I am pleased to be part of two major November events. Nope, it is not NanoWrimo. I wish it was, but trying to write a minimum of 50,000 words in a new novel just isn't in me right now. Plus--and this is not an excuse--I do not have the time. Nope. No time. Two days with my grand daughter in class, home schooling the other three, then trying to keep those home fires burning so my hubby doesn't feel left out does not leave me much time for writing. However, (Like that transition? Can you tell what we are working on in her lessons?). Hmm . . . as I was saying, however, I have committed to a substitute that keeps me on track with my writing in the two areas I love--Tween Fiction and Picture Books.
For the tween fiction, I am participating in Kristi Holl's Min-Nano challenge. It is fantastic. It's an accountability thing. Each participant commits to writing each day to a word count each sets. Mine was 200 words, but I upped it to 500 each day. That may not sound like much to those of you who can hammer out 1,500 to 10,000 each day, but for me it is challenging. By now, I should have 7,000 words completed on my new book (yep, a brand new one tentatively called "Firestarter"). I am pleased to say that as of tonight, I have completed a 2,000 word detailed outline--chapter-by-chapter, a 500 word character profile, and 7,200 words which includes the 1st three chapters and the last one). And, as Kristi reminded us in the challenge this morning--we are half-way there!
For movement on the picture book side, I've joined Tara Lazar's PiBoldMo. This is my third year, and I love this challenge. It's simple. It's direct. And, it makes me think creatively. It only requires one picture book idea each day, but it is so much fun because it gives me a license to think like a kid. I knew sitting for hours on those short chairs at school two days a week were good for something. In addition to the idea, I write a paragraph explaining what the book is about as I see it. I also include the character's name and a couple lines of prose I think might fit. My little notebook now has 20 possible ideas. Yes, some are definitely not worth the ink, but they are ideas.
So, can a person demand oneself to be creative? Most of the time, at least for me, yes, but it works best when I hold myself accountable. Or, in other words, "Sometimes if you want to see a change for the better, you have to take things into your own hands." Clint Eastwood