Tag Archives: nanowrimo

NaNoWriMo 2017 Final Update

I don’t like how the term ‘final update’ sounds, but as November is over so is another National Novel Writing Month. I didn’t finish as well this year, but I did give it a push and made it to 20,000. That was roughly 40 pages, so I shouldn’t be too disappointed. I wrote as steadily as I could, but I didn’t get in as much writing time as I did last year. I also found it hard to stay focused on the novel I was originally writing and ended up slipping into other stories. But again, I am happy that I accomplished what I did and though I couldn’t write for very long each day, I did write which is what NaNoWriMo is designed to do. 😉

The story i was working on is not ready to begin being serialized yet, which is something I always try to do, but I hope eventually to share it with readers here. I am itching to get back into blog posts again though, so expect some short writings, flash Fiction, maybe some prompt writing in the days ahead. Perhaps by the start of the year I’ll have a new novel serialization ready to start sharing, or will have begun to get back into “Vampire Boys Of Summer.” I am feeling a little vampire obsessed these days. Big thanks to everyone who encouraged me last month in my writing. Whether you posted a comment in my updates or just a put a like on them, that helped push me along and make the progress I did. It is greatly appreciated my friends.

And Perhaps this is nothing more than a teaser, but here’s one thing I had trouble with in NaNoWriMo this year. Since I generally write in first person, I had trouble with some of the descriptions of my characters. It’s a lot different when you are not making first person observations and instead must provide more details for the reader. So here is how I first introduce my main character in November’s novel attempt. It’s basically just how the person is dressed, which has always made the fashion illiterate within me cringe. But anyway, hope you enjoy this little paragraph.

The stranger walked across the lot towards Glenn, who was leaning against the wall outside Millie’s Quick Mart. His long black cloak spread out behind him In the early evening breeze, and his long dark hair almost seemed to dance in that same air. Beneath the cloak, he wore a burgundy and black Victorian style trench coat, which would have made him fit in with the other patrons of Steampunk Charlie’s. Barely discernible under the coat was a white ruffled shirt, pleated, with gold buttons. Glenn noted the way the top button seemed to shine brightly, as if it had been buffed to a finish, and the thief within him considered the fact this guy was probably loaded, and not with alcohol. Offsetting that idea however was the fact the stranger was walking and not being chauffeured in a fancy limo. Still, it didn’t seem he had been walking long, for his boots looked brand new. Made of leather, there were no marks or creases in the material. Black laces ran up the side, wrapped around silver buttons at intervals until tapering off at the top in a small knot. Rounding off the ensemble was the fact the stranger was wearing gloves, which appeared just as new as the rest of his outfit. Perhaps the costume is a rental, Glenn thought, just as the stranger reached him.

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NaNoWriMo Day 25 Update

Well, we are getting close to the end of November and the finishing line of National Novel Writing Month. I’m not having as much success with it this year as I like. I haven’t even written a fourth of what I did last year. For those who keep track of word counts I’m sitting at 12k and some loose change, which is falling short of even my conservative goal, but I take from this experience that I am writing when I can, squeezing Sentences or paragraphs at odd times, hashing out dialogue that comes to me between baby changing and feedings.

The novel I’m writing on is called “Perhaps, Mina” and I would classify it as a horror, thriller, modern drama, paranormal romance, somewhere between all that. I’m. Im not sure what to make of it or how I’m going to get from point a to point b and eventually a really big climax, but hey I’m trying. Writing from a different point of view than I’m accustomed has slowed me down a little bit too, but I do like all the possibilities and being able to follow multiple characters instead of locking myself down to just one (the first person narrator I usually delve in.)

Here’s an example of the writing style this time around, and this is in fact the most recent paragraph I’ve written. Hope you enjoy 🙂

Normally, he wouldn’t have taken such notice of her, drawing in her every detail, or even remembering the color of her eyes, the shape of her lips, all those attributes that most men savor long after the girl has left their vision. To Vlad, she should have been just the same as every other female he encountered. A vessel of flesh containing nothing but blood. She should have been a decanter filled to the brim with sustenance without savor. But she wasn’t. He didn’t know what she was. She was human no doubt. He could hear her heartbeat drumming in his ears. Smell the scent of her perfume unsuccessfully masking the lure of her blood. And Vlad no doubt was a vampire. He was strength and power and master of the room. But at first sight, and minutes later in her presence, he was weakness, powerless, and captured by a thousand chains. For this, he hated her and turned away from her approach. Even seeing her gliding softly across the floor on what he noticed as bare feet, made him want to strangle the life out of her before she could say a word, for he knew to hear her speak would be enough to make him walk straight into a sunrise.

