Wednesday, April 24, 2019

Row 80 #8: A Royal Wednesday

Is anyone else grateful for every reader, every book sold, every word written?

I am. It's been a long day. I tested out many, many beds in a quest for a bed that doesn't have lumps (our current bed is ten years old). I just downed a Bud Light, commiserating with my tired feet, yet looking forward to another episode of Killing Eve. I don't drink beer that often, but oh, when the feet hurt, what a treat.

Spring finally popped here. Nearly all of those deciduous trees are sprouting shades of green. In addition to hyacinths and tulips, we now have azaleas and Oregon grape.

Somehow, in spite of distractions (shopping, doctor visit, library stops), I'm feeling blissfully happy. Yes, we found a bed. And, yes, I wrote today.

Round 2, Week 4: Wednesday Update:

Today's report is really short and sweet. Wrote 800 words so far this week. Read posts by others x3, subbed Chapter 8 from The Seventh Tapestry to NOVELS-L, did two yoga sessions, and posted today's update before midnight!

Last week's plea for help in naming a small bookstore in Edinburgh came up blank. Maybe I'll have to go with the Unicorn Bookstore. At least that ties to the Royal Coat of Arms for the Kings of Scotland. And maybe my theme. After all, The Seventh Tapestry features a lion and a unicorn!

Meanwhile, have a good week. Cherish each day. Write alot. And share your thoughts with other ROW80 writers participating in A Round of Words in 80 Days -- also on Facebook.

Royal Coat of Arms of Scotland
Used from 12th Century to 1603
Source: Wikipedia





Sunday, April 21, 2019

ROW80 #7: Everything's Going to Be OK . . .

Does your life ever feel like it has more plot twists than a novel? Sometimes, every day is sunny, the words flow, and even the morning has promise when we face another empty page. And sometimes, we encounter the unexpected. Back pain. The serious illness of a friend or family member. A reckoning with the calendar: How many days make a true round of days?

So, tonight, after lovely holiday meals (including a chocolate meringue topped with raspberries, blueberries, strawberries, and whipped cream), I confront what's been accomplished this week and hope for another good week for us all.


Round 2, Week 4: Goals and Progress:

WRITING Goal: Write 1,000 words on Tapestry. Inspired by Kristen Lamb's "How Writing Faster Can Vastly Improve Your Storytelling,  I added 2,458 words (a first!) to Sec01. Editing from first to third person continues. Scaffolding helps me 'see' what's next.

BLOGGING Goal: post x3. Posted x2. Reading posts by others? So far 3/7.

NOVELS-L Goal: 4x/month. UPDATE: Completed 4 so far.

MARKETING: Need to order 2 audiobook covers.

Best writing moment. When the inner thoughts of a character come to life. When characters begin to argue with each other, even when in their own thoughts, they're thinking something quite different. And, when I can set aside editing when I draft!

HELP WANTED PLEASE: I need a FICTIONAL NAME for a small, used bookstore situated on a side street in the old part of Edinburgh. Imagine your favorite bookstore, with hundreds of books all well-organized by topic, shelves crammed with possibility, several nooks to simply sit and browse, and a corner office in the back, where the owner is as love with books as you are, always ready with recommendations. The Bonnie Reader? Lost & Found Books?

Spring at Manito Park, Spokane



May the coming week bring you new words, new insights, and good connections with other writers who encourage and inspire each other with A Round of Words in 80 Days -- also on Facebook. Why not join in?


Wednesday, April 17, 2019

ROW80 #6: Wednesday already?

I've nearly stopped watching/listening to the news, even avoiding online updates, as much is heartbreaking. This week's fire at Notre Dame, so devastating to so many still brings us together everywhere in efforts to protect, preserve, and reconstruct this wonderful cultural heritage. Though the spire is gone, the two towers remain. So much work lies ahead.

South Wall, Notre Dame (Camp 2004)
I can report a good week and a few breakthroughs.

