NANO WEEK #3 // THOR: RAGNAROK, LESS WORDS, MORE SLEEP!

Saturday, November 18, 2017
Phew, this week of NaNo was an absolute blur. I found myself answering comments that were six days old on my last post -- eek! Usually I do that on Sundays, and I have no idea how it escaped my mind. It's just proof that NaNo is chipping away at my sanity. xD

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DAY ELEVEN: 0
Yup. My total today was a big, fat, stinky, old zero. I intended to keep up my writing daily streak... but once I sat down and opened my document, all of my motivation disappeared. POOF. GONE. (funny how often that seems to happen. -.-) I tried to summon the motivation to find my motivation... but, alas, I closed my computer and went to read instead. (which ended up being an A+++ decision because somehow we're eleven days into the month and I haven't read a single book. *sobs*)

DAY TWELVE: 1,006
TODAY WAS SO BUSY. I feel like I could say that about most days... but today I was busy from nine in the morning until nine at night and it exhausted my poor little soul. (I'm honestly surprised I gathered enough energy to write 1,000 words. :P)

It's weird being an extroverted writer, because once I'm out and about I enjoy connecting with people... but words! editing! novels! <-- those reasons are why I wish I could have more time at home sometimes.

DAY THIRTEEN: 1,297
Currently I'm bemoaning my past plotting self, because I skipped over the details of so many story logistics. Today I literally had to write [insert realistic motives for this character to hate other character] because SOMEHOW I kind of skimmed over that part during plotting?? This is where I need the logical side of my brain to step up and give some input. Usually that side remains suspiciously quiet. xD

DAY FOURTEEN: 3,046
Words were hard today. Despite having most of the day open for writing, it took me nearly the whole day to write 3,000 words. (which is a lot, yes! but usually I would've aimed for 5k+) I don't know exactly why they were so tough in coming... but I'm blaming it on the fact that I saw Thor today, and became distracted thinking about the movie.

It seems like lots of people are raving about the amazingness of Thor: Ragnarok. I enjoyed the movie, but I'm a bit disappointed by the different direction they took. It felt completely disconnected to the previous Thor movies and to Thor's character. It was hard to take him or the life-and-death moments seriously, and the plot was too jerky for my tastes. *shrugs* To each their own.

But the movie did make me laugh out loud a few times. Especially Korg. IF YOU'VE SEEN THE MOVIE YOU KNOW HOW WONDERFUL KORG IS. I need a miniature Korg. He's basically my favorite character ever now. xD *will rewatch that movie multiple times just for his screen time, hehe*

I also received Renegades in the mail today! It was so hard to gaze upon the beautiful cover and not crack a peek inside. *sniff* But like I mentioned in a previous blog post: since I'm also writing a superhero story for NaNo, I don't want to accidentally borrow anything from her hero world. It's just extra motivation for finishing this novel. o.o

So, after writing all the above... I think it's safe to say that the words were hard because of all the distractions. xD

DAY FIFTEEN: 3,002 
I've been writing for three and a half years. I've written six novels. I've spent hundreds of hours slaving over fictional worlds. I've written about a lot of different things and subjects, but... for the first time ever...

I got to write about pizza today.

'Nuff said.

DAY SIXTEEN: 2,048
Sigh, today was another slow writing day where putting the words onto the paper felt like pulling teeth. Or tugging hair. Or pinching skin. Basically it was just hard.

NaNoWriMo this year has really showed me how much I depend on plotting. Which is weird -- two years ago I was a die hard pantser and didn't plan on changing my ways. But today I'm writing a section where I skimmed over the details during brainstorming. Because of this, progress is sluggishly slow. I need to know what to foreshadow! What are the order of the events?! Help!

I should hopefully finish this tough section tomorrow, and then I'm back onto my outline. AND THE CLIMAX IS NEXT. This book could be finished next week, you guys. How insane is that? o.o

DAY SEVENTEEN: 1,483
Another smaller word count day, but Fridays are always tough for me since they're my blogging days. So I worked on this blog post you're reading right now during the afternoon and night... and during the evening I went to my second write-in!

So, if you don't remember from my previous NaNo update, the last write-in I went to was a bit, erm, quiet. Which was totally productive! Just... not as exciting as I expected. BUT THIS WRITE-IN WAS TOTALLY DIFFERENT.

