#NaNoWriMo Best of the Daily (Day 3, 2015)

The weather was agnostic.  There was no commitment to any particular sort of forecast, not even short term, except for the leaves.  Those things couldn’t hold water.  The trees were showing their colors.  Ditches on both sides of the road spilled over with their fallen vestiges, and the skies made their cards known with clouds, as still as ever, dark but not foreboding, standing sentry duty.  No rain, bright sky, but no sun to be found.  Macon knew winter was close, but the air was still polite and her hands could stand to be without gloves.  She drove the roads at dusk.

She left the radio off and focused on the taillights fifty yards ahead.  “Focus on the taillights of the car in front of you and you won’t have to worry about staying in the center of the road; you just will.”  She remembered the lessons her foster dad tried to teach her.  She’d heard horrible stories about foster families over the years, but hers was one of salvation.  Her only regret was that she hadn’t been placed with them sooner.

A trio of Lodgepole pine trees presented themselves from the other side of the bend in the road up ahead.  Two were upright while the third leaned in as if preparing to tell a secret to the others.  She rounded the corner and caught a sip of the Hood Canal before more pines crowded in to block her view.  Another opening and she glimpsed one of the Olympic peaks, “The Brothers,” she recalled, before the sign ahead offered “Fresh Steak Gyros.”  She slowed and pulled in, parking where the gas pumps had been many years ago.

PrintTune in for quick reads of the best (or least despicable) selections from the previous day’s word count, by virtue of my daily writing regimen for the National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo).  WARNING:  editing has not taken place.




#NaNoWriMo 2nd Verse, Same as the First

Keep in mind, the purpose of WriMo is to write, not edit.  Editing is for December … or January if you’re still finishing in December.  Point is, I’m not editing these “snippets” before I post them.  There will be no “set up” for the scenes.  Just raw, unadulterated, first draft train wreck coming at you for the next 29 days.   If that sounds familiar, you may recall my NaNoWriMo posts from last near.  Here’s the daily:

It was well into one o’clock on a Tuesday.  Apparently hers wasn’t the only office with a soap opera playing out in the staff lounge where idiots acted like their mothers worked there.  It took twice as long to drive the main strip, the coffee shop only two miles away.  Halfway there as sign read, “Hold’Em Tables Tuesdays @ Two”  If not for traffic at a standstill for nearly a minute, she probably wouldn’t have noticed.  If not for the drive through coffee shack in the bar’s parking lot, she probably wouldn’t have stopped.

The kid at the window was chewing a wad of gum that looked like he’d shoved the whole pack in his mouth.  She wondered why he wasn’t in school, but their first verbal exchange explained it.

“Tired o’ waiting in traffic, eh?” he flipped a paper coffee cup like Tom Cruise in that 90’s movie.

“I don’t usually leave the office this time of day.  Is it always like this?” she nodded back at the road as a Mercedes and a Volkswagen Bug entering the lot caught her peripheral vision.

“Coffee rush hour.  No joke.  It varies throughout the week, but every Monday – from seven to eight, from ten to eleven, and just a tick past lunch, they come out.”  He scratched his head, and shrugged.

Zombies in search of a cup of caffeine brains, she thought.  Herself among them.  “Why no line at your window?”  she was getting tired of this conversation already.  She glanced at the letter sized, laminated paper that served as a menu below the window’s sliding glass.  Three choices were offered, all of them the same price.  Before he could answer she blurted, “Are you kidding me – a buck fifty for a coffee?”

He smiled and pointed to his name tag.  She hand’t paid attention to it yet.  She read his name, and below it in smaller print, “Owner.”  He said, “You got it dude.  It’s a long story, but I’ll keep it short.  You get what you pay for; the coffee here sucks.  I guess word’s gotten around to most the regulars at this hour.  I’ll give you a break, you not being a regular.  You should go into Smitty’s.  They have better coffee than burgers and, I’d say they have the best coffee for at least twenty blocks in all directions.”

“I was hoping to grab and go, Stuart,” she motioned to her watch, “people are expecting me back.”  Before she could shift into gear, however, he caught her by surprise.

