author, nanowrimo, Writing

NaNoWriMo: Finishing Up

And just like that it’s the last day of November! It’s crazy to think that just 30 days ago I embarked on an ambitious journey to write a 50,000 word novel in 30 days whilst studying and having a baby!

I didn’t think I would get it done, but I managed to persevere and complete my novel! With the conflicting priorities, something had to give though. I ended up dropping my summer classes at University. It wasn’t an easy decision, but I wanted to prioritise my child’s early days and continue my true passion of writing.

It’s always hard when you stop doing something. I felt a bit like a failure, giving up on my classes rather than pushing on and finishing them. But, it’s important to prioritise what makes you happy and understanding that it’s okay to push the pause button if you need the break.

Thinking back, even if I wasn’t pursuing NaNoWriMo, it was very ambitious to continue my Psychology studies over the holiday period with a newborn. He is very demanding, and preparing for Christmas is always a long journey even without a baby!

I still feel a little bit like a failure for dropping the classes over this trimester, but I keep reminding myself that my priorities have shifted and it’s okay to take a break! There is absolutely nothing wrong with pausing things when life gets hectic. Plans change and that’s okay!

You need to make time for your family no matter what happens in your life.”

Matthew Quick

Now I’m going to get back to editing Infection Point so that I can finally get it sent out to publishers in the new year! I even have a new novel to edit once I’ve finished Infection Point which is incredibly exciting!

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Halfway Mark for NaNoWriMo

“You fail only if you stop writing.”

Ray Bradbury

Halfway through NaNoWriMo and halfway to my word limit! I’ve managed to write around 25,000 words so far (just under I think) and I’m feeling a little proud. It’s been hard getting there but I’m glad that I pushed myself to do this.

It’s always difficult to complete NaNoWriMo. Writing 50,000 words in 30 days is intense. Especially when you add in a baby and University work!

Even if I don’t finish NaNoWriMo this year I’ll still be proud that I took part in it. It hasn’t been easy to write and I’ve learnt to be flexible and write when I have the opportunity. Lately that means writing in the early mornings when I’m feeding Bubba.

I don’t mind spending time in the wee hours of the morning writing. It helps keep me awake while feeding my baby and my creative juices have always flowed better at night anyway!

I’m eager to see if I manage to finish this year, but regardless it’s nice to have a new novel in the works. I’ve liked expanding my mind away from editing Infection Point and my new novel has taken me on a writing journey I never thought I’d take.

Hopefully I can finish the book before the end of November, but we’ll see how it goes!

author, nanowrimo, writing

Bring on NaNoWriMo!

“You can’t wait for inspiration. You have to go after it with a club.”

Jack London

It’s the second week of NaNoWriMo! It’s been really hard getting back into the groove and writing again, especially with a newborn! I didn’t manage to write much the first few days but I’m starting to get into a good routine now.

Since I have a baby to take care of I don’t get much writing done during the day. Hubby goes to work Monday-Friday so my days are filled with taking care of our son and doing chores or reading in-between feeds and cuddles.

I spend my evenings writing, once dinner is done and the baby is in his bassinet I write on my phone or on my laptop. Usually I end up forgetting my laptop in the living room so I write on my phone. It’s definitely different than my previous way of writing, but what can you do?

I’m pretty determined to get this done and so I’m writing whenever I can, even if that means writing in bed at night while the baby is asleep.

“A professional writer is an amateur who didn’t quit.”

Richard Bach

It took me a while to think up of an idea for a novel this time around. I ended up settling on going out of my comfort zone and writing a thriller novel, rather than my usual YA style. It’s been a challenge writing it so far, but I’m keeping up with the word goals and still managing to think up of ideas.

I’m not too sure where the novel is going at the moment, but that’s part of the excitement! I will see where the story takes me throughout this month and hopefully at the end of NaNoWriMo I have a half-decent novel outside of my usual niche!

