Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Word Count Wednesday!

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Yesterday I had an epiphany.

Although an important indication of progress on a writing project, word count alone is insufficient. As anyone who has participated in NANO knows, a certain number of words does not necessitate cohesion or usability, to say nothing of the other literary components which make a novel worth the read.

This caveat is especially true here. Though technically a revision, this go-round with my novel is more like a deconstruction, a remix if you will, so I can take nothing for granted as I proceed.

As my MC reminds me every time we meet.

So I no longer set arbitrary weekly word count goals, choosing instead to focus on my MC's whereabouts and activities.

But I do want a steady uptick in that number in the lower left-hand corner. It makes me smile.


Wednesday, May 22: 11,157 words

Wednesday, May 29: 16,280 words

Weekly tally: 5,663 words


Monday, May 27, 2013

In Memoriam: My Old Crabapple

Today is Memorial Day, the day our country sets aside to honor and mourn those brave soldiers who sacrificed their lives for our freedom. And I won’t trivialize their selflessness by waxing poetic about the death of a character or favorite plot thread.

Today I honor and mourn someone I lost, someone who slipped from this life without my immediate knowledge, someone whose death I didn’t understand right away because I was too busy being selfish.

My Old Crabapple, my Triple E.

My first friend.
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She was my courage, my aggravation, my whimsy. Though seldom philosophical and rarely stationary long enough for serious dialogue, she could knock you on your ass with her dead-on observations and wit.

And she died two years ago from a breast cancer whose encore she neglected to mention.

Friday, May 24, 2013

Reflections: The Cost of Choice

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I am a chronic allergy sufferer, scrambling for tissues and attempting to scratch the inside of my ears from the moment I awaken. So loud is my nose blowing, my youngest daughter covers her ears in her sleep whenever I start. It’s that bad.

To combat this issue, I took two antihistamines on Sunday—one at a time, more than four hours apart, as taking them together renders me useless and lethargic. Nevertheless I was asleep Sunday night by 9:00 p.m.

The real surprise came Monday morning at 3:00 a.m. when I found myself wide awake and full of fun as my Grandmom used to say. I should have gone back to sleep, should have decided it was too early for active consciousness and tried again in a few hours.

But where would be the fun in that?

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Word Count Wednesday!

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This blog serves many functions—it encourages, examines, enlightens, and entertains (I hope).

But its core purpose, the impetus for its conception, is singular: To chart my journey to publishing my first novel.

And as such, I must begin with the book itself, one I have yet to complete since deciding to revise it.

And the need for completion gave me an idea.

To stay honest and tether myself to the goal of completing a very rough first draft by July 1st, I hereby institute Word Count Wednesday. On this day every week, I will reveal my word count on this project from the previous Wednesday until the end of a writing session started on Tuesday—that final caveat allowing me to include Tuesday evening activities that roll on past midnight—and the word count for the entire story.

“Oh, aren’t you the brave one?” my Moo Sister Jess remarked when I shared my idea.

“Am I?” I wondered. “We’re about to find out...”

Monday, May 20, 2013

Do I Know You?

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I have been working on my revised manuscript off and on… okay, mostly off… for a few months now. And a strange thing is happening with my protagonist.

She has changed.

I don’t mean that after implementing the post-rejection suggestions she’s different. If I did, that would be silly and indicative of a bigger issue. 

Namely that I’ve lost my mind.

No, I mean when I sit down to let her in, her voice is different. Her mood and perspective are different. It’s as if she's a different person altogether.

Friday, May 17, 2013

Reflections: What I Need To Do

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(Grammar people, the “to” is capitalized intentionally, so bear with me.)

I have several friends living their dreams: hair consultants, fashion stylists, educators, and more.

One such friend recently cited Jim Rohn as one of her influences, particularly his adage, “Don’t start the day until it is finished," decide today what you will do tomorrow, beginning with the end in mind.

Armed with that sage advice, I tackled the first two business days of this week and accomplished more in those two days than last week altogether.


But sometime Tuesday evening, I met with an unfortunate side effect of all this industry.

I was cranky and overwhelmed, unable to decide what to do next.

Monday, May 13, 2013

Bad Blogger

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My name is Denise, and I have been a bad blogger.

(Hi, Denise.)

Nearly three months ago, I started this bloggerific journey with little idea of the time, commitment, and creativity it would require. I was just excited to find a viable use for my first novel’s rejection.

But enthusiasm is a poor substitute for a plan, given its tendency to evaporate under pressure and prompt you to chose relaxation over rewriting.

Thus too many weeks and an embarrassing number of days have passed since my last entry. And with each post-free day, I thought, “No one cares about my blog/my work/me anyway”—best way to talk yourself out of something, bar none—“so I can skip another day. No one will know the difference.”

And though I know that isn't true—You’re here, after all—a greater truth resounded.

I would know.