“How old do you think I am?”  he asked, leaning a little out the window.

“I don’t know,” she answered without a beat, but paused before releasing the clutch.

“I’m nineteen.  Do you know how I bought this, my first business?”

She was getting antsy.  How did this hour, this moment, get so out of line?  She just wanted a coffee.  Maybe she’d just break down and make a thermos in the morning.  Those Keurig machines were on sale at Costco.  She couldn’t bring herself to buy into so much waste – a whole plastic and paper capsule for each cup.  Where was the landfill going to be found.  Is this why they were going to Mars?  She felt a long, beleaguered sigh escape as she answered, “How would I know that?”

“I won big at cards as soon as I turned eighteen.  Now I’m not even that good, but I can read people.  You don’t like a lot of small talk.  You have a little problem with OCD, although you wouldn’t know it to look at your car.  Ever think about getting one of those yearly car wash memberships?  I mean, you can afford it, even though you drive a low-end car.  See I know all that from observing you.  I know, right?  I’m not what anyone expects.  Kinda’ why I get along at poker. So when you look at your watch and tell me you gotta’ get back?  I see someone who just wants to leave this place, really, and maybe get the coffee somewhere.  But lady, oh um, excuse me, ma’am?  You don’t really care about getting back.  I’m just sayin’.”

Now this, she thought, this was good.  A refreshing surprise – this kid.  Rude and obnoxious, not very clean, granted.  Still, she was intrigued.  She actually allowed a smile as she said, “Tell me, Stuart,”

“Stew,” he interrupted, “You can call me Stew.  I’m really sorry for the ‘lady’ routine.  Table talk.  Got a game in ten minutes.  Yeah, call me Stew.”

“Right.  Stew.  Tell me please, if you know so much from our brief interaction here, what makes you think I’d rather be in a bar,” she motioned to Smitty’s and smirked, “correction – a run down bar, probably full of smoke and bad jukebox music (I’m thinking George Jones era Country Western from the looks of it) instead of a posh coffee shop with free wi fi?”

Stew plunged his hands in his pockets and gave a head bob of defeat.  “That I don’t know.  I should have guessed from the OCD thing maybe.  Then again there’s the car.  Do you know you have like,” he paused and appeared to be counting, “five crumpled Whataburger bags in your back seat?  I don’t know.  I don’t really think that far out when I’m postulating.  I already told ya’ I get by at poker.  I’m not great.”

She put the car back in neutral, pulled the brake, and stuck her hand out the window with another smirk.  “Macon Belfair,” she announced.

This move caught him off guard and drained all confidence he’d been faking.  “Stew Graves, serious as a heart attack,” he placed his now sweaty palm in hers and gave a weak shake before pulling it back and blushing.

This time, she waited a beat, stumped for that short time.  Finally, “Why would you not be serious about your name?  Did I miss something?”

“Table talk again.  Speaking of – why don’t you just park and come check it out?  There’s no smoking inside.  They don’t  allow the jukebox or TVs while they have the game, for real.  That’s why they do it at two.  Used to be at six thirty and people complained it was too loud.  What are they gonna’ do, make it quiet as a cemetery while people are trying to enjoy their happy hour after their eight or ten lousy hours?”  He was cleaning off his counter and unplugging his machine as he spoke.  “Anyway, I wasn’t joking about the coffee.  Smit Jr. drinks it non-stop from noon to four and he’s pretty picky about it.  They don’t have all the flavor fluff you got at these other places, but you’ll see if you come it.  It smells up the place and, I mean, it smells good.  Smit says he read somewhere that’s the real benefit of coffee to a human body anyways, the olfactory job it does on us.”

“Okay.” she caught herself by surprise as her body complied with her answer, dropped the brake and shifted into first, “Just for coffee though.”  She meant she wasn’t going to join in the poker game, since he’d been talking about it as much as the coffee.  She could tell by his look of fear that he thought she meant something else, but she’d already started rolling forward too far to explain.  Now she was blushing.  She laughed out loud in her solitary trash mobile after turning off the engine and grabbing her wallet.  Most people didn’t get her.  She thought she actually liked it that way.  If they didn’t know her, she didn’t have to put forth the effort to get to know them only to find out that she thought they were idiots and should take a long leap off a short pier.  She didn’t turn on charm unless it served a purpose for business … or pleasure with no commitments.  This kid had made her smile twice, surprised her more than once, and here she was, blushing from a mishap in her verbal communication.  She hadn’t turned on the charm for the usual reasons; she was after all old enough to be his mother.  He’d charmed her into being charming.  “Tricky kid,” she said aloud.