It will be interesting to see how it all goes, but I will definitely be keeping you all updated.

author, nanowrimo, Writing

Prepping For NaNoWriMo 2021

Don’t just plan to write — write. It is only by writing, not dreaming about it, that we develop our own style.”

PD James

It’s that time of the year again! I wasn’t sure if I was going to participate in NaNoWriMo this year, simply because of how crazy my 2021 has been (see my previous few blog posts if you have no idea what I mean).

If you’re not completely sure what I’m talking about, NaNoWriMo stands for National November Writing Month. The goal is to write 50,000 words within the month of November. It’s hard, but participating is always good motivation to write! I’ll link the website so you can check it out if you’re interested!

http://nanowrimo.org

Feel free to buddy up with me if you decide to participate in NaNoWriMo this year! I always loved seeing what my buddies are up to and their progress! My username is emmy_lb

I decided a few weeks ago that despite everything I wanted to participate in NaNoWriMo again. It’s a yearly tradition for me, but I also want to spend a month writing and using my talents once again after months of not writing anything except University reports.

It’s not going to be easy. The first step is coming up with an idea and I’m already struggling with that (Mum brain is real). I have a week to prepare so I’m taking the time to focus and think of a basic concept before delving into writing next week.

I know it’ll be harder to write a novel in one month this time around. I now have a child to care for and it’s not going to be easy juggling a baby and writing 50,000 words in a month, but I’m determined to give it a good go! Even if I don’t hit the goal, I will have gotten back into writing again and that’s my main goal.

“Find your best time of the day for writing and write. Don’t let anything else interfere. Afterwards it won’t matter to you that the kitchen is a mess.”

Esther Freud

Once NaNoWriMo is over I’ll refocus on editing Infection Point, which has been sorely neglected over the course of this year. I’m so close to having finished the final edit and I want to finish it by January! I’ll get myself motivated through writing in NaNoWriMo and spend December editing Infection Point.

I’m looking forward to getting back into writing again. It’s been way too long neglecting one of my favourite activities and I can’t wait to get back into my created worlds again. Keep an eye on my blog for weekly updates through November of my NaNoWriMo progress!

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Back at it After a Long Break

“I’m working my way steadily back and feeling good.”

Lee Westwood

It has been a hot minute since I’ve posted a blog! Honestly, it has been a completely insane 6 months for me. Things have been crazy and time has been flying by.

I have been neck deep in Psychology studies, which have only been getting harder each semester. I still love what I’m doing, but it really does take a toll! I have to put every bit of my spare time into studying during a semester so my writing unfortunately has been suffering this year.

Not only this, but I actually became a mum recently! I had a little boy just last month and I’ve been slowly trying to finish off the semester at University while juggling a little demanding newborn.

“A new baby is like the beginning of all things – wonder, hope, a dream of possibilities.”

Eda J. LeShan

Pregnancy was rough, birth was rough and having a newborn is definitely a major learning curve. It’s been hard for the past 6 months to find motivation to do anything beyond sleep and study.

Now that my little boy is here, my head is starting to clear up a little from the pregnancy brain fog and despite the constant state of sleep deprivation, I’m starting to feel my spark of inspiration come back. I want to start writing again and getting back into it!

“You fail only if you stop writing.”

Ray Bradbury

NaNoWriMo starts in November and I’m gearing up to take part in it, as I do each year. I’m going to use November to get back into my writing train and push myself to write again. I want to get back into it and what better time to throw myself into writing than NaNoWriMo!?

It’ll be harder this year with a baby to contend with, but I’m motivated to get through it and smash it out! I want to keep pursuing my passions and with the pregnancy fatigue and brain fog lifting I’m confident that I’ll be able to participate and complete NaNoWriMo 2021!

I’m writing blog posts again and I’ll get cracking back into writing. I’m looking forward to the end of 2021 and heading into 2022. I’ve got my baby and my writing and I’m excited to see where the rest of the year leads!

“Writing permits me to be more than I am. Writing permits me to experience life as any number of strange creations.”

