Hey yall, hope everyone survived Christmas. We lost our four month old puppy to a severe intestinal blockage a few days ago almost exactly a year after our previous dog passed away. Let's just say things could be better.
Installed a video doorbell and smart thermostat in my parents house this weekend, glad I know enough about wiring and such in order to save them the costs of an electrician for something so basic.
Got some new switches for my keyboard in my stocking. They're tangerines, making them my first ever linear switch. I prefer the smoothness of them compared to the tactile halo trues I had in here before, those thing pinged like crazy.
I've been so busy with everything this is the first time I've been back on my computer since last week. Two weeks off will feel like three days off but I can't complain. Gonna go read some of the books I got for Christmas.
I think it was TMO, was talking about headphones and how some basically crush your head as you wear them. This happens to me about 10-15 minutes into wearing any over/on the ear headphone whatsoever. Most of the time if I need to use a headset I'll put on a beanie or hat to keep the cuffs directly off my head but even then they push the hard part of my ears to my skull. Anyway, I remember as a kid this was never an issue because headphones back then weighed .0001oz and were mostly black or orange puff balls.
Anyway I ordered a refurbished sony walkman with a new set of orange foam earbuds for Christmas. Now I'll be able to listen to all these tapes I've been buying.
It always happens. Some last minute thing you forgot to order or in this case, some items that were ordered got cancelled due to lack of stock. This weekend I've been scraping up the last few orders of things I needed. The fact that every single place does curbside pickup + shows a full inventory on their website has made it way easier to get things in time.
Sending some delivery cookies to friends, might get cards done for everyone else, not sure yet. Time is running out and I'll be ultra busy with work this week before the holiday break. Normally I'd be out shopping for things during my lunch break or after work. Hooray for local cookie delivery.
I'm still here, just been busy with work. Managed to get about halfway through my Invisible story before I got swamped with things. Not to worry, I can wrap it up over the Christmas break. Got all my shopping done right after Thanksgiving, using sales is a must these days. Things are almost all here, skipping the mid December shipping delays. Every year I wait till —– like, now —– to start buying stuff but then I could go into actual stores to do so. I'm not shopping in big stores or shopping centers, I can't trust the folks here to behave. Been seeing maskless family photos with Santa online everywhere, holiday parades, group parties, all kinds of wild stuff. I'll pay extra to have the local shop ship me the toys and games nine miles away, kthx.
I managed to get the tree out of the closet and lit. We've never had a live tree before. Mom is allergic to them and now my middle kid has bad tree allergies too so we've just always had fake ones. I don't mind, I figure the real ones get bugs in the house and shed. Can't deal with that.
Still need to buy decorations for the front yard. Most years we're pretty strapped for cash so any extra money goes to gifts and not lights etc. Hooray for work.
Still slowly working on my story for this month. With work I'm not able to keep up with the wordcount but I can get this one done in a reasonable amount of time. Should have it ready for editing in January.
Set in the late 60's, a young woman comes to terms with a rare genetic anomaly that allows her to become invisible at will. The only issue is that while she is cloaked from view the urge to do harm rises. Spanning a month in her life, this story covers her fight to control the problems that she faces both externally and internally with her condition.
Yeah I'm behind on writing. Work has me busy all day, then the whole house to deal with afterwards. Blah blah blah. It's a poor excuse. Here I am on my lunch break doing this, so you see where my priorities are. I did write last night and hit a little boring part. People will tell you if it's boring to write than it's boring to read, that's not true this is just a very calm scene that I've replayed several times and will just take a few paragraphs to get down properly. My number count on the site is behind. I haven't added up all the handwritten bits yet either. That's not really important though.
Doing something different for #NaNoWriMo this year and have gone the notebook route for a majority of my scenes. During breaks or meals I write and at the end of the day I transcribe it all to a doc to do the wordcount. These little pages range about 75 words each so I can get through several in a session depending on how fast I write. If you ever dealt with blank screen = blank mind issues, the use of paper to write seems to help me so maybe try it out this year.