Round 2, Week 3: Goals and Progress:

  • WRITING: Focused on writing and revision of Sec01. Added +800 words (Goal 1K for this week). 
  • BLOGGING: The week is barely begun, so this update to ROW80 is my first post. (Goal posts x3). Reading posts by others? So far 3/7.
  • NOVELS-L. Would like to do more critiques this week. Goal: 4x/month. So far, have completed 2.
  • MARKETING: No progress. No planned progress other than need to order 2 audiobook covers.
  • OTHER: Swimming and quilting coming along on schedule. Planning for future travels involves much folding and refolding of maps, thinking about weather, and how much we can hike. My office is finally nearly organized and I've given another two boxes of books to the library.
Best writing moment. An e-mailed newsletter from Kristen Lamb, "How Writing Faster Can Vastly Improve Your Storytelling," invited me to register for her online class, but the class was full. So I wrote her, thanking her for her inspirational article, AND SHE WROTE BACK!!!!! 

The gist of her article is that when we write and revise at the same time, we stay somewhat at the surface of our creativity. When we write faster, push ourselves to get more words down on the page, we tap into our own deeper feelings and motivations that move our characters, our story, and our readers (as well as ourselves).

So, I'm switching The Seventh Tapestry back to third person point of view because I want that balanced inner connection to BOTH main characters. This week, I used scaffolding to build the structure of Neil's part of the story and began drafting. So, the verdict? Not sure yet, but I'm happy that more of Neil's story is emerging. My writing sessions are now balanced between drafting AND revision, well supported by comments from my F2F writing buddy and the Novels-L group of the Internet Writing Workshop. The writing goes well.

from Kristen Lamb
May the coming week bring you new words, new insights, and good connections with other writers who encourage and inspire each other with A Round of Words in 80 Days -- also on Facebook. Why not join in?






Sunday, April 14, 2019

Row80 #5: Sunday Night Special

I'm not watching out for a tornado this week. Instead, spring is closer than ever with willow trees having that yellow-green blush that always precedes the leafing out of those long leaves that remind me of my childhood when I would hide in the willow.

So, short and sweet, here's my progress:

--WRITING: Made the goal of 1K by adding 1,157 to The Seventh Tapestry. Had a great work session with my crit partner. Finally worked a bit on family history.
--BLOGGING: Posted 2/3 for the week. Still behind in reading other ROW80 posts (only read 3/7).
--CRIT Novels_L. Critiqued 2x (goal for the month). Yippee. Would like to do 2 more crits before the month ends. Subbed a new prologue after much work.  
--MARKETING: Nada. For sure, I need to order 2 covers for audiobooks in progress. Amazon sales page finally, finally is linked for Rivers of Stone
--OTHER: Resumed quilting, swimming, and cooking. Falling more into the role of a caregiver for my husband. Feeling a little sad that I haven't written a single poem for April (National Poetry Month), so I read through old poems just for fun. 

May the coming week be filled with words that dazzle, your own writing a form of poetry, celebrating this round of words with writers who encourage and inspire each other with A Round of Words in 80 Days -- also on Facebook. Why not join in?

Japanese Garden, Manito Park (Spring)
A short drive from our apartment




Wednesday, April 10, 2019

ROW80 #4: Wednesday surprise

My feet keep giving up, but new shoes are on the way! Despite a hectic schedule this week with unexpected appointments, and a lower word count so far, I'm feeling pretty darn good. Forsythia, daffodils, a few hours of sunshine now and then, and that green or pink haze on some trees lets me know that spring is truly coming in the next few weeks.

PROGRESS ON ROW80 GOALS, ROUND 2:

WRITING: Weekly: Add 1K words to Seventh Tapestry. WEDS check-in: Added 437 words. No progress: family history. 

BLOG: Weekly: post x3 and read blogs by others x7. WEDS check-in: Posted ROW80 blog and have read blogs by others by Weds, 3/7.

CRIT Novels-L: Critique submissions by other writers 2x month. WEDS check-in: no critiques yet.

MARKETING:  Clarify marketing goals. WEDS check-in: No progress. Amazon pages finally linked for Rivers of Stone.

Best Writing Moment: The first pages of a romantic suspense story need to truly involve the reader. I'm just beginning to revise the first draft of The Seventh Tapestry. An e-mail invitation to participate in a writing marathon from Camp NaNoWriMo hit my inbox, starting today and 'running' through April 14. And that prompted me to write instead of revise!

 So, does this opening scene grab your interest?

