Camp NaNoWriMo Update

Camp NaNoWriMo wasn’t as successful as I’d hoped, but I’m still proud of my accomplishments so far.

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Camp NaNoWriMo wasn’t as successful as I’d hoped, but I’m still proud of my accomplishments so far. There are still a few days remaining in the challenge I set for myself to rewrite part of my epic fantasy novel and I probably won’t reach my goal.

That’s okay.

April Camp NaNo has never gone well for me. I usually don’t find time to write until the July version. This April Camp NaNo is my most successful so far, even though I’ll likely come out short.

My plan is to get through rewriting another chapter or two by the end of this month and I’ll be satisfied with that. There are some huge changes in my life right now that will require my focus, and I’m glad that I was able to make some progress this early in the year.

 

 

 

Camp NaNoWriMo Day One

What I accomplished on day one of Camp NaNoWriMo

Progress: 1721 words

I managed to get some rewriting done in my epic fantasy novel late last night. Right now I’m focusing on rewriting the story and not worrying so much about grammar. I’ll save that for when I finish the novel.

So far the beginning of the prologue has been greatly expanded and I tried to slow the pace and make one particular scene a little creepier. I haven’t succeeded with the latter, so I’ll spend some more time with that today (after I start my math homework for college).

One thing I should note is how I do my rewrites. I count the number of words in the new draft rather than hours spent rewriting the story. I have two Word documents open and I write a line at a time, usually reworking it completely. It takes a while, but I’ve seen great results between my drafts in the past.

That’s all for this update. I’ll have a new video on YouTube today about my first week of Spring Quarter classes at the university, which you can find on my channel at 11am PDT.

Edit: the video is now live here: 

How did your first day go?

Camp NaNoWriMo is here

After making considerable progress in my contemporary fantasy novel this week, I will be shifting my focus toward my epic fantasy novel.

Happy Easter and happy April Fool’s Day! It’s also the start of Camp NaNoWriMo’s April edition.

After making considerable progress in my contemporary fantasy novel this week, I will be shifting my focus toward my epic fantasy novel. I want to use Camp NaNoWriMo to rewrite the first half of Clash of Crimson. As much as I was having fun experimenting with vigilantes, magic in a modern setting, and writing about a character who had suffered much loss in his life, I need to take a break.

Firgrove has been an idea of mine dating back to 2014 I believe, but I realized while writing it that I didn’t know the story I was trying to tell. That’s the point of a first draft, but I couldn’t connect all of these crazy ideas that I had for the novel.

I think it’s best that I keep thinking about Firgrove and jotting down more ideas for it throughout April. Rewriting Clash is my priority because I think it’s about damn time to actually finish a draft of a novel. If I remain on track, I might actually be able to finish a complete draft of the novel this year of early next year. That’s a big deal, because I’ve been trying to finish it for 5 years. Considering that this is supposed to be the first book in a larger series (I have enough ideas for like 8 books), you can begin to see why I’m shifting my focus back to it.

Unlike Firgrove, I know the story I want to tell with Clash. I’ve had 11 years to think about where I want the series to go. My biggest problem has been forcing myself to sit down and write it. Working on a novel every November and July isn’t enough. I need to start working on it as often as I can.

That’s why I’m trying to rewrite as much as I can this month. I have new characters to add to the story, a new interpretation of the plot, and some much needed clarification on the setting.

I’m in a cabin for editing and revising this month, and so far some great resources have been shared that I’ll be using in my rewrite. I’m exciting see how much I get done with everything else that’s going on in my life.

More on that later. For now, I have writing to do.

What are you writing for Camp NaNoWriMo? Have you had any day 1 successes?

 

Getting excited about this new novel

It’s only day 2 of working on this novel, and I’m already excited for what’s to come.

I’ve written the first 3,500 words, and I’ve explored some very interesting areas that I wouldn’t normally explore in my writing. For one, this is an urban fantasy of sorts. I HATE

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Just a quick book cover that I made in Photoshop using my own Mount Rainier star photos and some free image light vectors. It’s just for fun, nothing too serious.

writing about our modern world. I prefer to write epic/high fantasy so that I can create a world from scratch and really introduce readers into my full imagination. So, for me to be excited about writing an urban fantasy is really something.

Second, chapter one jumps right into the action. I always include action in my first chapter, but I usually spend a little time working on setting and showing my characters’ lives beforehand. With this one, the chapter includes the discovery that will launch the plot, just so that readers can get a taste of what they’re in for.

Third, I only made a 1 page outline. I usually outline and world build for much longer, and I think that’s partly why the fun has been sucked out of writing for me. This novel has an end goal, and I have enough notes to drive the story forward, but I’m just going to let myself and write and come up with things as I go.

I’m just trying new things that I’ve never done before, and we’ll see where it goes.

As part of my excitement, I decided to make some graphics for the novel, just to really sell it to myself. They aren’t professional, they’re just something I whipped up in Photoshop using my own star/mountain photos and stuff. If I were to actually sell this novel, I’d spend more time making a cover that fits the story better, but for now it’s all about having fun.

Sudden Writing Inspiration

Here I am, minding my own business by watching movies, listening to good music, and rewatching Sons of Anarchy over my winter break from college, when I feel that urge to write.

Whoa. Stop right there. Write? I never write during winter break. Winter break is for doing nothing productive so that I can rest before doing another three months straight of college.

This was a new writing urge, however. I didn’t want to start working on my Egethor series again, which is the series that I’ve been working on for many years now. I wanted to write something different, some removed from the series and even the epic fantasy genre.

I wanted to try my hand at a novel that fits somewhere in the realm of dark urban fantasy, somewhere in the realm of superheroes, and somewhere in the realm of science fiction. Can these three genres be mixed? I dunno, but that’s what’s happening with this new project of mine.

