NaNoWriMo, Newsletter, and Magnolia Blossoms

I spent November writing the first draft of a new novel, learning how to podcast, and prepping for an audiobook version of Beyond Stone. I also put a Newsletter sign up page on this site. A very busy month.

December is proving to be just as busy. Last Saturday I had a book signing and reading at an art gallery which is the perfect place for a book whose main character is an artist.

To hear about future events, get updates on new releases, and my writing projects, please sign up for my Newsletter.

Magnolia tree blooming in December!

Autumn Showers

It was raining today as I sat in the Mobile Writing Studio working on my NaNoWriMo novel.  And windy. The van rocked as the rain pelted. I sipped my coffee and wrote, transported to the world my characters live in. Today, it was raining there too.

reflections

Reflections

NaNoWriMo 2016 – Pantser, Planner, or Plantser?

The countdown to NaNoWriMo has begun and it’s time to prep. When signing up this year, I went to claim a Pantser badge when I noticed a new one – Plantser.

This intrigued me – what is a Plantser?

A Pantser is one who flies by the seat of their pants – he or she sits down on November 1st with a blank screen and no plan.

A Planner is one who has, well – a plan. Usually an outline of the plot, descriptions of the characters, etc.

A Plantser draws from both worlds. This badge describes a Plantser as one who will start on November 1st with a comfortable mix of improvisation and loose structure.

That’s me this year!

I have a story idea and a logline. I have a protagonist and an antagonist. I have a beginning and an ending and a couple of plot points between. The rest will unfold as I type.

So I’m declaring myself a Plantser for NaNoWriMo 2016.

NaNoWriMo 2016 Participant Flair

The Beauty of Fall

Out come rubber boots, fingerless gloves, scarves, and hoodies. Fall is here!
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Autumn —
I would grasp even
her falling feathers
to weave into the fabric
of our dreams —
fluttering leaves spiral down
into disappearing mist.
— Willie Oliver Wolfe

Story Ideas For NaNoWriMo 2016

I’m getting ready for NaNoWriMo 2016. This is my third year participating in the National Novel Writing Month.

I don’t seem to have a problem coming up with story ideas, the tricky part for me is culling through them to find that gem. The idea that can carry a full length novel. An idea that can turn into a story that will keep readers turning the pages.

I write down my ideas in the form of loglines that include a general description of who the main character is, the situation, the main conflict, and the main character’s goal. Most of the time I also jot down the beginning and end of the story. These may change but they give me anchor points for the story. Which I need because I’m a total pantser.

Last year I tried being a planner but it didn’t work so well. I feel more comfortable letting the story unfold as I type.

Are you a pantser or a planner?

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View from the mobile writing studio.

My Writing Studio

I have a mobile writing studio. It’s set up in my van which I like to drive to different locations, make myself a cup of coffee or tea, and start writing.

My van is a camper conversion with a kitchen, bathroom, and sitting area with a table. I set up my laptop and off I go wandering into my story.

I thought it would be fun to write this blog while sitting in different locations, which I will either describe or post a photo of.  Today I’m sitting high above the ocean, getting a little battered by the wind.

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Inspiring!

A Little Background

Today, I thought I’d give a little background on Beyond Stone.

I first came up with the idea for this story when I was in the Professional Screenwriting Program at UCLA Film School. I thought it would make a great movie – I could see a lot of exciting visuals in it. But as I developed the story, I realized that I wanted to bring out what the main character, Andie, was thinking and feeling. And I would not be able to focus on her inner dialogue in a screenplay. So I filed the story idea away.

Then one day I was on Twitter when I saw several people talking about NaNoWriMo – the National Novel Writing Month. I learned that every November, people all over the world challenge themselves to write at least 50,000 words in 30 days.

I joined NaNoWriMo and wrote the first draft of Beyond Stone. Then, many rewrites later, it was finished! And now published!

Beyond Stone

My book, Beyond Stone, was released on July 20, 2016 as a Kindle eBook. Several people have contacted me asking when it would be available in print. I’m excited to announce that it is now available in paperback!