Another NaNoWriMo! Who is With Me!?

Today starts that crazy 30 days of scratching your brain and rearranging your daily schedules to find the time and discipline to crank out 1660 words a day, or a whopping 50K words for the National Novel Writing Month.  I have participated for several years and finally made the count last year.  Anyone can play (I’m smirking), so check out the website at nanowrimo.org and get started.

I don’t have the sense of direction I had last year.  I had plot lines scribbled and edited all over my house and stacks of books for exoplanets and astronomy (the story was sci-fi), character sketches and even artistic pictures of the scenery in my head.  This year I have a character, a hint of an idea, and an interest in professional poker to go with.  I also have this foggy idea that this will be a literary novel, and am going to pull from my popular post on this blog “Doom Pie,” somehow.  I’m “pantsing” it this year.  I’ll post snippets daily like before, in no particular order.  Here’s the first 204 words:

People told her to smile as a kid.  She wasn’t unhappy.  She found little use for the palette of emotional expression that most people employed.  She felt the same about small-talk.  She’d wasted so much youth speaking in trivialities with adults; she didn’t want to be trite in her own adulthood.  The table was the only exception to this rule.

When content her face stayed relaxed, no hint of an upwards slant in the cheeks, no pursing of the lips.  Happiness looked no different but for a sparkle in her eyes if one looked close enough.  If anger seethed in every part of her body, her face betrayed nothing of the inferno lurking beneath.  It wasn’t that she wore a mask – everyone else wore too many, substituting facades as it pleased them.  Millions of one-man vaudeville shows for the world audience.  She wasn’t big on theatrics.  Control was her thing.

Confusion, her most common state in social settings, required an exhausting effort.  Her forehead bunched and by her twenties she’d noticed a crease was fully formed there.

To make this pillar of composure laugh made the whole world do a standing ovation in your soul.  To play poker with her would wreck your bankroll.

The “I remember …” Writing Prompt

US Navy 020712-N-5471P-010 EOD teams detonate expired ordnance in the Kuwaiti desertI remember … a voice.  Soft and low, it beckoned me from my sleep.  My eyes were reluctant.  Soft and low, then a hint of discord – the voice reached, the beat of its language growing more insistent.  I reasoned with my eyes, my limbs … perhaps a little stretch.  “Mueller – wake the hell up.  Dammit, they’re here.”  Heat pricked my skin before I felt the concussion, and my eyes snapped open just as a shroud of dirt flashed over my body from the impact.

Writing Spaces

Smoke by THORMarge scratches her head in the midst of the last remaining place of business where smoking is allowed, “The Everyone and their Mama Meeting Place Bar and Internet Lounge.” The dank odor is already permeating her heavy overcoat, a vital accessory since the owner saves money by not turning on the central air unit. In the summer Marge wears the skimpiest tank top she can find and has to purchase several rounds of water before she’s through with her writing. Gone are the days where she could enjoy the little writing shack she fixed up in her back yard. Once a hot tub outbuilding, it already had water and power when she cleared out the insides and swept away the spiders. A fresh coat of paint, a small desk and ergonomic chair, built-in shelves, a work table, and two dry erase boards later and she’d put together the best writing environment. The man at the computer kiosk next to her lets out a loud burp and jams his fist in the air as his screen emulates a winning slot machine. Her blank screen yawns at her. It’s enough to make her start smoking again.

My Romance with Green

PlattenwegThe rain, it spilled out onto the green and brown velvet

an iced doughnut of foliage and flower in my yard

beckons me from books and house

leads me to the floor and twirls me round

rings my fingers with dirt lace

wonders collide

sun peeks


By Jeff Kubina from Columbia, Maryland (Typewriter) [CC-BY-SA-2.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0)], via Wikimedia Commons

Where From Art Thou?