There were snacks! Hot cocoa! A super energetic bookstore host! Prompts and popcorn and lots of giggles! I was able to interact with other writers while writing 1,500 words, which is a definitely win-win situation.

And there were prizes?? I walked away with a journal, a ninja eraser (#NadinesNinjas, anyone? ;), an ARC of the NaNoWriMo Pep Talk book (!!), and a sharpie that said: for signing books when you're famous. <-- that's the cutest thing I've ever seen and I will treasure it until that day.

If you have an opportunity to attend a write-in, I say go for it! The NaNo site should have a list of activities in your region. (and you'll get a fancy NaNo computer sticker only available at write-ins. *ooooh* *aaaah*) I can't promise that all of the write-ins will have snacks and prizes... but for your sake I hope that there will be. :P

WEEK TOTALS:
[i do not know why this image is blurry but it makes my heart sad]
word count: 11,892 [month total: 61,903]
time spent writing: seven hours, forty-six minutes [month total: 36h, 36m]
nights stayed up past midnight: 0! (wut, this might be a record o.o)
mornings with coffee: seven/seven. ahh, it's so lovely to have a working coffeemaker again. <3

This week was a lower word count week, but definitely still a productive one. It's crazy looking forward to next week because THE FINISH LINE IS IN SIGHT. Tomorrow (or... it will be today as you're reading this) I can finally work on the climax. Eek, insanity. o.o

HOW ARE YOU SURVIVING NANOWRIMO? Am I the only one who thinks NaNo is going suspiciously fast this year?? I mean, we only have twelve more days to survive! It's doable! Probably! Maybe! :P 


<3,
katie grace
my nano profile

how is your progress going??

NaNo Week #2 // 50,000 WORDS AND MY FIRST WRITE-IN!

Saturday, November 11, 2017
It's day eleven of NaNoWriMo! How are you doing?? Do you need a nap? Chocolate? Seventeen cups of coffee? All of the above?

Somehow, I'm surviving. It's been insane, but a good sort of insane. A type of insanity that only writers will understand. :P

DAY FOUR: 5,024
Like I mentioned in my last NaNoWriMo wrap-up, I went to a write-in at my library today! This was my first write-in, so I was super excited to meet and discuss books with other writers, but... everyone was so quiet. Literally the only conversation I had was with someone commenting on my NaNoWriMo shirt. The rest of the time was just frantic typing filling the silence.

It wasn't a bad thing, since I got lots of writing done... but still very different from what I was expecting. We were all so silent and still that at one point the lights turned off since they were motion-activated. xD

I'm glad I went, because I got a "NaNoWriMo superpowered noveling" sticker for my computer! It makes me ridiculously happy.

DAY FIVE: 5,017
I GOT TO WRITE A PLOT TWIST TODAY! I've been looking forward to this twist since I brainstormed it in October. I already know that this scene is going to need lots of editing... but hey! At least I have the bare bones on the page. xD 

And by the way... it is so tough to write a story with a large cast. I just... there are so many character arcs to juggle! So many backstories and fears and hopes and dreams and struggles and relationships and different personalities to sort out! Ugh, it's exhausting, and I already know that editing is going to be a nightmare. At least I'm passionate about this story so I have one thing going for me. :P

DAY SIX: 5,041
Ahh, day six of NaNoWriMo. It's a Monday: the start of another week of school and a thirty-hour work week. *collapses from busyness* But at least all the working means all the coffee drinking. ;)

OH! And speaking of work, the greatest thing happened to me today. A little boy came up to the register with his dad and ordered a hot chocolate. I asked him for his name, and he said in a small voice, "Landon!"

Um. What. Landon is one of my main character's name. O.O I couldn't stop grinning for a solid five minutes. I hope he grows up to be a reader and devours my book someday. <3

I also hope that he's not angry at me for putting his character through some rough stuff. (oops)

DAY SEVEN: 4,007
Today I was tired and unmotivated, so I stopped writing after I hit 4k instead of doing my usual 5k. I'm totally okay with that. Hypothetically, I could've stayed up until midnight writing... but... I wanted keep my sanity in check, so. xD (and if I continued writing, the words probably would've come out as nonsense so it's a good thing I stopped when I did)

