Pokémon Go detour, and then checked the home computer. Huzzah! All the words were there! And I had pastry, which was bonus. Then, finally, I got to writing, mixing it up with some offline stuff and quick bursts of exercise to combat the fluffy writer syndrome. I’m still not at epic levels, but I’m back…

NaNoWriMo: Day 10 (74,088)
NaNoWriMo / November 11, 2016

I slowed way down yesterday. Way down. Like, I hit the accelerator and was going 60, then I slammed on the brakes at the first light. At least I was wearing my seat belt. Yesterday was day 10, 1/3 of the way into the NaNoWriMo challenge. For those of you who are despairing that you still have 2/3’s of the challenge left to go, let me comfort you with knowledge of my distress: I am not done with high word counts until all six books have a first draft. I’m still on the second book. And today I start my newest day job, which will involve 11 hours of being on my feet with no access to a computer anywhere. Am I still gonna write? Of course. I’m taking the laptop and I’ll write during lunch. I’m going to write now, at 3:30 am, before I get in the car for my commute. Because, for me, it’s not about winning NaNoWriMo. I’ve done that. It’s about meeting my personal goals. So before you go another third through NaNoMonth, figure out what your personal goals are. Do you want the 50k win? More? Less? Maybe you just want to be sure…

NaNoWriMo: Day 10 (71,772)
NaNoWriMo / November 10, 2016

Why, oh why, did I decide to be Real when I did this year’s NaNo? My eyes hurt. My wrists/ hands/ fingers hurt. I have a niggling pain in my left elbow.  Yesterday I decided I was getting too fluffy, so I started amping up my exercise, so everything else hurts, too. This means you’re getting a short blog post today. If I added all my blog posts to my word count, I’d have another 5k. I could really use that additional 5k right now. So, here is what I have to say to inspire you: I wish I could say something classy and inspirational, but that just wouldn’t be [my] style. Pain heals. Chicks dig scars. Glory… lasts forever. – Shane Falco (aka Keanu Reeves), The Replacements I have no idea why I should care that baby birds like scars– and I don’t plan to get any while I’m writing. But the discomfort will pass. The tired will pass. When I’m finished, I will have glorious (and vomitous) words to edit. Words– and glory– last forever. So go out there today and make a little bit of forever. But scars are kind of gross, really, so make forever without…

NaNoWriMo: Day 9 (63,782 words)- BackUp Your Work!
NaNoWriMo / November 9, 2016

A Cautionary Poem We backup to our hard drive; We backup to our mail. We backup without thinking; We backup without fail. We backup to a DropBox Or similar device; We backup to a flash drive; We even backup twice. We send it to our family; We send it to our friends. They send restraining orders And then the fun begins. Unless you like retyping A thousand words or more Backup your words this instant I beg, beseech, implore. Backup when you’re done writing; Backup the in-between. Backup before web browsing; Backup your words, your dreams. If you forget to backup (And everybody does) Then post this short reminder Wherever you have cause. And now I’m off to backup My own words places three, And life will be less stressful If you backup like me. My computer had major issues yesterday. Major, won’t boot, issues. Fortunately, I had saved all my work for the day on a flash drive, so I wasn’t worried about losing my progress. Unfortunately, it limited how much I wrote for the day. Off to make up for the loss. Go back up your work, then get writing.

NaNoWriMo: Day 8 (59,787)- The Healthy Edition
NaNoWriMo / November 8, 2016

I kept running into that wall yesterday, so I finally cut myself a little slack. I went and played four miles of Pokémon and watched football (and was quite disappointed that only a couple of players seemed to use their feet) and went to bed early instead of obsessing about word counts. I’m behind… and that’s okay. When I committed myself to crazy word counts for this NaNoWriMo season, I promised I would also practice self-care. I wanted a real body– to be a Real Person– I was certainly going to take care of it. That’s harder than you would think when every instinct you have says to sit in the chair for 12-14 hours a day. But I have mostly been managing it, other than being a little behind on cardio exercise. It helped that I started with a plan: Every morning I get up, make a big cup of tea (I cheated once and had coffee instead and felt less hydrated all day). I take a probiotic, a multi-vitamin high on Omega-3s, and (because I’m a Figment trying to turn real), a special vitamin for skin, hair and nails. (You have no idea how funny you look without…

