jacquelineb: (stark raving sane!)

4000 words today. Wow. Am soooo glad I made myself do it though – it’s going to make the rest of the week feel a lot light, not going into it with a writing debt.

In terms of the plot, I’m now just on the cusp of writing the next big scene where the two protagonists meet up again, which will be exciting. I have to confess to cheating a little and writing some bits of what goes on after that, but I’m very much looking forward to getting to that point. It feels like I’m about to get over the hump, the hard second act and move into the third and fourth. Everything is about to pick up again.

I think I’m going to set Nanolomo aside – it’s a wonderful idea, but a bit much to take on when also trying to finish a draft of a novel. I’d like to get back to the reviews on influential books at some point. Just not this month. ;)

Mirrored from jacquelinebrocker.esquinx.net.

jacquelineb: (lilly)

I’m a little behind in the desired target. It should be 15,000. Goal thus is to do catch up tomorrow again, and that should do the trick. It wasn’t as arduous today as I thought it might be, actually. 2 and a bit more hours of work, and that feels very right in fact. It might be Nano this month, but I ought to be making a point of dong this more often.

As part of my ‘research’ I’ve started watching Scrubs. I suspect this is little more than procrastination, but having heard on good authority that, comedy aside, the show is pretty accurate in depicting life in a hospital, probably worth a look.

Mirrored from jacquelinebrocker.esquinx.net.

jacquelineb: (autumn cliff)

Well, it was bound to happen – missed days of both blogging and of words and of Nanolomo. This is partly a function of the missing days being my work days (and a dance teaching evening as well) – but also partly laziness. The words I can feel… kind of ok about, because they don’t have to be an everyday thing, but I wonder how I could have better managed the posts and reviews. Planning and scheduling I think would have been the way. Since I can schedule posts after all, I could have done a few ahead of time and that way made the whole process easier.

Once I would have felt bad about not having perfectly completed the month, and just thrown in the towel, not have bothered with continuing to post for the rest of the month. These days, I figure perfection is a touch over-rated. So, back onto the wagon for me, and hopefully with more foreplanning for next week’s work days.

At any rate, the Nano website reckons I just need to write 1700 words daily anyway to hit the goal on time, but I’d still rather catch up tomorrow. Perhaps though I can manage just a double hit rather than a triple – 5100 words in a single day is a rather lot! Doable, but may be not sensible. ;)

Am still enjoying the process of discovering the characters, new ones especially. I have a feeling I might have to add another fight into the final act, but I wonder if that might be contorting the plot into being something it isn’t. Well, still got some time before I get to that point.

NaBloPoMo November 2012

So to back-track a bit on the planned meme (and really, I might just grab things from it as the mood takes me), and perhaps to save me a bit of typing, I’ll talk about one of my favourite quotes.

Wherever I am on this earth, I am and shall always be a resident alien.
- Quentin Crisp

Actually, sod talking about it, I’m just going to let it stand as it is. ;)

Mirrored from jacquelinebrocker.esquinx.net.

jacquelineb: (stark raving sane!)

No meters, just the bare facts:

Words done today: 1715

Word count for month so far: 8609

Word count for project in total: 43, 679

That is all.

Mirrored from jacquelinebrocker.esquinx.net.

jacquelineb: (autumn cliff)

On track. Today could have been better, writing wise, but I’m still on track. Exhausted now though, so heading straight to bed. I’ll try catch up with Nanolomo tomorrow night. I’d push it to stay up later, but am in at work tomorrow so think it would be wiser to get sleep.

So bloody glad I’m still on track at least.

Mirrored from jacquelinebrocker.esquinx.net.

jacquelineb: (lonely Lawrence)

Today was better for writing. Much better. I was reminded by someone on Facebook that it focusing on the word count is probably not the way to go, but to focus on keeping writing. It was a useful tip. With me also, I kind of need a scene to do, and I really need to have a structure to follow for that scene. I’m only capable of a limited amount of ‘pantsing’ in terms of the plot; I cannot really write a scene with confidence, even for just bulking up words, without a direction. So today, I picked a scene, and before writing it in Scrivener, used the card function to write dot points on what I wanted the scene to be. I didn’t finish the scene, for as I wrote, I got other ideas for the novel and breaked from it to write those bits of scene down too. All of it goes to the word count, though, and now, I have a fuller scene to finish off, and more ideas for the plot. Which I figure must be a good thing.