Other things worth mentioning about today: Twitter exploded with their new 280 character limit. Obviously that makes it the perfect opportunity to scream about NaNoWriMo:
(this is one of my most popular tweets so I fear for the well being of all the NaNoWriMo participants XD)

DAY EIGHT: 5,002 
Guess. what. happened. today? I GOT A NEW COFFEEMAKER! My morning coffee will return! The caffeine consumption rate will rise! My fingers will be blurs of movement across the keyboard while coffee spreads throughout my veins. (MWAHAHAHA. :P)

Today I worked hard at finishing all my writing in the afternoon, because I had holiday setup at Starbucks from eight until midnight (decorating, updating menus, unveiling all the new cups, coffee, etc). I had a crazy fun time singing carols with my coworkers and eating pizza in the empty store at eleven at night... but it is not fun trying to change the drivethru menu boards in five degree weather while it is snowing. 100% do not recommend because you will end the night with frozen fingers. 

Otherwise, I had a blast. xD

DAY NINE: 5,108
Are you starting to sense a pattern with my word counts yet? Once I type that five thousandth word, it's rather difficult for me to summon any motivation to write more than that. But I'm getting soooo cloooseee to 50,000! If I manage to do 5k more tomorrow... there's a possibility that I can hit the big 50 on day ten. o.O

DAY TEN: 4,803
I DID IT! I HIT 50,000 WORDS! *collapses forever and ever*

One of the questions that keeps coming my way is: how close are you to finishing your book now that you've hit 50,000? 

My answer? I DON'T KNOWWWWW! I wish I was good at estimating. I know that I'm nearing the climax, but... I have no idea how many words it'll take me to actually finish the story. 75k? 80k? 90k? Somewhere in that range? I'll keep you updated on that mystery. xD

 
TOTALS FOR THE WEEK:

body count: just one! go me!
word count: 34,002 [month total: 50,011]
time spent writing: eighteen hours, forty-eight minutes [month total: 28h, 50m]
mornings without coffee: five
mornings WITH coffee: two!
nights stayed up past midnight: two (this is such an improvement from NaNo '16)

So, overall, this week of NaNoWriMo was a success. I'm feeling good about my story (albeit a little unsure about the characters/flow), and I'm excited to keep cranking out those words!

Also, shout out to my word warring buddies. I definitely wouldn't have hit 50k this soon without the motivation and accountability. o.o

How are all of you faring?? Keep in mind that I'm a naturally faster writer than most, so try not to compare your progress. NaNoWriMo is an extremely tough challenge, but ultimately the purpose is to get words on the page. And if you're doing that, you're doing well. <3

<3,
katie grace
nanowrimo profile

NaNo Week #1 // I BROKE MY COFFEEMAKER AND MIGHT BE GOING INSANE

Saturday, November 4, 2017
NaNoWriMo has arrived, which means my weekly NaNo updates are back! I'm doing them the same way as I have previous years -- daily updates, rambles, and then a few wrap-up questions at the end of the post. 

You'll notice, at the end, that I have a "time spent writing" section. I recently stumbled across a post by Marissa Meyer where she tracked the total time she spent writing/editing/outlining/etc for her novel, Heartless. That was incredibly interesting, so I'm going to do the same thing. Hopefully I can stick with it. xD

It's a short wrap-up this Saturday since there are only three days of NaNo to recap... but that just gives you more time to write. (Mwahaha, SEE WHAT I DID THERE?!)

DAY ONE: 5,339
Like I do every year, I started off NaNo with staying up until midnight, which was really weird because I haven't stayed up until midnight in over a month?? I'm a natural night owl, but just with school and work it makes more sense for me to go to bed early, so I've been trying to do that more. IT'S INSANITY. It's like -- gasp -- being an adult. o.o

But, since I don't have the talent to be a functioning adult, I broke the coffee machine. I was reaching for the microwave, and when I opened the door, my elbow jerked backward and knocked it off the counter and onto the ground. The coffee pot shattered into a hundred tiny pieces and all I could do was stare at it and imitate Luke from Star Wars, "NOOOOOOOOOO!"

