The world turns upside down…

Tuesday is the first of November, the day the novel writing frenzy begins. I have the weekend to prepare, make sure I’m ready to forget everything else and just write. I know some people map it all out, have incremental goals, and so forth. But I don’t flourish as a task orientated writer. That’s not to say I’m not organized. I do have the story all plotted out, but I am not writing with an outline.

When I say plotted, I mean I’ve written down the list of events that need to take place from the beginning to the end. I have snippets of conversation jotted on my index cards. I have character biographies written and I have a blank timeline spreadsheet started to keep track of my events as I write them. This approach can make the pacing of a novel more difficult. That is, making sure all the action isn’t bunched together with lots of dead space in between. We’ll see how it goes. The point of the whole exercise is  to get the story written, after that the massive edit can begin.

I have an obstacle or two to write around as well. Work of course, can’t be set aside for an entire month obviously. But I also have something special planned for the first weekend in November: I have tickets to Hamilton on Broadway. And a visit to The Metropolitan Museum of Art. I guarantee no writing will happen on the 5th and 6th of November. Totally worth it, though.

Picking up where the story left off…

It’s been eight months since I looked at the fifth novel in my series. For those of you just joining me, my novel series is set in my home area of Bucks County, Pennsylvania. Bucks County is situated in the southeast corner of the state, within shouting distance of Philadelphia. The books have followed a group of friends, each book concentrating on the story of one of them, or two as the case may be, as a couple gets together.

As the series progressed, I moved from the original six characters to write the story of some of the minor players. The fourth book has set up the plot for the fifth and after the fifth, I have one more book to write to finish the series. Six is a good number -a half dozen, a double trilogy.

It’s been hard to get my mind back into the world I’ve created there, however. I never gave it any thought, but my writing has drifted far away from that original style and genre. I hope I can still write a lighter, more humorous story. But to give you a taste, here’s the novel synopsis I entered for NaNoWriMo:

Even though Maya Kaminski is just getting by, her dream of opening a French bakery/cafe in her hometown has finally come true. Although she struggles financially, she is too proud to accept help from friends who have the means to ease her burdens. Its only when a ruthless competitor opens a rival enterprise right across the street, that Maya finds herself with little choice but to bring in a partner or go under. 

Not perfect, I know. The blurb is the hardest thing for me to write. This story will be part mystery, part comedy and –as expected–part romance. I will be posting updates and excerpts here during the month of November –that is if I manage to write something I’m particularly happy with.

Thank you all for your support and encouragement. It really means the world to me.

NaNoWriMo or no…

I am considering participating in National Novel Writing Month this year. Why on earth would I want to subject myself to that torture? Well, here’s why…


There. I feel better. The truth is I’ve been more caught up in “Here Lies a Soldier” than the novel universe. But I also feel like in being a series writer, the books need to appear in semi-regular fashion if they are going to keep the audience’s attention. Which is why I thought signing up for NaNoWriMo might force me to pick up the thread of the next  Bucks County Novel episode. If I succeed in vomiting out 50,000 words over the 30 days of November, I can edit and proof read in December, get it to the beta readers on January first, and barring any glaring problems with the manuscript, do the final edit and publish before the end of February. Sounds like a good plan.

On the other hand, what that means for blogging is that I will have to drastically cut down on the time I spend here. In fact I was thinking of just hanging in with Lula for drinking adventurously and making that my one and only weekly contribution. And maybe just a quick hello in the comments of your lovely posts as best I can.

I’m still wavering. NaNo is a HUGE commitment. I absolutely despise deadlines. The time constraints might have the opposite effect from what I intend and I’ll just get mad and frustrated. So I don’t know…

Are any of you doing NaNoWriMo? And if you are, care to twist my arm?