The intellectual equivalent of a ham sandwich.

Posts tagged ‘NaNoWriMo’

New Year’s Resolutions

New Year’s Day is fast approaching and that means I’d better get my resolutions in order. (Despite the fact that I sort of made fun of such things in a previous poem post.)

Last year, as far as I know, the only resolution I wanted and achieved was to reduce how many paper towels I use. After I go to the bathroom at a public bathroom I dry my hands with only one paper towel instead of two. This is simple but it does make a difference. You just spend a bit more time shaking water off your hands before grabbing a paper towel and wha-la, paper towel usage greatly reduced!

This year I would like to do another sort of green thing, as well as the usual personal resolutions which probably won’t happen.

Green resolution: take my Starbucks thermos to Starbucks whenever I go there (usually once a week). This will keep those paper cups I normally use from being used. Just like last year this is very simple but it does make a difference.

The usual litany of personal goals will make up the other resolutions …

  • Eat out less (priority number 1)
  • Send off query letters (which also means touching up my query letters)
  • Write more (finish that book I started for NaNoWriMo)

I am ok with the amount I read this past year for fun, but I could always use more of that. And of course expanding any knowledge I use for work (like by glancing at top coder in my spare time) would be great. But really, the top things are to eat out less and pursue my writing goal more. In November I cut down how frequently I blog so I’m reducing my excuses. Time to act on my goals!

Feel free to write some resolutions you have in the comments! (And yet more goals would be to read other blogs more, and get other people reading my blog more.) I hope you have some achievable and good goals for 2014. Whether resolutions or not, I believe it’s always good to be striving for something.

Running Thoughts, part 2

If you’re blind is every date you go on a blind date?

If Listerine went into the weapons industry, it would be incredibly terrifying. 99.9% of enemies taken down so far.

What did you write about for NaNoWriMo?
I wrote a tragicomedy called “An Unexpected Visitor.” It’s a 50,000 word novel about pooping your pants.

If I owned a store I would name one section “Mysterious Ways.” Then if someone came in asking for an employee I could say, “You’re looking for who? Oh, he works in Mysterious Ways.”

8,000 Short

My great NaNoWriMo experiment is over! The grand result, 42,000 words written in 30 days. Well, 28 days. I started a day late and I didn’t even try on the last day.

I came home to Arizona to see my family for Thanksgiving and I had to do 4,500 words a day in order to finish. Day 1? No problem! Done during the airport wait and flight! Day 2 … uh oh. Day 3 … worse. Day 4, absolutely nothing.

Despite my failure to reach the goal I am really happy I tried this. It was fun, everyone was very encouraging (I only made it to one writing event but I’m glad I went). And most importantly, it forced me to write. Even on days when I wasn’t feeling it at all I sometimes turned out material that I felt ok with. I am confident that for every 10 sentences I write, 9 are drivel. It’s only logical then for me to write a whole lot of sentences. Also, I’m pretty happy with the story I’m writing.

Bragging note: I thought of the story idea on November 1. On the 31st I thought and thought, and boom, November 1 it came to me! I didn’t start writing that day, which brings me to my next topic:

Lessons Learned/Tips for Future Self/Others

  • Sometimes I would think, “I need to do 2,000 words today … But I don’t think I can do that … I’ll make it up tomorrow.” Don’t do that! Instead write every day, even if it’s just 500 words. If I had done 500 words on the days I did 0 … That would’ve been smart.
  • If you go to a writing event, and someone tells you their plot and it sounds like humor to you, DON’T say that assumption out loud. It may lead to this hypothetical person saying, “actually it’s not humorous at all” in a very serious way. And then you have silence. Whoops.
  • Sketch out the outline as you can, and then don’t worry about it so much. I began to be frustrated that I was realizing later parts I would like to add in, make a note and move on.
  • If a part is not coming to you, make a note and move on to write the next part (this was difficult for me).


I fully plan to try this again next year, and in the meantime I will finish up the book I have started!

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