Here comes NaNoWriMo… and those pesky distractions

As my NaNoWriMo ideas start to come together in my head, I’m looking to the internet for good tips in starting it, working on characters, and thinking about the sorts of conflicts my characters are going to have to really challenge yet stabilize their growing relationship.

There is LOTS of thinking. I’ve done Character profiles. Next I think it’ll be doodling and outlining. I’m almost ready! (I keep telling myself that, seriously.)

I’m also taking notice of some potential distractions. Though, not bad, just…well, distractions…

1) editing Killer Orange: Oh yes. That’s still happening. I’m going to work on my cover soon. I’ve made myself feel guilty enough I haven’t touched it. I am THINKING about it. Though, that doesn’t do too much productively.

2) Unfinished paintings: This may go into December, but a local art shop is looking for submissions. My Ophelia painting is starting to stare at me while I’m in my studio. “Finish me!” And I have a few ideas for some old paintings and how to rework them into something new.

3) Drawings: I still want to draw SOMETHING at least every day, even if it’s just a sketch or maybe even a life drawing study. Drawing really is like working a muscle, and well, I’ve been sorely out of shape.

4) RL: Why do I have to go to work again and not spend all day writing? Oh, right. Bills. I also suppose I have a husband and two dogs to care for. I have family that, for some reason, likes my company. Friends too. Then there’s this really cumbersome holiday coming up in November called Thanksgiving. I have two family sides clamoring for our presence. If only people could be understanding that I’m a writer and maybe I want to hole myself up into my studio and not come out and socialize! No? Well… there you go then.

5) Fitness: I really REALLY need to fit in at least 30 minutes of exercise in my day. It’s good for my stress, and I’d LIKE to fit into some of my old pants again. Someday.

So there are my uphill battles for the coming month. Time to put on the armor, take up the Sword of Multitasking from the stone, and ride into battle.

Comeatmebro

Cheers,

HK Rowe

NaNoWriMo – Beginnings

I’m almost ready to go to work, but I thought I’d share this quickly. A NaNoWriMo link passed on my Facebook feed today, so I logged into my account and started filling out the details for the November 2014.

I’ve already written character bios for my two main characters, and now I have a title. So here it is.

Autumn Fire

Dori and Sam have always had a strange bond; they’ve both lost someone special in a car accident: Dori’s older brother Jon and Sam’s best friend. After Sam loses his job, he becomes homeless, prompting Dori to take him into her home. Dori is ready to help Sam heal from his demons, but is she ready to fall in love with an older man?

It’s probably going to be Jodi Piccoult type angst. No magic, no vampires, just a slow and cautious relationship.

It’s in the beginning stages, so there’s still time to figure out what “thing” might challenge the protagonists beyond, you know, the obvious as the age difference.

And I think I’ll start sketching out the characters. That might be one of the next things I post about the story.

Cheers.

HK Rowe

Ups and Downs

I have been writing and drawing a LOT. Unfortunately, it’s more exercise and practice stuff. I’m doing a lot of journaling, which is mostly personal.

I spent a two week stint designing proposal templates on oDesk so I was occupied there. Hey, money is money.

A lot of my private journaling comes from thoughts and introspections as I deal with the one-year anniversary of my father’s death, as well as being there for my mom while she goes through it. It’s not pretty stuff. One thing is a hard constant: I still don’t like sharing my feelings. Apparently people think that’s something I need to work on.

I’m musing and outlining my Nanorwrimo novel, thinking of a cohesive plot. I’m trying to get over the strange fear of editing Killer Orange. I wonder if I can get through that. It isn’t a block so much as a feeling of dread, like a dirty chore, and I need to get through that. I’m open to what other writers do when they feel overwhelmed with dread in editing their works.

On the upside, this Saturday was Madison Pagan Pride day, and I met High Priestess and activist Selena Fox. She’s one of my idols, and she’s so charming and full of love and joy. I wish I could be half the woman she is.

Work is going really well, but more is continually expected of me. Such is the game.

More writing progress posted soon!

Cheers!

H.K. Rowe

11 Pieces of Advice From Writers

Originally posted on Fiction All Day:

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1.  “Don’t tell me the moon is shining; show me the glint of light on broken glass.” – Anton Chekhov

2.  “Protect the time and space in which you write. Keep everybody away from it, even the people who are most important to you.” — Zadie Smith

3.  “Write drunk; edit sober.” – Ernest Hemingway

4.  “It’s none of their business that you have to learn to write. Let them think you were born that way.” – Ernest Hemingway

5.  “Substitute ‘damn’ every time you’re inclined to write ‘very'; your editor will delete it and the writing will be just as it should be.” – Mark Twain 

6a.  “Say it once, say it well, and move on.” – To be honest, I’m not sure.  I might have made this one up.  If you know who said this please let me know in the comments.

