Writing Marathon Day 3, and Third Contest Winner

Screen Shot 2013-02-03 at 8.50.29 PMThree days in already? It’s all happening so fast!

The Writing Day

Finished that pesky Chapter 10 (Swamp Times). It wouldn’t have taken too long… except for those couple paragraphs that took HOURS, and that one transition/flashback thing that, well, I actually just glanced at it again and I’m not even sure it’s a 100% now, even after all that work. Sigh. So anyway, when I thought I’d finally finished chapter 10 (which I keep wanting to call chapter 9 because it was chapter 9 for years before I added that whole thing about the wolves), I was a little emotionally exhausted from dealing with the peskiness of those scenes, but I still had a couple hours of writing time. Now, Chapter 10 was pesky because it was already pretty tight, but it needed small amounts of polish applied in hard-to-reach places. Chapter 11 is pesky because it’s a mess. I didn’t really have it in me tonight to put on the hazmat suit and start the serious cleanup. Instead, I went through and typed in the red-pen corrections I’d already made on my printed manuscript. I fixed anything that jumped out at me, and anything I had an easy fix for. More importantly, I read through the whole thing and asked questions and made editorial notes and let it soak into my subconscious to stew for the night. I actually made a fair amount of progress on the little things, and I’m looking forward to tackling the larger issues in Chapter 11 (The Harp and the Hound) tomorrow.

Time for that blog topic! Drawing a contest entry now.

And the winner is…

Laura! Congratulations, Laura!

Laura’s entry: If you woke up as the opposite sex one morning, would it change your life plan, and how?

Well, that’s something I don’t think about every day. And, seeing as my life plan right now is to become a published author and to travel as much as possible, I don’t think it would. Actually, being a guy might make the traveling part easier. There are certain dangers associated with traveling alone as a woman, and you sort of have to weigh those risks and cautionary tales against your common sense and good judgement and the fact that you can’t really live and experience life while playing it completely safe. It’s risky just being alive, of course, but I feel like guys have a little less to worry about in the safety department. I’m pretty sure I’d be just as good a writer as a man (some of my best writer friends are male), and, bonus, I’d finally have an inside view on that whole male camaraderie thing I’m always writing about. If my masculinity as a man were equal to the level of femininity I have as a woman, well, at 5′ 10″, it would be so much easier to find girls who are shorter than me than it is to find guys who are taller than me. If I remained completely feminine girl me in this hypothetical gender-bending scenario, I guess I don’t know what I’d do (besides wonder how I got stuck in an anime. My eyes just aren’t big enough, you see.) I know it takes a lot of strength to deal with that kind of confusion and mind/body disconnect, and I’m grateful that it’s a burden I haven’t had to bear.

Thanks for your question, Laura. Hmm, I actually came up with a lot of pros for that whole being-a-guy-thing. Good thing I really like being a girl. 🙂 You will be receiving your name-doodle prize in a week or so, and definitely by the end of February.

Have a good night, all! I hope you enjoyed your superbowl and your superbowl snacks. I didn’t watch the game, but we did eat some guacamole. While making a batch of guacamole earlier this week, I reflected to my father that some people probably only get guacamole once a year, on Super Bowl Sunday. It was a depressing thought, and we shared a moment of silence. But anyway, I hope you had a good party if that is the sort of thing that you do. May your cupboard brim over with tortilla chips, and may your guacamole bowl never go empty.

-G

Uh Oh, The Marathon Starts Tomorrow

I’m delighted to say that I have received four entries for the Race to the 8th Contest, and I’m really excited about all of them. Since there The Prizeare eight prizes, however, this means that you still have a really good chance of winning. So enter the contest! All the details are in yesterday’s post, and you can follow this link to the entry form or just scroll down to the bottom of this post. Remember, all you have to do is provide me with a five-minute blog topic (questions are good, or anything else you’d like me to write about) and if I choose your entry during my Writing Marathon in the first eight days of February, you win a link to your website and a personalized name doodle (sample on the right.) Like I said, chances are still really good, so please consider entering, and sharing this with your friends.

Also, I’ve never done this kind of contest before so forgive me if this is a little late, but here’s the fine print regarding your winnings. Let me know if there are any questions.

