Must Be Monday, writing

Must be Monday – NaNoWriMo Finished!

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So it’s December 2nd and NaNoWriMo is finished and I DID IT! Despite falling behind a little toward the end and having my first big wobble right at the finish line I finished at 50,139 words and wrote the end to the story I’d been working on for the past three NaNoWriMo’s. I literally cried for ten minutes after at having finally got it done at just having gotten the majority of it down. I have some more to write for sure as a lot of the three versions don’t strictly connect but I’m having a break from writing every single day until the new year because I just have too much on.  I didn’t even write a Six for Sunday post yesterday as I just needed the break. All back on schedule now though.

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This year I’m really proud that I managed to write at least a little every day and whereas I usually have a dip in motivation at around 25k to 30k and decide what I’m writing is horrid and it’s not worth it and I want to start again I didn’t really experience this until towards the end and it didn’t affect me hugely until the very last day. I also had a couple of D&D related projects that I was able to write for that really helped to boost my creativity and one or two friends who really encouraged me to write when I needed to extra push as well as my husband reminding me when I was procrastinating. He also brought me a box of chocolates for when I finished which was really sweet.

Although I didn’t finish early this year I still feel like this was my most successful NaNo to date and I’m looking forward to next year and maybe writing something a little different as well as spending the next year learning to hone my writing and improve my skill. For now, though, I’m sticking to D&D planning and hopefully catching up with blogging again, I miss having scheduled posts ready! Did you take part in NaNoWriMo? If so well done! No matter your word count just taking the time to sit down and write is enough.

The question is, what do I do with the weekly Must be Monday posts now? Any ideas welcome! Would you like to know about my various games of Dungeons and Dragons? My “normal” life? More writing stuff or something completely different?

Must Be Monday, spoiler free

Must be Monday – NaNoWriMo Week Three

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I’m still here! I’ve somehow made it through to week three of NaNoWriMo!! I’m at the over halfway mark now and somehow I’m still going! Honestly, I’m shocked that I’ve been keeping more or less on track with my word goals somehow which I’m pretty pleased with seeing as in addition to writing my NaNoWriMo project I’m also trying to keep up with my reading as a load of great new books just came out and I’m taking part in a blog tour early in December as well as unexpectedly running a dungeons and dragons campaign a little earlier than I had intended which will require a lot more planning than first thought on top of the usual being a parent and adulting etc so I’m pretty proud of myself.

In fact, when I got stuck Saturday night I actually went easily above and beyond my word count goal after trying to write a hard scene in which the main character essentially suffers a panic attack without suffering from a panic attack myself so I switched to a point I wanted to happen further on in the book and went nuts.

My goal now is really just to keep going. Even when I write more than I need I’m still trying to keep the same daily goal of 1.67k which is providing a helpful buffer on days where it’s just too busy to get much done. I’ve also decided to give myself an incentive for reaching 50k in the form of the new Star Wars game that just came out because it looks beautiful!

Are you taking part in NaNoWriMo? If so let me know how you’re getting on! Happy writing folks!

Must Be Monday, writing

Must be Monday – NaNoWriMo Week Two

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Well, here we are, eleven days into NaNoWriMo (ten at the time of writing, I’m actually procrastinating just by writing this post because right now I have about two thousand off words to write tonight to keep on track and for some reason this past week I have turned into the worse kind of procrastinator) and I’m behind. Usually, I do tend to fall behind a little but am on track most of the time, not so this year it seems although I did exceed my daily goal a few times. I’m finding it harder as I have less free time to write this year. For the past two years, I’ve been able to get away to the library for a couple of hours or so to focus on writing with fewer distractions and I’ve had more time alone while my little man was at his childminders etc but now he’s only at school for a couple of hours a day and as a result I’m obviously getting much less done.

To combat this I’m trying to get up earlier in the morning to try and write instead of messing around on my phone and scrolling through Twitter for ages. I tend to write better in the morning more than any other time so I’m hoping this will make me much more productive and if need be I can just go to bed earlier which seems to be happening anyway as it’s getting darker earlier.