6b.  “Don’t explain.” – Billie Holiday

6c.

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My Growing Reading List

Two posts in one day? What the -!

Seriously, you guys are killing me. I got my notice today that one of the books I pre-ordered was ready in my Kindle app library, there was an Alice Hoffman book for sale on Bookbub, and I still have tons of my friends’ stories sitting and waiting for me to read them.

I have a serious problem though. I tend to read 2 to 3 books at once. I don’t know if that’s healthy but it’s how I roll.

This is just a preview of my kindle app. It’s way longer and more stacked than this. Trust me.

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And this doesn’t even count all the books in my house in multiple bookshelves. I think I have a serious problem.

H.K. Rowe

Flash Fiction Friday

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Maybe this can be a regular thing. I see a lot of people writing Flash Fiction here, and since I love writing short things, I thought hey, maybe I’m missing an opportunity here.

This piece is old by about two years. I wrote this for a small fiction challenge over at Livejournal/Dreamwidth.

Title: Art Show
Word Count: 506
Genre: Horror
Rating: R
Warnings: Abuse, murder, torture
Notes: Written for the Summer Mini Challenge for the “berry pink” prompt.

Summary: Some things die before they are truly yet beautiful.

He took a sip of tea, and smiled as the girl continued to scream. Forbes had clicked his tiny knives together, and the youthful squeal of metal against metal filtered throughout the room. In one swift motion he jabbed the woman’s torso an inch above another knife, sticking three inches below her ribs.

“What kind of tea are you drinking, sir?” Forbes asked his master. His master continued to look out the window of their high rise building, listening to the loud hiss of acid rain against the pane of glass.

“Ah,” his master replied, “it’s Jasmine tea. I chose it in celebration.”

Forbes nodded, clicking two fresh knives together. He peered into his magnifying glasses, and jabbed one of the knives into the other side of the girl’s stomach, symmetrical to the one he’d just used before. He watched in fascination as the blood from the knife painted over her curry-colored skin. Breath escaped her berry pink lips less and less as he stuck her, sliced her, and blood started to trickle onto the floor, marring the pristine white carpet into various splattered patterns.

The master turned from the window and stared at them, entranced. His lips pursed. He was thinking – imagining, something terrible and beautiful at the same time.

It was just beyond his reach, and then…

“Sir, this one is starting to dwindle,” Forbes interrupted his thoughts, and he caught his master’s smile turn into a displeased sneer.

“Try to keep her here longer. We’ve just gotten started.”

Forbes picked up another knife, different than the others, with a blade that was pointed and curved in a half-moon shape. This one was his favorite. He smiled and stuck the girl after he had found the right place. Blood poured down her torso, running into the paths of the rest of her blood and then dripping into her navel. He picked up a smaller knife and struck her again, and then a spasm ran through her body. She let out a tired agonized moan, and then her breath was lost.

“This one has expired, sir,” Forbes said, his voice stark and cold. He looked down at the half-finished masterpiece and awaited his master’s reply.

With an exasperated sigh, his master took another sip of his tea and his lip curled with bitterness. “This is a failure.”

Forbes studied the girl, decorated with his custom knives and dressed painterly in her own rich blood. Forbes thought she looked magnificent, even if the piece was unfinished. He certainly didn’t think it was a failure.

“Why?” he asked his master, hovering his finger over a perfect river of blood down her leg, wishing he could touch it without ruining his work.

His master took another sip. “The tea is still hot, Forbes.” He walked over and traced a light, loving finger down the girls’ cheek, twirling her dark hair on his finger.

He spoke with disappointment, “There just wasn’t enough time to enjoy the art.”

 

I hope everyone has a marvelous weekend! Cheers.

HK Rowe

NaNoWriMo Prep

Well, it looks like I caught the bug too! I always enjoying NaNoWriMo and even though things have been insanely busy, it seems I can’t escape the excitement of NaNo coming around the corner.

The story is still in pieces in my brain, but I started doing character profiles yesterday in my notebook and things are starting to come together! I’m getting excited for it, so let’s see where it goes.

How’s everyone else’s NaNoWriMo plans going so far?