I had a thought this week about the core of a writer’s inspiration or drive.  I used to think there were a few writers that went about their art in an orderly fashion, making little piles and sticky notes of ideas and dreams, thoughts and overheard quirkiness, and they would eventually sit themselves down and make something of these.  I couldn’t relate to those folks.  I thought I was part of the majority of writers and we were all lunatic geniuses or possessed.  A sort of collection of disturbing savants that readers don’t always associate with some of the resulting masterpieces they come to cradle like babies.

Here’s an example:  someone sparks an emotion in me and it hooks onto an idea (similar or not) and enforceable yanks my doppelganger (the little shadow-woman that lives inside of me) until it writes it all down … drips it all out, extinguishes the fire.  Here’s another example from the opposite side of that spectrum:  I get my feelings hurt or I go into a deep depression and the shadow-woman trails me everywhere, looms over me in my sleep, trips me for the hell of it, and generally makes my life a living frightmare until I exorcise whatever daemon in the form of a poem or prose.  Either way, I might go for days, weeks even, without a productive writing day, but when it comes there is steam on the windows when my hands leave the keyboard.

Having made contact with a few writers and a poet now, I’m beginning to think there are innumerable kinds of shadow men and women, muses, sticky-note methodology, prompt tooling and daily regimens, possessions, and general mayhem when it comes to the spark that turns a writer’s hand to paper.  I don’t understand writers that function differently from me, and that’s okay, I guess.

What’s my point?

If there are possibly as many kinds of … I’ll call them “instigators,” … as there are writers, then maybe it’s like finding a mate?  What would my daemons do if I started trying on freewriting non-stop, or turned my radio on every morning and used the first ten words I heard as a prompt?  I’m not talking about the occasional dry spell where I try these kinds of things to hunt for my shadow-woman.  I simply wonder if Shakespeare would have been Shakespeare if he’d put aside his usual writing method and tried on something else for a year.  Maybe some other Bill would have been a household name if he’d tried Shakespeare’s.

But don’t mind me, I also sit around wondering how the author of Annie got away with stealing Dicken’s Oliver Twist story?

Countdown Over

Today marks the first day of unemployment that I can’t claim as a weekend or holiday.  I’m pleased to say I worked today.  I’ll post a helpful progress report on my business plan research tomorrow.  Meanwhile, this came to me today and, since as a writer I’m sworn to honesty as one helpful author/mentor wrote, I’ll share it with all you hopeful writers who read me.

Fear of Nothing

The clock on the wall keeps time
as step-ball-change tugs me loose,
and with clickity speed
I must speedily read,
and wealth of good writing produce –
lest my taskmaster soul bells chime.

No orientation exists –
just on the job training and fear.
The list of whatevers
and jaunty endeavors
make lists upon deadlines appear –
and procrastination persists.

Oh this …

fear of failing,
critics wailing.
What if it sucks,
and my rows of ducks
go waddling through
mediocre blue
and black guffaws,
full of flaws,
to find at the end
a wordful blend

of nothing
that makes a difference?

Cloudy with a Chance of Change – Conclusion

Gusts and lightning, hurricanes
Tornadoes, floods, torrential rains
The Captain lashes to the wheel –
Character – an even keel.

Speaking of the weather,
Let not these words dismay –
Change may be a feather
That falls on who it may,

But each is her own Captain,
Her well marked maps abound.
No feather tells a Captain
Which depths that she must sound.


Cloudy with a Chance of Change

Speaking of the weather,
I think it’s safe to say,
Change is like a feather
That falls on who it may.

It flits, it floats, it falling, flies,
Emits a casual lift of ties,
But not for easy, not for cheap.
Its shoulder queasy wants to keep

The ties that bind, the merry smiles
The hearty find, the traveled miles.
The bearer, weighted down with change,
Does find the passage dim and strange.

And wanting still to hold that place –
The people, friendships, love, and grace –
Doth reach both ways but stands so still,
The future frays the battled will.