SERIOUSLY, THOUGH. NaNo is the one month where I consistently drink coffee every morning. (throughout the rest of the year I usually don't if I work later, since I'll just get coffee there.) But with NaNo, I need all the caffeine I can get to act like a semi-normal human. Of course I break it on the first. day. *headdesk* 

(I spontaneously made a pizza at ten o'clock, which was definitely the best way to end the first day of NaNo. It helped offset the broken coffee pot disaster. :P)

DAY TWO: 5,259
Day two of NaNoWriMo is the day in which I realize that this book might turn out to be a monster novel. Long books aren't bad, don't get me wrong, but I prefer reading, writing, and editing smaller books, so I'm hoping that I'm able to condense it without making it awkward.

Also, whoever thinks that writing doesn't take logic is completely WRONG. I made the mistake during plotting of saying, "ehhh, I'll figure out the details later!" So now I'm stuck trying to figure out the motives and the timeline of events with a tired brain. #fail 

DAY THREE: 5,411
Today I discovered this neat writing tool called Fighter's Block! It's an online writing app that is set up like a RPG and motivates you to get the words down, whether they're good or not. It's a nice switch from staring at a word document all day. And if there's no one around to word war, then you can literally war against a fake monster. :P

It also snowed again today. (UGH.) I know that winter comes every year, but for some reason that doesn't stop me from complaining about it. I already can't wait for spring to come. xD (I do agree that the first snow is beautiful... but it's cold. The snow would be perfectly fine if it was warm! Wouldn't that be weird? Just a giant, fluffy heating blanket. o.o Ahem. Anyway.)

TOTALS:

body count: three
word count: 16,009
time spent writing: ten hours, two minutes.
mornings without coffee: three
stayed up past midnight: only once on the first night! woohoo!

<3,
katie grace
nano profile | about my nano novel

(by the way, I'm going to my first ever write-in tomorrow! this is the first one that the library is hosting, so I'm just crossing my fingers and praying that I won't be the only one to show up. :P I'll let you know how it goes next week!!)

how did the first few days of NaNo treat you?
what's your current body count at (hehe)?

OCTOBER HIGHLIGHTS // 2017

Saturday, October 28, 2017
I woke up this morning to snow. I think the dread of the oncoming winter made my heart sink right through my toes and into the floor. *sniff* Every year I get excited over fall, but forget the season of freezing temperatures that comes next. :P

Beside snow, this month was a good one. Here's what went down.

HIGHLIGHTS
I'M HALFWAY DONE WITH SCHOOL! My pace has slowed with work and life piling on, but I'm making progress. I just have to survive the winter. (which I will do by burying myself in fuzzy blankets 97% of the time) I CAN DO THIS. YOU CAN DO THIS.

Working at Starbucks is still a thing and I'm still loving it. All of the fun Holiday promo is coming out, and I get to help transform our store into a winter wonderland. (which means setting up decorations until midnight. SO PUMPED.) The zombie frappuccino released, which is popular, but nowhere near the crazy disaster of the unicorn frappuccino.  So I'm a happy barista. xD


LOOK. AT. THIS. FENCE. It's right outside my neighborhood so every time I drive home from somewhere I get to gaze upon its amazingness. The Calvin and Hobbes comics are close to my heart and hold a special nostalgia with them... so this fence always brightens my day. <3

MY MIND IS BLANKING ON MORE HIGHLIGHTS. Usually I write them down as I go throughout the month... but I was a slacker and totally forgot. #oops 

(Also, while writing this post I accidentally clicked publish on a very, very rough draft. *heart attack* (so sorry if you read that) But I mean, which genius decided it was a good idea to put the save and publish buttons right next to each other?!)

(speaking of blogging... I've noticed that the GFC widget on blogspot blogs are giving some sort of error.  Please tell me if you figure out how to fix it. I'll give you pizza. Virtually. ;)

BOOKISH STUFF
Invictus [3/5] - so the beginning started off SUPER awesome, but as it went on I lost interest and wasn't emotionally involved with the characters. (and my poor mind was very confused about the time travel stuff SAMxD)

Wildwood [2/5] this book had so much potential! The aesthetic and illustrations were gorgeous... but it was so loooong and boooring.

