Tag Archives: writing challenge

Ideas needed for my story, please

Here I am posting again so soon. I have a good reason.

When I was waking up Thursday morning I was still working out a dream I’d been having. It was a story, one I was “writing” while sleeping!  I seem to have an editor who works at night!  This is not a story idea I’d been thinking about before I went to bed, I hadn’t thought of it until I was sleeping. Really! Isn’t that cool?

Here’s what I need from you, if you will kindly oblige me in a comment. 

If you have ever gone on a cruise or a theme vacation – or any vacation, for that matter – and something went wrong, I’d like to know about it. It could be funny, embarrassing (not personal or intimate details please), disastrous, jumbled up, maybe something went missing or you got lost, or you missed a connection, or had an accident of some kind. Please tell me about it. Maybe it is a vacation mishap a friend told you happened to them.

I already had a few ideas and some members of the writing group I’m in told me of some funny and inconvenient things they experienced. I am gathering as many anecdotes as I can so that I can sort through and maybe even combine a few. This is for a picture book so they have to be child friendly – and hopefully funny.

Thank you so much for any anecdotes you care to pass along to me.

Thanks for reading, and … Creative Musings! :)

 

 

a Question, ReFoReMo, and a Quiz: what is your dragon personality?

It seems as if you, my readers, like the quotes I’ve posted each day of February. My question to you is: would you like to read a quote here every few days through March? or also whenever I find some good ones? I’d find some to do with reading and writing, and likely occasions and seasons. Please let me know so I can get that set up.

As you know, I am involved in 12×12 in 2016. It is proving to be amazing, encouraging, and a little stressful with all that’s going on around me – but I am not giving up. It already is helping me see how to be better at writing picture books.  I’m now part of a six-person critique group through 12×12, and we’re conducting our sharing and critiquing via email.

To add to the fun, another challenge I’ve taken on is ReFoReMo – Reading For Research Month, created by Carrie Charlie Brown. A lot of 12×12 members are taking part in it because it complements 12×12 so well. It runs during the month of March,  but the reading and research can be for as long as you need it to be for you. Today I contacted my local library and gave them the list of over 100 books I am to read and study to improve my own picture book writing. It’s going to be a busy month! If you are interested in taking that challenge you have until March 1 to sign up, so hurry! :)

Topic change:  I like dragons.

My grandson is reading a series called Wings of Fire by Tui T. Sutherland. In fact, he recently finished book 8, the newest in the series, which is a fantastic accomplishment for a reluctant reader, and he’s now reading another series by this author. He likes the Wings of Fire books so much he wanted me to read them because he knows I like dragons. He lent me book one and sometimes would ask me if I was to the part yet where … ?   :)  I finally was able to finish book one last month and had really enjoyed it, although it was written for the younger set. :)  Now he’s brought me book two to read, but because I’m involved in 12×12 in 2016 I might not get into that book for quite a while. I’ll have to try, though. 

Now for a quiz you might enjoy.  What is your dragon personality

It seems I am a Japanese dragon.  Here’s what it says: You are a Japanese dragon. Also called “Ryu,” Japanese dragons are well known for granting wishes to humans. They are wingless creatures who are often associated with water and weather. Like the Ryu you are very generous and will do everything in your power to assure that your loved ones are happy. You are adept at picking out just the right gift for every occasion and recipient. Your happy place likely involves a beach, and you love bold colors and lively music.

Which dragon personality are you?

Do you want me to post quotes here daily? every few days?

Thanks for reading, and … Creative Musings! :)

 

 

 

 

PiBoIdMo — I won the challenge!

It’s December 1 already –

twenty-four days to Christmas.

December 1 –

the day after PiBoIdMo ended, and …

the first day of Post-PiBo.

Post-PiBo is the week after the inspirational Picture Book Idea Month (brain child of Tara Lazar), the week when daily guests post encouraging and helpful advice on how to proceed with all our ideas gleaned in thirty days.

Yesterday, November 30, was the last day of the 30-day challenge to write a picture book idea each day – any idea that could be used in creating a picture book. This was my fifth year of taking on PiBoIdMo and it is my most creative to date. I’ve completed (won) in the other four years I’ve done this, but this year? This year I surprised myself. On day 17 I already had 30 ideas! By the end of day 30, the final day of the challenge, I completed with 65 – yes! 65! – ideas. 

Here’s my badge to prove it.

piboidmo2015winner

Yessiree … I’m doing my happy dance! 

the-seinfeld-happy-dance

Not quite like that but you get my point.

