July Plans

Ah, July!  The month of fireworks, camping out, and doing all things summer.  And what will I be doing?

Camp NaNoWriMo

I'm first-drafting a story that has been sitting on the backburner for over a year.  I got the idea for it during a half-marathon in February of 2016, and let it sit until I wrote the first half for Camp in April.  Here's a quick little blurb:

Muirn only has a few steps left before his plan is complete, and he not only gets to rule the coveted Hayalin Clan, but live in the Castle Rodulyn itself.  He just has one problem: the Princess of the Hayalin Clan (whom he must marry in order to lead the Clan) has disappeared.  And even more of a problem, the Princess is traveling with the best bodyguard in Havendenara.  Most worrisome of all, they were in company with the Rauladin, the only one who leads warriors capable of defeating Muirn's army.  It might be a simple crossing-of-paths, but to be on the safe side, Muirn sends out a spy to learn the truth.  Will they try to stop him from getting what he wants?  Or will they easily be pushed aside?

No, the book is not (entirely) written from the villain's POV, I just was thinking upside-down on how to explain the plot.  My goal is to get another 30,000 words into the story.  That may or may not get me to the end of the book.

I really have no plans for this book beyond Camp.  It may get a sequel.  It may reach 100,000 words and turn into an epic adventure.  It may get to 60,000 and be wrapped up.  But I'm enjoying it.  And, most importantly, it's giving me a quick break from Betrayal and Bravery, so I can return with fresh eyes and new vigor.

Is anyone else doing Camp NaNo?

Where Stories Come From

Ever since I was little, I have loved words.  As soon as I could hold a pencil, I would scribble lines across the paper and tell my parents it was a story.  I made my own "books" with paper and a stapler, and wrote little horse stories. 

My drawing and handwriting skills have not gotten much better.
My first actual (if I can call a few thousand words with a plot and chapters actual) book was Dark Days in the Goat Pasture, and ended up being around ten chapters long.  It followed a baby goat as she travels to the far side of the pasture to rescue her siblings who were held ransom (for all the goat feed) (yes, really).

The hero of the story: Petal. 
I then progressed to writing stories about me and my friends.  Mostly horse stories with my dear friend Sarah Rodecker. I began to fill countless notebooks and word documents with half-written stories of my own making.  I would spend so much time pouring over the characters and plotting out the whole story, and then I would write a chapter or two and get stuck.  So I would start over.  And over.  And over.

Then, in 2015, my best friend and I started The Order of the Pen, a writing group focusing on helping young Christian writers.  After talking with the other members, I decided put a stop to every current story, and, with their help and support, started a quest to find my "Process" and "The One."

Using those unfinished drafts and ideas as test dummies, I tried different methods of outlining/not outlining.  Turns out, I'm a Plantster (panster + plotter).

With that in mind, I began to look for a story to start writing.

I wrote what I thought would be yet another story I would never finish and then eventually dump.  Instead, I went on to write the complete book - as well as a sequel!!  By early 2016, my story had begun to grow (drastically) and a third book was needed (or else all the characters would be left hanging on cliffs)(not literally).  So the Betrayal and Bravery trilogy was born.

To date, these are in the editing process. 

Typos, new names, and utter chaos.
Seems like I'll never be done (and that the characters continue to misbehave and uncover even more secrets that require even more rewrites and then they demand name changes and history changes and appearance changes...) but I enjoy it, for the most part.  It's just the next stage in the writing journey.

So what started you on your writing journey?  Are you in the depths of editing, or are you still first drafting?

Release Date: June 19th!

The release date for my first post is June 19th!  Please bear with me as I spend this time tweaking the format/layout of the blog and prepare myself to start on this blogging journey!