Knife [4/5] - definitely not my normal kind of story... but I loved it because of the nostalgia! When I was little I read fairy stories all the time, so I adored the trip back to the past. <3

When Dimple Met Rishi [2/5] - cute at times, but didn't live up to the hype. It's hard for me to read a romance story when I don't like either of the main characters very much. :/


Earlier this month I went to a book clearance sale and bought seven barely-used hardcovers for seven dollars. Um, yes please. The only bad thing is that I now have to start stacking books on my floor since my shelves are completely full. :P

Oh! And mark your calendars for November 13th. Why? The amazing Nadine Brandes is revealing the title and cover of her latest YA novel! I'M SO EXCITED TO FLAIL OVER IT WITH EVERYONE. *hype intensifies*

THE WRITING WORLD



I FINISHED PLOTTING MY NANO NOVEL! I was done a week before NaNoWriMo, which is crazy because I am never that organized. But, hey, there's always a first for everything! :P

I debated on whether or not to work on a different project during my free week... but instead I decided to spend my extra time reading. Yes, I could've pushed myself, but I also know that it would've backfired once NaNo started. I need to stalk up on my energy while I have the chance. Beside -- reading is part of  being a writer! And I don't do nearly enough of it. *sniff*

My plotting motto for this year: ASK ALL THE QUESTIONS. FIND ALL THE ANSWERS. And that's basically what I did until I figured out my novel's plot. xD I'm more prepared than I've ever been. For instance:

time spent prepping for NaNo 2016: thirteen hours.
time spent prepping for NaNo 2017: thirty-seven hours.

Yeah. 37. That's thirty-seven focused hours. I'm trying to become better at just plotting/writing/blogging, and not getting distracted by taking quick little breaks to scroll through social media. I found this app called Forest that is AMAZING. It helps keep me on task and make the best of my time. Huzzah!

Also, look! I ordered NaNoWriMo merch for the first time! I'm hoping to go to a few write-ins in November, so I'll be able to properly show off my obsession with NaNo. xD

#dorkysuperheropose
RAMBLINGS OF THE MONTH

THINGS TO COME
The last two NaNoWriMos I've done a weekly NaNo recap on the blog, and I'm going to continue that for this year! Stay tuned for excitement, revelations, sleep-deprived moaning about word counts, and incoherent babblings. (what more could you ask for? ;)

And, if I remember, I'll be doing a daily NaNo vlog that I'll put together and post at the end of the month. I'm so excited for the craziness to begin! *hands out cookies for you all to enjoy*

(and here's my NaNo profile if we're not buddies yet!)

<3,
katie grace

are you prepared for nanowrimo?
what book(s) do you associate with your childhood?

WRITING IS AWESOME

Saturday, October 21, 2017
The year isn't quite over, but it's quickly coming to a close. For me, November means NaNoWriMo and writing whenever possible, and December means reading and Christmas and trying to recover from the previous sleepless month (aka: regaining my sanity).

I've learned a lot about writing this year -- more so than any other year. I've learned about the world of publishing, the art of crafting a novel, my limits, how I work best, re-evaluating my WIPs and thinking about my next steps in this journey.


One of the most valuable lessons I learned was during Camp NaNoWriMo back in April. My words ran dry. My creative soul was tired, brain pushed to its max with all of my crazy ambitions. I was bored with my story, frustrated with my goals, and losing energy, so I didn't have much of a choice but to take a break. 

I wrote a post during that break: The Joy in Stress Free Writing, where I said that I would take writing slowly until I rediscovered that passion. I'm someone who is driven by conquering goals and challenges, so it felt weird to not have any of those hanging over my head and clogging my to-do list.

It's been five months since my writing break. Did I rediscover the enjoyment?! Did it help? Did it teach me anything??

Well, yes. It taught me two things in particular.

1. I can't stop writing.
I've tried gymnastics. I've tried playing the piano. I've tried swimming. I've tried ice skating. I've tried painting. <-- I enjoyed all of these activities for a certain amount of time, but eventually lost interest. 

Writing is a different story (<-- I think I just accidentally made a really lame pun). When I take a writing "break," I find myself doing some anyway just because I enjoy it so much. Even editing isn't quite as bad as it used to be. Now I've come to appreciate how I'm making my story better and dream about it being on the bookshelves one day. *happy sigh*

The month I took off in May showed me how hard it was for me to take a break.  Yes, I may have taken a break from my story, but my writer brain is always churning, always thinking about some future idea. 

2. I can't stop writing because I really, really, really like writing.
Like I said before, I didn't like taking a break, but it helped me rediscover the joy in writing.