NaBloPoMo November 2012

Favourite film is the meme request for the day. Well, this is a slightly hard one. I’ve had myself a little list of favourite films since high school, which has become a little meaningless as the number of films I love has grown, and also my tastes have shifted.

Lawrence of Arabia Theatrical Poster

But to pick one for the purposes of this meme, I’m going with Lawrence of Arabia. (If you know the film, you’ll probably be cringing at my contorted post title…)

This year is the 50th anniversary of Lawrence’s release. I remember when I first saw it thinking that 1962 seemed like a long time ago, but not quite so long. 50 though puts things into perspective. I was telling a friend last night that I watched it at a rather young age; 12, or 13 (but that might have been conservative. I suspect it was actually 11). And on the face of it, it is something you could show a kid that age relatively safely. This was the 60s, when films trod the line of subtly through suggestion, knowing glances, and fade to black. Undoubtedly these days the infamous whipping Lawrence experiences in Deraa would have been shown in fullness, complete with the rape he described in his book Seven Pillars of Wisdom (which I have yet to read, and one day, really ought.)

Lawrence of Arabia Poster for DVD

The film is anything if safe, though. It depicts war, battle, harrowing decisions made on a personal level, and the calculating politicking of the powers that held sway in the Middle East during WWI. It has very human passion, even if Lawrence doesn’t come out of it at the end as especially likeable, and watching for the first time, he was one of the more unusual characters I’d thus far encountered, I somehow felt akin to him. Which probably doesn’t speak so well of me, but there you go. It wasn’t just O’Toole’s performance either that was striking – Omar Sheriff brings what I think is the real heart to the film. Perhaps these days we wouldn’t have very English actors like Alec Guinness with some enhancing make-up playing Arabs, or the Mexican Anthony Quinn’s for that matter, but there are far worse examples of cross-racial casting out there.

Of course, I could just be saying all of this to disguise my adolescent crush on Peter O’Toole in this film… I mean seriously, those blue, blue eyes… and those cheekbones…

Mirrored from jacquelinebrocker.esquinx.net.

jacquelineb: (jar lanterns)

It’s an ‘on track’ word count. And I am ok with that. I had hoped for more today, but found I hit a couple of blocks. There is a book I really want to read for background of one of my two protagonists, and I really am at that stage where it will be relevant to the scenes. I was able to go on with writing from the other protags POV, but I know that cup will run dry soon when they have to meet again and I find myself without the scenes of the first. So this weekend will be book reading. I don’t think it will take me too long, and hopefully by Sunday I’ll be in a position to add a few more words to the cup so I can not fret so much on my work days about getting them done. I did discover yesterday the need for a new element to the plot, and ergo, a new character, and I think it helps, and I’m discovering more about a secondary character too, which is quite lovely.

NaBloPoMo November 2012

For NaBloPoMo, I’m adapting this meme here. I tried it once before on my Dreamwidth blog, but only got to the first entry. So repeating that… you get a favourite song, Sunny Came Home by Shawn Colvin. I could try tell you what it is about this song that I love and have loved since first hearing it, but I think I’ll just leave you with haunting, thoughtful pyromania. :)

Lyrics here.

Mirrored from jacquelinebrocker.esquinx.net.

jacquelineb: (stark raving sane!)

November is upon us. Two months left to go of 2012, and I’m feeling ambitious.

Or insane.

Or both.

It’s been a while since I seriously considered Nanowrimo (National Novel Writing Month). A friend/former colleague commented on Facebook when I posted something about it, and I realised that we’d been working together when I did it in 2008. That was an interesting month. I remember at some point giggling hysterically (and not in a good way) while my boyfriend at the time hugged me and patted me gently. Ok, that makes it sound like I was having a breakdown, and really, that wasn’t it. But it was that moment that the dawning realisation hit me that I wasn’t, writing like that, going to churn out a perfectly formed novel by the end of the month. That’s perfectionists for you, though.

