Sunday, November 30, 2008

So This is What It's Like in the Winner's Circle

On my fourth attempt, I have completed the challenge of NaNoWriMo. :)

At around 1am this morning I finished, with a little over the required word count of 50,000 and uploaded my story to the NaNoWriMo site for word verification. Somehow an extra 200 words were added in the process, but hey! that's fine by me. :) I'm quite pleased as you can imagine. It was very difficult to focus but focus I did and finished. Hoorah! The novel will need major reworking and revision, but I think the idea is a good one and has promise. So again I am happy with the results. :D

I really believe that part of the reason I was able to finish this year is the course How to Think Sideways that I'm taking. Without it I couldn't have pre-plotted without over plotting, and I think that helped me a great deal. I was able to plot just enough. Not over, not under, just enough structure to aid me as I struggled to get from one part to the next. And yes, it was a struggle, but it was so much easier this year than past years! :) Another reason was attending the Boston Kick Off party - fantastic motivational day. Then, of course, having writing buddies like atomicpagan kept me motivated as well. Finally, if I was stuck, I would think invisible robot fish or crime fighting tomatoes, grin like an idiot and start writing again.

I've decided that next year I won't be writing my nanonovel in my notebook. I'll just type it out. Writing then typing is not fun, especially when you're writing 50,000 words in 30 days. Some stories need to be written on paper, doodled on, scribbled over and dotted with asterisks and side bars full of conversational snippets for a later time. NaNoWriMo stories are better suited to being typed out with the first words that come to mind .. or to fingertips, as the case may be. Spill it all out on the keyboard! More efficient that way.

I've crossed NaNoWriMo 2008 off my 1001 list. Three down, 98 more to go!

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

NaNoWriMo Update

I like to write on paper with a nice pen. I like the way that feels, and it enables me to take notes, cross things out, make doodles in the margins as I write. So, for this year's NaNoWriMo attempt I did just that. I bought a notebook and wrote. I find I write best in the morning so I tried to do most of my writing at that time before I went to work and then finish off some more words at the end, but when I reached over 20,000 words, the realization of it all hit me like a mack truck. In order to have my word count validated and to officially "win," I would have to type it all in and upload it to the NaNoWriMo site by November 30. *headdesk*

I've since switched gears. I've started typing in the mornings what I've written so far, and I type new scenes into my laptop at night. Physically typing at night isn't foreign to me since that's when I'd usually check my email and respond to people online. I'm better at staying awake when I'm typing into the computer at 11:30pm than I am when I scribbling into my (paper) notebook. At night I have a stream of consciousness thing going on that works well for typing out a nanonovel. In two days/nights, I've typed around 7,000 new words of my story. (yay!) I'm aiming for 30,000 words before I go to sleep tonight. I know there are many who are way ahead of me (congratulations!!) and many who are behing me in word count (don't give up!!), but hitting the 30,000 mark would be such a confidence boost for me.

Luckily, I had written a series of sentences lite for the story as part of my class work in Holly Lisle's How to Think Sideways: Career Survival School for Writers course. Those little scene sentences are a godsend! I can easily stay on track and create new scenes at the same time. Taking Holly's class was a wise decision for me.

Oh! and Scrivener is working out great. Once the trial period is over, I'll have to purchase the program. I've been able to keep all my notes, sentences lite and work in one spot. And Scrivener keeps a running word count for me, and shows me a little graph/bar with my progress. How cool is that? Very cool in my book.

Friday, November 14, 2008

#71 on the List

I took a CPR class tonight. It was painless, and I learned a lot. Plus now I'm more confident about trying to help someone in distress. In high school I always felt intimidated by the whole thing and could never remember how many breaths, how many compressions, etc. This time it was good. M. was a great teacher. :)

Now I just have to get on with that nanonovel. I'm sadly behind, but I think I can still do it. I'm motivated by everyone else's progress. Great job, everyone! :D

edited to add:
#21 on the list - There's a new restaurant next to where I worked. I tried a lovely artisan sandwich there called Jardiniere. Very tasty. I also tried one of their Caprese sandwiches, but I've had a Caprese before so that didn't count.
#90 on the list - I watched "Spanglish" over the weekend with Tea Leoni, Adam Sandler, Cloris Leachman and the talented Paz Vega. Good movie. ;)

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Stuff for Sale

Well, as part of my attempt at selling 10 things on ebay (and getting finances in better control), I've put a few things up for sale.

