NaNoWriMo 2019 Update and Other Stories!

It’s almost the fifteenth of the month! And I am not even a quarter of the way through The Knowledge Stones. Oops.
This happened mostly because I’m figuring out exactly what to put where in the first few chapters that is now completely new. I then also realised that I need to change one of the secondary characters’ fate completely and add another secondary character. Now, he actually does have a true purpose and wasn’t just added because he just pitched up! (Which happens quite often while writing.)
In short, the first chapter featuring Zala has been written – whoohoo! – and I’m now on chapter three. Once these are sorted, though, the writing should go a lot faster.
That said, one of my writer friends and I are going to try and write through the night on Friday (15 November) to see how far we can get with our stories and then basically just sleep part of Saturday.

Other stories popping up out of nowhere

I may have also started another short story (which needs to be done by the twentieth as I want to send it to a publication for publishing) and I’m also excited to be busy writing that. I also got a cool idea for another story. For that one I need to do some research still before I can actually plot the whole thing out, but it’s also going to be fantasy.
A third story I’m pondering writing properly is one which has been rattling around in my brain for a few years now. It’s scifi, but definitely not hard scifi by any stretch of the imagination. The story is rather treading that thin line between fantasy and scifi. The story will be an Afrikaans one (just because I feel like writing an Afrikaans one for a change!), while I also want to translate Pandjieswinkelgoed that appeared in Vrouekeur in 2018 into English and send that out for possible publication. But that will have to wait until after November, I’m afraid.

Also, be sure to check out my Instagram (@carin_chronicles) feed for more stories and updates on NaNoWriMo as I go along. You can also read along some parts of The Knowledge Stones on my Patreon page if you’re one of my Patrons.

That’s it from me for now – hope everyone has an absolutely awesome week!

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Why I will not be doing NaNoWriMo 2018

After some consideration, I’ve decided not to take part in NaNoWriMo 2018. Although I enjoy it – and the energy around it – greatly, there are just too many other projects waiting to be finished or get started for me to completely stop to write something else for a month.

The projects, or, I think my plate is overflowing

  • The projects I’m currently busy with, include:
  • Finishing and editing The Knowledge Stones
  • Editing Grove of Graves
  • Finalising the outline of and writing Porselein
  • A ghost story which will be about 7 000 words
  • The outline of a radio drama
  • “Not the Chosen Ones”, part 2
  • “Forgotten”, part 2

So, instead of having a slow and relaxing November, it will still be a very busy month (in which I may just write 50 000 words in any case…), especially taking into account that I have blog posts to write, a Christmas Market where I have a stall, making Christmas gifts and, you know, a day job!

Still, I’m not complaining, I just wish I could work faster!

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Plans for October

That said, I’ve now managed to open up October a lot more, as I usually use October to prepare for NaNoWriMo. So, instead of doing that, I will spend all my time editing The Knowledge Stones to get that out by the end of November. That is the final deadline I’ve given myself!

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What are your plans for November? Are you taking part in NaNoWriMo? Please let me know in the comments!

When NaNoWriMo is a Flop… But Also Not Really…

Yeah… so… NaNoWriMo 2017 did not go AT ALL as planned. Oops. But most of what happened was beyond my control. And when I actually had the time to write, I did. And, whoohoo!, I managed to finish about 10K words, which is more than I had thought I would, actually.

So, between being ill, family emergencies, crocheting baby shower gifts, a guy almost drowning in the ocean, and even a lost 3-year-old that one day just pitched up at our complex (yes, really), I’m surprised that I made it through the month.

That said, you may ask why my NaNo that was a flop, wasn’t actually a flop? Well, turns out the time spent not writing gave my subconscious time to mull about the story. And figure out a much better storyline than I initially had in mind.

Which means that I took some days in November just for planning instead of writing, as pantsing the “new” story was getting me absolutely nowhere.

I’m hoping that December will be a better writing month, but, at least for the moment, it’s all a bit wait and see…

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Jozi Flash Anthology and NaNoWriMo 2017 News!

It is with some trepidation that I watch the last days of October flit by, leaving me too scared to look at the date in my diary as that just reminds me how close NaNoWriMo really is and how much I still have to do before Wednesday!

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But first – Jozi Flash Anthology news!

The Jozi Flash Anthology will appear later than expected (but no less awesome), and will be released this November. It is a collaborative effort between Chasing Dreams Publishing and a bunch of writers based in and around Johannesburg (also called Jozi at times). And the writers includes me! (And some other brilliant writers like Nthato Morakabi.)

This year Chasing Dreams is hosting a cover reveal competition with a $20 Amazon gift voucher up for grabs – and it’s not too late to start. Just keep your eye on my Instagram account today for the next clue…

The competition and rules are quite straightforward…

  • Rules – Jozi Flash Cover Reveal Competition!
  • Download the #FindJoziFlash17 Info Pack from https://chasingdreamspublishing.wordpress.com
  • Print page 4 of the Info Pack in order to save details about the hunt.
  • Read through the pack to get to know the authors and artist (participants), and find their social media links.
  • One clue will be posted each day starting from the 23rd October 2017 and running until the 2nd
  • November 2017.
  • The clues will lead to one of the participants’ social media sites and will be posted at random times.
  • Make a note of who posted each clue on the relevant days and which social media site they used.
  • Once the cover is revealed on the 2nd November 2017, return to
  • https://chasingdreamspublishing.wordpress.com and leave a comment listing the order in which the clues appeared.
  • The competition will be open until midnight GMT+2 on the 3rd November 2017.
  • The winner will be randomly selected from the correct entries and announced by the 5th November 2017
  • Friends and family members of the participants are illegible for entry.
  • The winner will be notified by e-mail and will have a week to claim their prize.
  • The prize is a $20 Amazon Gift Card and is not exchangeable for cash.
  • The draw is final and no correspondence will be entered into.