----
     Sandra had to get out. Now. 
     Flames flowed up the walls, hot ribbons scorching her skin; the ceiling above her blistered by fire. Like a cockroach, she scrabbled across the carpet as fast as she could. Not fast enough. I'm going to die.
     The night light blinked. Sandra awoke on the floor, her knees burning from rug burns. There was no fire. She was safe in her dad's apartment. Her pulse pounding and in a sweat, she sat up. When will the nightmares stop?
     "You all right?" her dad called. "I'm here if you need me, darlin'."
     Sandra laughed, a shaky laugh that once started, turned to slow tears. "Maybe a cup of coffee?"
     "Come downstairs in five," he said.
     Sandra checked her knees. He didn't need to see her bloody knees. She limped to the bathroom and cleaned each knee. The bleeding wouldn't stop. She pressed bandages over both knees, as the smell of coffee lifted through the rowhouse. Sandra took a deep breath and pulled on a fresh pair of jeans. 
     It was time to talk with her father about their last case.
----

What participating in such a marathon means is that I will be pushed to explore and write even as I'm working on editing. And that's fun, even if what I write will ultimately not be used.

Check out ROW80's website at A Round of Words in 80 Days for how to get started! Or you can swing by our Facebook page to catch up on how other ROW80 writers are setting goals and measuring progress. May you have a good week, and let's celebrate spring!

Source: https://imgflip.com/i/1f6624

Sunday, April 7, 2019

ROW80 #3: Sunday Sunshine

So far, so good. I spotted the first forsythia today, its sparse yellow blossoms a welcome contrast to the bare-boned trees of winter that yet linger.

Efforts to declutter mind and office continue. This week, I cleared out TWO shelves of books, donated to our local library. We also visited two senior living complexes this week. We decided we won't move when our lease is up here, even if our apartment is dark (stress immediately lower). Instead, we'll spend that extra bit of money on traveling. Next, need to decide where we'll go to escape next winter's snow.

My story's in an odd place. After drafting that last chapter for Section 03, I realized I love the concept, but the dialogue between heroine and hero doesn't ring true. So, I've called the first draft complete, and, with lots of notes, I began the first revision of the first draft yesterday. More revision and research ahead, inspired by generous and helpful critiques from The Internet Writing Group. I'm telling myself that perseverance furthers!

PROGRESS ON ROW80 GOALS, ROUND 2:

  • WRITING = Weekly: Add 1K words to Seventh Tapestry. Sunday check-in: Added 1,357 words!  Not yet: Add 500 words to family history (or work 4 hours). 
  • BLOG = Weekly goal = post x3 and read blogs by others x7. Sunday check-in: Posted on ROW80 blog x2 and on Writing blog x1 (Insecure Writer's Support Group). Read blogs by others x10. My monthly post for IWSG: "About Blushes and Beginnings."
  • CRIT Novels-L = Goal = Critique submissions by other writers 2x month. Sunday check-in: Critted x1 (Don McCandless). 
  • MARKETING = Not yet: Clarify marketing goals. Sunday check-in: Still working on linking pages for Rivers of Stone on Amazon. Anticipate first audiobook 'pages' this coming week. Did post on Twitter and Instagram. Books I ordered from Amazon for the book reading next month were sent USPS and not delivered on Saturday (we were home), so following up on this. Redelivery not guaranteed. I can always pick the heavy package up at my local USPS, but again, not guaranteed. Good thing the library book club is next month.

Check out ROW80's website at A Round of Words in 80 Days for how to get started! Or you can swing by our Facebook page to catch up on how other ROW80 writers are setting goals and measuring progress. May you have a good week, and may spring soon come to your Zip code!



Wednesday, April 3, 2019

ROW80 #2: Short and sweet

It's Wednesday, a little later than I planned (blame filing taxes), but I'm feeling encouraged by being home and by the start of a new round. So, in keeping with one of my new goals to keep all simple, here's my progress report for the first 3 days of Round 2:

WRITING:

Goal 1K/week on The Seventh Tapestry. So far: 928 words. Scaffolding and chapter summaries help me think about where the chapter is going, how to ensure continuity, and to get the full story down on the page in this first draft (goal to finish first draft by April).