And so she knows the change must win,
And freeing courage deep within,
Releases anchors founded here.
Tucks safe the memories held so dear,

And lets the winds of fortune wail,
The goals she’s set – the billowed sail.
So waving, frantic that they’ll see
She cuts the mooring, cruises free.

The sunset forward, history aft,
Heartaches cried and funnies laughed,
A ballast full of lessons learned,
Friendships forged, demons burned –

The Captain sets a course for Then,
Embraces now, begins again.
So Change unfettered, rides the clock
And elsewhere seeks another dock.


Tune in for the conclusion of this self-fulfilling prophecy on December 20th.

Take Me With You

A genius raised, a shroud of mist –
A muse amazed, a writer kissed –
From blue veined structures, lyrics flow.
Into a bloodlet cistern go
The drippings of a mind possessed –
Such humors best to have confessed
Onto the page where readers drink
Transfusions of vampiric ink.
They get their fill; they breath the words,
And bits of meaning flit like birds.
Into their daily highs and lows
A writer’s rhythmic weather goes.

Personification Loosed

The onion’s protest registered in the air throughout the house.  Its flesh sizzled as it hit the pan and, soon after, it began basking in the sheen of butter.  The metamorphosis began.  Two eggs balked at the corner of the counter before they cracked and were beaten in rapid swirls.  The Organic dill made its appearance from the cabinet above as a new aroma rose from the pan.  The onions were caramelizing.  The egg and spice joined them as the coffee maker hissed its message, “Mission complete.

The tomatoes would probably swamp up the whole thing and the writer doubted they would add much flavor, but she cut one up and threw it in anyway.  They’d go bad in a day or two.  She stirred and sifted the hotbed of shapes and textures and lifted out sections to the waiting plate.  After a sprinkle of parmesan on the concoction, she slid the rest from the pan to cover the cheese.  Her coffee and creamer poured, she carried the muddy mug to the table and downed her morning vitamins.  Rinsing the fork she’d used to beat the eggs, she tasted breakfast and deemed it serviceable.

What to write about, she wondered, as she opened a web browser and began her morning rituals.  The screen stared back at her, still groggy from the operating system update the day before.  She adjusted the brightness and checked her glasses for streaks.  All systems go.  Must have sleep in her eyes.  The fork finally rested on the empty plate, and she moved it out of her reach, purchasing better access to the keyboard.  Her neck pulled at her head and coaxed her to tilt back and stretch before leaning forward once again.  Her fingers reported to their assigned positions but remained poised and still.  What to write, what to write …

Nearly two years of blogging and she’d learned a very important lesson – find your niche and stick to it.  Her’s was “writing.”  Essays, memoir entries, poetry – the style made no difference as long as it had to do with the artistry, romance, challenges, and techniques regarding the craft of writing.  IMG_0175The blog readers had spoken.  So this morning she pondered what sparkling, mystical pool of the art she would dive into.  Candle flames danced. The floor heater whispered a smooth unending exhale.  An unfinished book taunted her from across the room, and still she focused on the blank screen, its face devoid of expression – as clueless as she about what would adorn its space.

An angry truck roared past outside.  huffing as it came to a stop at the sign, and mumbling something about gravel and ice before rounding the corner and grumbling off into the distance.  The coffee pot ticked and popped on its hotplate, reminding her it was there if she needed help.  She went for a refill as the empty breakfast plate caught her eye.  It joined it’s family in the dishwasher.  The icy floor tiles were not interested in her morning routine except to demand that she remove the stray onion skin that had interrupted its stubborn compulsion at order.

A second cup of energy sparked her neurons into more intense action.  “Action,” she said aloud, and the house responded with awkward silence.  She could write about creating action in a story, or inciting forward momentum in pumping out a daily word count.  “Fat chance at that,” the house seemed to insert, and she had to agree – faced with the still blank page.  Yesterday’s post pulled her to her blog page, and reminded her that decades of writing teachers would surely provide material for her to expound.  “But that feels like cheating,” she replied, “unless I put some kind of spin on it.”

