Lieutenant Junior Grade’s Log, Entry 10: NaNoWriMo is HERE!

Lieutenant Junior Grade’s Log, Entry 10: NaNoWriMo is HERE!

November is one of my most favorite months of the year. Why? For one, it’s an autumny month–not quite winter yet, but summer has passed, the leaves are changing, and the air is crisp and cool. There’s also the wonderful holiday of Thanksgiving, a time to celebrate family and friends. However, the writer in me has another reason to celebrate November’s arrival: National Novel Writing Month.

A lot of writers have heard of this challenge. Some like the idea, some don’t. It’s not for everyone, anymore than any writing method is for everyone.

For me, NaNoWriMo is a cornerstone in my life as a writer. It offers me the freedom to dive into a new idea with abandon, the challenge of completing that novel within 30 days, and the encouragement of many, many other writers who are all facing the same task as I am: 50,000 words in one month.

I have been participating since 2007; 2017 will be my 11th year and hopefully my 11th win. With that in mind, I decided to keep my other writing goals for the month small.

Here’s my November Month Map:


My project this year is Within the Ironwood, which is technically already started, but I only have a few chapters written so far and this will be the perfect way to get the rest of the first draft down on paper. I’ll be sharing excerpts on my Facebook page and in my newsletter as the month progresses.

I tried to design a mock cover but failed miserably. Instead, here is the blurb:

Branwen has spent most of her life in her castle tower, building beautiful, intricate constructs. Her favorites are the birds, who can fly freely in the sunlight, unlike their pale-skinned creator. When her new stepmother orders the destruction of her birds on the eve of her father’s death, Branwen realizes she is no longer safe in the castle. She flees into the Ironwood, a dangerous forest within which many wondrous and terrible things lurk. In the home of a family of dwarfs, Branwen finds welcome refuge, but as her stepmother’s preparations for war begin, the princess must choose between her own safety and protecting her kingdom.

If you also participate in NaNoWriMo, you can find me under the username shark13.

Solstice Flames (JLA #4)

This mash-up retelling of A Christmas Carol and The Little Match Girl is currently being judged by our amazing group of judges. I’m a little nervous about how it will be received–I won’t know until the 14th, when the results are available. Once I have their feedback in hand, I’ll be revising Solstice Flames at least once before the end of the month.

Monsieur Puss (JLA #5)

I’m going to heavily revise this short story this month, as judging for its anthology is coming up fast and this story, as much as I love it, needs some serious editing.

Cooperative Writing Project

I’m working with Kristy Perkins on an amazing fantasy project involving magic and dragons. We’ll be wrapping up the first draft this month; I have three chapters left to write. These words won’t count for NaNoWriMo, but they’re still important.

Goodreads Challenge

I need to read nine books for my challenge again this month, but we’ll see how it goes–NaNo must come first!


What are your goals for this month? Are you doing NaNoWriMo, too?


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