To the Throneroom

I’ll admit it, I didn’t think I was going to make it this month. When I looked over the weekend and realized that I was around 2,000 words behind where I needed to be, I worried that this would be another failed Camp NaNo month.

Instead…

CampNano2014Winner1

WOOHOO!!

It was only when I went back in and had to verify my novel that I realized just how much work I had put into this piece throughout July. I was copying scene after scene; some are going to be included in the final novel, and others are there to help me explore characters. I’ve had several unexpected characters crop up that I didn’t expect, like Lieutenant Varg, the friendly but secondary military personnel who takes it upon himself to check in on Shaleigh and her friends from time to time. Then there’s Meryl the imp who is tasked with taking care of guests and cleaning up after them, but who harbors a darker side as well. Not to mention my two dismissive healers, Franklin and Mel, who were not too pleased to have to deal with Shaleigh obviously terrible injury.

All in all, it’s been a fun month, and I don’t even think I’ve hit the hit the halfway point on this novel yet. I’ll keep posting updates here to help me stay on target.

Here’s the progress on my YA other-world fantasy novel about urban explorer Shaleigh Mallett who is whisked away to the Land of the Fae. Along the way she encounters living statues, friendly minotaurs, and a backstabbing ruler. When she gets tangled up in a love story that can’t possibly end well, Shaleigh finds herself forced to make a difficult choice that could change the future of this new land, and prevent her from ever getting home.

Project: Madam Cloom’s Garden
Current Word Count: 37,040
New Words Written:
7/30 – 2,267
7/31 – 2,145

Progress: Learned that imps can be quite pushy. Picked up some awesome new clothes; then got mocked by the very person they were supposed to impress. Finally met the person who wants to get rid of me.

Next up: A tour of the land, meeting up with a frenemy, and an unexpected sight. Not nearly enough training though.

Commentary: It’s amazing what a deadline hovering over my head will do for my daily word counts! I sure didn’t think I could squeeze in >4,000 words in a couple of days, but there it is. I’m happy that the lady antagonist has finally arrived on the set, but I’m looking forward to some upcoming scenes with a few of my favorite characters.

One Hand on the Steering

Plenty of writing getting done over here, just not as much as Camp NaNo demands of me. I’m trying not to sweat it too much though. The story is benefiting from me taking my time to mold each section before heading onto the next, even if I don’t quite hit my word count goal this month.

vineyardArchway

Custom archway for vineyard in Wisconsin.

If you follow my weekly Drabbles, you’ll notice I skipped last week. Honestly I don’t have any real excuse except that my head has been in Shaleigh’s world and it’s difficult to squeeze out little bitty one-shots on TypeTrigger as often as I like because of it. Don’t worry though, I should be getting back to a regular weekly Drabble schedule now.

Here’s the progress on my YA other-world fantasy novel about urban explorer Shaleigh Mallett who is whisked away to the Land of the Fae. Along the way she encounters living statues, friendly minotaurs, and a backstabbing ruler. When she gets tangled up in a love story that can’t possibly end well, Shaleigh finds herself forced to make a difficult choice that could change the future of this new land, and prevent her from ever getting home.

Project: Madam Cloom’s Garden
Current Word Count: 32,641
New Words Written: Plenty since my last update, but not enough to get me caught up with Camp NaNo! I’m a pretty consistent 700 words behind schedule on this piece each night despite my best efforts. We’ll see if I can muster up the energy to write more over the next few days.

Progress: A visit to the rude healers, a heated argument, and an awkward guest have put Shaleigh into a rather down mood. I guess it was inevitable that the realization would fall on her eventually. It’s a good thing she’s about to make a friend.

Next up: Making a friend despite the obstacles and a lesson about masters/madams in this city.

Commentary: Some of my favorite scenes so far? Describing Teagan’s gazebo and glassed-in conservatory with its vines creeping up the walls, trying to decide if there should be a limit to the jerkiness of the healers, and figuring out what kind of formal outfit Shaleigh would choose to wear.