#59 is not put 10 things up for sale but sell 10 items. So it won't count until the items actually sell. If you'd like to put in a bid for anything, the items are here:

"Princess Bride" on VHS

Harlequein romance: "One Hot Summer" by Suzanne Scott

Harlequin romance: "Dodging Cupid's Arrow" by Kate Hoffman

Harlequin romance: "Not the Gal!" by Glenda Sanders


Monday, October 27, 2008

Working on Reducing My Credit Card Debt

I'm focused once again on #20 on my 101 list. I've decided that, in November, I'm limiting myself to $40 in cash for spending money (toiletries, night out with friends, taking the train in town, etc.) Since it's novel writing month anyway, it shouldn't be too much of a hardship. $10 a week to spend. If all goes well, I will cut it down again the following month to $20 spending money. If not the following month (December), then definitely in January.

The trickiest thing about spending no more than $40 in November will be November 1. There's a NaNoWriMo write-in on that day. I could go in town to that after work (which I'd really like to do), but I'd be looking at spending a quarter of my monthly allowance on the train even before the week has started .. and then a few dollars on lunch or snacks (since it's in a restaurant). I could instead go to the Vegetarian Festival in town, but I run into the same problem with how much I'm spending that day. Plus, I lose out on word count while I'm in there at the festival. The positive side of the Veggie Fest is hanging out with my friend T. I haven't seen her in months, if not over a year now. My third choice is the most frugal. After work, I simply go home and write. Good for my pocket book. Good for my word count. Bad for my social life (which barely exists as it is).

Decisions, decisions ..

Friday, October 24, 2008

NaNoWriMo Prep and Working on my 101: #33 & #2

In preparation of NaNoWriMo, I'm attempting to get a few things done before November madness hits. Part of that is plotting out my 2008 nanovel (#33 on my 101 in 1001 list). Holly's course How to Think Sideways is a big part of that. In fact, my idea for this year's nanonovel is an idea generated from the course (lightning struck!). It will be a young adult novel like last year's attempt, but it's not a fantasy novel. It's more of a mystery which is a little different than anything I've tried before so I'm excited to get started on it.

Another part of my preparation is working on the EstellaDawn web site (#2 on my 101 in 1001 list). I've promised T. to have at least one version this weekend for her to check out. I'm hoping to have more than one version completed this weekend. Hopefully she'll like one of them, and then I'll simply tweak it a bit and upload to the server. Although the site has nothing to do with NaNoWriMo, finishing it will be a nice accomplishment and one less thing to worry about in November.

Lastly, although not official NaNo prep work, I'm heading in town tomorrow with Jo for a Boston NaNoWriMo Meet & Greet. It should be lots of fun!

Monday, October 20, 2008

101 in 1001 Days

from Day Zero (aka "101 in 1001 days")

The Mission:
Complete 101 preset tasks in a period of 1001 days.

The Criteria:
Tasks must be specific (ie. no ambiguity in the wording) with a result that is either measurable or clearly defined. Tasks must also be realistic and stretching (ie. represent some amount of work on my part).

Why 1001 Days?
Many people have created lists in the past - frequently simple goals such as new year's resolutions. The key to beating procrastination is to set a deadline that is realistic. 1001 Days (about 2.75 years) is a better period of time than a year, because it allows you several seasons to complete the tasks, which is better for organising and timing some tasks such as overseas trips or outdoor activities.

