NaNoWriMo – Day 13-15

At the end of Day 12, I was halfway at 25,000. My goal for days 13-15 was to make 1,667 each day. I wanted to keep my lead. Sounds simple enough right?

Day 13 – Goal 1,667 (Cumulative 26,667)
I didn’t have a lot going on this day. I didn’t write at lunch, which I have been trying to do. But I got a few hundred words on the way to work, so at least I wasn’t looking at starting from scratch in the evening. Things at home were busy and difficult, but I struggled through getting to my goal just before midnight. Actual – 26,667

Day 14 – Goal 1,667 (28,333)
Wednesdays are my gymnastics day. Once again I didn’t do enough writing at work to have much of a lead going into the evening. I’m out of lunch writing practice and I need to do better. It was a slow start, but once I got going I wrote the last 400ish words very quickly. I finished up a bit late again, but not as late as Tuesday. In the end, I even had about a hundred extra words. Actual – 28,450

Day 15 – Goal 1,667 (30,000)
My pattern this year has been to get ahead, stay ahead for a few days and then have a really bad day with only a few hundred words that eats up my lead. I was determined to break the pattern. I didn’t succeed. I wrote a few hundred words on my way to work, and thought I would write more at lunch … but I forgot we had a retirement lunch for my old boss. Then when I got home I had to make food for the writing retreat and pack my bags. I just had too much to get done, and I wasn’t able to hit the keyboard again. I have had too many tiny word could days this year. Actual – 28,800

I really wanted to have 30,000 words before heading off on the writing retreat. I might still get it before leaving the city, but with the poor weather who knows how many words I’ll get tonight. I guess we’ll see in my next update how things went.

Do you have any big writing events planned this month? Is your family still feeling supportive of your writing efforts halfway through the month?


NaNoWriMo – Day 10-12

At the end of Day 9, I had lost my lead but was still sitting at par. My goal for these three days was to get three days ahead. That means a double word day each day of the long weekend.

Day 10 – Goal 3,333 (Cumulative ~18,500)
This was the first day of a three day weekend. My goal for all three days was simple; get 3,333 each day. My husband took on a lot of the ‘extra’ stuff for me, and I was able to get a lot of writing time in. I got my first 2,000 words fairly quickly and easily, but then I hit a rough patch. It was a slog to get the next 1,000, but then I raced through the last 400 words. I finished the day with a little over my goal, putting me (once again) at one day ahead. Hopefully this time I will build on my lead instead of burning it up. Actual – 18,600

Day 11 – Goal 3,333 (~22,000)
A second double day felt like a tall order. Most years I have at least a few big word days (over 5,000). This year I seem to be getting a decent day of words followed shortly by a horrible day of words. I was determined to break the pattern. I had plans to go climbing in the afternoon, and I needed to get some laundry done, but the rest of the day was mine to write with. It was a slog, and I didn’t quite make it, but I wasn’t too far off. Actual – 21,100

Day 12 – Goal 3,900 (25,000)
I really wanted to be three days ahead by the end of the long weekend. Monday was a bit busier than I anticipated. My husband was at work and it was just my son and me at home. I broke the day into smaller goals. 500 words over breakfast, 1,000 before lunch, another 1,000 before dinner, and the rest after the kid was in bed. I came close on most of the goals and when I went to bed I had hit my goal for the end of the weekend. Actual – 25,000 halfway!

Are you starting to lag? or have you just hit your stride?


NaNoWriMo – Day 7-9

At the end of day 6, I was one day ahead of schedule.

Day 7 – Goal 1,667 (cumulative 13,333)
Wednesdays I have gymnastics, so I kept my goal to just a regular days worth of words. I made it with exactly 1,667. It was a decent day, and I continued to be one day ahead of the game. Actual – 13,333

Day 8 – Goal 2,000 (15,300)
Thursday nights I lift weights, but I don’t find that as disruptive as gymnastics. I figured I should be able to get a few more than a single days worth. As an added bonus, I had the house to myself so it would be nice and quiet. I came close with more than a usual day but didn’t make the full 2,000 I was shooting for. I just couldn’t get that final push to meet my goal for the day. Actual – 15,100

Day 9 – Goal 2,000 (16,100)
I wanted to keep working toward getting two days ahead. I knew I didn’t have a double day in me, but I figured I should be able to get par plus a few extra. Ya, I didn’t even come close. I was tired and lazy and only wrote 150 words. My lowest count so far. It has been a month of great word count days interspersed with miserable ones. This was a miserable one. Actual – 15,250

I’m at par overall, but I’ve lost the one day lead I had at the start of these three days. I guess for the next three days I’ll work first on getting one day ahead, then start pushing for two. It has been a bit of a roller coaster of a NaNo.