NaNoWriMo Day 15 update

Wow, the month sure does fly by when you’re broke, lol…okay so for today’s update, we are halfway through the month, and while some writers are already at the 25k mark I am struggling to reach 9k. Still, I feel like I’m being productive, if in short spurts. I almost feel like I’m writing flash Fiction, and I guess that’s correct in a sense because I’m not sure exactly where I’m going. In my story, or would be novel, I have introduced a whole host of characters in 8k words. Now I have to figure out what to do with them. Not an easy task when you can only write a few sentences at a time.

I am having fun with this however. Switching up my normal point of view has opened me up to all kinds of possibilities, though I’m not sure its all that well written. I guess my normal readers and fellow writers will have to judge that when i get around to sharing this latest endeavor. I’m hoping to post the opening soon, so keep an eye out and please let me know what you think.

Okay, so I’m out of here, to try and go bounce a few more sentences off the wall and see how they settle on paper. I’m really hoping to bash out another 500 words tonight so wish me luck.

Until next time….

NaNoWriMo update 10 days in…

Okay, as I said I would do, here’s an update on my National Novel Writing Month progress. Unfortunately, my progress seems very slow for this year’s event. Here we are at Day 10 and I’m sitting at just under 5,000 words. My personal goal is 1,000 words a day, so we can see I’ve only accomplished half of that. The NaNoWriMo website has a goal of around 1700 words a day in order to complete a 50k novel. It looks like I might not even hit half of that this time. But hey, the good news is I’m writing.

Several factors have impacted my output. One is I have two little babies to help take care of which limits the time and length at which I can write. I am writing literally a few sentences at a time. Another factor is I’m writing outside my comfort zone. While I’m writing under a similar theme to my Vampire Boys Of Summer , I am attempting several things I have not done in the form of a long story. One is that every long form story I’ve written to date has been told in the first person. The gender may change but the pov is always first person. For NaNoWriMo I have decided to throw that out and try a different format. I find I’m spending more time on writing just a few sentences because of that.

Still another factor has played into my slow progress. A current event happened a few days ago in the news that took me by surprise because it had similarities to something I had planned for what I’m writing. It kind of upset and discouraged me and I briefly considered abandoning this whole project. It took those couple of days to decide to keep soldiering on. I may change some aspects of my plot because of it, but I still feel I have a worthwhile story in there somewhere.

Anyway, that’s all my excuses for my poor output so far this month. I guess there’s still time to turn it around, so wish me luck. Hopefully, next update will sound more promising. Until then, I leave you with this piece of encouragement if you are currently struggling with a project: There is no wrong way of writing. As long as you have pen to paper you are a writer. And there is no correct way to tell a story. Be a rebel, break rules, step outside your comfort, have your characters make you cringe. Whatever it takes to impact the page, just do it. If you have to, attach a note to your mirror that says, “today is my best writing day ever” and then challenge yourself to make that so.

See you next time 🙂

NaNoWriMo, here I come….

Uh oh, here we go with another attempt at National Novel Writing Month. Though I don’t believe i will be as successful as I was last year due to time constraints, but I’m not here to win. I’m here to write. I doubt I will be able to complete the 50k words that NaNoWriMo considers a win, but if I’m lucky I’d like to be able to do at least half that.

I am trying to challenge myself a little this year by writing in a point of view I am not totally comfortable with. Most of my books or long form stories are told in the first person, so I’m going to try and toss that out the window this year. Wish me luck.

My title this year is tentatively called “Perhaps, Mina.” If I had to classify it, I plan for it to be a paranormal romance, though I’m hoping it will have some other elements to it as well. We’ll have to see where the characters take me. The story will start off with one of the sentences from my recent “Seven Days Of Sentences,” but I’m not saying which one….yet. 😉

Now something I won’t be able to do this time around is post what I write everyday. I will still let you know of my progress as much as I can, but I won’t be able to post the story as it’s written, as I did with last year’s entry “Time Of Our Death.” However, when the month is over, depending on how much I’ve actually accomplished, I will get to posting the story I hope. Still, because it has a vampire theme, I may wait until my other long form bloodsucking tale “vampire boys of summer” is complete and posted to avoid confusion between the two. Well just have to wait and see, I suppose.