MARKETING/OUTREACH:

Sent handout to library book club for next month's reading. 

Sent quarterly newsletter out to subscribers! If you'd like to sign up to receive my occasional newsletter (and find out what Writer's Digest said about Rivers of Stone, go HERE!

Read only 2 ROW80 posts . . . so far.

Ordered author copies from Amazon to take to the reading and discovered I can only order author copies IF the paperback and e-book are 'paired'. So far, I'm five hours into trying to fix this 'pairing,' thank goodness for only one of three books. I can be forgiving, for Amazon took on a huge job in closing down CreateSpace and porting all those paperbacks over to KDP Print. But what this means just now is I have to wait up to 96 hours to see if customers can find the e-book and the paperback on Amazon's same sales page. As my mother would say, "Ooofta!"

Best Writing Moment: Realizing that that critical feedback from writers on NOVELS-L of The Internet Writing Workshop will make all the difference when I start revising my rough draft -- and is already influencing how I write now.

Here's just one quote from a critique of Chapter 5 to show you what I mean: "I think Sandra needs to drive this story more. Right now, most of your scenes and beats focus on people telling her what to do. The story needs to focus more on what she decides on her own to do." --Dave.

May you have a good week. Check out our website at A Round of Words in 80 Days for how to get started! Or you can swing by our Facebook page to catch up on how other ROW80 writers are setting goals and measuring progress. Looking forward to checking in on Sunday!




Tuesday, April 2, 2019

ROW80 #1: And Round 2 Begins . . .

Just this last week, Winter has finally morphed into Spring, the snow has melted off the sidewalks, and it's time to post goals for Round 2 of A Round of Words in 80 days.  I'm trying not to be too ambitious, especially as sometimes I find it challenging to post 2x a week on this ROW80 Blog.

2019 WRITING GOALS (ROW80 ROUND 2)

WRITING: Finish drafting The Seventh Tapestry by July, 2019. Work on characters. Structure for series and draft some scaffolding for prequel, Books 2 and 3. Min 1K words/week. RESEARCH to support the story and study techniques for writing romantic suspense.

MEMOIR: Work on family history, converting papers and photos to story form (Min 500K/week).

AUDIOBOOKS: Learn ACX marketing techniques. Work with Mandy Fugate-Moss (ACX) as she records Years of Stone, Rivers of Stone (April-June 2019).

COMMUNITY:
  • Meet with my F2F writing group weekly. 
  • Participate in online writing communities: Active: NOVELS-L (4 crits/month). ROW80. 20 Books to 50K (FB).
  • NOVELS-L: Minimum 1 crit/week.
  • Participate in associations: Sisters in Crime = JAN. PNWA. Historical Novel Society.
  • BLOG x4 monthly. Travel blog 2x month. Writing blog 2x month. ROW80 6x month. Explore reviews x1/month. Research guest blogs.
MARKETING: Set goals for marketing: Instagram (relate to my genre). Post weekly. Send newsletter quarterly, starting in March. Set up readings with book clubs and/or other outreach.

UNDECIDED: My 'to do' list gets too long very quickly. I want so much to finish that first draft for The Seventh Tapestry . . . so, I'm putting aside long-hoped-for revisiions on Mothers Don’t Die (dark thriller, currently 34 chapters, 62,500 words). IF I attempted to revise 2 chapters each week, that would take a year to finish . . . but at what cost to current projects? To make a final decision whether to work on Mothers Don't Die or not, I could do a simple read through. Maybe.

Thanks to A Round of Words in 80 Days, I feel more disciplined about writing and about holding myself accountable for what I am able to accomplish -- plus, I've met some truly wonderful and supportive writers along the way. Consider joining in!  Check out our blog HERE or on FACEBOOK

First check-in tomorrow, Wednesday, April 3. Happy writing!