Alice Walker
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Review Time – Throne of Glass by Sarah J. Maas

Libraries were full of ideas—perhaps the most dangerous and powerful of all weapons.

Sarah J. Maas, Throne of Glass

I picked this novel up at a bookstore ages ago and when I finally got around to reading it, I loved it! Essentially, Throne of Glass centres around Calaena Sardothein, who is an assassin. The novel follows her as she is forced into a contest to compete to be the Crown Prince’s champion. It is a fascinating novel that follows her story as she overcomes her struggles and grows stronger each chapter.

My name is Celaena Sardothien. But it makes no difference if my name’s Celaena or Lillian or Bitch, because I’d still beat you, no matter what you call me.

Sarah J. Maas, Throne of Glass

Calaena is thrown into competition against men from all over the empire – assassins, warriors and thieves. She is promised freedom after 4 years of service (if she wins) and this drives her forwards, since she was brought out of the prison camps specifically to compete.

I really enjoyed reading Throne of Glass and I can’t wait to delve into the follow-up novels! The novel quickly takes a turn away from the anticipated storyline when Calaena has to solve mysteries surrounding her fellow competitors and mystery starts to encompass the story.

The fact that the main character is a female assassin was so appealing to me (I’m a sucker for badass females) and Throne of Glass had me hooked early on. It’s a fun read and I enjoyed delving into this world and getting lost in the novel.

Sometimes, the wicked will tell us things just to confuse us–to haunt our thoughts long after we’ve faced them.

Sarah J. Maas, Throne of Glass

Throne of Glass is definitely more on the younger side of young adult literature – it’s not sophisticated but it is easy to understand and a thrilling read. Although Calaena can be a little annoying (she borders on Mary Sue territory sometimes), she grew on me and I found myself enjoying the novel more each chapter.

I definitely recommend this book to those who enjoy thrilling fantasy novels! It is the first of 8 in the series, so it does take some dedication to invest in the rest if you read this one. I’m willing to make that investment to find out what happens to my favourite characters!

author, Writing

Starting Something New

I know, I know, I know. I haven’t exactly finished Infection Point yet but I’m so close to finishing the edits! I get ideas sometimes that I just have to get out, and I have started my next novel. It’s nice to get that release from my constant editing and focus on something new.

I have had some ideas for several months now and I’ve decided enough is enough and I have to get these ideas out and onto paper (figuratively speaking since I type on a computer).

Sometimes the ideas just come to you and you have to start writing them down! I have started my next novel while finishing off editing Infection Point. It is not taking priority, as editing and getting Infection Point published is my main focus, but I like the new story.

I love Infection Point so much and I have so much time and energy invested into it. I figure that it’s okay to take a small step back some days to write something new – it won’t detract from me finishing my edits!

I’m confident about Infection Point being done soon and I know I’ll need something else to work on once it is complete anyway. I’ve just started the next novel before Infection Point is completely done.

I will keep everyone posted as to how it all goes! I’m enjoying this new novel and I can’t wait to show some of it, however Infection Point must come first!

author, Writing

Behind The Scenes – Infection Point Update

If a story is in you, it has to come out.

William Faulkner

I’m getting there. I really am getting there! It was slow progress over the holidays and with work, but I’m at the home stretch! I don’t have much more to edit until my novel is done, which is so incredibly exciting!

I only have a couple of chapters left to edit, and then I’ll let some people read it and make sure it’s okay before I send it off to some publishers! It’s really improved from where it started, and I’m proud of the novel I’ve created. I am nervous for second opinions and sending it to publishers, but I am proud of my work and I do want to put it out there.

It’s been a really long haul. I’ve been working on this novel for like two years now. It hasn’t been a quick process for me, with work and studies getting in the way, but I’m excited that I can finally see that finish line!

I could just keep on editing this novel for another two years. It’s hard to stop editing and decide that enough is enough. It’s hard to end that story and be done. But I need to do it in order to get this novel into the world. I need to stop the story and be done with editing at some point.

