Monthly Archives: October 2010



I’m sitting here at 7:37pm, October 30, writing this.

And I can easily count the things I should be writing.

Like my outline.

With only a bit better than 24 hours to go, I have zero outlines prepared. I had hoped to get one done earlier today, but that just never happened for a variety of reasons.  Now I’m hoping to get one done this evening (in principle, because I’m only writing two long novels, I only need the two outlines….but I really would like to get a couple more outlines prepared…I don’t know if that’s going to happen)

I am a splendid procrastinator, but really? fk


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Amended Goal


It’s just past midnight; it’s now officially the 27th.

I have planned (outlined) precisely 0 of my planned projects. (I did sorta plan to plan them tonight, but got held up at work until 10pm, and then didn’t really feel like doing any more work when I got home)

I have taken into consideration all the comments from my previous posts. You all pretty much have something of real merit to say – the million last year nearly killed me, and now I’m threatening to do the same after losing 40+ hours/week. Writing that *does* sound pretty insane, I’ll grant.

And I certainly don’t want to shirk my job and lose it. Not given that I’ve got a year-long lease to maintain.

So, we’ll compromise.

I’ll actually properly plan for 500,000, which I think is definitely possible, given my situation, especially with catch-up times for the weekend. I will also prepare 500k of alternate outlines. (Yeah, that’s going to pretty well pack this weekend.)

I will launch my month with a *goal* of a million.

However, if and when that proves impossible, I will gradually cut back. For those who are worried about my job/health/sanity, I want to preserve at least the first two of those three.

Nevertheless, I want to push myself to my limits this November, just as I attempt to every November. It just wouldn’t be NaNo without.

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So, I appear to have lost my mind

Well, I think the title says it best of all.

My competitive streak seems to have taken the best of me. I believe I mentioned it somewhere towards the end of last November, but I’m highly competitive in the few things which I know I excel. Writing and writing reasonable quality quickly is among those few.  And when I started the overachiever thread on the NaNo forums, it was inevitable, eventually, that someone would start bandying the million around again.

Do I know if I can do it this year?

Not sure in the least. I wore myself out last November trying to reach it, and I was unemployed and commitmentless last year. Now I have a full-time job, which may well require overtime that I can’t actually shirk just because I want to.

On the other hand, I live less than a five-minute-walk from work, and so that frees up almost the entire rest of the day for writing.

Why have I lost my mind so thoroughly this month?

No fking idea.

The major obstacle I see, thus far, except for the very obvious fact that I have forty hours fewer a week to write, is that I haven’t actually started any real planning for *any* of my NaNos. And the last time I checked, NaNo starts a week from tomorrow.

Seems like I’ve got my work cut out for me.



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And now back to our regularly scheduled Kateness…

Well, I’m more or less moved in to my apartment. It still looks kind of bare, and I’m sure there are all kinds of funky things that I’ll discover over the next few days, weeks, and months, but I have the keys, I’m here to stay, and it means I no longer have a three-hour commute each way to work every day. Instead, my commute will be less than five minutes – that’s how close work and home are now.

In any case, because I’ll have more free time, expect to see some more NaNo related blogs coming up over the next week or two.

Also, once I’ve cleared up all the boxes and got my desk assembled, I’ll take some pictures of my shiny new place for the blog.

Happy NaNo planning, my lurky readers!

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My Very First Book

So I’ve been looking for this for ages, and when cleaning up the crap in my room, I finally stumbled upon it again. This is the first story I ever wrote, at the ripe old age of seven. The school bound it up very nicely, laminated the front cover, and gave me a copy. I was the happiest person in the world.

And now, behold:  The Red Apple

And that was when I knew it. That was when I knew that I wanted to be a writer, more than anything else in the world.


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Pre Nano Prep

So, Nano is rapidly approaching and I am disastrously unprepared for it. Hopefully, that’ll be remedied when I move into my new apartment (signed a lease yesterday and am moving in next weekend), but I suspect the next couple of weekends will be attempts to actually move a liveable amount of stuff into the apartment so that I don’t, y’know, have to sit or sleep on the floor and have plates to eat off. (As soon as the place is habitably furnished, I’ll be posting pics up here.)

