Call me a masochist if you wish, but I’d like to participate in the NaNoWriMo Challenge more often than just once a year.

The associated website might not accommodate the next challenge until November 2015, but that’s not going to stop me from writing my next novel’s first draft via the same NaNoWriMo-inspired methods before then. Granted, I have more novel ideas in my “to do” folder as it is, but the simple fact is I like to create, so I’m going to create. I don’t care how many new, unattended ideas I have on hold…it’s not like those ideas have an expiration date.

How often will I utilize the NaNoWriMo approach?

As often as I have ideas I want to express and stories I want to tell.

Which means I’ll have plenty of first drafts written by the time November 2015 gets here.

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Experiment. Fail. Learn. Repeat.

I saw a poster just like this on an office wall at work.

I never really attached that exact wording to my writing exploits, but that’s essentially what I’ve been doing all along.

Experiment. Fail. Learn. Repeat.

Earlier this morning, while fighting through a stretch of my science fiction novella “All the Time in the World,” I came up with what I thought would be a great way of solving certain problems with how my characters were ransacking my intended story line. Except, ten minutes into it, I decided I didn’t like this solution any more than the other dozen attempts.

There was a point where I would have gotten frustrated with the story, and simply reach for something else to work for. But, I’m not at that point anymore. Now, I see this process as a fantastic opportunity to experiment.

To fail at conjuring the images and emotions I want to share.

To learn a new way of improving at my craft. And, a new way of telling this particular story.

And, yep…I’m gonna repeat the hell out of this one until the results are to my liking.

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PROGRESS REPORT – All the Time in the World

Well…at the very least, it seems like I’m taking all the time in the world on this one.

  • I still don’t think my MC has suffered enough in the present tense. His back story has been developed enough to my liking, and some of this past leaks into his current condition in a way that the reader will pick up on, but I still have the sense (especially for the first half of the story) that he’s merely ‘riding the wave of suffering’ because he has no choice, as opposed to making an attempt to navigate his way against the hardships in an attempt to better his situation. Now, this might be a condition of the unique situation he finds himself in (because of someone else’s doing), meaning his reactionary mode (at least at first) makes perfect sense…but I’ll continue to play with it.
  • My MC’s primary ‘ally’ is turning out to be a much more complex character than I first anticipated. This is making me exceedingly happy.
  • Two of the characters in this story made appearances (to varying degrees and with varying consequences) in my recently completed NaNoWriMo novel.
  • My version of a particular theoretical model doesn’t quite match what others might believe the ‘answer’ to be. This makes me exceedingly happy, too.

I originally scheduled this story to be ready for the critique phase by early January 2015. That might still happen.

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NaNoWriMo 2014: The Post-Post-Post-Game Show

I’ve already announced that I was a 2014 NaNoWriMo Winner. The next step, of course, is to work on the second draft. Many of my fellow NaNo’ers are attending to that step already. Some will let their story sit for a month or two, allowing the NaNoWriMo-inspired franticness to subside before undertaking part two.

I’m different. I will probably not touch my NaNoWriMo novel again until next year. Late next year.

Here’s why. Because my main character plays college (American rules) football, I want to do a bit more research on the behind-the-scenes workings of that lifestyle. If any University with a major Division I football program would like to work with me on this, I would greatly appreciate it. Of course, the best time to experience this lifestyle would be during the actual season; and, since this season is essentially over (minus bowl games), I would want this immersion to take place during the 2015 season.

Which means the novel probably won’t be ready until 2016.

No biggie. I’ve got plenty to keep me busy until next season.

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Sounds of Celebration

Being that I’m still celebrating my successful NaNoWriMo campaign, I figured this would be the best time for me to share a particular link about celebrating.

For those who partake in and/or watch ice hockey, the goal horn / siren / victory song is one of the most special auditory moments in all of team sports, mainly because goal scoring in ice hockey is (in theory, at least) difficult to achieve.

The gang at Sports Illustrated have compiled links of celebration sounds for all 30 NHL teams. Why the horn/siren combo of the Washington Capitals is only ranked 15th, I’m not entirely sure, but I’m also a minority amongst my fellow Capitals fans in preferring they ditch the horn (which just about every other team uses) and stick with the unique siren they’ve been using since the team’s birth in 1974 (yes, I’ve been following the team that long).

All 30 NHL Goal Celebration Sounds

For the metal head in me, I also like how the Dallas Stars fans get to celebrate.

With this kind of influence, I’m considering buying myself an air horn and blasting it in celebration every time I reach one of my writing goals. That should make me quite popular…!

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NaNoWriMo 2014: WINNER!!!

In my first ever attempt at completing the NaNoWriMo challenge, I got it done with a day to spare!

Officially, my word count crossed the finish line at 50,651, so, technically, I don’t have to write another word if I don’t want to.

But, anyone who knows me knows I do want to…and I will.

I’ll enjoy my success and reflect on my experience for a day or two, then I’ll attend to a few of my other stories. I’ll also share a few more NaNoWriMo-related thoughts. But, for now, simply know that I’m quite pleased with myself.

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An Actual Writing Progress Update

I haven’t blogged an actual writing progress update in a while. I blame NaNoWriMo.

”Venom Infinitum” (science fiction short story):
For a while now, I would not share the name of this story because I was convinced I would be submitting it to contests that required anonymity-esque separation between the writer and his/her manuscript. Obviously, I’ve changed my mind about those contests. This story has gone through the critiquing gauntlet, and I am just about finished with the revisions. A few more days, I’m thinking.

Unnamed mainstream novel:
I haven’t done much with this story in a while, except for a few stints of research and world building tasks. Once NaNoWriMo is over, I expect to begin writing a few scenes, just to see how the characters get along (or, preferably, don’t get along) with each other.

”All the Time in the World” (science fiction novella):
Yes! I’ve finally brought this story back into the starting lineup! I’ve been letting a few of my ideas simmer in my mind for a while, and I feel I’m now at the point where they make sense…or, at least, they show promise of cooperating. But…as is my usual practice, I have an additional reason for renewing work on this story: a couple of the characters made their way into my NaNoWriMo novel.


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