Since I grew up, it has become harder and harder to find things for my Christmas list. My mom, or grandparents, tend to start asking me around the end of November, and my mind always draws a blank. ‘Um, clothes? Money? I dunno…’ I like what I have, and there isn’t too much that I need or want. Which is good I guess? But it can be hard when all your relatives are staring at you, waiting for you to reply.
Perhaps it is so hard to think of things because the things I truly want for Christmas can’t be bought, by any average income anyway. But if I could write to Santa and ask him for something, this is the list I would give him.
A months worth of gas in my car. Do you know how much money I would save if I didn’t have to fill my car?
A new computer. One that doesn’t die as soon as I unplug it, or warn me about imminent death as soon as I turn it on.
To eat anything I want during the holidays and not gain any weight. I may have had a few too many cookies…
A walk-in closet dedicated to books. My bookshelf is overflowing, and so is the box in the closet.
An unbreakable phone screen. My poor phone, that is all I have to say about that.
A couple of these may happen someday, a couple of them, not so much. (when will someone invent calorie free sweets that still taste good?) But hey, it is always fun to wish!
Nanowrimo is over! Somehow, I survived. I lost my sanity and my brain somewhere around week three, and still have to catch up on sleep (though is that even possible?).
Also, I won!!! I somehow managed to scrape out 50,000 words in the month of November. Even with an epicly slow plot, Thanksgiving, and interruptions every two hundred words. Some evenings…
To celebrate such epicness, I am doing the last part of the ‘Know the Novel Linkup’ by Christine Smith. A great link all about your nano novel, or your current work in progress! This last link up is ‘It is Written’. Or half written, as the case may be.
If you would like to join the link up, you can here!
Know the Novel Part Three: It Is Written
1. Firstly, how did writing this novel go all around?
Ummmm… Terrible for the first third of the month, okay for the middle third of the month, and great for the last third of the month! I got into a groove with writing, and finally got to the bits I was excited for. Yay snarky character relationships! I am pleased with where the novel is going, and I can’t wait to write the next half!
2. Did it turn out like you expected or completely different? And how do you feel about the outcome?
In some ways, it turned out the way I expected. No new characters or plot twists. However, some of my characters are exhibiting strange new tendencies and depth that I am simultaneously liking, and wondering how on earth to deal with. No new love stories or anything. But unexpected friendships, moral dilemmas, and conversations. Overall, I like the unexpectedness. I think every bit that surprised me ended up being some of the stronger parts of the novel. So, yay!
3. What aspect of the story did you love writing about the most? (Characters, plot, setting, prose, etc.)
Characters!!! I love Kerina and Terrence’s relationship, and their growing shipness (we are pretending that is a word). I also love the beginnings of the threesome Nerl, Kerina, and Terrence. Nerl likes Kerina, though she is terrified of him; Nerl and Terrence have a sort of friends but mostly enemies relationship. Alllll the snark, mostly from Nerl. Which is nice because he is the only one in this novel who is. Heaven help all my serious characters…
4. How about your least favorite part?
Subplots. They sounded like such a good idea at the time, and now they are so frustrating! Trying to balance them all, and remember them all, is hard! I am consistently forgetting some plot thread or other and having to go back and find them again.
5. What do you feel like needs the most work?
Pacing. Blegh. my beginning is too slow, and then finally stuff happens, and then it got slow again, and now stuff is happening again! When I edit, there is going to be many, many scenes cut out because all they do is, well, give me a word count. Yeah. During Nano I have a tendency of putting in random dreams and scenes because I don’t have any more ideas and I needed two hundred words an hour ago!
6. How do you feel about your characters now that the novel is done? Who’s your favorite? Least favorite? Anyone surprise you? Give us all the details!
Technically, my novel isn’t done yet. I got about halfway in 50,000 words, and now have to write the last half. Eheh. This novel will never end…
My favorite character is Terrence. I like being in his head and writing things from his perspective. He is so interesting! Though Kerina is slowly growing on me. She is learning stuff, and I think I am getting better insights into her character.