Start Date: Monday, October 20, 2008
End Date: Monday, July 18, 2011

I'm keeping track a little differently than I did before.
* Completed tasks will be crossed out.
* Tasks in process will be in bold (so I can keep track of them easily).
* Incomplete tasks will be left as is.

My 101

1. Get my ears repierced.
2. Get Estella Dawn website up and running.
('til then visit

3. Finish one scrapbook project.
4. Attend another convention.
5. Start filming web series.
6. Get web series up and running (online, publicized).
7. Promote P7D.
8. Read M.A. Bernier’s “Dragonstone.”
9. Read one of the Pratchett books that Digger lent me.
10. Publish this list on the web.
11. Cook something in my crockpot.
12. Take a dance class.
13. Get my driver’s permit.
14. Get my driver’s license.
15. Take a class through either the BCAE or the CCAE.
16. Write in my diary at least three times in 2009. (fail!)
17. Read a book by Lois McMasters Bujold (the author Mreen always recommends to me).
18. Start an IRA.
19. Make a vet appt. for my kitty.
20. Get my credit card balances down to at least half of what I owe.
21. Try one new thing every month, no matter how small, for at least six months. (The months don’t have to be consecutive.) (5/6)
22. Take a cruise.
23. Visit Missy.
24. Visit Martha’s Vineyard. (completed Aug. 4, 2010)
25. Visit Canada.
26. Take a Boston Duck Tour.
27. Finish a cross-stitch project.
28. Have a picnic with my neice.
29. Enter a photo or a craft project in the Marshfield Fair.
30. Take the MENSA test.
31. Take a tour of the Day House.
32. Get a new library card.
33. Complete the 2008 NaNoWriMo challenge.
34. Complete the 2009 NaNoWriMo challenge. (fail!)
35. Submit one of my finished stories somewhere for publication.
36. Finish a WIP (not including NaNoWriMo, of course).
37. Make a short film.
38. Submit the film to at least three festivals.
39. Participate in the 26 Things meme.
40. Make FS commercial.
41. Produce something for local cable.
42. Organize Ella photos.
43. Replace ten VHS tapes with DVDs.
44. Plan a family reunion.
45. Catalogue my CDs.
46. Catalogue my DVDs.
47. Catalogue my VHS tapes.
48. Finish the list of books I own.
49. Copy one of my old diaries (from elementary school).
50. Put the VHS tape my aunt & uncle had made for my grandmother onto DVD.
51. Transfer my LCIII files onto my current laptop.
52. Transfer T.’s vids to digital form as she had requested.
53. Attend a film festival.
54. Get better acquainted with all the bells and whistles on my laptop.
55. Get better acquainted with all the bells and whistles on my camcorder.
56. Get better acquainted with all the bells and whistles on my new digital camera.
57. Dye my hair auburn.
58. See Cyanide Valentine live. (possible failure since Jake is now a solo act)
59. Sell 10 items on ebay. (4/10)
60. Put $20 into savings for every completed task. (0/101)
61. Organize my closet.
62. Finish a FS fan vid.
63. Make ATC series.
64. Work on altered journal (or something similar).
65. Identify 100 things that make me happy.
66. Complete at least two things off my 43 Things list. (1/2)
67. List my 100 favorite movies.
68. List my 100 favorite books.
69. Write the alphabet books for T. that I’d promised her.
70. Buy rainboots.
71. Take CPR class.
72. Start an Etsy shop. (completed 06/21/09)
73. Finish writing the first five episodes of my web series.
74. Buy pedometer for Micky & Christine. (1/2)
75. Buy pedometer for myself.
76. Visit with Brett & Mary again.
77. Get together with some Scapers (beyond 1 or 2 Boston Scapers).
78. Get a table for Estella Dawn on Norwood Day.
79. Upload five more photos to my imagekind account. (4/5)
80. Volunteer on someone else’s film.
81. Enter a music vid for the 2009 Creation Farscape con (assuming there is a con). (fail!)
82. Post the result of something inspired by The Soul Food Cafe.
83. Attend a craft fair.
84. Create an altered journal for the Library project.
85. Spend three days without once going online. (2/3)
86. Replan my torturemazes website.
87. Post ten more entries on the Beanywood blog. (0/10)
88. Make a 2009 New Years Resolutions list. (fail!)
89. Complete at least five things off that list. (0/5) (fail!)
90. Watch at least three of the videos my dad sent me.
91. Write 10 actual letters (not an email or a card). (10/10)
92. Go apple picking.
93. Start another 101 things to do when the 1001 days near their end.
94. Read the Book of Revelations.
95. Read 10 non fiction books. (0/10)
96. From Learning to Love You More assignment #53: Give advice to yourself in the past
97. From Learning to Love You More assignmnet #3: Make a documentary video about a small child.
98. Visit with my dad at least three times. (1/3)
99. Complete How to Think Sideways course.
100. Take a digital photography class.
101. Complete all the items on this list. (fail!)