Let me clarify before you read into that: I never stopped liking writing... but I did let the stress and the pressure to overachieve impact the enjoyment. There's magic in creating characters and worlds, and that had dwindled.

So I kept my goals smaller than normal, trying to avoid another burnout or having this become a reoccurring problem. And hey -- it worked! Instead of trying to finish a full round of edits for Camp NaNoWriMo, I only went for half of my novel. I didn't get as much done, but I also didn't end the month hating my novel. (always a good thing)

I've fully recovered from the burnout, and goodness, I've realized how much I really loke writing. I love creating worlds. I love penning stories that can transport the reader to another dimension. (unfortunately not literally. though that would be rather impressive if I could send readers to a warped time in space xD)

When I first started writing I wanted to become a published teen author. I still think that would be awesome, but I also realize that my chances of that happening are becoming slimmer. And I'm okay with that.

Even if I'm never published, I'll keep writing because I enjoy it. 
I enjoy the escape, the thrill, the community around stories. God's given me this ability and place to spew my creativity. (and don't worry -- even though I'm content with being unpublished... I'm still going to work as hard as I can to become an official author. :P) 

I don't even know what my point is for this post. Writing is awesome, guys. And it's important for me to keep checking in with myself: am I writing because it's become a responsibility -- another task to complete and wordcount to meet? Or because I truly enjoy it? It's incredibly easy to get wrapped up in the hustle.

So someday I'll be seventy years old, counting down the days until NaNoWriMo, writing my 50th novel or something crazy like that. I'll have a cupboard overflowing with an enormous assortment of coffee mugs and tea cups. I'll be the NaNo grandma -- writing because she can't stop. Writing because she enjoys it.

(now I'm giggling over that image. CAN YOU IMAGINE IF THAT ACTUALLY HAPPENS? dude I want to be a cool writer grandma xD)

Anyway, thanks for reading my rambling post. "See" you next week with allll the October highlights! (and screaming about the fact that NaNoWriMo is SO SOON.)

<3,
katie grace

what did you learn about writing this year?

ABOUT MY SUPERHERO NOVEL

Saturday, October 14, 2017
Happy Saturday! We only have seventeen days left to panic before NaNoWriMo begins! *yay* Last year I wrote a post about what I was writing for NaNo (it's funny how much of that story has already changed since editing), and that went surprisingly well, so I summoned the courage to do it again. 

I'm linking up with the Beautiful Books Tag hosted by Sky and Cait! Thanks for supplying the questions and the community. :D

I first got the idea at the MYWW workshop! I was in Sabaa Tahir's class and our assignment was to create a world together. One of the suggestions was that when a child turned eighteen they would receive a special dragon-speaking ability. That's been done before, so I wanted to turn the idea on its head. What if kids were born with superpowers, but lost them upon turning eighteen?

That's where my story originated! So I've had it for... four months? It came right in time for NaNo and I'm very thankful. xD

SUPERHEROES! *excitement*

Oh. Wait. You mean an actual fancy-professional-like blurb? I'll try. :P
They receive a superpower upon birth. They lose it once they turn eighteen. 
Ten years ago, Tasia's brother was kidnapped by hero traders -- criminals who use children's powers for their own crooked exploits. Her parents haven't been the same since, now convinced that he's dead. But until evidence proves her wrong. she refuses to believe that it's true. 
Tasia and her superhero partners are stationed in a destroyed underground railway system. Guided by her power of light, they spend their days patrolling for possible threats... until they stumble upon a dead body. Officials order them to let stronger heroes deal with this case, warning of hero traders involved with the murder. Clinging to the hope that it might be connected to her brother, Tasia convinces her team to go undercover and hunt the villain of this victim. 
The dead body is only the beginning. They learn crucial information about a rising villain, and soon their mission isn't just about restoring Tasia's family, but saving hundreds of lives in danger. 
The clock is ticking. Can Tasia and her team put their powers to use before they disappear entirely?
[only a rough blurb because it's SO LONG and needs condensing. but it'll do for now.]
 
