Facets of a Muse

Examining the guiding genius of writers everywhere

Week 1: So far, so good #nanowrimo2021


Quote from barbara kingsolver: there is no perfect time to write. there is only now.

Week 1 of NaNoWriMo is almost over, and I’m on track. Not ahead, since I missed my quota a few days this week, but I’m about where I should be.

What’s better than getting back into the “writing every day” habit? Realizing the difference between two versions of the same story.

I spent time over this year writing the opening scenes for a novella in longhand. One version in one notebook, then later decided to redo it, and used a different notebook. Couldn’t find the newer notebook, so started transcribing from the older one first. The writing? Meh.

When I finally discovered the newer version, I see the differences in the writing. Namely, the second one is a better version. Why? It reads like I was more “in tune” with my creative energies, if that makes sense.

I’ve also started reading a new book (new to me, and if anyone is wondering, it’s Unspeakable Things by Jess Lourey, a local author and foster mom for adorable kittens! The one she’s fostering now is unbelievably cute! (she posts pics on FB)), and the writer in me is taking mental notes on how she’s writing, and the techniques she’s using, especially when it comes to drawing readers in. Granted, she was an English professor until she started writing full time. If you ever have the chance to attend a presentation by her, I recommend it.

Anyway, the take-away for me is being conscious of ways to draw the reader in and immerse them in not only the story, but the characters. That’s the difference between the two versions of my current project: the first is more mechanical, the second has more “heart” to it. Now that I recognize that, I’m going to try to incorporate more of that into my own work. I’ve even gone through some of my assignments from my writing classes that went toward my writing certificate, and I’ve done it. I’ve written with more “heart”, but those were short (2k or less) pieces. I can do it, now it’s a matter of focus and being conscious of not just the actions in the scene, but how to immerse the reader in the scene with the characters.

Practice! I’m off to write. And don’t forget to turn the clocks back tonight!

It’s getting cold. Only time I need a lap!

Author: Julie Holmes, author

A fiction writer since elementary school (many years ago), and NaNoWriMo annual participant for over a decade, I have been published in small press magazines such as "Fighting Chance" and "The Galactic Citizen". I write adult mystery with a touch of romance, mystery with extrasensory elements, contemporary fantasy, and epic fantasy, and I'm represented by the fabulous Cynthia Zigmund of Second City Publishing Services. My debut novel, "Murder in Plane Sight", has been released by Camel Press (an imprint of Coffeetown Press/Epicenter Press). In real life, I am a technical writer and empty-nester with a wonderful hubby, one cat (what writer doesn't have cats??), two dogs, three chickens, and more chipmunks, squirrels, and rabbits than any garden should have to deal with. My garden, our hobby farm, and Nature's annual seasons are some of my muses.

8 thoughts on “Week 1: So far, so good #nanowrimo2021

  1. I know just what you mean about a story that has ‘heart’ in it, Julie. I think that happens when the writer really tunes in to that creativity and lets the story come out without getting too bogged down in the mechanics of the story. Just tell the story first – get swept away in it. The mechanics (chapter breaks, grammar, things like that) can come later.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Hooray for writing discoveries and chilly kitties!! πŸ™‚

    Liked by 1 person

    • *high five* My son and his girlfriend brought all three kitties to visit this week. Stella found a corner to hide in, Nyx was her usual curious, troublemaking self, and Tibbers spent his time trying to decide if he felt comfortable enough to let anyone close enough to pet him. And Zoey, of course, wouldn’t have any part of it. She high-tailed it outside as soon as she realized the interlopers were back!

      Have a great week, Betsy!

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Congrats on a good week of writing, Julie. Keep up the good work. πŸ™‚

    Liked by 1 person

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