Days Left: 33
Tasks Remaining: 85

** previous list
New 101 List!

This morning I finally completed my new list of 101 things to do in 1001 days. I'll post it later today. If you're interested, my old list is here. I didn't complete a lot of them, but I *did* complete more than I expected. My new list will have some repeats from the previous list, plus a few newer items.

I've included the writing course I'm currently taking on the list, too. Many of the items have meaning only to me (as well they should), but some are fun items I found on others' lists that I chose to borrow for mine.

It's an interesting challenge, and there is great satisfaction in ticking a completed item off the list. ;) I encourage everyone to give it a try if you haven't already.

Sunday, October 05, 2008

Writing Things

Holly Lisle is once again opening the online writing course I'm taking for a limited time starting Monday Oct. 6 until Mon. Oct. 13, and she offered a pdf which gives others a glimpse of some of the lessons along with a link to download a free module from Lesson 7. I personalized it a bit with my name (hee hee) and included the link here if anyone wants to take a peek. The course costs but the pdf and link inside the pdf are free. :)

Think Sideways PDF

The course is opening up to a limited number of students so if it fills up before Oct. 13, she'll close it again for a bit.

I'm using this course right now as my prep for NaNoWriMo. (I'm determined to finish it this year!) I *will* be using it to help me along with some other writing that's on hold and for web series plotting & character help.

Oh, and I'm enjoying Scrivener so far. I can see loads of potential for organizing and writing .. and less chance of me misplacing my notes when I go to write something. :)

cross-posted to live journal

Friday, October 03, 2008

Writing & Other Updates

I've joined Twitter. Holly Lisle dangled prezzies in front of me, and I'm learning so much from How to Think Sideways that I couldn't resist signing up/the opportunity for a free writing clinic. Holly has a rockin' way of celebrating her birthday. ;)

I've also downloaded a trial for Scrivener. If anyone has thoughts on that particular program, please feel free to share. I'll be playing with the program a bit this weekend. Hopefully I get a good sense of it.

This weekend will be busy. I promised to start on a simple (because I can't do anything more than simple & basic *g*) web site for my sis. We'll be showcasing and selling some digital art (hers more than mine *g*). I'll post a link once we're up and running. ;) I need to find a dress for Laura's wedding! I also need to clean (why are you laughing?) for S.'s arrival next weekend. Maybe get some con book letters out (I've already missed a few deadlines!) And write. And research. And go to Boston Sunday with L.? And figure out the dinner plans for next Wednesday. What I won't be doing is finishing any videos for the Burbank con. I didn't get much feedback from the people I showed them to, and I have no energy to start new ones since my mind is focused elsewhere anyway. Actually, this weekend won't be very busy compared to next. Next weekend will be action-packed but fun. Scott & Laura's wedding, S. visiting, maybe an outing in town or to Salem or somewhere else (depending on the weather), maybe a concert Sunday night .. busy, busy.