How are you doing so far? Have you had any miserable word count days?

NaNoWriMo – Day 4-6

When last we left off I was about 1,000 words behind at the end of day 3. In short, things were not going well. I’m not worried yet though. Here is how days 4-6 played out.

Day 4 – Goal 5,000 words (cumulative 9,050)
Five thousand words might sound like a lot, but I always have at least a few 5,000 word days during Nano. I figured if I could get one in early, then I could get a good buffer of words going. I did have a good writing day, but I also had a lot of distractions. I managed to get 3,500 words and I was ahead at the end of the day by about 1,300. I went to bed feeling better about this whole NaNoWriMo thing. Actual – 7,600

Day 5 – Goal ~2,400 words (10,000)
If I hit 2,400 words, I would be one full day ahead. That would give me a lot more leeway going forward when bad days happen. On my way to work, I wrote a little over 250 words, and I was feeling good about the rest of the day. Unfortunately, I had another frustrating personal day on Monday and only wrote a total of 800 words. I was still at par with 8,400, but I certainly wasn’t ahead by as much as I would have liked. Actual – 8,400

Day 6 – Goal ~3,250 words (11,667)
My goal for the day was 3,250. I still haven’t given up on getting at least one day ahead. At a minimum, I vowed not to fall behind. I wrote a little bit at lunch getting around 400 words. After work, I had friends over for weight lifting (it was my night off, but I helped keep track of sets). Once they headed out I really got down to business. I finished the day with almost exactly 3,250 words. Finally, I made my word count for a day! Actual – 11,666

How is your NaNoWriMo going? Are you ahead or behind?

NaNoWriMo – Day 1-3

The first three days of NaNo are finished and … well, they didn’t go as smoothly as I would have liked. My plan for the year was to do something like a reverse NaNo with higher than 1,667 word counts at the start of the month allowing for lower than 1,667 word counts later in the month. I figured I would aim for something like 2.5k the first few days. No big deal, I thought, I’ve done that plenty of times in the past.

Day 1 – Goal 2,500 (cumulative 2,500)
The first day went well. I had a clear picture of the hook in my mind. I could almost see it playing out like an old black and white movie when I closed my eyes. My fingers flew across the keyboard with hardly a pause. I quickly made my 2,500 words for the day. See, I thought, I can do this. Actual – 2,500

Day 2 – Goal 2,500 (5,000)
Day 2 is when the trouble started. It was a hard day personally and I just couldn’t get into writing. Then I forgot my keyboard upstairs for a while when I wasn’t in a position to go and grab it. All in all, it was a miserable writing day. I only wrote 238 words. I was behind for the first time in years. I was too tired at the end of the day to be worried, and even if I hadn’t been, I didn’t have the mental space to worry about a few words. Actual – 2,700

Day 3 – Goal Get Caught up! (5,000)
I woke up on Day 3, still behind. It was a Saturday so I figured I’d have lots of time to write and get caught up. No big deal. The day just disappeared on me. Errands and other issues made the day speed by. I wrote just over 1,300 words. I didn’t even make par for the day, let alone make progress on how behind I was. Actual – 4,050

Things this year aren’t looking great at this point. I’m not worried yet, but I really can’t remember the last time I was behind for more than one day!

How is your NaNoWriMo going? Are you where you wanted to be, or are you also struggling to catch up?

NaNoWriMo: It Begins

This is not my first NaNo. In fact, I’ve won regular NaNo all 11 times I’ve attempted it. As the years have worn on, I’ve tried to change things up from time to time to make it a little more interesting. Some of the challenges I’ve given myself have included:

Year 2 – I wanted to finish and validate on the first day (the 25th at the time). I made it.
Year 5 – I wanted to get 75k. I wrote 80k and it remains one of my favourite NaNo novels.
Year 6 – I found myself pantsing for the first time.
Year 9 – I wrote from the perspective of the side kick. This was tough.
Year 11 – I set myself a Daily NaNo Challenge

This year, I have a lot going on that is outside of my control. This year, I just want to get 50,000 words in 30 days. I hope I won’t have any trouble finishing, but I don’t have the mental or physical space to make the challenge more interesting than a straight up NaNoWriMo.

I have an idea, a character, and 75% of a plot, and today I will find myself writing the first of (hopefully) 50,000 words. If you are writing for NaNo this year, I hope it goes well. If you are on the fence, jump in, take that risk!