Actually, if when even one of my ideas is developed into a picture book and makes it to being published, the above will be even less of the happy dance I’ll be doing. You can be sure of that.  :)  Perhaps you will join me? 

One year I won one of the prizes given out at the end. It was a cute caricature of me, based on the illustrator’s insect characters. I may show you sometime what he sent me. I think it’s meant to be a combination of a firefly and a mosquito – or a misinterpretation of a firefly.

Tara Lazar does an amazing job of putting together six weeks of inspiration for writers of all skill levels and experience. She is a published picture book author herself, having written The Monstore which I reviewed hereLittle Red Gliding Hood, I Thought This Was a Bear Book, and Normal Norman.  She has two more picture books coming out in 2016. I urge you to buy, borrow, and for sure .. read and share .. her books.

Right now I am happy and feeling a little proud of myself for managing to go beyond what I’ve done before. This time I will complete manuscripts.

What or who inspires you? What challenges helped you to go beyond what you thought you could do?

Thanks for reading, and … Creative Musings!:)

I’m participating in NaNoWriMo and PiBoIdMo 2013!

November is again a busy writing month for me. I signed up for National Novel Writing Month for my fourth year, and Picture Book Idea Month for my third year – having passed on it in 2012. I am going to make an honest attempt to do both again even though my life situation (caregiving) has not changed.

3886950-fountain-pen-writing-paper-with-black-inkAfter midnight last night a thought came into my mind, then an idea was taking shape, then the thought became the title, and before I went to bed I had a rough ‘rough draft’ of a story for a picture book. Day one accomplished for PiBoIdMo!

Not so for NaNoWriMo, I regret to say, as I have not written a word there yet. I am still writing the novel I began in NaNo 2010, since I’ve worked on it only during the last three Novembers. My word count is a combined total of 123,900 – give or take a few words. When I stopped near midnight of November 30’12 it was at a place one would call a “cliffhanger”, and was a bit exasperating to my sister who read it all after NaNo had ended last year. ;)  She was not happy with where I stopped and told me emphatically I had to finish the story! Even I am not sure what is going to happen next, but my characters will gradually let me know when I get into it again … which should have been today, but that’s not happening!

If you are asking, ” What is she talking about?!” I will briefly explain.

NaNoWriMo – or National Novel Writing Month – is the worldwide challenge to write a novel (really a novella) of 50,000 words in 30 days. You have to start with a fresh idea to ‘win’, but there are many who are NaNo Rebels, which is perfectly fine, too. I won (reached the goal of 50k) the first year but the next two years I participated as a Rebel in order to add to the novel I had begun and want to finish. This year I am doing the same.

If you are interested in checking out NaNoWriMo, click here. If you are taking part in it this year, let me know if you want a buddy.

PiBoIdMo – or Picture Book Idea Month – is the brainchild of Tara Lazar which she started in 2009. It is quickly becoming the widely known challenge to write a picture book idea a day during the 30 days of November. It’s for those writers who don’t want to take on creating a novel but would enjoy participating in a book writing challenge. Some of us do both.:) Each day you write something … anything … a title, the name of a character, an idea for a story, or even a whole draft if it works out for you, so at the end you should have at least 30 ideas for picture books! Cool, huh? I think so! Oh, and there are super guest posts, lots of writing genius shared, and even prizes! I love that I end up with so many ideas for PB’s, even if I ‘win’ nothing. It is sort of like a conference but with so much added.

If you are interested in signing up for – or checking out – PiBoIdMo, click here. Registration closes SOON, so hurry!

Now I must create a new page for my NaNo updates so if you want to keep track of what I am managing to do you can read it there. Click on the NaNoWriMo updates (2013) link at the top of the page. Besides, if you want to cheer me on, Heaven knows I need it!:) It may be crazy for me to be taking this on since I am behind in reading, reviewing, interviewing, but sometimes I need a change of pace to get refreshed and inspired anew. At least, I hope that’s what will happen!:)

Are you participating in either of the above challenges?

Thanks for reading, and … Creative Musings! :)

NaNoWriMo is over. Did I win? You tell me

Wow! Here it is December 1 which means National Novel Writing Month has just ended for another year. After this month I believe myself – even more – to be a writer. Why?

The goal for the challenge is 50,000 words in the month of November. My personal goal was to finish my novel – the novel I have written only during NaNoWriMo. I started it in 2010, added to it in 2011, and planned to finish it this time. (You can check my progress, if you are interested, through each one of my pages called NaNoWriMo Updates 2010, 2011, 2012)

I have an accumulated word total of over 123,000 words through those three Novembers, every word written by hand. No editing has been done yet so there are whole sections which will be taken out or changed or added to in some way. Someday.