I did, however, make it, and I still look on the writing of it that year as my first ‘proper’ Nanowrimo success. I did it back in 2006 with the very first beginnings of the Dragon Novel (which looks so naive now compared to my plans for it these days), but I didn’t finish the story in those 50,000 words. I did with ‘Touch’ in 2008. It has become a trunk novel since, waiting for my attention to its plot and words (and the line I love to tell people as an example of the dreck Nano results in – ‘He picked up a handful of pens in his hand.’) I think one day I’ll return to it, and the world it is part of.

Funny though, the hook of the plot for ‘Touch’ is strikingly similar to ‘Stitched’, my WIP for Nanowrimo 2012. And I have to confess I’m slightly cheating a bit. I already have 35,000 words for it. That’s the first act and then some. So the plan for November is to get the novel done and to a draft of 85,000 words.

So far, I am on track (see my handy widget):

See also my participant page on the official site.

But Jacqui, that’s not *that* insane, you might say. You’ve done it before, and working full-time rather than part-time too. Shouldn’t this be a walk in the park?

Well, except for the fact that Nanowrimo never is, and also… I’m taking on two other things…

NaBloPoMo November 2012

The first is is NaBloPoMo. This runs every month of the year, the idea being to post on your blog at least once a day (so is National Blog Posting Month). Being a rather inconsistent blogger, this seems like a great idea – and coupling it with Nanowrimo I think works. I can always post my word count if I can’t think of anything else that day.

The second is an initiative of Shanna Germain, NaNoLoMo (National Novel Loving Month). The idea is to write a short review of a book you love each day of the month, to share you love and appreciation of the written word. Despite the ‘novel’ in the title, it is not purely restricted to novels, which is a relief for me, and also gave me the idea for what I’ll do this month. I’m going to be reviewing some of the books that have had an impact on me, starting from early picture books until novels I read this year. I have complied a list of twenty books so far, and there will be more. The trick is, really, not be embarrassed by my loves. That desire to seem sophisticated, or at least of possessing good taste, is strong, but I think for this month I need to keep those voices at bay and remember that our loves are what they are, and embracing them will no doubt make me and others a helluva lot happier.

So… that’s my month ahead. Thus far, Wrimo words done, and this blog posts counts for the blogging. Now off to do a review…

I did tell you I’m insane, right?

Mirrored from jacquelinebrocker.esquinx.net.

jacquelineb: (stark raving sane!)

Girl on subway platform reading - photo by moriza

So yesterday I came to a slightly odd decision. No fiction writing for a month. Planning, plotting, a bit of research, yes, I will do that, but as to fiction writing, no.

But hang on, some might think, isn’t this Nanowrimo month? Where all the world’s would-be writers get together for a gigantic word producing mass of fun, stress, and creativity?

Well, yes. And I wish anyone doing it the very best of luck with it, for I do believe it is one of the most invigorating, draining, and creatively stimulating things you can do as a writer, particularly when you are starting out and are just not sure if you can even produce that amount of words.

So what the hell am I doing by taking this time to not.

There are a few reasons for this. I didn’t have the greatest of Octobers (several personal things happened which I won’t go into here). On Where the hell my writing is going has been weighing on my mind for a while now, both in relation to what the hell kind of writer I want to be and what on earth is going on with the publishing industry and where will I fit into all of that. Trying to just bloody well focus on one project at a time, rather than heading off into several directions (and then, by extension, not completing things. And that really doesn’t feel great.) And to be honest, part of me gets a bit of a kick out of doing something a little against the grain. 😉

Ultimately I think what I want is a bit of a reset. See if the act of ordering myself not to put pen to paper (and that’s fine for the mid-week now when I’m working, but I suspect come the weekend I’ll get a little more angsty and want to do so) bears some of it’s own fruits. In the meantime, I’ve got books to read that I’ve been meaning to read for ages, and various little bits and bobs to do about the place. Am going to be posting various links about writing and Nano on my tumblr for the month, things for others to read that may be of use, stuff to get me thinking as well. And maybe blogging and writing reviews. But no fiction. Will be intrigued to see how this plan will work out come 1st December!

Photo by moriza under creative commons license

Mirrored from jacquelinebrocker.esquinx.net.

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