Best of luck and I’ll see you at the finish line.

Reverse NaNoWriMo

Two years ago I wrote a post with several options for how many words to write per day. One thing I didn’t include because I only heard about it last year, was the Reverse NaNoWriMo.

The idea of a reverse NaNoWriMo is to write a LOT of words the first day, then write a few less each day after, until on the final day you are only writing 1 word to finish things up. The exact number of words recommended per day can be found here. I started with a reverse NaNo last year, and it worked very well. I kept up the higher words counts though and finished on Day 18.

I think a reverse NaNo would be great for someone who either has a lot of time at the beginning of the month or is just really excited. Why not take advantage of that excitement and time?

How many words do you try and write per day? Would you rather start slow, fast, or keep an even pace all month?

January Goals

To get a start on my resolutions, I set some goals for this month. When I set goals I try not to set too many. Usually I aim for four, but will occasionally go as high as five. I also try and by very specific about what I am trying to achieve. This month my goals are:

  1. Quilt the Jungle Path Quilt
  2. Finish the Holiday Train Stitch
  3. Submit something to Critique Group
  4. Cardio eight times
  5. Weights six times

I’m already making great progress on number two, and I’ve thought about what I want to submit for number three (MG sci fi chapter 2). The hardest one to complete will be number one. I need to stay focused and work hard.

Do you have anything you want to accomplish this month?

2018 Resolutions/Goals

More important, to me, than the resolutions, is the process of figuring out what I want to focus on for the year. I weed out the things I don’t care about and figure out the things that matter to me.

When I started thinking about my priorities for this year, I found myself drawn to the same things: Crafting, writing, organizing, and fitness. It’s nice that my focus is staying the same. I like that my priorities are shifting in the same range rather than changing wildly. This year I also want to focus a bit more on family and friends. I need to work a little harder at maintaining my relationships.

I didn’t get as much quilting done as I wanted last year. This year I am going to try being much more specific in what I want to achieve.

  1. Quilt and bind my son’s bed quilt and my lap quilt
  2. Finish the quilt top for a family friend and for my Mom
  3. Finish at least three cross stitches (holiday DONE! and two family portraits)
  4. Bonus – Two more family cross stitches

Another area where I didn’t do as much as I wanted.

  1. Finish the rough draft of my MG SciFi
  2. Do basic edits to get a first draft of my MG SciFi
  3. Submit to Critique Group at least six times
  4. Finish a second draft that is ready for a final polish – MG SciFi

I think part of why this goal is so hard is because I can’t figure out specifics. I’m going to try though.

  1. Continue to put as much out of the house as we bring in
  2. Sell or donate all unused items in the basement storage room
  3. Move out of season or out of size clothes to basement storage
  4. Deal with paper in the study
  5. Set up my desk in the study

I’m still doing gymnastics, but I think the biggest things holding me back are my lack of strength and flexibility. Along with cardio I want to focus on those.

  1. Weight train twice a week
  2. Cardio twice a week
  3. Flexibility two to three times a week


  1. Eat dinner as a family at least twice a week (working up to four times a week)
  2. Facetime with SIL’s family once a month
  3. Boardgames with S and C at least 10 times

That is a lot of goals! I’m feeling worn out just writing them all down. Many are very small though and won’t take much time. I need to remember to plan out what I want to accomplish each month to get things done over the next year.

What are you hoping to accomplish this year? Do you set resolutions?

Round Up of my 2017 Resolutions

I like making resolutions each year. I don’t always accomplish them, but I enjoy the process. Thinking it through helps me mark the priorities in my life. Even in years when I do not achieve my goals, I find that I have spent more energy and time on the things that matter to me. I will post my resolutions for 2018 tomorrow. Today I’m doing a quick review on my goals from last year.

Organizing the house
This was a big fail. The craft space isn’t set up, and in general the house doesn’t look much different than this time last year. I did manage not to gain any new stuff though. We sent as much stuff out as we brought in. I think I actually sent out more than I brought in, but not enough to make me feel accomplished.

The goal was to piece three quilts and finish three quilts. I pieced two and finished one. I helped my friend Cate piece the Grace in Our Stars Quilt and I finished the Jungle Path Quilt top. I quilted and gifted the Mystery Quilt.

The goal was to write 10k a month. I made this two months I think … I’m back into writing now though so hopefully I will make good progress this year.

The goal was to exercise twice per week. I did fairly well at this. I struggled in December, but I was sick and my schedule was off. Going to call this one a win.

How did you do on your 2017 resolutions? Did you achieve all you set out to achieve last year?