Wednesday, October 01, 2008

Prepping for NaNoWriMo & Jumping Slightly Ahead of Myself

I've put my current writing aside while I prep for NaNoWriMo. Part of that preparation is Holly Lisle's Think Sideways course. I'm using one of the ideas generated during the coursework as this year's nanonovel. The techniques and lessons learned so far are helping me with plotting and characterization, and I think I will feel ready to just write come November 1. Plus, most of what I've learned so far (and I'm not even done with the course yet!) can be applied to other ideas I'm working on. In fact, this'll help with the duality issue I've been having with one of my characters (that story is on the backburner while I prep for this year's NaNoWriMo). I think I'll be able to pinpoint what exactly is wrong and where; I'm very excited to jump ahead and rework the idea using techniques I've learned. For now though it's best for me to focus a bit on what I'll be writing this November.

In fact, many of Holly's techniques will help me with the web series idea, too, since I've been having problems with that as well. But I'm jumping ahead of myself again. (One step at a time, D.!)

Speaking of jumping ahead, I've just received in the mail business cards I ordered from VistaPrint. Yes, business cards. I figure something semi-professional looking that states my interests in writing (and filmmaking) & has my contact info. on it will aid me in realizing my dreams. I know that sounds a bit silly, but if I have a card that says I'm a "writer" or "filmmaker" (aspiring!) that I can pass out at networking events or classes/workshops, I feel I will come across less nervous (scribbling my name & email addy on a tiny scrap of paper becomes an illegible mess to anyone but myself) and more willing to learn & gain experience. Plus, at the end of a long day, when someone looks over the contact info. collected at a networking event, I figure a neat, professional card will have more of an impact than a hastily written note on a torn piece of paper. Don't you think? "Yes, I'm a writer. Keep in touch." "If you need an extra hand on your film, I'm willing to learn. Here's my contact info." "Oh, yes, I sell some of my photos online. Here's my card. Take a look. Drop me a line."

Today was an okay day at work but still stressful so it's the little things (like the business cards!) that keep me motivated to continue pursuing that which interests me the most. Creative opportunities ahead .. I can't help but feel a bit excited and hopeful. When I finish my nanonovel, I have every intention of revising and then sending out queries and proposals. When I have a few episodes of my web series written out to my satisfaction, I will start filming and posting the series online. And there are other things cookin' in the not-so background. I'm trying my best not to jump ahead of myself. :)

* I'm still involved, though from afar, with S.'s film "Passengers of 7D." The website will be update once the film goes into post, I think. (I just remembered I have to get my bio to Sharifa!) I'd intended to blog about my film experiences at New Film Nation (formerly Beanywood) but haven't gotten over there much lately. (research! writing! work!) I'll point you over there once I've posted a few updates. For now if you're interested in the film, check out the site. More info. will be available as the film nears completion.

Monday, September 22, 2008

Farscape Burbank Convention 2008: Con Book List

It's that time again .. Con Books for the Farscape Convention in Burbank!

Just in case you're interested, but haven't visited the link yet, the list is here at Terra Firma Scapers. And just in case you want to see the list without clicking on it, then read on. ; )

The List
To help you read the list .. Actor, Person who's doing the con book, Deadline, Email address, Any instructions

- Claudia Black Camerascaper (deadline Oct 25th)

- Ben Browder Selena (deadline Oct 17th)

Ben's Con book theme - Send in your favorite recipe - if you're from the south all the better ... make it your favorite southern recipe. You could finish off the submission by adding your avatar or your wonderful signature. Most folks know Ben is from the south - born in Memphis and grew up in the Carolinas. I also heard that when Ben first went to Canada for SG-1 he lived on nothing but cottage chesse. So if you have a great cottage cheese recipe you could send that. If you don't cook and can't think of anything to write - make an email postcard (1 sided only) from your area with a local flavor and then just say "This is (insert your name or on-line name) sending a big hello from ..." (wherever you live.) Nothing witty or clever required.
Someone suggested a leather theme so that leaves a lot to the imagination ... perhaps a leather clad Crichton postcard with a cottage cheese recipe