Ok, so anyway, I hope you all will wish me luck this year, and if you are doing NaNoWriMo as well, feel free to let me know and I’ll try to help cheer you on as well. Have a great Halloween night and I’ll see you in November. 🙂

Seven Days Of Sentences: Day 7

Wow, I made it through this self dared challenge. I’m not sure how successful it was, but I am pleased on how it turned out for me in my writing. Creating a daily writing habit, even if it was just one sentence, made me feel better about jumping back into the fray. It also got the creative juices flowing, getting me to think about different stories and voices. I’m still on the fence about NaNoWriMo but I’m sure running out of time to make up my mind, lol. Okay, so here’s Day seven of the challenge and my last entry of the weeklong prompt. Hope you enjoy.

Not many people today talk about the massacre at the Cayville Public library, but sometimes within the eyes of the survivors you can see there’s a secret in there, perhaps lost or purposely forgotten to protect those who were never seen again.

Time Of Our Death Chapter 40 (NaNoWriMo project)

Time Of Our Death

By Paul D Aronson.
Forty
By the time I caught up, they had already wheeled Dawn into emergency and doctors were beginning to work on her. I didn’t know myself how they had lost her in the ambulance, but I guess sometimes the body just gives up after a fight. We had been fighting to keep her awake and alive, and though I believe survival begins in the mind, perhaps she was tired of it all. When one attempts to take their own life , often the will to live has already fled the building.

It was chaos in the room, because being of spirit, you hear both the living and the dead. On the living side, they hadn’t allowed Angie into the room, but instead charged her with trying to locate Dawn’s parents. So she was at the nurses station trying to call everyone she could think of, even her own mother. Over the hospital’s public address system it was like a highway of jumbled traffic, as one doctor was called here, another called there. Waiting patients complained about everything from their pain to the wait time, while telling everyone they could, even other patients, about their ailments. In addition, it was still Halloween, and spirits of the dead were roaming the earth right here in the hospital, under the mistaken belief that this was home. Even in the emergency operating room, a few wandered aimlessly, lost and confused as to what happened to their house, which apparently had once stood on the site of the hospital.

Lori tried to shut them out by concentrating on Dawn. She stayed by her sister’s side and whispered things in her ear that I could not hear from where I stood. I didn’t need to know those kind of particulars anyway. It was easy to see her whispers were pleadings with her to live.

I didn’t know what to do. Maybe there was a way to manipulate their machines, help bring her back to wakefulness and breathing again, but I felt I could do more damage than good. This was definitely a time when only the living could work miracles. The dead, as they always have been, were helpless to alter fate. So I just prayed that fate would work in Dawn’s favor, and the beautiful blue spiraling colors of death would stay outside.

“There it is,” I heard someone say, and for a moment I feared death had gotten in, until another voice added, “I got a heartbeat.”

“Can you hear me?” One of the attendants was saying over Dawn. “We need you to open your eyes, okay?”

I held my breath, as her eyelids fluttered but did not open.

“Heartbeat a little weak, but it’s picking up. We need some oxygen over here.”

Lori, still leaning over her sister, was kissing the girl’s face. “I love you, Dawn. Now I need you to open your eyes and look at me, please. Let these people know you want to live. You don’t want to die. The voices will stop soon, I promise.”

Dawn’s eyelids fluttered again, and slowly opened. They squinted against the bright emergency room lights, but stayed open nonetheless. She tried to speak, but it came out as something between a gasp and a moan.

“Welcome back,” one of the attendants said. “Can you tell us your name?”

“Dawn,“ she whispered breathlessly, staring right through Lori, her eyes focusing on the lights.

“We’re going to give you a little oxygen to help you, okay? Just breathe in naturally.” She put the mask over her face and Dawn managed to slowly take it in.

Lori let out a sigh of relief and turned to look for me. I stepped towards her and put my arm around her. She leaned her head over on my shoulder, exhausted but happy her sister was going to live.

“Sorry about this Dawn,“ I heard a voice say, “but you took a lot of bad stuff and we are going to have to flush it out of you. Have you ever had your stomach pumped?”

The girl slowly shook her head, still breathing through the mask.

The doctor tried to reassure her with a smile. “The good news is it shouldn’t take long. We understand you already threw some of it up. But after this, I don’t think you’ll be wanting to pop a bunch of pills again.”

I recoiled a little. I had heard of the procedure before and had no desire to witness it. “Maybe we should wait outside,” I told Lori, and she allowed me to usher her through the doors and out into the hallway.

Angie was sitting on a bench opposite the ER doors. We sat down next to her, and her worried demeanor made me wish we could tell her that Dawn was going to pull through. Lori looked at her with a proud smile and was just about to pat her on the shoulder, when the double doors opened and one of the ER doctors came out to talk to her.

“Are you the one who came with the O’Donnell girl?” He asked.

