Wednesday, June 30, 2010

What I Should Have Done

Editing and revisions. Oh how I wish I knew then what I know now. Things would have gone smoother. Less caffeine induced comas, I'd have more of my hair and fewer sleepless nights.

This is what I will not do the next time I reach the wonderful 'The End' of a first draft.
  • Print it out to 'really see how long it is'.
  • Scribble all over it in red pen doing a line edit. (Yes, I did that. On my first novel, ever. Bad idea.)
  • Proclaim to the world that I've finished the first draft, caring family will ask to read it. You'll freak and realize it's not worthy.
  • Tell yourself you'll write those missing scenes later. (That's why I still had a missing scene in my third draft.)
This is the method I think will work for me:
  • Do take a break. At least stand up and stretch. 5 minutes or 5 days, I don't care. Take a break.
  • Read through. (Not sure on this one, might skip. We'll see.)
  • Break out the boards! (Also known as grids and post-its) You know you've been looking forward to this!
  • Fill and fix any plot holes/problems the boards show you. (You're allowed to fix grammar etc. errors as you go.)
  • Read through. (No skipping!) Take notes on any problems, etc.
  • Line-edit. Also time to send to a macro reader. Micro reader gets it after you finished your micro edit. (Might want to actually have crit partners by this point. Might be helpful ya know.)
  • Make any necessary changes. Repeat as needed.
  • Read through again while writing queries.
  • Queries away! (No stalling, get it out there!
We'll see how it goes. I have to finish the first draft, first of course. :D

Monday, June 28, 2010

Manic Mondays

WooHoo Moment!

We're leaving on a mini vacation today! This will be our first vacation that does not involve visiting family. Love my family, but everyone needs a break. :) We're headed to this nice little B&B in Fredericksburg. Should be awesome!

Mad at Myself Moment

I didn't finish Ivory like I wanted to. Positive spin, even though my husband is home, he sits and plays video games for hours. Hours I have been using to write. Yay! I just have to sit where he can talk to me and I can see the TV. He likes to show me when he gets certain achievements or does really well. My husband's a chatterbox.

Logical Moments (Talking to Myself!)

Get the spare room set up as a mini living room for the rest of the summer. It stays much cooler in there than in our living room. You don't want a $200 electric bill!

Finish Ivory so you can start your new novel silly! (I told myself I had to finish Ivory first.)

That's my manic Monday, how's yours going?

Monday, June 21, 2010

Final Push!

Five days. Five days until my husband is on vacation.

I will get Ivory done. I used to thrive under pressure, time to find out if I still do. :D

Just have to keep telling myself "You I can do it, so stop worrying and get to work!"

Progress as of Sunday Night

Done through old Chapter 13

Which is now new Chapter 6

Total words done: 13,732 (Really, I've gone over about 35,000, the 13,732 is all that's left.)

Total words remaining to go over: approximately 60,000

That's like 12,000 words a day. Slightly daunting. But I took the summer off from school, didn't pick up a summer job, so I have no excuses. :D

No good ones anyways. Just have to sit my butt down and get it done.

Friday, June 18, 2010

Friday's Baking - Cupcakes


From my husband's birthday party. The man who hates cake, loves cupcakes. I don't get it either.

Safe to say I took an easy route...

But my piping skills are improving!

Sort of...

But the little sea creatures and the flowers are just so adorable!

Next time, I'll actually try the full coverage swirls, I did okay with the little center ones.

Have a great weekend!

Thursday, June 17, 2010

End in Sight!

Main Goal: To be done with this draft of Ivory. I want it to be reader ready by the 25th. (That's when hubby starts vacation, and I know I won't get much done with him home.)

How much do I have left? *calculates*

A lot.

What started as a 99,244 word novel right after NaNoWriMo 2008, ended up as a 94,876 second draft. Not a big difference. As it stands right now with the in-progress third draft, it's at approximately 80,000 words. Short for a fantasy novel.

I'm at 2nd draft chapter 11, third draft chapter 5. What was about 25,000 words, is now a little over 10,000. I had a ton of info dumping. I know what's left is good, and the rest of the novel is info dump free minus one chapter.

I'm also the point where I stopped fixing the tense my first time through. Gonna be a pain in my butt. At least my POV has stayed steady.

I'm never changing tense on a completed novel again. NEVER.

Oh well. It's my first complete novel. It has been a total learning experience, and I don't regret it. And I'm going to finish it all the way. No giving up just because I don't think it will sell. I didn't write it to sell it. I wrote it because it was a story in my head that wanted to be told.

Monday, June 14, 2010


I've been AWOL. Sorry, my allergies are killer.

Allergies as an excuse? I really do mean killer. And I'm still trying to get my house back in order after our guests. My office is still not all unpacked. That is also driving me crazy. I wanted to be unpacked 100% within a month. (We have too much stuff to manage it in a week anymore.)