The cold truth is … I did not make the 50K mark. I tried hard to do it. My hand is so sore and was getting cramped by the time the clock reached 11:59 and I had to stop writing to post my final word count — of 41487 — before the stroke of midnight. (I managed to write 9750 words today.) Once midnight arrived the clock stopped in the NaNoWriMo stats chart. It now reads: Event Finished, where all through the month it had shown the number of words written that day, which day it was in the event, and how many writing days were remaining in the challenge.

polilla-lynn stats

Another thing is that my first goal was to finish my novel this time, second was to reach 50K. I did neither, although I wrote 82% of the 50K, and I am so close to the end of this story.

polilla-lynn,wc,pc,days

Am I disappointed? A little. I believe that if I had been able to ignore things, such as normal life stuff and responsibilities (although I tried to), I could have finished this novel.  ;)  Now maybe I can cook a decent meal for my dear husband, although I usually don’t have writing to blame for my not-so-great results in the kitchen. Oh, and my internet connection dropped today, so the repairman came by to fix that for me. It is working fine now, yay!, but that was another time stealer – although I am not complaining about that. I am truly grateful for my Internet service.

The worst culprit for stealing time is ME, though. The times I could have been writing, but other things took priority; the times I had nothing coming to me at all; the times I just didn’t feel like writing. So now I still have an unfinished novel. But you know, that is okay too, because I can work away at it at my own pace now without a clock. That might not work in my favour, but that is something I will have to find out.

As I said at the beginning, now I believe myself to be a writer even more than I did before. One big reason is because when I am writing in the NaNo challenge the story practically tells itself to me. Sometimes things I write I wonder about, but later it all ties together; it makes sense as I go along. I find it to be an amazing process. And I enjoy it!

Thank you for your interest in following along as I attempted the National Novel Writing Month challenge again. I appreciate your support.

NaNoWriMo is over. Did I win? You tell me. :)

Thanks for reading, and … Creative Musings! :)

 

 

 

 

 

One NaNoWriMo day left! I think I can, I think I can …

Here it is down to the wire. One day left in National Novel Writing Month. ONE DAY!

I do not have 48343 words written, which is the total suggested for the 29th day in the challenge. What I do have is 31737 words captured. Yes, I am way behind, but in looking at what I managed last year I am ahead. In 2011 at the close of the 29th day I had 24133 words.

In checking over my progress in 2010 and 2011, I see that the most words I added to my total in one day was 8017. That was last year on the last day when I was making a valiant attempt to get closer to the goal. This year I have to write 18263 words on day 30 to have accomplished a win at 50000 words! 

I think I can, I think I can …

That’s if I need that many to finish this novel. I really don’t know even yet. I can probably stretch it out, make it longer that way, if I have time to do it. There is much that I can play with later in pulling the story together during editing to make it really work. The main thing is to finish this novel! As I have said before, that is my main goal, secondary being a NaNo win of 50K words.

As I am nearing the end of NaNo I am also gaining ground in pulling together some threads that will bring this story to an end. I just hope it can be sorted out later, because in writing it this way there are conflicting statements and unintentionally duplicated scenes that have to be fixed. But, that’s for later. For now I have a story to write.

First things first — I am about to catch some zzzzz’s and then in the morning – Day 30 – I will start writing again, because …  I am going to finish this novel! That is the plan, anyway.:)

How do you do with your deadlines? Do you write better under pressure or do you need lots of time to get there?

Thanks for reading, and … Creative Musings! :)

NaNoWriMo’s nearly over! Can I complete the challenge?

Another day has ended, a day of little writing for me. I simply was stuck … no words sprawled themselves over my paper (remember, I write longhand) until late in the evening. Not a good sign.

Here is it November 25 already and I have not made it to the halfway point yet in my NaNo Novel writing for this year. My word count stands at 43%. This does not look good for me.

Let’s see now … comparing my totals at this stage of the NaNoWriMo challenge, by the end of DAY 24:

  • in 2010 I had written 32,179 words
  • in 2011 I had written 8,722 words
  • in 2012 I have written 21,651 words

Looking at it this way, I could make it! If I take the next six days and write like crazy, that is. Six days to go to midnight of November 30.

(And I am grateful!)

My goal is to find the end of this novel by then, too, so my questions to you are:

Do you think I can write 50,000 words by the deadline?

If you think I can, do you think I will?

And, do you think I will finish writing my novel in this challenge?

Let me know your opinion about this. Send me a little encouragement if you want, I can use it! :)

Thanks for reading, and … Creative Musings! :)