Sunday, March 24, 2019

ROW80 Sunday and the End of Round 1

That snow is melting so fast with sunny days, at least until today. A few clouds do not take away from my sheer joy at warmer temperatures! So here's my update for the last week's progress:
  1. WRITING Weekly goal: √ Add 1K words to Seventh Tapestry = 1022. √ Add 500 words to family history = 501.
  2. BLOGGING No progress at all on this Weekly goal: Post x3 (2x ROW80, 1x Travel blog, 1x Writing blog). Writing blog: review Annis Cassels new poetry book. READ BLOGS x7. 
  3. CRIT Novels-L = Crit x2 for the month. √ Critted Bob White. Half way there.
  4. MARKETING = √ Added Writer’s Digest review to Author Central. √ Sent 3 books to Mandy for ACX. PENDING: No progress yet. Send out newsletter update by end of March (content = Writer’s Digest, ACX preview + bounty link, PB giveaway?).
Best Writing Moment: This week, I haven't written every day, like this morning, far too easily distracted by research -- and a new project (the next book in my romantic suspense series that is too enticing). My writing partner reminded me again that in a first draft, it's really OK to just write. And so, this afternoon, I did just pick out an incomplete scene and wrote. Happiness is words on the page.

April 1 begins Round 2. Check out our website at A Round of Words in 80 Days for how to get started! Or you can swing by our Facebook page to catch up on how other ROW80 writers are setting goals and measuring progress. Many thanks to Eden Mabee, Shan Jeniah, and Denise Young for all their coordinating AND encouragement. Happy spring!

Made you smile, didn't it! (Meme)



Sunday, March 17, 2019

ROW80: Happiness is Sunday night!

So it's Sunday night. The snow is finally melting. Time to make plans for the coming week AND measure my progress (somewhat mixed but real progress). I'm smiling!

WRITING: Weekly: Add 1K words to Seventh Tapestry. Add 500 words to family history. UPDATE: Almost added 1K words to Seventh Tapestry (how about +920). Met with my champ editing partner. Only edited for 1 hour this week on family history (deadline May 3).

BLOGGING:  Weekly goal = post x3 (2x ROW80, 1x Travel blog, 1x Writing blog). UPDATE:  Posted ROW80 x2. READ BLOGS x7. Commented on x5. NOT YET: Writing blog: Review Annis Cassels new book of poetry. 

CRIT Novels_L = Crit x2 for the month. Not yet.

MARKETING:  Set up ACX/voice actor for Years of Stone and Rivers of Stone. UPDATE: Really excited about this one. My first choice for ACX/voice actor said YES! Now need to get the formal paperwork online at ACX.  NOT YET: Send out newsletter update by end of March (content = Writer’s Digest, ACX preview + bounty link).

OTHER: Actually resumed water aerobics this week x1 and walked 4/7 days. Worked on taxes and have a quilting project ready to go. Made a great dinner for family tonight -- Bacon-wrapped pork loin with apples! Served with fresh green beans and fruit salad.

BEST WRITING MOMENT: Thinking about how to add depth to my characters in the current wip, I checked out Psychology Today from our local library. Bingo! Lots of discussion about personality and motivation. One nugget from Editor Kaja Perina (page 3, July/August 2018): Pay attention to actions, not words (funny advice for a writer). Look for the small moments of DOING, not grand gestures to reveal the essential character of a person. 

(Source: Emily Coates)
So, it's great to be home. Almost back to a 'real' schedule. If you would like to know more about A Round of Words in 80 Days, CLICK HERE on our blog or over on Facebook to catch up on how other ROW80 writers are setting goals and measuring progress. WHY NOT JOIN IN? May your week go well.

Wednesday, March 13, 2019

ROW80: Snow and slow . . . progress!

Last night, we got somewhere between 5-6" of new snow. I'm grateful the heating system still works and that even in March, those snow plows are out, clearing the roads. And I'm warm and inside, clearing my desk. Here's my progress report for this week so far:

WRITING: Weekly goal to add 1K words to Seventh Tapestry by next Sunday. Add 500 words to family history. Update: +250 on family history, but only +280 on Seventh Tapestry. Slow progress!

BLOGGING: Weekly goal = post x3 (2x ROW80, 1x Travel blog, 1x Writing blog). Update: Posted Weds ROW80 today (on time).

READ BLOGS x7, or one every day. Update: Read 4 so far, and it's only Weds.

CRIT Novels_L. x2 for the month. Update: No crits . . . yet. Just got my account reactivated.

MARKETING.  Set up ACX/voice actor for Years of Stone and Rivers of Stone. In progressSend out newsletter update by end of March. Nothing yet.