The chair squealed as she twisted in it, staring at the patio-door window to think.  The blinds it wore were those cheap, plastic hanging strips that twisted to open, and shuffled along the track it hung on to open wider or close.  Some of the strips were warped and hung crooked, exposing a striped portrait of the neighborhood.  She let the spaces paint lines of light on her brain as she dissected the art of writing for a specimen that could hold her spellbound long enough to make her fingers twitch on the keys.

Alliteration, hyperbole, metaphors – she stretched her memory for other literary devices.  Imagery, simile, irony – she loved them all and they had always been faithful, except for “hyperbole,” she recalled, that one time in college.  Such friends could make or break a piece, she started to write about it, simultaneously questioning each as to their whereabouts earlier that morning.  She broke their resistance, they started talking; she was making great progress. Some were even pointing their fingers, and just when several had named the culprit (“Personification,” whom she’d forgotten to put into the lineup – the space heater began an annoying incessant beeping.

Death found an author writing his life.. (3517039221)

Death found an author writing his life.. Designed & done on stone by E. Hull. Printed by C. Hullmandel. London, Dec. 1827.

The fuse breaker’s lack of cooperation had incited a strike.  She moved from her seat and headed over to begin negotiations.  The phone rang.  Work was calling.  She would have to finish the article another day.  It was times like these that she was grateful for the MacBook’s battery.  The laptop would protect the morning’s work, safeguarding it until her return.  She had a lead now, she thought.  It was only a matter of time before she could round up “Personification,” and expose its habit of transforming objects,  animals, and even concepts like “death,” into humans.

L. Frank Baum, 1899

Writing & Blogging: Lessons Learned in NaNoWriMo2014

If you are a writer, an author, a novelist, or interested at all in the literary world, you know that November marked the popular National Novel Writing Month, or as it is more affectionately (or vehemently) known – NaNoWriMo.  This was my third year participating in the event where writers from all over the world commit to a monthly word count goal of fifty thousand words.  This was the first time I won; I wrote over 50K words and am still going.  But more importantly, I learn a few things from the experience.

1. Keeping a daily writing habit is essential. 

Doesn’t matter if the material is not my best, or even crappy.  Putting my body and mind in the habit of writing something, anything, everyday knocks the idea of writer’s block off its rocker a little.  It means I don’t worry about quality so much as quantity for this exercise.  If you wrap that whole philosophy up into a little stocking stuffer – it means you tend to be looser, more limber, and can step into the ring looking like a buff, energetic writing monster.  It means quality will come easier.

2. Setting a daily minimum keeps me honest. 

Otherwise, I can subscribe to the idea of daily writing and then cheat out a sentence or two and call it a day.  Maybe you don’t have this problem.  I do.  So even if I set a low 500 word count minimum, I can do the math on how much content that gets me in a year and be happy that I’m on board.  With the day job, I think 500 – 1K is reasonable depending on your genre.  I intend on upping that to 3K – 4K when I go full bathrobe writer in 45 days.

3. First draft writing is important for building confidence.

Before my first 50K on one project, I always wrote as if doing a term paper the night before its due.  I wrote, edited, rewrote, wrote some more, polished that, etc.  By the time I got to the ending, I had lovely content leading up to it and the “grand finale” of finishing and being done at the same time was wonderful.  But facing such a large project, I had trouble.  My first two NaNo years were hell because I couldn’t let go and just type.  I made it to about 3K the first time, and only 8K the second.  I knew that I needed to prove to myself that I could tackle a project as large as a novel before resigning and becoming (for all intents and purposes) unemployed.

So this time (and as many of my blog posts display for all to see) I just threw caution to the wind and made myself ignore aspects I wanted to go back and change after a few paragraphs.  It required discipline to stay committed to that plan.  It also required that I let go of the control I relish in the creative process for the time being and just vomit the ideas and ramblings that came to me onto the page.  The experience was a watershed moment in my writing practice and I encourage anyone who hasn’t tried it to give it a go.

I intend to finish the content of the book this way (probably another 50 – 100K) and then revise for the next two months.  Then I will follow the seasoned advice of many successful and published writers and toss the whole thing in a drawer for a few months.  In June or July (right around the time of Camp NaNoWriMo) I will pull it out and begin learning how to edit and develop a third and fourth draft.  Who knows?  Maybe it will be ready for an agent shortly after that.