It’s an old project really, one that I tried to write in 2014 and early 2015 before giving up on it. However, I was hit with a new idea and I ran with it, outlining the beginning of a new novel. When I finished jotting down the idea, I realized that the idea fit perfectly with what I had envisioned for my Eskaden series, but it would take it in a whole new direction. This new direction would fix the problems that I encountered in my original draft, which had caused me to stop writing it. There’s new life in the story, and I’m really excited to see where this goes.

I’m currently 1,700 words in, and I’ve already explored areas that my original draft did not. Let’s just hope that I make it past the original draft’s 18,000 words.

World Building Like Crazy

I spent the last two days doing some major world building for my novel. There were a few details that I had neglected to figure out and I realized that having those details would make it much easier to piece my world together.

I figured out approximate populations for countries and major cities and created maps for two of the kingdoms where most of the story will be taking place instead of just having a world map.

I also changed a few place names around and created distinctive regions in each country.

I also did a little bit of writing in A Clash of Crimson and I was able to add about 1000 words to the story. If I can keep this momentum up I will be looking good for NaNoWriMo.

As a quick side note, I’m attending a diversity journalism conference in Oregon next week. Because of this commitment, I had to refuse an offer for two $50 tickets for row 17 to see Def Leppard in Tacoma on October 1. Ugh. I really want to go to that concert.

In the mood

I feel in the mood for writing.

I tried writing in Clash of Crimson again last week and I failed. I got some stuff accomplished, but then I went nine days without even looking at my novel. I knew that I needed some inspiration and something to get me going.

So, I decided to spend yesterday watching the entire extended edition Lord of the Rings trilogy on Blu Ray. There’s honestly nothing like those films to get me in the mood for writing high fantasy.

Now I’m hoping to get some writing done today and maybe a little bit of revising my outline so that my path ahead is clear.

Then maybe, just maybe, I’ll be ready to write part 2 for NaNoWriMo in November.

Writing, Writing Again

I was inspired to write a little bit more in my novel yesterday. A Clash of Crimson has been the absolute biggest headache and the hardest project of my life, and it doesn’t look like it will ever be finished. But, I’m pushing forward.

I gave up on my rewrite at about the 30,000 word mark in the middle of Camp NaNoWriMo – July 2016. Now I’m trying to play catch up so that I’m ready to begin writing part 2 for NaNoWriMo in November. I figure if I can at least get a little bit of writing in each week, then I’ll be in good shape.

September 11, 2016

Starting Word Count: 30,177

Ending Word Count: 30,836

Difference: +659

Camp NaNoWriMo: Day 6

Welcome to day 6 of Camp NaNoWriMo!

After writing yesterday’s blog post I sort of kicked it into high gear with my novel. I realized that I really want to finish rewriting this to the point that I start writing new chapters all the way until the end.

Of course, that means that some of my edits aren’t going to be perfect and some scenes will be left mostly how they are. But, that’s okay for now because the novel isn’t even done yet. I’ll worry about trying to be perfect AFTER I write “The End.”

I’ll just walk away knowing that my novel is better after this Camp NaNoWriMo than it was before I started rewriting. That’s all that matters: It’s better.

Yesterday I passed the 13,000 word mark in my rewrite and reached the end of Chapter Two. That’s a big achievement this early in the game, because I only have 11 chapters written, and many of them are much shorter than Chapter Two was.

How I finished rewriting the dreadful second chapter:

Yesterday I complained that Chapter Two was awful. Well, I’m feeling a little bit better about it now. I ended up keeping the plot of the chapter exactly the same.

I expanded a scene in the middle of the chapter where the main character, Arrellia, originally was just corner by merchants who wanted to mug her and was rescued by an old man named Tancard and her knight in shining armor, Bedric. Now, she actually does kind of get mugged, which adds a bit of a thrill to the chapter. Plus, I was able to hint at the dangers of a certain coin Arrellia was given, whereas originally she was just given it and it later came back to bite her. Kind of a plot hole right there. But that’s all cleared up now.

I also made Tancard a little bit creeper by adding only an additional line of dialogue. Originally he gives Arrellia a letter for her grandfather and she thinks nothing of it. This time around she realizes that this stranger had the letter prewritten, and Tancard admits that it wasn’t a chance meeting.

Ooo, mysterious.

Hopefully today will be another great day of writing!

 

Until next time,

Chase

 

Camp NaNoWriMo Word Count as of 1:28 pm: 13, 555

 

 

Camp NaNoWriMo: Day 5 & Fireworks Video

Happy day 5 of Camp NaNoWriMo!

I haven’t done any writing yet today, but I’ve finished some very important world building to assist in my rewrite. It partly had to do with reorganizing the main country’s government and actually drawing the capital city so that I could keep everything straight.

Now I’m hoping to get 2,000 words written today.

Chapter Two is really just a big mess. It’s my least favorite chapter in the original draft of my novel, and I’m starting to see why.

  1. Even though there’s a really good hook to start off the chapter, it quickly loses steam. There’s plenty of big events in the chapter to keep it interesting and to build the plot, but it just doesn’t seem to work.
  2. There’s a lot being introduced to the readers here
  3. It’s 17 pages long, which would be fine if it was better

So, I’ll be trying to work through that chapter or at least figure out how to make it better.

In the meantime, I also uploaded a new video to the YouTube channel. It’s just some of the neighborhood fireworks from last night’s Fourth of July festivities. Now you can see why I’ve been annoyed by people letting them off all week. There’s just so many people in the neighborhood lighting them off.

Until next time,

Chase

Camp NaNoWriMo Word Count: 8004