It’s not only my 2017 NaNoWriMo (and other) writing projects that have been set aside, hopefully temporarily, but also some craft projects too. A while back, actually years ago now, I began making a super special secret item for my Cal daughter, in blue and gold. Took a class and everything. And it’s sitting right here in the bag, unfinished. Technically, it is officially unstarted now, since I ripped out the entire thing due to its being imperfect. I don’t remember how to do it from way back when… sort of a beginner crochet stitch, I guess. Oh look, there are instructions, yippee! Only six steps in total, so how hard can it be? LOL
Next is a scarf for myself I began knitting with circular needles at my other daughter’s two Thanksgivings ago ~ really lovely colors in a variegated yarn. I actually got pretty far on this, maybe over halfway done. Need to figure out how to blend in the next skein of yarn because I used up the first skein, and then end the scarf after that. It’s soooo soft and cozy. Blues and browns, like the sand and sea. I can’t wait to wear it!
I got a craving this weekend to do needlepoint again and began searching Amazon and eBay for kits I might like to make. Found one ~ a trio of beautiful red poppies for a pillow or picture. Yes, I bought that even though I still need to finish the two otter yarny things and all the writing ever. I consider this rather restrained because I almost bought a gorgeous kit of purple pansies too and the only reason I didn’t is because it wasn’t as versatile for picture or pillow. It would have to be a picture when finished and I’m not sure I want a purple picture. I have no problem with a purple pillow.
But what I really want to do is design my own cross stitch pattern. I did a simple one ages ago, and the one I have in mind will be a little more complicated. It’s very mathy and time-consuming, but when has that ever stopped me? Right. I started one yesterday with an online template, but when you use the online ones they either let you do a photo or text and naturally I want a combination of both.
Here’s a weird thing: when I was poking around eBay I found the very first needlework kit project I ever did! No lie, when I was 14 years old, I did this crewel design, brought it with me to babysitting jobs and did it at home while watching TV also. I can’t believe they made so many kits that some are still around in their original packaging 40+ years later. I grabbed a Google image to put here because I think the eBay link might disappear.
Look how beautiful this is! My God, I am tempted to buy it again and remake it, for old times’ sake. You really can go home again. I wonder what happened to mine? It wasn’t this well done, of course. My first project. I didn’t even use stretcher bars. What a n00b.
The Daily Prompt: Knit
No point in dancing around the truth: I am not going to win NaNoWriMo this year. Today I am about 5,000 words short, which means that even if I write the approximate 1,700 words per day necessary to stay even for the next three days, I’d have to somehow flop 5K words on top of that. Not going to happen, despite it being a long weekend (for me). I have things to do, and I’m in pain besides. I’m still going to write this story though. I like it, and it appears to have something previous ones lacked: a plot.
The Daily Prompt: Dancing
I don’t usually express gratitude publicly. I’m grateful for sumatriptan, which usually knocks out a migraine, but I can’t thank a pill—I should thank a scientist. I’d have to research that, find out who first discovered Imitrex back when. A team of scientists? Who knows. I’m glad it’s generic now, wish I could get more than nine pills per month though, since I get more than nine migraines per month. I could, if I went outside insurance, but who can afford that? Anyway, I am grateful for sumatriptan. My NaNoWriMo wordcount is derailed however due to last night’s pain.
The Daily Prompt: Gratitude
I use everything in my writing, like a depression era cook. Nothing goes to waste. While juicy bits might be served immediately, scraps and fat are not tossed out, but flung into the pot on a slow simmer. Bones and beaks will be cycled back in someday, just wait and see. Feathers float around the stove whispering poems as I stir the plot. Little feet line up on the windowsill awaiting their turn as I sweep broken shells into a corner. Oh, I haven’t forgotten what you’ve done. You’re just lucky my weapon is a pen and not a gun.
The Daily Prompt: Simmer
After much fluctuating, I’ve decided to do NaNoWriMo. I’m building in five October “cheat” days to make up for my rocking social life, and the first one is tomorrow. I’m getting excited! It’s been a long time since I wrote my butt off for hours, without expectation. I don’t know what kind of novel this will be, or if I’ll even approach the 50K wordcount at all. Maybe it’ll be semi-autobiographical, or perhaps I’ll cut the selfies later. It might be a suspense novel or a romance. For sure, it will have ghosts, real or metaphorical… or both, most likely.
The Daily Prompt: Expect
August is RAM. I bet you didn’t know that. I didn’t know that. But luckily I have romance novels set as a key term in my Google News feed and ~ voilà ~ an article materialized to inform me of such.