Story-wise I have a good vague idea of what I’m doing with it and where it’s going down to the exact scenes for up to eleven chapters of which I’m currently meant to be writing the beginning of six. I’m a little unsure what exactly will happen in the last third of the book but I have an end goal which is a start it’s just mapping out the scenes I need to do but I’ve realised in my time as a DM for Dungeons and Dragons that it’s probably better to have a rough idea now and refine it a little further down the line.

I hope if you’re taking part in NaNoWriMo at the moment, or any other project really that you’re getting on well and still enjoying it. Let me know in the comments what you’re up to!

Now, I’m going to go back to watching Star Wars and pretending it’s purely for writing inspiration.

It is!

Honest.

Mostly.

Update: I did continue to watch Star Wars but I did also write another one thousand words and I’ve already written another 400 this morning putting my total at 15667 words. To be on track I’m meant to reach 18337, just a measly 2670 words to get me back on top right? I mean I’ve done it before? Fingers crossed!

New Update five minutes before post goes live: I have a splitting headache and feeling really nauseous. Pray for me.

 

Must Be Monday, spoiler free, writing

Must be Monday – Inktober Week Five and NaNoWriMo Week One

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So last week marked the end of Inktober. I really enjoyed taking part in the Writer Edition for it and will definitely do so again next year I think. Below you can check out the last two prompts I did but didn’t include in last weeks post as it wasn’t quite finished!

30.Catch

Rose had slept in far worse places, albeit usually where her father’s influence and reputation reached. With Slobberchops however, her loyal, if not dishevelled looking winged cat, she slept soundly knowing that anyone who may disturb her sleep or try to steal from her would quickly regret their life choices. 

(Thank you to Georgia from Top Banana for this artwork of my precious, not as sweet as she looks, warlock girl, Rose)

31.Ripe


“It’ll be fine!”

“Why don’t I feel confident in your abilities right now?” The alcohol slurred Naero’s words but couldn’t disguise the concern. Lucien scoffed. 

“If Dae can do it I probably can too” 

“Probably?” 

“Just put the damned apple back in your mouth” Lucien commanded drawing back his bow.

(Thank you to Michelle from Feline Trickster for this gorgeous artwork of Lucien, my D&D character based on a different version Lucien from ACOTAR. This particular piece was inspired by cosplayer Woodsmoke and Words a shot taken by Starbit cosplay.

NaNoWriMo

For those of you who have maybe not heard of NaNoWriMo it stands for national novel writing month and is a challenge for writers to write 50k in a month. Traditionally you start a brand new novel on November 1st but many others, like myself, use this month for rewrites, later drafts and more. This year I’m working on a story I’ve had the bones of for a few years now but I think after a lot of tweaking I might finally have it this year so fingers crossed.

I had a pretty strong start hitting over 3k words on my first day and smashed my daily goal again on day two. I tapered off a little Sunday but made my goal still (it’s been a busy day) and I’m already about halfway through today. I only tend to first thing early in the morning or in the evenings and my evenings have been full for almost a week now so I’m relying on those mornings! The story is coming along well although I’ve only vaguely plotted half of it so we’ll see where things head as I have a rough idea about the ending.

Let me know if you’re taking part in NaNoWriMo! I’m MissChocobo88 on the new site if you wanted to be buddies! Just make sure you let me know so I know to accept you.

Must Be Monday, writing

Must be Monday – Inktober Week 4

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Okay so I know it’s not Monday but I took my Angel Mage Blog Tour date before I decided Must be Monday’s were a thing! So today is an honorary Monday? The end of Inktober is almost upon us and I am really flagging now but still going! This will probably be the last purely Inktober post as next week Inktober will be over but NaNoWriMo will have begun! I won’t be posting everything I write for that because I need to write over 1.5k a day AND I will be adhering to the same first draft motto that I have for the past three years.

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I will check-in and reflect on how it’s going through, maybe share a quote or two here and there to help me reflect on what I’ve written so far etc. There’s also quite a high chance that I might ask for ideas/names/help and so forth but we’ll see how it develops, I want it to be a casual and informal kind of weekly blog post. Anyway, for now here’s another week and a bit’s worth of Inktober posts, enjoy!