Best writing moment: Realizing that writing progress is not always measured by counting words. 

I'm not happy with the depth of my character description or the settings. So, I'm wrestling with what to add, where, and why. What descriptions are unique, bring supporting characters and settings to life, without overpowering or slowing the story. 

And, at the same time, I'm thinking about (and writing and rewriting) what happens next. Yes, I have an outline, a very rough, working outline, and yes, I'm first-drafting, about 70% done. Maybe I'm getting ready for the first edit through, and maybe I'm still just drafting. 

from Dan Delatorre, "Little Things to Keep You Going"

Thank you, Eden and Shan Jeniah, for facilitating ROW80. If you would like to know more, click to visit A Round of Words in 80 Days HERE on our blog or over on Facebook to catch up on what other ROW80 writers are doing. 

WHY NOT JOIN IN in setting goals and measuring progress weekly!

Sunday, March 10, 2019

ROW80: Happy to be home, but it's still snowing!

The short summary of last month? We arrived home to find two feet of snow after four incredible weeks in Seville, Spain (think 70F sunny days every day, incredible monuments, museums, and food). I discovered sangria, and, another surprise, added 10K to my current wip.

But jet lag aside (seriously), here are my goals for the coming week:

WRITING = Weekly goal to add 1K words to Seventh Tapestry by next Sunday. Add 500 words to family history.
BLOG = Weekly goal = post x3 (2x ROW80, 1x Travel blog, 1x Writing blog).
READ BLOGS x7, or one every day.
CRIT Novels_L. x2 for the month. 
MARKETING = Set up ACX/voice actor for Years of Stone and Rivers of Stone. Send out newsletter update by end of March.

Best Writing Moments: No Game for a Dame, by W. Ruth Myers, my current read, is giving me writing lessons. This fascinating crime drama, with a wisecracking female protag, puts me right back in the Depression Era (1930's).

Myers is showing me how to write more descriptive (and unforgettable) settings and introduce characters with telling detail. Just one example, her opening line: "The guy with a bad toupee strolled into my office . . . " And, because she's writing from first person, she's expanding my sense of how to make my female protag more connected to other characters without resorting to 'back story dump'.

It's a first draft, Author Kitty!
Thank YOU for reading my post -- and for being a steady member of ROW80. I am grateful for the discipline, encouragement, and that sense of connecting to other writers that reporting in and reading others' posts brings to my writing.

If you would like to know more, click to visit A Round of Words in 80 Days HERE on our blog or over on Facebook to catch up on what other ROW80 writers are doing. WHY NOT JOIN IN in setting goals and measuring progress weekly!

Wednesday, January 30, 2019

ROW80 Farewell until March!

Dear ROW80 writers. Just a little farewell until the middle of March . . .but I'll be hopefully working on my writing and thinking of you all.

If you want to follow along some of our travel adventures in Spain, check out my blog at  -- Beth Camp: On the Road at http://bethcamp.blogspot.com/

Now wish me luck that the next month brings happy resolution to all my writing goals -- and I'll wish you the same!

First View of Florida: Palm Trees!

Sunday, January 27, 2019

ROW80: The Morning Before . . .

Sunday morning early. Two weeks since my last post, dear ROW80 writers.

The short story is I got pneumonia and have spent most of the last two weeks sleeping or taking antibiotics. Not writing. Luckily, the antibiotics worked. So, I've rebooted to about 80%. We leave tomorrow morning, literally at the crack (5:30 am) for a month in Spain. I am taking my netbook which has the memory of a flea (flash drive, flash drive), but is so small that it's nearly invisible.

Not really sure we'll have internet access where we're going, so I can't promise to be 'present' for ROW80 or even check in on your progress -- until mid-March. Imagine Seville, the land of palm trees and rich history, no snow, lots of musuems, tapas, a day trip to Granada, and, just maybe, a finished first draft.

Best writing moments: 1) Dear Hubby reassuring me that I will have plenty of time to write -- and energy to do so. 2) Spending a few hours with my writing partner F2F last Friday, catching up with her work AND strategizing about my goals for the coming month (finish the draft!). 3) Learning how to use the NOTE feature on my phone to plot, anywhere, anytime -- which led me to decide my heroine will rescue herself!