4. Truth – “Find a niche for your blog and stick to it.” 

In posting my blog since I moved to Idaho for work in 2013, I’ve watched how interested readers/followers are in what I post.  My original idea was to have a daily snippet of writing, just a morsel, that readers could enjoy in less than a couple of minutes with their coffee. I discovered that I don’t do that well.  (Someone who does that really well is – http://myothervoices.wordpress.com/ although the content is not daily.)   I tried serials, but learned writing them “on-the-spot” daily is embarrassing since I didn’t edit them much prior to posting and later wanted to change the storyline or bury my head from all the typos.

I hadn’t learned that lesson until NaNoWriMo2014.  I posted unedited tidbits from my daily word count climb for all to laugh at and/or find amusing.  But since I slid around in the plot arc so frequently, and since there was no character development provided for a backdrop, it was hard to follow any story or stay hooked.  This was the valuable criticism from my lovely beta-reader and wife.  I agree.

Overarching all of this was the countdown theme.  My wife and I have set a goal for my return home once bills are paid and finances in tune for losing my income.  I thought sharing the experience of the countdown would interest some because, who doesn’t dream of quitting their job and writing full-time?!  I learned that to leverage that, I needed much more focus and time than I could provide to the blog.

My point?  The most popular articles on my blog since starting it are the ones dealing with the writing practice, habit, journey, and frustrations.  I love to write about those things almost as much as I like creating fiction.  So I believe I have found my niche.  Expect blog modifications to follow.

Asrai Blessing: NaNoWriMo Best of the Daily (The End)

The pilgrims gathered on the bow of the ship as instructed by Larien.  Their traveling things, now much lighter, had been hoisted above their heads to the awaiting dirigible airship above.  Now, they each took turns saying their goodbyes to the Asrai.  To R’Zen and Tboi, Amras said, “Courage and wisdom your honor brings.  I embrace you for certain of times.”  Tboi blushed a pinkish color and R’Zen bowed deeply at the pair.

Larian touched Hoss’s face and cradled it there with a rippling kind of sadness in her face, “So acquainted with loss your strength.”  She turned to Ingrid and said, “A heart must never win where knowledge can sacrifice.”  Ingrid made no sign that she understood, but nodded and hugged the brother and sister.

Each of them taking one of Miriam’s hands, they placed a kiss on both and said, “Stories to tell.  Stories to tell.”  She smiled and shivered, thanking them for their blessing.

Terra felt ticklish again as Larien and Amras both gave her a parting hug.  “Take your care, world woman,” Larien still used the mysterious title, “must needs to find the cure.”  She looked to Ingrid and Miriam for help, but neither had any answers to offer and met her glance only with a shrug or raising of the eyebrows.

This is the last quick read of the best (or least despicable) selections from the previous day’s word count, by virtue of my daily writing regimen for the National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo).  WARNING:  editing has not taken place.  NaNo conquered.  Next move – additions and revision number one.




Lizard vs Horse: NaNoWriMo Best of the Daily (29)

Terra was excited.  It was one thing to read about things, even to watch vids on them, but in a short time she was going to actually see, with her own eyes, the beaches of Kepler-Z.  R’Zen, reading her excitement from behind and aching to give his much atrophied legs a good exercise, jogged to her side.  Her horse, startled by the appearance of a fully grown matterhorn gentry suddenly appearing at its side, crow hopped and then calmed back to its original trot.

Participant-2014-Square-Button“N’Sa, apologetic for startling dumb animal,”  he smiled his cantankerous smirk and Terra laughed, not missing his intended irony.  “Beach not far,” he trilled, “if Ms. Terra wish to race.”  He was stripping his leggings and tying them around his neck.  Terra smiled, even giggled a little, then played a game she remembered playing with Ingrid what seemed like so very long ago.


Tune in for quick reads of the best (or least despicable) selections from the previous day’s word count, by virtue of my daily writing regimen for the National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo).  WARNING:  editing has not taken place.