22.Ghost

“Trick or Treat!” The group of children cried. Kate smiled as she offered up a bowl of gummy pumpkins. Each took one, thanking her, a figure in a sheet was last and Kate made sure the little ghost got an extra one. Kate, after all, had died fifty years previous. 

23.Ancient

“It is an honour Cardan” the old monk had insisted as the young boy struggled against those that held him between them.

“No! I don’t want to be a monster” he had begged, tears streaming down his face.

He screamed then as the fire of the ancient dragon consumed him. 

(My boy Cardan is back, you might recognise him from some of the other Dragon related ones!)

24.Dizzy

Claudia stumbled as the room spun around her. She knew she’d had too much to drink and almost nothing to eat. Someone caught her but then she was being lifted up through the crowd to the front of the stage where she threw up in front of her favourite band.

(True story).

25.Tasty

“That…actually wasn’t bad,” Daefir admitted. 

“Don’t act so shocked!” Lucien looked affronted. 

“I don’t think I’ve ever seen you so much as chop an onion.”

Lucien looked sheepish, “I can chop an onion”

“Did you?” Dae raised an eyebrow.

“Well…Umeris was already there and…”

“You are utterly unbelievable.”


26.Dark


I crawl back into bed and crack open my laptop. My furry companion sits beside me with an occasional head bump for strokes. Its five-thirty in the morning, I’ve already been up for an hour and a half but I figure I might as well get some work done.

(Another true story and exactly what was happening when I wrote it at 5:30 in the morning).

27.Coat


Still feeling a little light-headed Claudia pulls up the collar on her coat to protect her from the fierce winds blowing. Her coat was lighter, she realises, but this is much darker. She puts her hand in a pocket and freezes as she pulls out a large red gem.

28.Ride 


Asha surveyed the group with suspicion but also a longing. She’d lost count of how long she’d travelled alone and this group was certainly interesting. Instantly recognised the regalia of a Dawnfather cleric, was surprised to see Tiefling twins but fought the urge to run as she saw Aasimar eyes.

29.Injured


She limped from the temple, her mortal wounds healed but still bruised and sore. As the sun began to rise, Asha tried to ignore the memory of the knife entering her chest, the bodies she had left behind and the sudden dullness of the Dawnfather icon pinned to her cloak.

Just two more days left which feels crazy! But then the dreaded NaMoWriMo arrives!

 

Must Be Monday, spoiler free, writing

Must be Monday – Inktober Week 3

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I somehow both can’t believe we’re into week three of Inktober: Writers Edition but equally, I’m really starting to flag a little now. Especially as I’ve been starting prep for NaNoWriMo next month which is A LOT of work. I’ve succeeded with the 50k goal for the past two years and I want this year to be no exception so I’m trying to make sure I’m as ready as I can be as I had a lot more free time last year! Still, we’re not there yet so without further ado I present days 15-21 of the Inktober 2019: Writer Edition challenge.

15.Legend

“You’re sure this is the place?” Zeke grunted.

“Yes,” sighed Zara.
“It’s just a ring of mushrooms”
“I know what I saw. We just have to wait.”

“We’ve been here for hours and…” Zeke paused, mouth hanging open as seven fae dragons materialised in the circle and began to sing.

16.Wild

Tig circled the Tiefling girl, growling. Injured or not she refused to become prey but was finding it hard to concentrate with all the blood she was losing from the wound in her gut. She readied herself to strike just as the girl called out. 

“Would you like some tea?” 

17.Ornament
“Why do you keep so much junk?” David groans, grabbing another dusty box from the back of the attic space.

“I don’t like to throw things away” Lara protests.

“Even this?” David holds up an old, stained teapot, rubbing at a stubborn spot. 

“You have wishes three” A voice booms. 

18.Misfit 

Closing her eyes and gathering her power it felt as if the universe pulled at her, the entire cosmos bearing down, the gravitational force of hundreds of planets, the heat of a trillion stars. She pulled at the threads within and let them escape in a torrent of defiant force. 

19.Sling 

“You broke my arm!” Lore exclaimed as Clair nearly tied off the sling she’d hastily made from her scarf. 