Cat photo courtesy of seatmaestro

May spring flowers ease these last days of winter, health and energy remain a steady part of your life, and may your writing goals be met with surprising clarity and beauty. Cherish each day! 

Click to visit A Round of Words in 80 Days HERE on our blog or over on Facebook to catch up on what other ROW80 writers are doing. Stay healthy! WHY NOT JOIN IN in setting goals and measuring progress weekly!






Wednesday, January 16, 2019

Weds ROW80 Check-in: Perseverance furthers!

Wish I had happy news . . . I'm still struggling with that nasty cold, and we're slowly preparing for the 'big trip' of being away from home over a month. Mending plus packing! Biggest achievement so far: figuring out how to avoid roaming charges with the iPhone. Other work done so far this week:

WRITING = Weekly goal to add 1K new words by next Sunday. So far by Weds: Actually + 535 on Tapestry, plus two hours of revision. Nothing on the memoir.
BLOG = Weekly goal = post x3. By Weds: Posted to ROW80 x2 and have working draft for writing blog with another idea for travel blog -- "How Wearing Glasses Can Save You From Being Burned at the Stake" (forthcoming, but not posted yet).
READ BLOGS x5?  By Weds: Actually read x3.
CRIT Novels_L. x2 for the month. Personal goal x4. By Weds: posted x2 and that means completed 3 so far for the month.

Best writing moments: 1) Being a part of The Internet Writing Workshop, Novels_L group. Got 2 critiques in today for chapter 5 of Tapestry, and somehow it just helps when another writer you trust gives you thoughtful insights and editing feedback that will lead to a stronger story. 2) Realizing that I like my main character MUCH better from first person pov. And 3), Well, all that and a box of Kleenix.



Click to visit A Round of Words in 80 Days HERE on our blog or over on Facebook to catch up on what other ROW80 writers are doing. Stay healthy! WHY NOT JOIN IN in setting goals and measuring progress weekly!

Wednesday, January 9, 2019

ROW80: Weds check-in: Here and Not Here

Trip planning is kind of our top priority. At times, I'm feeling a bit overwhelmed (what to take, what to leave behind, what to finish before we leave). Intellectually, I know whatever preparations we are able to make will be fine. I will forget something (just not the netbook, or the passport, or my Kindle). Good health has nearly returned, though I'm not quite ready to hop up and down in a cold pool for water aerobics when it's snowing outside!

WRITING = Weekly goal to add 1K new words by Sunday. So far by Weds: Actually +384 on Tapestry, plus an hour of revision and +434 to memoir.
BLOG = Weekly goal = post x3. By Weds: Posted to ROW80 x2 and have working draft for writing blog with another idea for travel blog -- "How Wearing Glasses Can Save You From Being Burned at the Stake" (forthcoming).
READ BLOGS x5? Surprise! By Weds: Actually read x6 and am happily working with writing partner..
CRIT Novels_L. x2 for the month. Personal goal x4. By Weds: posted x1.

Only 21 days before we leave for six weeks on the road. I have studied Spanish x2 since Sunday and have set two goals aside until March (typing Allen's St. Remy and any serious quilting). 

Best writing moments: Finished revising Section 02 of Tapestry to first person and developed a working timeline of events and weather for Edinburgh. One example, I planned to have Neil take Sandra walking around Edinburgh, especially to Calton Hill. But until I did that research, I didn't know that Beltane , a pagan fire festival, happens atop Calton Hill at the end of April. Yes, I already have a good map of my story, though thanks to recommendations from several ROW80 writers, I'll be taking Susan Bischoff's blueprint with me to doublecheck the whole story.
Winter view of Edinburgh from Calton Hill
ROW80: May you have a great week. Click to visit ROW80 HERE on our blog or over on Facebook to catch up on what others are doing. Stay healthy!

Sunday, January 6, 2019

ROW80 Sunday Check-in: Ooofta!

Since last Tuesday, I've been sick. Usually I bounce back in a day or two. Not this time. Yuck. I slept in until 8:30 am this morning. DH checked on me to make sure I was still breathing. Thank heavens for Sudafed and Robitussin DH; otherwise, I would not be functional at all. Naps seem to interrupt the day despite my best intentions. As my mother used to say, "Oofta!"