I enjoyed reading what the various authors in the linked article had to say about the genre, about the joy of the happy ending, and especially how predictability is not a bug but a feature. Sarah MacLean noted that the genre is evolving to highlight not only the empowerment of women in general but also has given prominence to the “non-standard” heroine. Yes, we can have overweight women finding their soul mates now, along with older women, disabled women, women of color, on and on. Gone are the days when only “perfect” 19 year old white girls were allowed to find true love.
But romance novels are still scorned by many in a way that other genre novels are not. Sure, there are a lot of crappy romances out there. There are also a lot of crappy science fiction stories, crappy murder mysteries, etc. It does take some effort to find a good romance, since the market is flooded with them, but the same holds true for the other genres as well. This is where the library comes in handy, so you don’t waste $8 on impulse, and/or exchanging paperbacks with friends.
SSC: I have been on a break from romance novels for most of this year, but I’m sure I’ll go back eventually. I always do.
SSC2: I may do NaNoWriMo in October (would end my count on 10/30 to be fair)!
Some of you are probably going huh, wut, November? It’s the middle of the summer!
But a few of you will know exactly what I’m talking about.
November is coming.
And I’ve spent couple years faffing about writing poetry, NTTAWWT. Poetry is nice and all. Sometimes you just need to write poetry for a while… well, I do anyway. But then you get tired of creating adorable appetizers and delectable desserts and you want to make the main course again… you need to tell a story.
At some point in the near future, I’ll be organizing the poetry I wrote over the past few years, together with some relevant material from the distant past, into a new themed e-book available for purchase. I may also have one or more of my works narrated into an audio book and see how that goes. Dunno if I’ll do that with a poetry book or one of the romance novels; need to look into the whole dealio first, but it seems like a neat idea.
Aside from all that, however, the story drum is beginning to beat, faintly now, but slowly and steadily growing louder. Tell a story, beginning to end. So, savor my whimsical poasts and musings on social media for the moment. Soon it’ll be time to get serious again.
November is coming.
The Daily Prompt: Savor
No, this isn’t about you.
This is about Britain’s annual Literary Review award ~ and this year’s honor goes to Manil Suri for his scene in The City of Devi.
Surely supernovas explode that instant, somewhere, in some galaxy. The hut vanishes, and with it the sea and the sands – only Karun’s body, locked with mine, remains. We streak like superheroes past suns and solar systems, we dive through shoals of quarks and atomic nuclei. In celebration of our breakthrough fourth star, statisticians the world over rejoice.
It sounds pretty painful, especially the shoal-diving. But it’s hard to write a good sex scene… they all start sounding the same after a while. In my latest novel (from NaNo and not a romance per se), I did a fade to black. YES, I CONFESS. I did the fade. But it’s better than summoning a team of statisticians to help out, I’m pretty sure.
Apparently this consmasheration of holidays won’t occur again for 70,000+ years, so if you’re gonna try that pumpkin latke recipe you’d better do it now.
For all my peeps who are feverishly churning out words during these last few days of NaNoWriMo, I wish you good luck. I’m no longer attempting to get to the 50K mark, but I am pleased with the progress I’ve made this month and plan to finish this novel. I received very positive feedback on the first chapter at my writing group last week.
It’s been a tough couple of months for me, but things are looking up. I hope all my peeps have something to be thankful for as well.
I’m having a hard time killing off my casual acquaintances.
So I’ve begun editing two WIPs, neither of which are this year’s Nano project, but both of which are much further along toward an ending, or so it seems at this point anyway.
First WIP was intended to be a 100K contemporary romance novel, way back when I had the insane idea there was a possibility I could see a book of mine in actual physical print. Oh, the LOL. Right now the thing is at 61K and the plot is pile of hissing snakes. However! Now that I’m only writing for e-pub, the entire novel should be around 55K total, so I can pull half the snakes out and ~then a miracle occurs~ the rest of the snakes will then magically morph into a perfectly plotted wonderful romance novel.
But which snakes? Right. It’s not like they’re all so great. Not saying that. But they’re pretty freaking tangled up. Saying this.
Other WIP is finished and the right wordcount. It just kind of, well, sucks. I’ve had some feedback that the male protag isn’t developed enough as a character. Men have characters? What? Isn’t it enough that he has…
OK. ~eyeroll~ Gonna go program some feelings and an arc or whatever for this dude.
Wish me luck! 🙂