“Yes,” Angie replied nervously.

He sighed. “Well, I can’t tell you much, simply because you aren’t a parent or guardian, but I wanted to let you know she’s going to be okay. In a couple days she should be on her feet.” He started to walk away and then stopped. “You did a good job. Quick thinking saves lives. Are you related to her?”

“Yes. Cousin.”

“Well, she is certainly lucky to have a cousin like you.”

I thought Angie was going to burst into tears and hug the guy, but she didn’t. Still, it was easy to see she was very relieved. After all, she had been the one responsible for her while Lori’s mom was gone. Which brought up a new point to wonder, where was Lori’s mom anyway? Or her dad? And where were my parents? I guess I would never figure that one out. Death would be here for Lori and I before they showed up. I have to admit I was pretty disappointed in all that. All this time as a ghost, and my parents had done me one better and apparently left the planet.

A couple of the ER attendants came out of the room next. A pair of thirty something nurses, their hair crammed up into nets and still wearing their sterile gloves, were discussing Dawn in semi hushed tones. “O’Donnell. O’Donnell. Where have I heard that name before?”

Her companion frowned. It was one of those looks that your face took on when discussing lost causes and terminal patients. “Probably from the woman in ICU. Her name is O’Donnell too.”

Lori looked at me. “What woman?” Before I could even ponder the question, the hopeful look on her face fell. “Oh no. Mom.” She sprang to her feet. “That’s why Angie couldn’t find her. She was already here!” She took off down the hall towards the intensive care wing.

I took off after her. “Lori, wait!” Running down the hall, I looked out the rows of windows and saw the blue swirling sky, those colors of death personified, trailing us as we ran. Having lost the opportunity to claim Dawn , perhaps it now was setting sights on Lori’s mom. But what had happened to her? Car wreck? Had that guy she’d been seeing beat her up or something? Or had her distress over losing Lori and the dissolution of her marriage sent her over the edge like Dawn?

We both careened through the closed doors of the intensive care unit. If you’ve ever been in an ICU, you already know it’s really one big room, with small units partitioned off with curtains. These units are usually just big enough for the hospital bed and maybe a chair or two for loved ones to seat themselves, sometimes in a final vigil. A nurses station is at the head of the room, as visitors are very limited, typically just immediate family members with no more than two at a time. None of this really mattered to Lori and I. We couldn’t be seen or stopped from entering, and as Lori called frantically for her mom, she passed through the curtains with no concern for privacy.

The first makeshift room held an elderly man with no visitors, just an incessant beeping of life support machines. The second held a sleeping woman with shallow breathing. Another woman sat in a chair beside her holding her hand and reading a devotional magazine in her lap. Through the third curtain, Lori stopped short. The intake of her ghostly breath told me she had found her mother, even before I reached her. Mrs. O’Donnell was sitting up in a chair, looking haggard and tired. Across from her sat her husband, equally worn down. And between them on the bed lay the other O’Donnell woman the ER nurses had mentioned.

“Oh no,” Lori breathed. “It can’t be.”

I came up short alongside of her and felt both my heart and voice catch in my throat. Lori herself lay in the ICU hospital bed, a myriad of tubes and machines hooked up to her. Her body was still, in a seemingly comatose state. An oxygen mask covered her lower face, forcing air into her lungs. Tears welled up in my eyes. She was still alive. All this time, she hadn’t been a ghost at all, but some kind of a projection of herself, a wandering soul stuck between life and death, roaming with the rest of us and believing herself dead.

The Lori I knew turned to me. On her face , a look of shock and horror, with the realization of what all this meant. “No,” she cried sorrowfully, looking from her bedridden body to me with a pain only those who have lost a loved one can know. “I don’t want to go.”

“I don’t want you to go either, but you have to.” I wiped a tear away with the back of my hand. “You’ve seen your body. It’s time.”

She shook her head. “I don’t want to live without you. I just found you, Chris.”

I tried to smile, but I knew it wasn’t convincing. “You’ll find me again someday.”

“No, I want you now….” She stopped, her eyes fixing on something behind me. I turned my head. The swirling, electrified blue that had been in the outside sky was seeping into the ICU, filling up the room with a crackle and pop. No one but she and I could see it , nor did anyone else feel it. But I knew now what it was. It wasn’t Death trailing behind us, trying to claim us for the final time. It was life, coming for Lori, to push her back into the beautiful frame she had been born with.

“Lori,” I said. “Don’t fight it. Just live. Please.”