ANY PROGRESS SINCE LAST WEEK?

WRITING  = goal to add 1K new words.  Actually added 980 words to 7th tapestry and 400 to the memoir.
BLOG = Post x3. Yes, posted to ROW80 x2 and to my writing blog x1.
READ BLOGS x5? Surprise! Actually read x8. And connected with my ROW80 writing partner.
CRIT Novels_L. No progress.
Type Allen's St. Remy. No progress.
OTHER: Full stop on exercise, quilting, and studying Spanish this week. And that's OK. My Spanish books are too easy, so tomorrow I go to the library to check out a few bilingual stories (the kind that have Spanish on one side and English on the other).

WHAT'S NEW? On January 28, we leave for Seville, Spain, for 6 weeks, healthy or not. I hope they let us on the plane. So, these next few weeks will see me focused on getting ready for the trip -- and planning how to bring my writing. I typically travel with a netbook (light, invisible, limited memory) and a journal. Meanwhile, I'll try to get healthy and stick to the above weekly goals.



ROW80: May you have a great week. Click to visit ROW80 HERE on our blog or over on Facebook to catch up on what others are doing. Stay healthy!

Wednesday, January 2, 2019

ROW80: Point of View AND FIRST CHECK-IN

Trying to find a quick way to summarize work completed so far this week.

WRITING GOAL = 1k. Sun +230. Mon @200. Tues sick day. Total so far 430.
Memoir = 1K. No progress.
BLOG = Post x3. ROW80x2 yes. Insecure Writer's Study Groupx1 yes.
READ BLOGS x5. No progress.
CRIT Novels_L. No progress.
Type Allen's St. Remy. No progress.
Exercise x4. No progress.
Quilt x4. x2 so far.
Study Spanish. x3 so far.

WRITING CHALLENGE THIS WEEK:  Decided to switch my story from third person to first person for more immediacy. Which version is more appealing?

Sandra (and the tapestry) have been kidnapped. She wakes up in a storage room in a large warehouse in East Edinburgh. Opening scene:

THIRD PERSON:

     Sandra opened her eyes slowly to total darkness. She blinked but could see nothing. Where am I? Who were those men? The back of her head throbbed, and something tickled her hand. A spider. She jerked her hand to brush it off, but both hands moved. They had been tied together in front of her.

     She squinted in the dark and tried to sit up. She bumped against something. The tapestry? It had been rolled-up and propped against a wall. She shivered, tried to stand, and then paced off the dimensions of the room. Twenty steps by twenty steps and bloody cold. Where am I? Sandra used her hands to feel for a door. She found an immense door; its iron handle wouldn’t move. No surprise there. It’s cold, dark, I can’t see, and I’m hungry. She settled on the floor and leaned against the tapestry. Well, somebody has to come some time.

FIRST PERSON:

     I opened my eyes, but I couldn’t see anything. I moved my head slowly. Side to side. Pain sliced across the back of my head. I opened my eyes wider. Nothing but blackness. I sniffed the air. Musty, damp. Something skittered over my hand. I jerked to brush it off, but both of my hands moved. Someone had tied my hands together. I should be grateful they tied them in front. I brought my hands close to my face, but I couldn’t see anything. I brushed my face over the knots. Could I chew the rope off? I squinted, but I still couldn’t see. I tried to feel the back of my head. Just the edge of a bump. I shivered. I am not going to panic.

     The concrete flooring was cold. I pushed myself against the wall and tried to stand up and stumbled over something that had been rolled up and propped against the wall. The tapestry? My feet hadn’t been bound, so I stood up and paced the length and width of the room. Twenty steps by twenty steps and bloody cold. I giggled, the sound a surprise in the dark. I felt along the wall for a door. Nothing until I found an immense iron handle. Would it open? I couldn’t move it. Locked. It’s cold. I can’t see, and I’m hungry. What else could go wrong? I felt along the wall until I found the tapestry again and slid down to lean against it. After a long time, I closed my eyes. What happened to Neil?

ROW80: May you have a great week. Click to visit ROW80 HERE on our blog or over on Facebook to catch up on what others are doing.  Stay healthy!