NaNoWriMo Goals

Dude, where’s October gone?

It’s NaNoWriMo eve, and while I can’t get super hyped or whatever about it anymore, I’m doing it again this year, and that means I needed to set some goals. One of the best ways I find to accomplish my goals is to share them with the world — then there’s some external pressure (whether it’s real or not doesn’t matter, I feel like it’s there) and that is very motivating. If you’re me.

November Writing Goals

  • At least 50,000 words toward a first draft of my novel ‘Richter’. (I’m calling it a paranormal mystery for lack of a better genre. At least until it’s been written :))
  • 30 poems, one a day, based on prompts from the November Poem-a-Day challenge. All with zombie themes in order to give me the last pieces I need to put together a zombie poetry chapbook
  • Work with Danica on a poetry project. I’m not putting a specific poem goal here because the challenge in this will be learning to work together and have fun with it, not on the finished project.

Let’s see how it goes, shall we? ๐Ÿ™‚

As for the picture, I just thought it looked ‘autumn-y’. I took it for a collaborative project I was doing.

Zombies and Swamps

You know, I’m still not happy to be unemployed, but I am beginning to feel like my life is more under control than it has been. For the longest time I’ve been doing too much and trying desperately to try and figure out how to balance things and where to cut back. Now I’m getting things done and the other day I almost managed to do everything on my to-do list. I realise how pathetic that sounds, but it’s absolutely true. And it’s progress. Could be that I’ll go back to work sooner or later, but right now I’m truly enjoying feeling like I’m climbing out of the hole I’d plunged myself into.

We’ll have to wait and see if NaNoWriMo plunges me right back into the pit. It could happen. I have a basic premise for the story and one character and that’s it. Not exactly a strong platform to go into NaNo on, but it’s what I have so I’m going to work it. My plan is to embrace this as a chance to feel out the story and find out how to tell it. I don’t expect anything good but I’m not going to resort to any of the word-padding ideas so popular in November. We’ll see how it goes.

In other news, my poem After The Storm is up at Tales of the Zombie War. They have a comment option so you can tell me how much you hate it (Kidding, please don’t. I want you to like it. Like it, I say! :-p).

Finally, World of Warcraft has recently gone through a very disruptive patch. It’s been kinda crazy and overwhelming, in no small part because I have far too many characters with too many specs that I need to relearn how to play. Still, I’m muddling through. Right before the patch, however, I allowed my WoW nerdiness and my fiction writing to collide and snuck off to take a screenshot to share.

Please note, this screenshot is rather spoilerific if you’ve not read Shades of Green. Also, if you’ve not read Shades of Green you won’t likely find it very amusing, so click with caution.

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Brains are Funny Things…

Despite the fact I’ve started sharing Lost and Found on this blog, it isn’t quite finished. I’ve been going over it chapter by chapter and cleaning it up, polishing it and making it as good as I can. Midway through the novel I ran into some problems that necessitated extensive changes. That slowed down my progress and resulted in the situation I’m in now; serializing a novella that isn’t quite finished. However, at this precise moment I am, quite literally, fifteen minutes away from having Lost and Found polished and done. Ready to get sent out for reviews. So why am I blogging?

Why haven’t I finished it up?

Beats me.

As a psych student I could come up with several valid theories. Things about endings, letting go, perfectionism… but truthfully I don’t know what the answer is. I don’t know why I’ve spent the last hour or so mindlessly surfing instead of finishing up these last few paragraphs, I just have.

Enough of that. Time to get this finished and start collecting reviews. Really. As soon as I post this blog.

Honest.

Any minute now…

Happy Birthday! Now with cookies!

Today is Danica’s birthday.

It’s not just any birthday though, today my little girl turns thirteen. Thriteen. Wow. So now I’m officially the mother of a teenager. And not just any teenager, a freaking awesome one.

For those of you who haven’t had the pleasure to meet Dani, let me tell you a little bit about her. Danica is clever, funny and creative. She loves rice, ice cream and tofu and up until recently wouldn’t eat a green vegetable without a significant amount of coercion. She’s a huge fan of horror movies (her favourite movie when she was 3 was Interview With a Vampire), enjoys singing, drawing and hanging out with her family. The most remarkable thing about Danica, however, is the size of her heart.

Last year at the end of the year her teacher passed out personalised presents to all the kids in her class. On each of them she’d chosen one word she thought applied to that particular person. On Danica’s she’d written “Benevolent” and I think she hit the nail on the head. Danica has got the biggest, kindest heart of anyone I’ve ever met.

I love her to pieces and I’m so very proud to be her mother, and honored to have been able to watch and help guide her as she grew up to become the wonderful young lady she is today. The teenage years are challenging ones, there is no denying it, but they are also exciting and full of potential. I have no doubt Danica will navigate through them with style and grace and continue to make me more proud than I could ever express.

I love you Goober, happy birthday!

Ever since Dani was very, very small we’ve baked together. At first she was actually so little she couldn’t sit up in her highchair without help and I’d have to tuck towels in around her to keep her upright, so she was just sort of watching what was going on. Now, she is more often than not to be the one in charge of the baking with me acting as supervisor and sometime assistant. It’s a happy coincidence then that my friend Beth is asking her friends to share some of their favourite recipes over the next few days in order to celebrate the publication ofย  her baking-related story in the Mountain Magic anthology coming out on the 9th.

I’m going to share my favourite chocolate chip cookie recipe. I know, that’s kinda mundane, everyone has a chocolate chip cookie recipe, but to be honest, whenever we make chocolate chip cookie dough around here odds are we’ll nom it before it ever gets baked. So what follows is a recipe I’ve found is fantastic in both the cookie and dough states. And Danica agrees. Enjoy ๐Ÿ™‚

Chocolate Chip Cookies

1 Cup butter (salted and softened)
1 Cup packed brown sugar
1/2 Cup white sugar
1 tsp of sale
2 tsp vanilla extract (real, not imitation. It matters, honest.)
2 eggs
1 tsp baking soda
2 1/4 Cups of flour
Chocolate chips
Skor bits (optional)

If you can do this in a mixer than you get bonus points. I sometimes start out with the hand mixer and then switch to a fork for lack of a funtastic uber mixing machine.

Cream the butter and sugars together, then add the salt and vanilla and mix it until its fluffy. Add the eggs and the baking soda and give it another mix, then start adding the flour. Finally add the chocolate chips and skor bits if you’ve got them. Drop by the spoonful onto a greased cookie sheet and back at 350 for about 11 minutes.

Nom nom nom!

Check out Beth’s recipe at her blog: Catch A Star As It Falls.