Writing is going, slow but going. I still have high hopes of having Ivory ready for other eyes by the 25th. We'll see. I'm super behind on 2YN. I'll catch up, then fall behind again. That's the way life goes.

My mind is whirling with ideas. I've got post-its everywhere, very awesome.

I hope you all are doing well, no clue when I be back to my regular, irregular posting schedule. :D

Friday, June 4, 2010

OCD Sharing

Life post!

Below, you will see a picture of a scan of one of my daily routine pages. I don't always follow them to the letter, but if I don't look at it, things get forgotten. Even brushing my teeth.

I don't have timers set to go off to tell me it's time to eat breakfast or anything like that. It's more of a guide. I'll get focused on something and completely forget everything around me. I get obsessed. Having these pages helps, I can look at the clock and know I'm supposed to be doing something instead of dusting all the windowsills. Or organizing the bathroom counter. Again.

I even have one labeled "Crazy Chaos Day Routines" All that one has is my early morning stuff and my evening stuff.

I'm still learning how to deal with this, how to live best. I am very thankfully I do not have OCD fully, I only have facets. The facets I have are hard enough to live with, I can't imagine what it's like with full-blown extreme OCD.

What facets do I have?

  • I eat a certain way. Bascially boils down to two bites of everything in order. My drink glass almost always has to be on the left when eating out. The exception is when they seat us at a tiny table and putting it on the left greatly increases the risk of someone bumping it and knocking it over.
  • I can't stand messes. When things get crazy in my life, my house gets trashed and then I can't sleep because I know it's a mess.
  • Germs. I'm so thankful I can open public building doors and use bathrooms and water fountains. My issue with germs is mainly contained to raw meat. And bugs. Bugs are just bad.
  • An odd food one is that when spreading anything on bread I have to cover the slice fully. Crust to crust. Jam, mayo, butter, anything.
  • Not wanting to make a left turn while driving without a traffic light is annoying. We've been working on that one. I would go 10 minutes out of my way to avoid making a turn like that.
  • When I am stressed out, I will put my clothes away according to type, length, and color. (That usually only happens during deployments.)
  • I can't handle change. At least not very well. My brain needs time to absorb the information and realize that it really is okay. Usually only takes like 20 minutes, but I'm flipping out for those 20 minutes. (That's for same day sudden changes, if I've got more than a day, I deal much better.)
  • I can't let anyone cook or clean in my kitchen. They put things in the wrong place, use the wrong knife and it's just not good. So I just don't let people. I am very upfront and tell them it's me. It's not that I don't like them, it's that having them cooking in my kitchen will drive me crazy. Even just making a sandwich.

Most of things people have pointed out to me. I never realized I felt the compulsion to do things until my husband would try to stop me. At first he thought it was funny. Like rearranging the sugar packets at a restaurant so the colors were all messed up. He'd see how long I could stand it before I had to fix it.

Now he realizes how much it does stress me out and it's actively trying to help me deal. Most of my compulsions are harmless. Who cares if I butter the entire piece of toast or eat two bites of everything on my plate in order? Doesn't hurt anyone, doesn't hurt me, so why try to change it?

I just have to remind myself on a daily basis that nothing is perfect, nothing will ever be perfect, so don't worry about it.

Thursday, June 3, 2010


...Thank God It's Almost Friday. :D

Our extended house guests are gone. Though our garage is still full of their stuff.

I'm loving where Ivory is going. It's taken a different direction, just with tiny changes. I think I managed to change the whole feel of the story, and I like it. :D I cut out useless filler characters, tightened up the subplot, and made my MC seem real rather than a cardboard cutout.

We'll see how it comes out in the end. I've been trying to get 5 chapters done a week. I've lost quite a few scenes and chapters to the knife, right now I have 22 I believe. (Reminder: this was my first NaNoWriMo novel, first novel ever, the first draft I had to work with was...Crap. Scenes out of order, characters with the wrong names and five million 'it is' rather than 'it's' for word count purposes.)

I know most of it was due to inexperience, I had a couple chapters with one scene, a few with way too many. I've been trying to combine the scenes into 4 chapter chunks. So far it's working, the chapter ending is usually a good break spot. Makes me happy! It's finally coming together and making sense.

I'm trying to have this done by the 24th because my husband starts leave on the 25th. We're actually taking a mini vacation this year! Rented a cabin down south a bit. It's going to be so much fun.

It's odd. We've traveled so much, but this will be the first vacation for us. We always go see family and that usually comes with stress and drama.

I get sidetracked so easily...

Off to get some writing done! I'm not letting the mess in my kitchen derail me. It can stay messy for now, it won't hurt it.

Have a great day everyone!