NaNoWriMo is upon us!

October has been more of a whirlwind of a month than September (did not see that coming), which means that I have a lot of planning for NaNoWriMo still to do. Which must happen this weekend.

I’ll try to put bits and pieces of the planning on social media (being careful not to give away any spoilers, obviously), mostly so that you can see how I go to work on outlining a new story.

I’d like to hear what your last minute preparation for NaNoWriMo is this year – or are you just going to pants it?

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NaNoWriMo Prep 2017 – A Cover and Initial Feedback

It’s nearly the middle of October and, though I wish I could say that my planning is in full swing, it’s more like in half swing… It’s not that I have lost the muse or anything, it’s just that apart from being busy I went and became ill for nearly a whole week. Well, I guess rather now than in November, right?

Initial feedback

Initial feedback on the story and the style has been better than I had anticipated (yay!) and now I feel a lot more confident in writing Papier en porselein. After all, this is quite new territory for me! I am still busy doing research (and continued more with that during Illness Week than actual planning) and am finding that the story is slowly but surely coming together. I still need to make my antagonist stronger, though. He is still a bit two dimensional and boring. But, I still have two weeks left for that before Writing Starts!

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Cover

In the meantime (and to make my NaNo page look a little better) I have also created a simple cover for the book…

PAPIER en PORSELEIN

Current WIPs, Short Story Accepted, and NaNoWriMo 2017

Writing update time!

So, I have ended up doing quite a bit of writing, but feeling like I am not really getting anywhere because the writing consists of so much planning.

Worldbuilding different worlds, changing my mind

The previous NaNoWriMo’s had me knowing exactly what I want to write and what I would spend the month writing. This year, however, I’m flip-flopping between two WIPs. Now, after changing my mind many times, and at first being certain that I was going to work on The Ruon Chronicles, I have now changed my mind for the last time. I am certain of that. Ok, I am 90% certain of that.

I decided that I will no longer use NaNoWriMo to work on The Ruon Chronicles, but will use it to work on a standalone urban fantasy (I think it’ll be classified as such, anyway) novel in Afrikaans. This is the one I want to enter for publication in about September next year. So, if I can get the first draft done by December, which would be absolutely awesome. And it would give me about seven months to finish said novel.

The working title for this novel is Papier en porselein (Paper and Porcelain). It is an idea I’ve been playing around with for quite a while and now I have at last found the story in that world that I want to tell. Let the countdown to NaNoWriMo begin!

Short stories

While I am busy sorting out the planning and worldbuilding, I am also trying to get back into actually sending some of my short fiction off for possible publication. I also want to try and enter competitions other than the flash fiction ones I take part in on some Fridays and Saturdays. At the moment I am busy with one Afrikaans and one English short story.

I also got the great news on Friday that a magazine has accepted one of my stories! Yup… an actual magazine, with pages and printing and everything *swoons*

Getting back into writing in Afrikaans

As you can probably notice, I am trying to write more in Afrikaans at the moment as I have neglected my Afrikaans fiction something horribly!

Random life update

If you have been following my blog recently, you would know that I recently started a new job. The good news is that it is going very well and I am really enjoying my new role very, very much. It’s still a bit weird to not be part of the same team I’d been part of for eight years, but lucky for me the new team I am a part of is awesome and I already feel at home.

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As NaNoWriMo and November Draws to a Close

Between NaNoWriMo and double deadlines, November simply flew by and in the blink of an eye, it seems, we’re barreling towards Christmas and New Year. Those that follow me on Instagram (less so on Twitter) would have seen me spending a lot of time this past weekend crocheting. A lot of time, and that my NaNo word count did not budge. The reason for this is that I needed to take time to regroup and make notes and see where rewrites of scenes are already needed. My health also hasn’t been 100% over the past week and my brain found it a lot easier to focus on a pattern I can do in my sleep than writing epic epicness (I was finishing a mermaid tail blanket).

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However, the creation of Trebles On My Mind did take place last week.

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This week I’m planning to work on Charms of Life and Death as well as a WIP short story titled “The Rusted Key” at the moment. Blogging should go back to normal as from next week as well.

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NaNoWriMo Update and Some Thoughts on Writing

After a difficult start on the NaNoWriMo novel I feel like I’m getting somewhere (well, I guess I should, I’m over 25K words now…). The story is flowing quite well, plantsing is really working for me this year, and I’ve sent the first part of the story on for a friend to read.

This, and talking about my writing over the weekend, made me think about how weird it actually is to be a writer. And I wonder if it’s stranger to be a fantasy/scifi writer. I mean, you’re not just writing in this world, you’re making up a whole new world – some of which are complete secondary worlds – along with the characters, and basically play around in it making up stories and adventures as you go along.

On the one hand I feel like a bit like this as soon as I start talking about my writing… tumblr_o7fchbsheb1sedg7ko1_500

And on the other hand, when I do let other people see my creations (especially the stories taking place in the secondary world of The Ruon Chronicles) I feel like…

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What has helped this past week is getting my first book review. Yes, I did read it, and I’m glad I did. It was a well thought out critique that will actually help me improve my writing. And they liked it, so that also helps!

This week’s aim is to reach at least 35K words by Friday evening. Let the sprints begin!

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