There is no real ending. It’s just the place where you stop the story.

Frank Herbert

It’ll be strange finally finishing the editing process. I’ve been editing for most of these last two years, and it’s dragged on and on. The writing was easy, the editing was definitely not easy. I’m looking forward to being able to start new things and move forward with my writing.

It’s hard to let go, admittingly. I’m kind of dreading having to let go of this novel. I’ve spent so long on it now that it feels strange to almost be at that point when I’m done with it. When I don’t need to spend time every day on it.

Finishing books – and leaving the world you’ve created – is always a kind of emotionally wrenching experience. I usually cry.

Lauren Oliver

That moment isn’t quite here yet. I’m hoping to be done by the end of February, which means I’ll have some time to send it off to people for opinions and start something new before delving into University again.

But, for now, I’m off to go edit some more!

author, nanowrimo, Writing

Finishing Up NaNoWriMo

“Be yourself. Let who you are, what you are, what you believe, shine through every sentence you write, every piece you finish.”

John Jakes

I am done! What an amazing feeling to be done! 50,000+ words written in one month and I have the first draft of my new novel completed!

I hit 50,000 words on the 28th of November, and the last two days were spent finishing the entire novel as it is. I ended up with about 65,000 words, but the novel is done, and I did it in just one month!

It’s not the neatest at the moment, and there are quite a few errors throughout, but it is done. The novel is completed, apart from editing, and it is such a great feeling!

I am officially a NaNoWriMo 2020 writer and winner! Absolutely love this feeling, and it is so amazing to feel this way each year when NaNo comes rolling around!

I am really relieved that I finished the novel. It was time-consuming and exhausting, but I finished it! I was determined to get it done, and I spent many hours writing in order to make this dream a reality.

“Finish what you’re writing. Whatever you have to do to finish it, finish it.”

Neil Gaiman

You do have to do whatever you can to finish a novel. Especially when you’re writing it in just one month. It takes a lot of dedication and focus to do this, but it is so incredibly worth it!

I have a fantastic first draft of a novel now, and I can’t wait to get into editing it in the coming months!

“You must write every single day of your life… You must lurk in libraries and climb the stacks like ladders to sniff books like perfumes and wear books like hats upon your crazy heads…May you be in love every day for the next 20,000 days. And out of that love, remake a world.”

Ray Bradbury
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The Final Stretch

“Worldbuilding can be a lot of work. I try to see where things are linked together—and also to keep mundane details in mind. Just those, put together, give you a kind of rudimentary skeleton to start hanging things on.”

Ann Leckie

I am so close to the end! It’s within sight, within reach, and it is so incredibly exciting! I’m at 41,000 words and have 6 days left – definitely a feasible goal to write 9000 words in 6 days!

It’s been a hard process, but it’s so worth it. I feel so proud of myself for coming this far, and I’m sure that I will feel even prouder when it is complete!

I always struggle a little during NaNoWriMo. It’s hard to believe that it is possible to smash out 50,000 words in once month, but it definitely is possible!

I am usually able to get the 50,000 words done each month, but I do still wonder if it will happen each and every time I enter NaNoWriMo.

I am on that home stretch now and it is such a relieving feeling. Some days I struggle to write, but I do what needs to be done during NaNoWriMo – I just write anyway.

“If you can’t think of what to write, tough luck; write anyway.”

Philip Pullman

It may not always be my best work during those moments, but I do get ideas out and get some writing done. It may not all be useable when I go back and edit the novel, but at least it’s there and at least I tried!

It’s just one month out of the year dedicated towards NaNo and it is a worthwhile year. It was during a NaNoWriMo that I first wrote Infection Point, and I’m sure this NaNo and others to come will also help me flesh out a new novel that will eventually be realised to the public.

One step at a time is all it takes and this time next week, I will have my next novel draft completed, which is one of the best feelings!

“Writing permits me to be more than I am. Writing permits me to experience life as any number of strange creations”

Alice Walker