Anyway. Nano.

I mentioned on the forums that I’m going to be doing two long pieces (250k each), because that means I only have to plan/structure/outline two stories, rather than five or more. If by some miracle I pass the 500k mark and the month isn’t up yet, I’ll figure out what to do then. (And probably swear at myself in hindsight for not being better-prepared). It’s a shame, really, because I had a bunch of fairly neat projects that I could have worked on, but I had to pick the ones that would lend themselves to length, and were reasonably within my comfort zone.

I’ve only really started planning one of them, The Lines Men Draw, which is a dark, almost apocalyptic fantasy. The frame of the story is of the last battle at the last castle, which when lost will mean that the era of kingdoms and knights and an older way of living has come to an end. Outside these walls are only strangeness and evil, born of shunning the old ways.

What is actually happening is that republicanism is on the rise (no, lurkers, not republicans like America, republicanism like the form of government), after a handful of revolutions and civil wars, and monarchies have largely been replaced (for example, the sort of thing that happened during the French revolution, except with multiple countries more or less simultaneously).

The actual story contained within the frame will be the getting-to-that-point, and will be told from five POVs (another handy way to increase the word count without actually resorting to dirty tricks).

1. the eldest of the last king, who goes on a journey to an ancient spiritual place after the middle son has failed to return (this idea sparked by this). The oldest son insists that he can go in hunt of his brother, that the father is hale. He departs with an escort of 50 men. This POV follows his travels through strange new lands and witnesses his transformation from, essentially a country bumpkin, to a sophisticated young man who knows the truth of what is happening in the world, but is ignored when he returns home early on in the siege to try to convince his father to capitulate.(This POV is by far the most well-thought out so far)

2. Diplomat from the warring republic, who becomes a true believer in the chivalric ways of the old kingdom and betrays his cause to help them, but it is too little, too late. This POV gives an inside look into the true motives of the “bad guys”.

And then for the last three, all I know about them is who they’re going to be: a rural, coming-of-age boy who fights for the chivalric cause, the queen (to parallel the diplomat), and a scientist from the republic, who is also traveling to the ancient spiritual site (to parallel the older brother).

I also haven’t drawn maps or anything for any of this, let alone begun the outline. And Nano is only three weeks away.


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1 week in!

So today concluded my first week of real work. It’s been…an adventure.

First off, there’s the 6 hours a day I spend commuting, not to mention the exhaustion of being up for so long that I’m so ridiculously unused to. All this week, I’ve easily fallen asleep well before midnight (which is a good thing, I guess, given that I have to get up at 5:40am. To start work at 9. Bah.

Then there’s the office itself. I can’t get my own computer account because the sole IT guy is in the hospital, so I’m using the guy-whom-I’ve-replaced’s account until then. I haven’t signed a contract yet because of…uh, I’m not sure, but I’m pretty sure it’s related. I’m reasonably sure that I’ll get paid, though (and I did get a colossal amount of paperwork to fill out first thing I walked in there on Monday). The boss likes me. I have (or will have) decent health insurance.  The people at the office are pretty cool, too, even though I think I’m the youngest by at least a decade. I’ve learned a lot, a lot of it basic administrative stuff, but some law stuff as well, which is cool. If I decide that I want to go to law school in a few years, knowing some actual stuff about the law might be advantageous. I probably won’t be telling stories about work here unless I can sufficiently anonymize them, but then, this blog is really more about writing than anything else. (I shall write a post about NaNo this weekend.)

Tomorrow, I’m going down to Wilmington with my mother to look at a couple of apartments. Moving this early is a rather hasty decision to make, but this commute is unpleasant, and I would much rather jump into an apartment than keep this up. Plus, of course, the whole NaNo thing.

So, I survived my first week. Who knew I could? Huh.


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