- Francesca Buller PkGrl (deadline: November5th) subject: Fran's Con book

- David Franklin Camerascaper's hubby (deadline Oct 25th) subject: David's Con book

- Kent McCord bandrui (deadline not listed!) Subject: Kent's book submissions limited to 8 X 10 size

- Virginia Hey Camerascaper (deadline Oct 25th) Subject: Viginia's Con book

- Raelee Hill ScorpSik (deadline Oct 5th) Subject: Raelee's Con book

Raelee's Con book Limit size of submission to 4 3/4" X 7 1/2" (the book is small).
Theme: - Creativity! ... be it art, wallpapers, poems, limericks, haiku, jokes, podcasting, nametags, avatars, beading, knitting, crochet, embroidery or cross-stitch... if you've created something - it does not have to be a Sikozu creation - just show off your skill. Tell Raelee what you like to create and include a photo/picture if possible. Has Farscape inspired your creativity?

- Anthony Simcoe AmméLeep (deadline Oct 1)

Theme:- D'Argo LIVES!!!

Here are the 'rules'

- Nothing profane or lewd - if you wouldn't say it or show it to your Mother then don't say it or send it to the cast
- If you are going to include photos with other people in them please make sure you have everyone in the photo's permission to do that
- Limit the size to no more than an 8" X 11" page - unless the individual Con book maker specifies otherwise
- No stories, fan fiction, scripts or anything that could be considered an item for publication - the cast are NOT ALLOWED under their contracts to receive such submissions
- Poems, limericks, haikus and personal salutations are okay as are notes wishing the cast all the best in their current and future work
- You can submit almost anything that is meaningful to the cast member and you
- Cast members who have appeared in other shows can have references to those shows, too, but primarily we are here for Farscape
- Try to submit in recognized formats that most of us have on our computers such as MS Word/Works or Word Perfect. Avoid software that is not widely available as not everyone has access to specialty programs.
- The people compiling the individual Con books reserve the right to reject or edit any submission they feel could be offensive, inappropriate or just too long for inclusion

Any questions? Email the appropriate person doing the particular con book. :)

Monday, September 01, 2008

Think Sideways

Yay! day off! feels so good .. and sleepy :)

I've been writing & editing. I need to finish a vid I'm working on. I don't think I'll be doing any of that today though. Too sleepy. As you probably know already, I've been struggling with finishing some projects so I sought out something to help with that. I enrolled in an online writing course called "How to Think Sideways," and registration is open until September 8 so I'm giving it a little plug. I know there are a lot of writers on LJ who might find this beneficial. I'm only into the sixth week of it, and the course is self-paced so I can go my own speed. Sadly, some weeks I don't have a lot of time to read the materials (yay for self-pacing - I get to it later as time permits), but the course has been interesting so far regardless. If you decide to sign up, I suggest doing all the assignments even if they don't seem to apply toward you & your writing or you don't get how it's going to help. The course is supposed to help you to get in touch with your muse at will and not at the whimsy of your muse. *g* It's a different way of thinking & approaching stories for some people, and it's an invaluable excercise in the way a professional writer like Holly does it.

It's geared toward fiction writers (book authors), but the information can be applied across most (if not all) disciplines, I think. Although I have several projects I'm working on (still trying to finish last year's nanonovel, working on web series idea), I'm following the course, step-by-step to come up with a previously unimagined project on a deadline. Already I've found a few little tricks that can be used with my current projects. :)

From the site ..

Would you like your writing to take off in directions that surprise even you?

With this self-paced course, "How to Think Sideways", full-time author Holly Lisle can help you whip your muse into shape with proven techniques that will open the floodgates of your creativity.

Every writer has read a book and wondered how the author came up with that plot twist, seemingly from left field. With this course , Holly is not only going to stimulate your idea generation, but will show you how to do it on a deadline. She will also show you how to effectively plan your projects as well as walk you through the beginning, middle, and ending sections of your novel.