“You shouldn’t have kissed me!” She yelled, tugging a little harder than perhaps she needed too. Lore hissed and gritted his teeth.

“I thought you wanted me to!”

“I’m ENGAGED!” 

“Oh.”

20.Tread
“The tracks lead this way.” Zara nodded forwards. 

“Into the dark spooky forest?” Zeke asked, fear clear in his voice. 

“Yes,” she huffed, “He’s your friend, don’t you want to make sure he’s okay?” 

“Of course. But does it absolutely have to be this way?” 

Zara sighed dragging him along.

21.Treasure 
Lucien sat with an ornate box, resting it on his lap before opening it and gazing at the contents inside, a leather bracelet with a crescent moon charm, his first real birthday gift from his little sister. His courage found at last, he replaced it and went to rescue her. 

 

Huge thank you to both Feline Trickster for this AMAZING art of Lucien and Anissa and to my in-game sister Alaina (Anissa) for letting me use it for this piece.

Just one more week left to go now. I’m determined to see this through AND be ready for NaNoWriMo as well as keeping up with my normal blogging too. I think I might need some luck! I’ll meet you back here tomorrow for my weekly review, this week it’s Finding Home Vol. Two: The Healer and it is a doozy.

 

Must Be Monday, spoiler free, writing

Must be Monday – Inktober Week 2

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So week two is now over and this feels like it was better than last week, maybe because I’m getting more into the swing of it now. Yesterday I even managed to only go two words over the fifty word limit in my initial write up before I had to edit which was a first! Friday’s post started out at seventy-three words so sometimes a great deal of editing is needed and it really helps me to think about what I’m trying to say with each piece. Here is last weeks Inktober 2019: Writer Edition round up!

Frail

Leaving her cane behind she made her way through the trees, leaves darkening, creeping near the end of their time in unison with her own. Their usual bench was empty now without her companion but as she sat and longed for their hand she knew they would be together soon. 

Swing


Cursing in elvish as his arrow misses another target Lucien throws his bow to the ground and draws his short swords, advancing on the TARGET before him but missing again. Growling with frustration he reaches behind him and pulls a sword through his long russet hair, leaving it considerably shorter. 

(Credit to Lissy Raine for her art of my precious boy Lucien – My main D&D character based on Lucien from ACOTAR.)

Pattern 

Elle picks at the ghastly green and silver threads resembling snowflakes and Christmas trees adorning the red woollen jumper while trying to ignore the itchy sensation she had been experiencing since putting the damned thing on. Her girlfriend beams proudly at her handiwork and Elles feels her cold heart melt.

Snow

I’m not going to make it in today,” Lara coughed down the phone, “I’ve come down with that bug that’s been going around. Yes, of course, forty-eight hours” Lara reassured the voice before hanging up the call. “All clear!” She yelled as a snowball hit her in the face. 

Dragon

As an ear-splitting roar filled the air I was surprised to find I was not afraid, although my hands shook and my fingers itched with anticipation. Despite my time at the monastery, I had never come across another of my kind. I held my breath as I stepped forward. 

Ash


As I floated back to consciousness the taste of ash filled my mouth as it always did, this time accompanied by a sick feeling in my gut.

“Good work, my son,” My father told me later that evening and I knew then that I must have done something truly terrible.

(This is a follow on to the Dragon prompt and is about another D&D character who shares their body with the soul of an ancient red dragon.)

Overgrown

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Lucien wasn’t sure he’d recognise his home as he walked amongst the now ruins where he had grown up, but as he ran a hand across the charred and overgrown remains of what had once been the veranda overlooking the great gardens his mind was suddenly awash with old memories.

I’ve been playing and/or planning a fair bit for my different Dungeons and Dragons groups this week so a good few of these are about events that have happened or I imagine have or will happen to my characters which I’ve really enjoyed as D&D is pretty much my favourite past time.

I think my favourite this week was probably Dragon although overgrown is a close second. My least favourite was swing as I had to edit it quite heavily and it didn’t have quite the same feel to it once I had reduced it to fifty words.

Now,  onto another week!