Saturday, October 31, 2015

Prepping for Halloween & NaNoWriMo Success!

This week has been all about prepping for NaNoWriMo. This year is the year I set myself up for success.

No, the issue isn't whether I hit 50,000 words. As a girl determined to become a career writer, and as a girl who has already been published by NY, I know that I can write words. In fact, I have 3 manuscripts already completed.

First drafts, though.

So for this NaNo, I'm changing up the rules. I'm using it to benefit me and my goals. I'm using it to revise.

And so I did some prep in order to get to this point.

But first, a moment to see a Week in My Life:

He wasn't in the aisle I was in. Found him at the bubble wrap. Of course.

The temperate days of fall are going away soon--must make the most of them!

I may have a slight crush on fall.

And maybe this girl here, my La Petite.

Costumes done!

He was so happy with his Super Why.

Hey, Fall. Stop with the cute  photo opps already!

Off we go to get some cavity!

Waiting for La Petite at dance and revising some awful drek and drivel.

Planning my week.

The Prep

-I finished Draft 2 of my story. I gave myself two weeks to do it. I did it! Six chapters a day, baby. But it wasn't about perfection--it was about done-for-now.

-I created a time line for November's revisions, based on my process.

Anne Lamott's Bird by Bird always inspires me and my patience level.

And so here it is. By the way, if you've read the last one or two posts, you'll see that this is now a process for A DIFFERENT STORY. I decided that I couldn't change gears. The hope had been to finish Draft 2 of YCCMA and then switch to TBMOMW for Nano and finish Draft 7 since I'm so close to being done.

But I didn't. Why? YCCMA is so entrenched in my head, I need to stick to that world and finish it. Why? Because it's an Awesome Story.

More Prep

I didn't just prep the writing. I prepped my body and soul. 

-No wheat. I started this on Sept. 1, 2015, with only one time where I ate wheat to see what would happen. I got a headache. I got tired. I got the hint wheat isn't worth it.

-I created daily times that work for me to work on my story. I don't have it in me to always devote large chunks of time to a story. I can no longer sit down for 16 hours and write and revise. (That was pre-children.) So instead, I write a bit in the morning while Le Bebe watches a Curious George or two. I write a bit in the afternoon, before the bus comes. And I write again at night, between the jogging and paying work. In all, I get about 2 hours of work in on a bad day, and about 6 hours on a good day.

-I put it in my schedule to be in bed by 1:00. I used to go to bed between 3:30 and 4:30, so this is huge.

-I downloaded an app (free) called Steps on my cellphone. It notes how many steps I've taken, and has made me conscious to do more.

Further Prep

I need to keep tweaking because I'm not awesomely perfect yet. So more things I want to accomplish include:

-Get on the treadmill for :30 minutes, either a jog or walk, depending on migraines or not. (The weather has given me a lot of them.) 

-No excess sugar. I wish I could say no sugar, but that would mean no jarred tomato sauces, no ketchup, not a lot of breads. Sugar is EVERYWHERE. But at least I can stay away from foods where they're the first through fourth ingredients. 

And there we have it. Prepped as I can be, while also having a process in place to keep myself on track.

Do you have prep in place? A process? A goal for NaNo or writing in general?

If you want to read more, here are my 2014 NaNoWriMo posts, in chronological order:

(Note: It looks like I lost at NaNo, but read all the way to the last post to see how I oh-so-won.)
Twas the Eve Before the Eve Before Nano 
Preparing for NaNoWriMo in Two Days ( A Lesson for All Future Story Prep) 
Winning at NaNoWriMo: Word Vomiting Draft 1 Until Done vs. Writing Drafts 1 & 2 Simultaneously
NaNoWriMo Self-Flagellation: Reassessing Your Unsung Accomplishments
Chasing Rabbits in November
Revising a Book and Writing a Book at the Same Time
Christmas Lights, Book Deadlines, and Letting Go of Perfecton* 

If you want 2015 NaNoWriMo posts, in chronological order, read these:

NaNoWriMo: How I'm Going to Use This Awesome Opportunity to Revise

Sydney Strand is a writer and mom who has published two stories through New York and another six via self-publishing. She writes funny little romances, but not of the Red Room of Pain variety. More like the Dan and Roseanne Connor variety--humor is sexy, dontcha know. You can follow Sydney on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter, and/or you can sign up for her All Things Awesome Newsletter.

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