Lee Masterson, an author from Australia, had this to say about the course:

"Holly, I've been writing professionally for a living for the past 9 years and your Lesson 1, Break the Thinking Barriers, made me think long and hard about what I've been doing all this time and what I'd rather be doing - and why I haven't been doing it all this time. Thank you for the wake up call - and thanks also for the brutal honesty."

This course, delivered in weekly lessons, includes:

- Monthly video that covers the month's main topic
- Weekly lessons with assignments
- Weekly technique demonstrations
- Monthly checklist of all steps to take
- A monthly Q&A made up of questions taken from the course forums
- Private workgroups (optional)
- Class discussion forum to interact with other students

Writers spend hundreds of dollars taking courses to learn more about their craft. At $47 a month, "How to Think Sideways" goes above and beyond, showing you how to make the most of your imagination.

This course is only open until Monday, September 8th, so enroll now.
Click here to find out more.

I also put some photos up on ImageKind if anyone is interested in taking a look. :)

I think I will go do a little research on an unrelated topic now. lol

* cross-posted from LJ

Friday, July 11, 2008

Maybe I'll Use the Duality

Since my last post I was thinking about my M.C. a lot and playing around with her character. She seems like two different people at this point, and maybe she is. Maybe it's two sides to the same person, different aspects of her personality and frame of mind depending on the day or the situation. Maybe she's a Gemini. Maybe I'll use that dual nature of hers in the story. She does feel a connection to another character and isn't accepting at face value what others are saying about him; she sees another side of him that others insist isn't there. Maybe the problems I'm having with her are actually a *good* thing. Maybe it's all connected in there, and I'm just discovering that now. If so, it'll make finishing that much easier and editing a lot more fun. Hm.

I think I'll play with that whole idea as I work on the altered-style journal (kind of like a collage or scrapbook with visuals and words).

Tuesday, July 08, 2008

Some Writing Updates

So this year's nanonovel was a bust (ie, not finished in time). It's still not finished at this very moment, but I am working on it. I think I will use an altered journal-style notebook to record the nanonovel's ideas and themes. There are very distinct images and moments I imagine and until I have a handle on it all and on what it means to me, to the characters and to the story itself, it might help to have these themes represented both with written descriptions and visuals. I haven't tried anything like that before, but I really think it will help connect things as I write. I'm continuing to write in the NaNoWriMo way - don't think, just write! - which is difficult because I like the control that comes with planning & plotting all the details,. This way of writing is interesting, too. I'm discovering a few things here & there, not enough about the characters, but I've uncovered a brand new character whom I've grown very fond of.

I think part of the problem is the main character. I like her but maybe not as much as I like some of the other characters, and I still don't know her very well (not as well as I should, imo). I don't really understand her yet. She keeps morphing in the way that I see her, and although that's a curious idea in itself, it's not supposed to be. I may have to rename her. Maybe she and her name are two different people, and at some point I'll figure out which person I'm actually writing about. I just don't know at this point. *sigh* I'm determined to continue writing, however, until I reach the end, and I'm hoping to figure it all out when I go back to reread. (I'm trying so hard not to reread, rewrite, revise as I write, and to leave all of that until the very end. It's very, very difficult!)

I'm also writing out a web series idea. I'm following S.'s advice. Just write. Forget about format. Just write. Formatting will come later. It may not be perfect at this point, but once I have it all down, on paper instead of in my head, I can rework some things and find ways to connect it all. Then hopefully I can get the dialogue down right, and S. & others will read & advise. :)

As I write out the web series, other ideas keep popping into my head so there are all sorts of paper scraps and scribbled notes all over the place. *g* It'll be nice once I finish something and then go on to the next stage of prep. (I guess I'm technically in the "development" stages of it all) I want to finish the Beanie idea (well, one of several Beanie ideas) as well. Maybe film that this summer before she gets any older!