My least favorite character is… Do I have to choose one? I kinda like ’em all. Though, Akel is being irritating. He isn’t very nice to the rest of my characters, and sometimes he is very hard to keep in line!
7. What’s your next plan of action with this novel?
Finish it. Write The End on a novel that has been in the works for years. And this time, I will do it! It will be finished! So says the procrastinating writer who already has a couple more ideas now that Nano is finished. *headdesk*
After that, time to edit! Which includes ripping out half the beginning and starting my novel someplace else entirely. And cutting out that weird dream, that was not a good day of writing, let me tell ya.
8. If you could have your greatest dream realized for this novel, what would it be?
Get it published. This is the first novel I have written that I think could be publishable material. It is interesting, needs lots of work, but the characters are slowly popping up off the page. If I do it right, this novel could be worth pursuing publication for. And that would be really, really awesome.
9. Share some of your favorite snippets!
‘Valon said something, but at that moment Terrences attention had been arrested by something else entirely. There was a girl laying on the grass. A girl. When was the last time he had seen one? Maybe it wasn’t a girl. She had flowers in her hair and looked for all the world like an elf that had been transplanted to the forest.‘
‘There was a rustle above his head, then a thud at his side as the tree deposited a grinning Kerina. Her braid was covered in leaves and twigs sticking out at odd angles from her head.
“How did the biscuits taste this time?” She asked with a smirk. “I think I finally found a charm that keeps them from burning.”
He hadn’t eaten dinner yet. Now that she mentioned it, the smells coming from thirty odd plates was overwhelming. Not that he was going to tell her that.
“What is the charm?” He asked instead.
Kerina tapped the side of her nose with a mysterious air. Then shrugged and grinned again. “I don’t know, they just worked out this time.”
Terrence blinked, was she teasing him?
“You should try one,” Kerina added airily before turning around and walking off to who knew where. She was definitely teasing him.‘
And my favorite…
‘These buttons were going to be the death of him. Maybe he should just stuff them in his pocket and pretend bare hands were all the fashion in Valai. They were, as long as you didn’t count the court. Which could be wearing rags for all he knew.
“Wretched things, aren’t they?” Terrence looked up to a lady in a green dress floating towards him. She took his glove and began to do the buttons for him. He almost jerked away, ladies of this court were too forward. He didn’t even know this woman, and she presumed to do his buttons for him. Then she spoke again. “Minnie had to help me with them. With all the ribbons and things they have to look pretty, they should invent things so that you can get dressed in them yourself.”
There was one person who talked like that. Kerina. Even if Terrence had wanted to move, his feet were stuck to the floor as he looked down at her hair. It was fixed with ribbons woven in and out of her brown, glossy hair. He had never noticed how well green and brown went together.
Her dress swished against his boots. Silk, how well she looked in it. Just like a lady of the court. As if she belonged here.
She finished the buttons and looked up at him. Any thanks was stuck in his throat. Her green eyes were iridescent. He couldn’t look away, couldn’t step back. There must be something to say. All words had left his mind, except three.
“Good evening Kerina.” ‘
10. Did you glean any new writing and/or life lessons from writing this novel?
I am a faster writer than I thought. When I started Nano I was under the impression that I am a slow writer who creeps along at a snails pace. When in fact, I can write a thousand words an hour. (yes yes, some of you are sniffing at such a small number, but it was news to me!)
No, I am not a steady writer. I write in spurts of creativity followed by a few minutes of staring into space. Or fifteen minutes, depending on the day. Even this blog post has been written in increments. But those increments add up, and I was finding that I could write two thousand words a day no problem (ish).
I also learned that my peak creativity is at about 4:00, 4:30, and at 7:00. Go figure, I am an evening writer. Not a late night writer, because at about 9:30 my brain decides to turn into a pumpkin and I run out of ideas.
There you have it folks! Another successful Nano under my belt, and a scrap of sanity left to spare. Yay! Despite what I did learn about how much I can write and when, I was still left drained. My creativity has all been sucked up by my novel. To rest, and to renew that creativity, I am taking a hiatus from most writing for a couple of weeks. You will probably hear from me sometime around Christmas, or right after, and then it will be back to your regularly scheduled blog posts in January.