YESS. This is my favorite question because I simply adore aesthetics. They create this powerful vibe and mood. It's almost like envisioning your book in movie form? I don't know, man. I'm kind of obsessed.
-- flickering lights, soft echoes, baggy hoodies, crunching boots on loose rock, the sound of cars thundering over a tunnel, radio static, coursing adrenaline as you flee death's arms, power, cuts and scrapes, day old fast food, bold newspaper headlines, missed calls, the indescribable bravery it takes to stand against evil --

ALL THE BRAINSTORMING! Lots and lots of brainstorming. I used to despise plotting, but now that I've experienced how helpful it is, I don't think I can ever go back to my pantser ways. Yeah, some people think it's boring to know exactly how the story is going to end (presumably, ha), but until I actually write it... it hasn't happened. I still get to experience that thrill and excitement. *shrug*

Other ways I prepare: ordering NaNo merch, going to a NaNo event at my library (I'm a little nervous about that because I have NO IDEA what to expect o.o), picking a theme album for my story, eating pizza, upping my caffeine intake (I kid, I kid)...


Before I start introducing the characters, please allow me to take a moment to ramble on the struggles of characterization. For instance: WHY IS NAMING CHARACTERS SO HARD? I've created temporary names for them (as you will see below), but... ugh. I despise naming like I despise spiders and vegetable pizza. >.< I'm assigning them a title that they will go by for the rest of their life! And that I will have to type hundreds of times! That's too much pressure for my little heart.

I could go in detail and describe all of my characters... but I have a lot and this blog post doesn't need to be the length of a novel. :P Instead, here are their powers and my pathetic naming abilities.

Tasia - can summon little, burning orbs of light out of her palms. (her name is the only name I have so far. #fail)
Mindy - mind reader. (MIND-y. Get it? :P)
Wallace - can walk through walls. (WALL-ace. Heh.)
Isaac - is able to see through other people's eyes. (EYE-zack.)
Missy [side character] - never misses a shot. (MISS-y. she never misses. :P)




I am so pumped about writing with a cast of characters! My last novel, Where Shadows Lie, had only one main character and one side character. There's little dialogue/interactions in that book, and now I'm transitioning into a Superhero story with four main characters. It'll be very different, but I'm ready for the change.

I'm also excited about finishing the novel! Because... if you weren't aware (you should be), Marissa Meyer comes out with a superhero book, Renegades, on November 7th. I have it preordered, but since I'm also writing a superhero book, I'm forcing myself to wait to read it until I've finished my own novel. Even though my project will be plotted out by that point, I don't want to accidentally sneak in any threads of inspiration from her. It'll be agony to wait, but then my conscious can remain clear in case I spot any similarities. :P

I also can't wait to find a title. Eventually. Hopefully. *grumble* Titles are usually one of my favorite parts of creating a new story... but it's giving me a headache this time. Oh well. xD


one: the majority of the story takes place in the underground railways. They've been abandoned for a looong time. Decades ago a supervillain destroyed them by exploded the railway transports, taking hundreds of innocent lives. It might be fun to write a short story about it someday... but I'm getting ahead of myself. I haven't even finished plotting the novel. xD

two: the world is an alternate US reality/timeline. I like the idea of placing the unfamiliar in the familiar. Then the core of the world itself remains the same -- but the culture, organizations, and how the cities run is obviously very different because there are young superheroes everywhere.

three: tying into the point above, it's been really fun exploring how having superheroes would impact the culture! I've created schools specifically for superheroes -- tests detecting their powers upon birth, how to use and maximize their powers, and short-term institutes specifically designed to help them adjust to life after losing their powers and to help settle them in the "real" world. (PHEW that was a long sentence. Oops.) Once they graduate from the school, the heroes will be assigned a mission or a station and use their powers for the good of their city until they turn eighteen. 

[those were more culture/world-building stuff than setting... but oh well. :P]

Well, I already mentioned this in the blurb, but if you skipped past that... my MC's (Tasia) goal is to find her brother who was kidnapped ten years ago. She was only seven when he first disappeared -- just a bit too young to go adventuring into a crime-infested city. :P

Now that she's older, with an opportunity at her fingertips. a group of friends that have her back, and limited time before her powers disappear... It's either now or never.


There you have it -- all the juicy little details of my NaNo novel. I hope you're intrigued! I don't think I've ever been this excited about writing a specific story. Beside the title, the ideas have come fairly easily, and so far there's not a sign of a sequel (I could cry I'm so happy about that).

Here's my NaNo profile so we can become buddies and scream about words, and then here's my Pinterest board for this novel (because #aesthetic).

<3,
katie grace

what are you writing for nanowrimo?