She threw her arms around my neck and clutched me so close I felt like she was trying to crawl inside of me to live forever. “I love you so much, Christopher. I’ll never love anyone the way I love you. I’ll never marry…”

“Whoa, hey, hell of a time to be getting this kind of serious, don’t you think?”

She knew I was trying to make a joke, to make things easier for her and I both. Through her tears I could feel her smile against my neck. “You are the very best thing to ever happen to me and you know it. My long hair rocker nerd boy.”

I smiled, even as I felt the electric static moving through the air behind me. “You are everything I ever wanted, Lori. I’m glad I got to have you for awhile.” My voice choked. I was happy that she was really alive, but sad to lose her in the same token. I was torn emotionally, feeling as if I were being ripped in two. “I love you,” I said, my tears busting forth like a ruptured dam letting loose the flood waters. “Don’t forget me.”

“I won’t. Goodbye Chris.”

“No. Never say goodbye. Say, see you someday.”

“Someday,” she sobbed, as my hands held her cheeks and I planted final kisses across her beautiful lips. Her mouth opened against mine and in the most intimate of kisses I felt like we were back at the dance with “is this love?” still playing over the loud speakers. I felt something move through me, and I opened my eyes to see the blue energy separating us. Like long thin fingers it seemed to gently nudge her towards the bed where her body awaited. The taste of her kiss was still on my lips, and my body trembled from the knowledge of having known her, yet now losing her to fate’s final whim. Her dark eyes never left me, as the energy that was her life, here and yet to come, pleasantly pushed her back into her body. One last “I love you” whispered across her lips, and then she was gone. The machines around her began to beep and her father leapt to his feet.

“Hey, something is going on in here!” he yelled to the nurses.

Lori’s fingers twitched. Then her foot. Her hand attempted to flex, her leg made a struggling effort to bend. At last, her eyes opened. She looked around the room, unable to move her head, and for a moment I thought her eyes saw me. But it was only a moment and then it was over. Our time as ghosts in love had come to an end. I blew her a kiss she would neither see nor feel, and then stepped from the curtained partition out into the ICU room. I took a deep breath and tried to compose myself. With my hands I tried to wipe the tears out of my eyes. A radio on the nurses station desk was turned down low but the song it was playing wasn’t lost on me. Never say Goodbye. Bon Jovi.

I tried to smile. “Tell me about it, Jon,” I sighed.

“Grace, I think we should really notify your sister. She would want to know.”

I turned to the voice. It was so familiar it was almost like coming home. I looked around me but no one was there, just the nurses going about their usual duties.

“We really need to go home soon. She can help out if you just ask her. I know you don’t get along these days, but now’s the time, you know.”

I walked down the aisle of the ICU seeking the speaker of the voice. Two partitions down from Lori , I found him.

“Dad?” I asked.

He didn’t turn to look at me, but for a moment my mother seemed to. She turned to my voice, then shrugged helplessly and returned her attention to the body they had kept constant vigil over for days straight. My voice choked in my throat at the sight of myself. I began to cry, overwhelmed with emotion. I too, hadn’t died. I too, wasn’t a ghost at all. I was just lost, not knowing where to go. But now I knew. I didn’t know how this was possible, as I had seen our dead bodies on that bus. Maybe it hadn’t been us at all. I never got a clear a look at the faces. It must have been someone else. I felt a weight lifting off of me. Both Lori and I had made it, but as our bodies hung between life and death, our souls went wandering with those who had died, believing ourselves to be deceased with the rest. And like the rest, only the sight of our own bodies could compel us to go where we belonged. I turned to greet the swirling blue colors of life and spread my arms wide.

I felt the energy swelling up around me, enveloping me in a warmth that permeated my whole being. My mind seemed to temporarily separate from my spiritual frame, and I thought of Donald, Brian, and Kelly, all taken from the mortal coil and propelled into that which comes after. For a moment, I imagined that was happening to me, and I feared that I truly would not see Lori again. But then, I felt the push, the nudge that sent me back to my body in its comatose state. The memories of my time spent as a ghost seemed to catalog themselves deeper within me, so they could not be taken nor removed. I wanted to remember everything. To learn from it. To grow from it. To spend my life being better. But more than that, I didn’t want to forget the time with friends. I didn’t want to lose the memory of loving Lori. As with all important moments in my life, a song came to mind. Alive and kicking. Simple minds. I was alive. And I was ready to kick down the doors of the future and live as I never had before. I couldn’t wait to see Lori and tell her all the things I’d confessed when we were ghosts, to share new moments reserved for the living and loved. I opened my flesh and blood eyes and the world looked back at me and smiled. I’d had the time of my death, but now I was ready to live.