Doing It Blind

Welcome to Day 1 of Nano!! I’ve had great ideas for the past couple of months, knowing exactly where I’m going with the story, who’s doing what to whom, and when the kid gets kidnapped.

I froze.

Yeah, I’ve got about 2,500 words so far today. But it’s always easier in my head. I looked at the blank screen and thought, “Oh, crap…now what??”

I had no idea what to do. Then it hit me – I can keep the words in my head.

Now, that may sound180 degrees off base. How can you keep the words in your head if you’re going to write a novel for the public to read? (Someday. Hopefully.)

I found a way around the problem.

Those of you who read this blog know that I write in Scrivener. In Scrivener I can go into Full Screen format, change my font color to match the background color, and off I go. It’s like everything is still in my head, because I can’t see it.

No fear. No judgement. All production.




Unexpected Changes (And How Writing Is Like Sex – Or Not)

Good morning!

After all my good planning, the Universe went and spit in my eye via a bit of misdirection.

One of my coworkers had something of a – possible – nervous breakdown at work and subsequently quit. I totally get it; everyone has their line of demarcation. Cross that line, and anything can happen.

That event created some changes in my work life, and it’s distracted me from other things I had planned – like planning for Nano.

This morning, that all changed.

I saw an ad for the Wall Street Journal. Of course, it was centered around a woman opening her own business as part of her personal dream. Good for her.

However – there was a tag line that completely resonated with me. It was this:


Wow. And all this time I’ve been putting other things first – things that seemed more “important.”

Writing always felt like an indulgence, a luxury, something that I should probably be doing privately. Something done in secret, alone, so that others wouldn’t know and look down their noses in some weird conglomeration of disdain and horror.

What I do (and other writers) is not pseudo-intellectual creative masturbation. It is the planning of a fiesta, a block party where everyone is welcome. No matter which party you end up attending, there will always be something to appeal to you.

I must go apply fingers to keyboard now, and continue planning a party to share with the world.

Jumping In Again…

I’ve been away for a while – unexpected life events, becoming overwhelmed, things like that. So much so that I haven’t looked at my email in months, and have over 40K of unread emails to get through. Yep. In the process of doing that I was online this morning and the Round 4 Signup post was at the top of the list.


I’d forgotten. I’d forgotten  how much writing means to me. I’d forgotten how easy it is to get sucked into the downward swirly of everyday life and ignore everything that makes life ultimately worthwhile.

So I’m back.

This is a great time to come back, too. Nano is on the horizon (Yay!!). My month of plotting begins in less than a week. I find that I’m raring to go.

In the spirit of assuaging my spirits I’m taking the plunge with both feet. I’ll have two goals, but each one will be taking place at a different time.

First, between now and Halloween, I’m going to make SURE I have all the planning done that I want to organize before Nano. During Nano, I’m going to go for a daily goal of 2K words. I don’t think that’s too difficult, and with any luck, I’ll get more. After Nano, I’m planning on continuing with the daily word count of 2K.

This will prove all the more interesting since I’ve recently rescued two kittens. They’ve taken their cues from my older Russian Blue, who immediately taught them deep and abiding disrespect for my keyboard and anything my fingers happen to be doing on it.

I write in Scrivener. My automatic save button is set for 2 seconds of inactivity. I know where the undo button is – essential when you have kittens/cats – and now it’s time.

Here goes!


So, as anyone who has been reading my blog knows, I’m doing a series bible. It’s for my Scrolls of Rassa series. Quite frankly, it’s a lot more work than I ever envisioned.

I decided they wouldn’t be using money on Rassa. That frees up people to actually do the jobs they like, rather than the jobs they think they must do in order to support a family. For instance, remember Felix Unger from the original Odd Couple? His OCD tendencies would probably make him a landscaper or garbage collector on my planet. It would give him the most satisfaction to keep things clean and organized. Good for him. We need people like that.

The people here don’t compete for money – they compete for reputation. In addition, there is a world-wide competition once a year that takes place in the capital city, where the best of the purveyors of everything compete for the right to supply the ruling family/castle for the next year. That gives them the right to put a plaque on the wall saying “By special appointment to the Keeper of Rassa, (name), in the year (date).” Depending on what the winner produces, they might be shipping things up to the castle every day or so, or maybe once a month or once a quarter.

I’m having a good time working this idea around.

See everyone Sunday!

The Scrolls of Rassa


So far, things are going very well with the series bible. I really didn’t understand how important it was to thoroughly understand and plan your world/universe before you went ahead with your story. I’m enjoying this a great deal, much more than I ever believed I would. I know this sounds a bit weird, but it’s like being an addict. The more I do in the world, the more I WANT to do. Wow. So totally unexpected…

On a side note (sort of) I got a Samsung S6 on Friday, and I was able to take story notes this morning while I was waiting to meet a friend for breakfast.

To paraphrase a commercial, “I’m as giddy as a wee lass on St. Cavendish day!” (Is there a St. Cavendish day??)

See everyone Wednesday!

Series and Psychopaths—The Author Sadist & Why Audiences LOVE the Pain

Here’s an amazing analysis that, as a writer, might shift your perspective 180 degrees!

Kristen Lamb's Blog

Screen Shot 2015-03-23 at 9.18.35 AM Mads Mikkelsen in “Hannibal”

Hubby and I are now careening through Hannibal, which is some of the most amazing writing I’ve ever seen. I would have never believed any actor could even rival Anthony Hopkins’ portrayal of Dr. Hannibal Lecter, but…? Mads Mikkelsen might actually be better. I don’t know if I have ever felt so conflicted about a character. Hannibal is a stone-cold killer, but then I catch myself rooting for him?

Wait…no, he’s the BAD GUY. Right?

I’m so confused *head desk*

Yet, this series is such a prime example of why series are superlative storytelling. Instead of containing a character like Lecter to 90-120 minutes, we now have what no movie can offer…TIME. This allows for a layering, a depth, an exploration we always craved, even if we weren’t entirely aware of it at the time.

I find it harder to make snap judgements (like I do…

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