So it’s Day 13 of the NaNoWriMo challenge and I feel it as good a time as any to provide an update on my progress.
It's been a ride so far I can tell you. Most of you might already see my word count plastered on my other social media pages and the NaNo site. Despite the ups and downs of November that have already got my head spinning, I can honestly say the experience is MORE than worth the cost. (mainly paid out in sleep dividends)
I can only attribute this success in my endeavors to the following:
- Seeing other WriMo’s and their word counts gave me goals to pace myself against. I've never gone a day without writing something. Even if it was just a two hundred word blurb about a chapter I will most likely scrap completely when all is said and done.
- My husband has been avidly reading over everything I write as I compile it into something that will one day - fingers crossed - be tangible, readable, and actually enjoyable for a wider population of readers. DH is also something of a drill sergeant when it comes to his methods of encouragement. (Great example during my exercise routine yesterday morning. "One more sit up, Sarah. Don't give up. Alright three more now. Come on. You aren't a quitter." All yelled at the top of his lungs. For those of you who know my DH, you know he NEVER yells. It's actually intimidating.)
- My own expectations. I have plans for this novel (and the two outlined sequels as well). This story has embedded itself into my brain now. The characters are alive and actively telling their stories. See: Socially acceptable schizophrenic) I am passionate about telling fairy tales and this one has all the elements I've loved since I first learned to read. It's a rough draft now. I am hoping desperately to find someone who's just as passionate about telling this story as I am - so I can publish it someday soon.
The actual writing?
It’s rough, like I said. Okay, some parts just suck. And I've skipped around so much on the scenes that it'll take me a whole month just to piece it all back together again. However, the story is definitely workable and according to my DH, has GREAT potential...it's brought us both to laughter and tears already. (Though the tears on my part may be due largely in part to my own wacked out hormones and the god-awful sleep schedule I'm keeping. See: Insomniac)
Now it’s time for some NaNoWriMo fun facts! (For those of you whose ears I haven't already burned off with my inane chatter)
Words Remaining: 15,035
Days Remaining: 18
Words Per Day To Finish On Time: 836 (Should I stretch it out that long???)
Name of Hero/Heroine: Jared Octavius Grandstorm & Serra Nadine Kingston (AKA Princess Serena)
Name of Villain: Tiernan (Usurper of the throne of Erene)
Other Characters’ Names: Gwendolyn Atticus Fiona Brand (Don't ask yet; I'm not telling), The Oracle (AKA Iris, goddess of the rainbow), Melnoch, Bomrin, Iakona, Elise, Rose, Amlodi, N'dalea, Anatole (oh he's an interesting character), Prince Cedric, Leyla (yeah that name has got to change), Stasia, Taylor Ellington III, Kate...and many more!
Places of Interest: New York, Tirn Aille, Indana, Erene, Molwood (Best ale this side of the veil - no kidding; it's really their advertisement), Vairhol, I'tori Desert, Wizard's Annex, Forbidden Forest
Magic: Still working out the rules in this reality, but the basic premise is that there's good and evil, light and dark. When a person or being uses the magic for evil or manipulation of unchangeable truths, the magic becomes twisted and bent. In turn (and points to whoever guesses my reference) the wielder of the bent magic becomes subservient to what the wielder once controlled) I do know that music will be playing a large part in the story as a magical element...
Animals: The usual, though many of the animals can communicate with those of royal blood.
The Story So Far:
She always dreamed of being the princess in a fairy tale. Too bad no one ever informed this princess what happens when the fairy tale hits the fan!
Serra Nadine Kingston literally lives out of sync with not only her peers, but the world around her. Adopted at an early age by a wealthy couple, she enjoys her fairy tales and little else. She cannot sing to save her life, she's completely average in everything, and not one boy notices her unless she trips over their feet - sometimes not even then. Klutzy and unsure of herself, she quickly becomes targeted by the high school queen bee and her horde. She spends the next three years of her life wishing for a knight in shining armor who can vanquish the wicked witch and steal her away into a land of happily ever afters.
On one of the most tragic days in history - and in her own life - Serra receives her first kiss. From the lips of a compelling stranger on the streets of New York, who then disappears without a word of explanation. She might have passed it off except for the strange things that happen to her after that kiss.
It's bad enough when her skin and hair suddenly glow healthy and blemish free, causing the boys at school to finally take notice and the Queen Witch to redouble her efforts of sabotage now that Serra is actually a THREAT to her popularity. She thought it couldn't get worse when the pigeons in the park started gossiping about her - and she could UNDERSTAND them. It's nearly the end of the world when her voice suddenly has range, tone, pitch, and power - and her best friend suggests she try out for choir again. (She'd gotten a waiver when her instructor's ears bled so hard the poor woman started crying)
The worst thing about finding out she just MIGHT be a real princess in a fairy tale though?
She feels the magic of the fairy tale world in her dying a little more every day - and unless she can find the man who awakened her with his magic-laden kiss, she won't survive to see her seventeenth birthday.
Somehow, being the princess in the fairy tale isn't all it was cracked up to be anymore. The Grimm Brothers definitely had the right idea. And she was suing Disney if she ever got the chance.
Prince Jared, born the second son of the king and queen of Erene, lived in the menacing shadow of his older brother Tiernan his whole life. The arrival of a neighboring kingdom's infant crown princess just means he's now got an annoying tag-along on all of his adventures. Still, she's not a bad playmate all things considered. Until a protection spell gifted to her at birth goes awry and he ends up blamed for her disappearance.
Now seventeen year later, he's on the run from a vindictive, jealous older brother (and the bumbling assassins Tiernan sends once in a while just to torment him) and he's only recently lost the stigma attached to being the last person to see the infant princess before she vanished.
An old friend and wizard calls on Jared for help and the prince answers - to his everlasting chagrin. See, what Gwen forgot to mention in his plea for help was that a certain tag-along princess is the damsel in distress - and Jared just won the bachelor of the year quest to wake her up with a kiss. Theoretically, he can still avoid any long term repercussions (AKA marriage to said princess) because technically (Didn't I mention this?) she is still betrothed to his brother. Magical contracts don't just fade away because of a little thing like travel between realities. So Jared's safe...Right?
Except said princess keeps getting under his skin and he's had enough of just surrendering to Tiernan's menacing shadow - especially when his surrender endangers the princess with whom he's slowly falling in love. He'll never admit it out loud though.
Now he (and the supposedly wonky protection spell Gwen gave Serena at birth) is the only thing standing in the way of Tiernan's evil intentions toward said princess. He's also the key to undoing a curse on his family that triggered the moment Tiernan was ill-conceived. (Pun intended)
Will Jared rise to the challenge and win the girl?
He'd rather drown himself in a good vat of Molwood ale.
At least that's the story he's sticking to.
Extract: Offbeat: Part One in A Fairy Tale Trilogy
Of all the places for Gwen to plant a wizard's tower, the idiot had to choose the center of the Forbidden Forest.
How are you guys keeping motivated? And how are my fellow first timers finding the NaNo experience?