Lead up to October…
I’d decided many moons ago I wanted to have a costume party for my 30th, but I had too many options available for my costume and I couldn’t decide. So I spent a long time searching the web for amazing costume ideas, costume shops (the family friendly kind and even some of the ‘adult’ kind) and while searching I kept stumbling across these Faun or Satyr legs that people were making. They looked amazing and I kept thinking about how great it would be if I could get someone to make them for me. I researched it – they were quite expensive – so I forgot about them. I kept searching. I’d decided I was going to dress up as a Geisha, Ursula from The Little Mermaid, Belle from Beauty and the Beast, a vampire queen and many, many others.
Over the months leading up to my party in September I picked a costume, would go to find the parts needed, couldn’t find them and have to start the process over again. I kept running into these amazing photos of the Satyr legs and horns and what not and kept getting drawn to them. I started stockpiling the photos of these half goat men and women with legs and hooves and horns. I think people would have thought I’d gone a bit loopy if they’d seen my browsing history. Finally, we got to about 6 weeks out from the party and I needed to decide. I picked the Satyr.
I’d found a fantastic YouTube video showing the steps on how to make the legs and the same person had a video on how to make a pair of hooves from shoes that meant I wouldn’t be in scarily high, high heels all night.
So I spent 6 weeks frantically making the inner legs to get the shape, cutting up shoes, covering them with wire, then layering car bondo on it and sanding it back and then painting it. I created horns and sewed fur material, played with and shaped foam and many other things.
The finished product:
October was recovery from my 30th in September and the mad rush of crafty creativeness I lumped upon myself for my costume. I read a few books, took part in a few reading challenges on GoodReads and generally had a pleasant time. I put some effort into my school work and just kept on trucking.
I’d decided that I was going to partake in NaNoWriMo again given I didn’t get to finish it last year. This year I wanted to win, I wanted to use the month to create something worth being proud of. Something I plan to dedicate to my grandfather.
I re-read my previous material from last year – all 17,000 words. It provided a solid grounding for the new work that was about to begin, but it also highlighted just how much I wanted to change about it too. I had new ideas that fused with the old ones and became better.
The start of November saw me revamp the beginning of my novel. I broke away from the first scene I’d always planned to have as the opener, the one I’d written last year. I calmed it down a little, worked on some world building and I introduced two of the main characters.
As the month progressed, things got a bit more difficult. I had a few days where I didn’t write at all. Life got too busy and days where I only wrote a few hundred words. I spent the whole month behind the word count. Chasing it down.
It got to about day 20 and I was struggling to keep up with the word count total. I kept putting in solid 3,000+ word days, I kept creeping a little closer and a little closer to the word count line. My little columns of words lining up and stretching to their desired goal – that little grey line that speared through the chart.
It took a lot of perseverance, a lot of determination and quite a drastic drop in my reading time and sleep time. I found time, I made time and I borrowed time. Before work, during my lunch break, before bed, in between the gym and school to spend time writing.
Picture it… shoulders hunched down over the keyboard, caressing the keys and muttering ‘my precious’ as I poured my blood, sweat and tears of frustration into it.
In the end, on November 28, I’d had enough. I was tired and worn out and ready to just throw in the towel. But I was so close. I started on the 28th with 43,896 words. I had 6,104 to write to make it.
I locked myself into my room around 6:30pm and wrote. I forced myself to find new scenes to write, it didn’t matter if they were the next scene in the story or just anything my brain wanted to produce. I put on some writing music (thank you Spotify) and I wrote. I didn’t allow the dog or the husband in. The phone was on silent, a cold drink was beside the computer and I just wrote.
At 9:50pm I tweeted and updated my Facebook page. I had reached 51,100 words. I was done!
Now, when I look back on the writing it’s feral and rough and pretty average. There are certainly parts that have great potential, but they will need to be polished until they shine with the emphasis I intended. I am about 50% of the way through the first draft of my novel. Another 50,000 or so words is what I need and then The Great Cull will begin.
I was surprised when things in my writing didn’t go as I’d expected, the characters began to take over and drive the story where they wanted it to go. There’s more detail in parts that I’d thought were going to be glossed over and sweet moments, epic fights and betrayals that cropped up as if by magic. It took me on a wild journey.
And the best part…
I still have more to go.
So, while I am back, the posts will be a little less frequent than before. I will still have a sprinkling of reviews (I started to accrue a bit of a backlog) but I’m hoping to get back into writing posts for you guys again. Seek your thoughts on things, share my experiences and generally engage with the blogosphere.
Bring it on!