From lands far beyond

Not as much progress over the last few days as I would like, but I’m getting some really fun scenes and dialog in. I’m also happy because some of my favorite characters are starting to show up. Is it bad to have favorites?

Here’s the progress on my YA other-world fantasy novel about urban explorer Shaleigh Mallett who is whisked away to the Land of the Fae. Along the way she encounters living statues, friendly minotaurs, and a backstabbing ruler. When she gets tangled up in a love story that can’t possibly end well, Shaleigh finds herself forced to make a difficult choice that could change the future of this new land, and prevent her from ever getting home.

Project: Madam Cloom’s Garden
Current Word Count: 23,654
New Words Written:
7/16: 994
7/18: 353

Progress: A convenient camera, a bloody death, and nearly a plummet over the edge. Banter between two enemies who know each other too well and Shaleigh learned she can have a big mouth at times.

Next up: Shaleigh is once again on her own and in a strange place, but this city is far more dangerous than she realizes.

Commentary: The dialog in this last bit was a lot of fun and has multiple levels to it. I love it when the words come out the way you want them to. I get to tap a bit into Shaleigh’s historical knowledge next, which is one of the many perks of her being an urban explorer. It really gives her a touch of reality and groundedness that starkly contrasts her to the rest of the world around her.

Camp NaNo Stats:

Average Words Per Day: 807

Your Average Per Day: 715

Words Written Today: 353

Target Word Count: 25,000

Total Words Written: 12,886

Words Remaining: 12,114

Current Day: 18

Days Remaining: 14

At This Rate You Will Finish On: August 4, 2014

Words Per Day To Finish On Time: 866

When Day Turned to Night

I haven’t gotten a chance to update the word metrics in a few days. Various excuses include impromptu family get-togethers, laziness, and the weekend.

Here’s today’s progress on my YA other-world fantasy novel about urban explorer Shaleigh Mallett who is whisked away to the Land of the Fae. Along the way she encounters living statues, friendly minotaurs, and a backstabbing ruler. When she gets tangled up in a love story that can’t possibly end well, Shaleigh finds herself forced to make difficult decisions about people she’s come to truly care about.

Project: Madam Cloom’s Garden
Current Word Count: 16,753
New Words Written:
7/8: 1,035
7/10: 13 (Yes, thirteen WHOLE WORDS. There was lots of revision to do, okay?)
7/11: 1,077
7/12: 1,013
7/13: 1,556
7/14: 910

Progress: Day turned to night and night turned to day. Not all daggers are magical, and faeries have a mixed reputation.

Commentary: I honestly didn’t expect to put werewolves in this early, but here they are. At least it resulted in an awesome chase scene. I’m also very happy that Talek and Briar are going to be making appearances soon. I guess it’s bad when you cheer for your own characters.

Next up: Difficult decisions, rude behavior, and a decision about cats.

The Ruined City of Aife

Taken by John Smith.

Taken by John Smith.

More writing metrics! In between running errands today and finishing up some last minute weekend relaxation, we squeezed in a little bit of writing time. Slow and steady wins the race, or at least that’s what I’m telling myself.

Here’s today’s progress on my YA other-world fantasy novel about urban explorer Shaleigh Mallett who is whisked away to the Land of the Fae. Along the way she encounters living statues, friendly minotaurs, and a backstabbing ruler. When she gets tangled up in a love story that can’t possibly end well, Shaleigh finds herself forced to make difficult decisions about people she’s come to truly care about.

Project: Madam Cloom’s Garden
Current Word Count: 16,753
New Words Written: 950

Progress: We learn about the City of Aife and its people. Shaleigh goes on a short trip.

Commentary: More talks with Mawr the Guardian and learning about the sad tale of Aife. Ooh and a (once) gorgeous library. Not a lot, but I had a good time adding plenty of lush descriptions. This piece is coming along nicely even though it’s a holiday weekend!

Next up: Painful explanations, terrible smells, and difficult truths.