Category Archives: Reading

Words are flowing out like endless rain into a paper cup…

I’ve been kind of slacking with my blogging this year so far, huh? It’s not that I lack the desire or motivation to, I just keep finding myself lacking things to say.

I also keep finding myself buying books. It’s like a disease and completely compulsory. I signed up for Barnes and Noble’s free two month membership and it comes with free shipping. I’m just going to blame it on free shipping and bargain books. At first it was just buying books to this series I’ve been reading (Ranger’s Apprentice, sounds lame but is completely awesome and maybe meant for little kids but it’s still awesome) but then they started having bargain books (I mean really, can YOU resist buying a hardcover $3 book??). So I’ve been buying quite a bit of books, so much that I’m running out of room on my bookshelf. Which means that I really need to start reorganizing my room, but that’s a ton of work and I’ll just push that off for another time…

On the subject of books, I just completed The Fault in Our Stars by John Green. I’ve quite a few friends who are major fans of his, and I suppose I could consider myself one too, but this book was a total bore for me. Normally I love the characters he creates but everything just fell flat–especially what you would consider the “climax” of the book. Not very dramatic or climatic. I was really disappointed. Out of five stars, I would’ve given it three.  Though, I did get a signed copy of the book. I hadn’t even realized I had ordered a signed copy until I got it. So the book was lame, but I guess it was worth it for the signature. :P

I don’t think I mentioned this before, but I’m taking a web design class. It’s actually Web Design 2; I took the first class during my junior year. Turns out I’m the only girl. I think it’s kind of funny really, and I actually kind of like it. Only because I’m doing better than most of the guys in there. I think the majority of this is because I’m pretty familiar with everything we’re going over. I am definitely no expert (have you seen my layouts–oh wait…) but being familiar with it all makes it so much easier. I keep surprising myself at how much I already know as well. I guess it’s just all perks of running your own website. :)

Running has been going pretty good since the last time I blogged. I found this website (trainer.active.com) that allows you to track and log your runs and other workouts, and I really like it. It’s kind of kept me motivated. I’m really looking forward to some warmer weather though because running on the treadmill gets pretty boring. Some nights, I quit just because I’m bored, not because I’m tired. But, I’m still doing it which is better than what I was doing before: nothing.

I’ve also been writing quite a bit. I’ve almost finished editing my NaNo novel, I’m hoping to completely finish that by the end of February, and I’ve been working on a story that I started a really long time ago, back in 2007. I was just going through my files on my computer and found it. My grammar and writing then was absolutely awful. I mean, did I not know what a run-on sentence was? Anyhow, despite the writing being absolute crap, I really liked the storyline so I’ve been rewriting and it’s been fun. It’s always good to know that you’ve improved in something. :)

Reflections on NaNoWriMo

I wanted to wait a little bit before I talked about NaNoWriMo, mainly because I was so burnt out. Writing a 50,000 word+ novel in thirty days really is quite a feat, and it zapped me of most of my time and energy and… everything else.

At the beginning of the month, I felt pretty good. I felt good about my plot, my characters, etc. This continued until probably halfway through the month, when I realized that I had been a little blinded by the excitement of the whole thing, and that what I was writing was absolute crap. I probably had the worst plot ever, and my characters were about as three-dimensional as cardboard.

But that’s okay.

It would’ve been nice to have this absolutely beautiful, wonderfully, well-written piece of literature to have been produced, but it was enough that I finished. I won with 51,818 words. The whole purpose of this is to focus on quantity, not quality, and just getting that awful first draft out of the way and done. And fast.

I don’t know what exactly I’m going to be doing with this novel. Its title is Murky Waters, and I think I’ll always be proud of it, since it is the first novel I’ve ever written (and hopefully not my last as I hope to participate in many more NaNos!). It needs a ton of work, though. I’m not sure if it’s worth the time and effort to keep working on it. I’m thinking I might just give myself some space from it, since I’ve had absolutely none for the last month or so. I think I might give it one quick edit over Christmas break when I don’t have too many other obligations and I think I will leave it at that.

CreateSpace has been kind enough to offer to all winners of NaNoWriMo 2011 five free paperback copies of their book. I’m going to take up the offer (because how cool is it to see my name as the author of a book! :P) but I’m not sure if I want to share my novel with anyone. I did NaNoWriMo more for the experience, not for having a novel that I want to  make public. I know that Andrew wants to read it, but I haven’t decided past that if I’ll share it to anyone else. I’ll decide that when I’ve done a bit of editing. In a way, I just want to keep it to myself. A close little something that only I can really appreciate.

Overall, NaNoWriMo has been an awesome experience. My senior year of high school has been my busiest, and yet I still managed to write a novel in between homework, projects, clubs, sports, church, Thanksgiving, shopping, and time spent with friends and family. I guess I could say that I learned if you really want to accomplish something, you can get it done as long as you focus and prioritize. This is my second year participating, and my first year winning. The difference is I just had a lot more perseverance and determination. I really wanted to win. I look forward to next year’s NaNo since I’ve won this year, though I am a little more nervous since it will be my first year in college. But like I said, if I focus and prioritize, I can do it, even if it’s 50,000 words of garbage. 8)

Any other NaNo winners out there? Did you participate? If not, I’d suggest you try it next year! As they say, you’ve got a story just waiting to be told. :)