That means #NaNoWriMo is coming. Yes, that once a year writing exercise that gets people to (attempt to) bite the bullet and just write the damn thing. Several new folks have been joining the writing group im in have already done the worldbuilding, character arcs, conflicts, resolutions, and all that but still ask “How do I come up with a story?” Honestly that should be the first thing well before you start making the bricks to build the house. Other folks join and complain they don't want to use their Best Idea Ever because they aren't good enough to write it but don't have the motivation to write anything else. Like, yall gotta get over that.
Tips for November:
Write something totally new. Don't beat your head against the wall with the same concept you've been working on since you were 16. Start fresh, get some inspiration from short stories or movies. Anything you can consume in the next 2-3 days.
Outline it: Sit down and write out an outline for the story (not the synopsis and not the summary). What happens at the beginning, middle, and end that are so important you can't not have them occur. [Guy goes to a bar, guy meets a girl, takes her home, she turns out to be an alien creature, gets beamed back to the space ship, wakes up back at home with a thank you note from the alien girl the next day.] << That simple.
Get a notepad/spiral Use the notepad for things like character names, places, and such so that you can just glance at it while typing. Interrupting your flow by swapping screens or pulling up another window will cut into your progress. What did I name the bar? Oh yeah, type type type.
Stop trying to write Harry Potter/Game of Thrones/Wheel O' Time This is 50k in a month. Unless you regularly write 2k words a day for work you aren't going to bang out a vast immersive world. If you are into that and don't already have the back end made for it then try for fanfiction. I wholly encourage fanfiction for new writers to practice pacing, dialog, etc.
Schedule Writing Time You will not just sit down and be inspired to do this. You might for a few days but after a while you're gonna wander around the room thinking about how the story goes and not actually get it written. It's a pace of 1667 words per day minimum. Don't waste time thinking about what to write. (Do that before hand.)
I had originally outlined something I thought would be easy to roll through next month but turns out I don't have enough story to tell for it. This is why I outline first, easier to toss out or put away for a while. So now I've come up with something that is a decent story (altogether different) that just needs the motivations fleshed out to make it work. Will see how it goes. It's about a young woman who has the genetic ability to visibly disappear. (The invisible man but a girl, kinda.) Not from a freak accident like the Marvel character, she can't make things she touches disappear, no force fields etc. Just good ol fashioned vanilla ability to turn invisible and the consequences that come from that.
Anyway, my 500 word spooky story got put on the Halloween site at work. I'm halfway through doing Earthshine, and will probably do the Halloween short the day of if I have time. Short stories give the impression of productivity don't they?
The last two weekends have been spent visiting family for the first time this year. (Very small towns.) So I'm just now catching up on my bloggery. Work has kept me busy all week and while catching up on emails I caught one that had a spooky writing competition for employees etc from corporate. Being a public thing and designed for families they had several rules including no violence, gore, blood, potty words, etc. So while they had to be spooky stories they couldn't be drag out horror (the way my Halloween short is). It also had to be no more than 500 words. Now, I do a fortnightly flash fiction contest on a discord server where the limit is 750 so I thought I could bang this out easy. No. That extra 250 words is a world of difference. Managed to tell a story about a ghost wolf in 500 words without anyone yelling fuckwords or ripping out an artery. Good times, we'll see if the judging panel thinks it's as fun.
New puppy gets picked up this afternoon which means house needs to be cleaned and all the cables need to be taped up. It also means that when he stops peeing the floor we rip this 6 year old carpet up and get hard flooring.
I can't eat that many, even if I skip lunch. Too full to move. More last minute plans this weekend so less time to work but it's worth it. I've blocked out times at night to write for the next few months.
Halloween story – due Oct 31st (2k words)
Specfic story – due Nov 1st (2k words)
Deadford Square – due Dec 1st (50k words)
Redbriar 2 – due Jan 1st. (40k words)
Can I do it? Yes. Will I keep to that schedule? Maybe. I have the resources to do so. I'll most likely be working on Redbriar 2 off and on throughout the whole time, but leaving all of November for Deadford Square.