NaNoWriMo: Day 7 (55,802)
Motivation Monday , NaNoWriMo / November 7, 2016

I have run into a wall… and it wasn’t all friendly-like. Sundays are traditionally a recharge day for me, but it’s NaNo. Recharge means I wrote a little over 4k, finished up the cover and formatting for The Wicked Witch of Whatever, and hit the shiny “publish” button. Today, I don’t want to write. And this is honestly the thing that will separate me from the pack when it come to the long-term. Because I’m going to sit my rather fluffy butt in the chair and write anyway. I may grouse. I may kill off Eric in new and exciting ways. I may even deny the Bobian (and myself) ice cream. But I’m going to write. Take a chill pill, those of you who just went all full-defensive.  There’s no judgement in this. The only writer I get to judge is myself. But I want to be a full-time Writer. (I also want to be a Real Person, but that’s a different blog post.) Are there writers who manage a good living without writing when they don’t want to? Absolutely. But there are more who make themselves write when they don’t want to, because the road to success isn’t paved…

NaNoWriMo: Day 4 Pep Talk
NaNoWriMo / November 4, 2016

I’ve had a few writers tell me that my word count intimidates them (although I know others who have even higher totals). That made me think: is trying to achieve a high word count actually hurting someone else’s journey? No. I finally settled on no. We’re not all running the same race here. Some of you are brand new writers, trying out this adventure for the first time. Some of you just do it for fun. And some of us, well, we write every single day and need to hit milestones in order to make deadlines. Since I’m already using a running analogy, let’s take it a step further. When kids are young, they to love to race just for the fun of it. We cheer for them even though we could beat them every time– walking. They are doing great for where they are at. I don’t run competitively anymore, but I like to get out and run just for the fun of it. I still set myself a goal, like “under ten minute per mile” or something, but if I don’t hit it, it doesn’t stop me from enjoying the run. I’m there for the exercise and the enjoyment. On the other hand, I follow Sara…

NaNoWriMo: Day 3
NaNoWriMo / November 3, 2016

I am just shy of halfway to finishing official NaNo: 24,718 words. I was going to try for the extra 300-ish words last night, but I was completely out of juice. I had managed a one-hour walk out in the cold and rain as well as attended my first write-in.  I’m working hard on my NaNoBingo card; as soon as I have a win, I’ll post a picture of it here. I’m going for a blackout, but we’ll see. Maybe one kind of over-achieving is enough. (Nah!) Today, I’ll be starting out with this word crawl to get my blood flowing (as if situps, pull-backs, and toe taps weren’t enough) and this awesome music played on listenonrepeat.com. I may choose a different song from this CD for each day in this book. Which reminds me (in an oblique way): I think I might put together my own Captain America: Civil War word crawl. I think it would be fun and I don’t see one out there (although maybe I just haven’t looked hard enough because I want to do one. Also, the goal today is to beat yesterday’s word count, so at least 13k in the books by bedtime. There’s…

Monday Motivation: #BeTheLight
Motivation Monday / July 11, 2016

I’m a humor writer. This means I’m funny, all the time, upbeat, and smiling. Wrong. I’m a humor writer. This means I use humor to deal with the tougher things in life, whether it’s the pain of watching someone decline from Alzheimer’s or tough topics like divorce, abuse, and bullying. It means humor is my triage for life. Unfortunately, there’s been a lot of real life stuff lately and I seem to have lost my ride back to the Figments world (who closed that plot hole?). That makes writing humor harder– and more necessary– than ever. You would think a humor writer would always have jokes on the tip of his tongue, but I’m a terrible joke teller. Two Figments walk into a bar. One ends up with an en-dash; the other an em-dash. Not very funny. My humor tends to be from life. But we need more humor out there, so I’m going to ask for your help. On 7/14 (that’s Thursday, for those who do dates flipped around as 14July), spread humor on social media. Funny cat videos (because who doesn’t like laughing at cats when they use up one of their nine lives?), personal anecdotes, or just…

Why on Wednesday: Why Are YOU Writing?

There’s a crazy notion out there right now that everyone should publish a book. I’d like to break this down logically, but I’m a Figment, so I’ll break it down Figment-logically: Everyone should birth a baby. Yeah, that makes sense. Those who can’t birth a baby (men, women with fertility issues, small children, the elderly, aliens, and animals), those who don’t want to birth a baby, and those who shouldn’t birth a baby makes a pretty compelling argument against this. The same thing goes for book publishing: some can’t (lack of skills, finances, commitment, etc.); some don’t want to (which is perfectly valid); and some simply shouldn’t (I’ve read a few published “books” I wish hadn’t been published because… ugh). Everyone should sell a piece of art/ craft work. Really? Because not everyone will ever be good enough to sell something. Everyone should become a rocket scientist/ brain surgeon/ marathoner/ concert pianist.  All ridiculous, right? I am not saying people shouldn’t write. Everyone should write. Anyone who wants to should write a book. Hurrah! I’m also not saying we should stop anyone from writing a book or publishing it. But there’s a big push out there to get everyone to publish a…