The name doodles will be digital files. Should you win one, the name doodle will belong to you, and you can use it however you want to, whether in print or on the internet. I will provide you (and only you) with a print quality copy via email, should you want to print it out (and I can tell you what your best printing options are, if you’ve never done that sort of thing before). You can use the doodle freely on the internet (facebook, your blog, etc.) as long as you do not pass it off as your own work or try to profit from it in any way. Where appropriate, a link back to my website is always appreciated. The name doodles will include my signature and blog url in the corner, and I reserve the right to use the doodles in posts on my blog (you can opt out of this if you have a name that should not be public knowledge, although if that is the case I strongly encourage you to use a web-friendly name for the doodle, as I will also need to credit you if I use your blog-topic) and in my digital and print portfolio, which includes but is not limited to the website Deviantart.com. I also reserve the right to decline to link to your website should it be something I consider excessively offensive or vulgar.

I really don’t think that last thing is going to be a problem, but better safe than sorry, I suppose.

So: my writing marathon begins tomorrow! Am I ready? Well, I couldn’t tell you. I’m going to spend today doing some painting and earning a bit more cash before I dive into writing full-time tomorrow. I have band practice tonight; we’re becoming a Beatles cover band, apparently. I’m going to have to decide whether an eight-day writing marathon means I can’t go to open mics. I don’t want to let my friends down, so I’ll probably still attend one or two—depending on whether I completed enough writing earlier in the day to warrant taking a break. I did a full-body work out yesterday, my second of the week, and I am sore today! I’m having a surprisingly easy time with my diet changes, though. I’m keeping a journal of everything I eat, and ever since I started writing stuff down it hasn’t been too difficult to decrease my portions and just be more mindful about what I’m putting in my mouth. I’m still thinking about that harp video and I hope to post it soon. Part of the reason I haven’t yet is because I’ve spent much of the past few days blogging in my bathrobe, painting in my painting clothes, exercising in my gym clothes—and when I shower in the evening I change straight into pajamas. Basically, every time I’ve played my harp I haven’t felt presentable enough to attempt a video. Maybe this evening!

I am excited to begin the marathon tomorrow. As I said in yesterday’s post, I’m fed up with how long this book is taking and I want to get into it, and see how far I can get towards my goal in the next eight days. And remember, I really need your help, so don’t forget to enter the contest below. 🙂

-G

Writing Marathon and… *Contest*

So you’ve all heard that I’m getting close to finishing my current manuscript revision. I’ve been saying it for weeks. Still, every time I think, “This is the week I finish!” it seems like I barely make any progress at all. I need a push; I need a deadline. And conveniently, it’s almost my birthday.

On February 8th, I turn 24. Beginning on February 1st and going until the 8th, I mean to put everything aside and write—because I want a completed draft of Wanderlust for my birthday this year. And I’m gonna need your help.

Race to the 8th Contest

I will blog about my daily progress, because reporting to you will help keep me motivated. Your support and encouragement will help too. I know my progress reports won’t be as meaningful to you as they are to me, however, and I want to make this worth your while. I won’t have a lot of time to blog around working on Wanderlust non-stop, so I am asking YOU to give me eight five-minute blog topics. These could be questions about me, questions about writing, questions about Wanderlust, or even silly things, like, “Please write a story about penguins.” If I choose to respond to your entry (entries will be chosen by whatever I most feel like writing about, or drawn from a hat if that fails) you get two prizes: 1.) I will link to your website on my blog, and 2.) I will create a personalized name-doodle for you. [Edit 31 January: Fine Print is here.]

There will be a delay of about a week for the doodles, because I won’t be able to do them during the writing marathon. I did this sample one with my name, which went in a sort of ocean-nymph direction. YOURS MIGHT BE COMPLETELY DIFFERENT. These won’t be hugely detailed works of art; I plan to spend in the neighborhood of twenty minutes on each one. Still, I promise to make something aesthetically pleasing just for YOU.

Want one? Enter the Contest!

Want one? Enter the Contest!

Now, there are several things that will make this writing marathon hard. I have recently started a very restrictive diet as well as a new exercise routine. As hopeful as I am that these things will make me healthier and more energized, in the beginning stages they are just as likely to make me tired and cranky. What I’m saying is, this whole thing might go up in flames. I’m hoping we can have some fun before it does. I get a chance to make some real progress on my book, and you get to ask me questions and win prizes. Are you with me? Submissions are open.