I know you're all bored with my NaNoWriMoTooSlo talk. I wouldn't even be posting now, except that I got the following email from the casting director of ABC-TV's Wife Swap, looking for families who would be willing to be on the show.
My friends all know that as a general rule, I don't watch reality TV, even the good shows, so I can't say that I have any opinion, good or bad, over this one versus the Fox show with a similar premise. But what did catch my eye was that those who do get cast on the show earn compensation of $20,000. And yes, if that someone was referred by me, I would receive an easy $1,000. Money I can really use while we are getting ready to leave the country again.
That said, click below for the information - if anyone reading this is interested, drop me a line and I'll send you the release form. Or call or email them directly -- but if you do, please do tell them how you learned of their casting call. Thanks!
Not as quickly as I'd like, but it's coming along.
Today was the first day in a long time when I had no competing engagements, when all I had on my schedule was to sit down and WRITE.
So far, I've only managed a couple of hundred words. Yesterday, I did a couple of thousand and finished a chapter. And that was AFTER I'd spent a couple of hours chit-chatting with a girlfriend at Starbucks.
I've been keeping a spreadsheet (downloaded from the NaNoWriMo website) that tracks how I'm doing and I've noticed a pattern. Typically, I'll have a good output day (like yesterday), followed by one or two lean days. I'm not certain those low output days are non-productive -- I just think I need that time to allow my subconscious to process the ideas that will turn into story later.
But at this rate, I won't finish the novel on November 30. And I have to.
The other thing that's worrying me is that I'm nearly at the end of the story and have not even hit the halfway mark of 25,000 words.
That tells me that I've not done enough description, conversation, exposition, etc.
I think it will be OK. If the product of 30-days of brisk writing is essentially a first draft, what I'm doing now is the rough. So once I get to the end of the final chapter, I can go back in and expand and develop a lot of the storylines that I started and then didn't follow through with. I may actually end up with something that's somewhat coherent at the end of the 50,000 word mark.
I just have to figure out how to get there more quickly.
For now -- I'm going to take a drive. Ideas tend to pop into my head when I'm focusing on something mundane. The shower is a great place for inspiration, but as I've already done that, a drive will be nice.
Besides, it's a beautiful day out (damn those Santa Anas!) and it's been hard to just sit here at the computer while the view of the Santa Susanas beckons.
NaNoWriMo: I wrote nothing on Saturday and very little on Sunday, but made up a little time yesterday. Am still behind and doubt that I will hit the goal of 25,000 words at the month halfway point tomorrow -- but it's not yet a lost cause.
Gymnastics: Much of my inability to focus has been because of Megan's participation in the state gymnastics competition. It was a bit of a heartbreaker: She missed a state championship on the floor exercise by just .005 of a point. And that was the good news. Her all around score was the lowest of the entire season.
Now, this is the kind of sport where it's common to hear sore losers complain about the judging. I don't want to be one of those. But her coaches feel she was judged unfairly on one of her events and want to file a protest. Personally, I am happy to put this meet behind us and allow my daughter to focus on the spring season. She's been promoted to the next level and it's a clean slate now.
Last year, Megan cried all the way home from the state meet because she was disappointed with her score. This year, she's just angry. PISSED. And I think that's a lot healthier.
Finally: As we are coming to the anniversary of my father-in-law's passing, we've decided to spend the holidays in the UK again, and have started locking in our travel plans. So, this blog will be focused on travel again as soon as NaNoWriMo has passed. One thing we'll be doing differently this year: Megan and I will be traveling a few days ahead of my husband so we can spend some time in London before heading over to Wales. I've never been in Britain without him (nor have I had the luxury of three full days in London), so I'm kind of excited about that. I've already booked a table for afternoon tea, and there will be more as Megan and I figure out what we'd like to see over there.
This means that instead of writing today during my prime morning hours (when the words flow better), I've been paying bills and trying to get my financial stuff in order so I won't have to worry about any of that while we're traveling. (And now, I must go and make some deposits, mail some checks, etc.)
Maybe I can get back to work when Megan is home from school and doing her homework...
I did manage a little bit of progress on my NaNoWriMo novel, but with Megan home from school yesterday for the observation of Veterans Day, I didn't even look at it. And today is her state gymnastics competition, so I'm pretty sure this will also be a lost cause. Perhaps my family will allow me to break away from them all tomorrow -- as my novel is set in a gym not unlike the one we practically live in, I'm hoping that today's competition will provide me with lots of inspiration to try and catch up.
This week has been tough - there's the inevitable loss of energy that comes when the excitement of starting something new wears off and your creative juices stop flowing so freely. It's why I'm so good at starting projects and so bad at finishing them once I get to the muddy middle. And it's why I really do have to keep plugging away at this. I don't want to quit and I will lose all respect for myself if I do quit.
The biggest problem this week has been an unusual occurrence of distractions. The election was one of them -- I don't talk politics a lot here, so let me just say that this week, for the first time in years, I have enjoyed listening to the news. I feel hopeful, and that's a feeling I have not had in a long time. At several points this week, I was downright giddy.
But more distracting was the realization that my day to day existence is peopled with a bunch of women who are CRAZY. Maybe it's the Santa Anas, which famously prompted Raymond Chandler to note that when they occur, "Meek little wives feel the edge of the carving knife and study their husbands' necks. Anything can happen."
This was a week when one mother at our school tried to get a restraining order out on another. A week when several moms at the gym posited all kinds of conspiracy theories as to why their children were left out of events. A week when a woman (who knew better) brought her dog onto the campus when picking her kids up from school. "I've seen lots of people do it," she said. And of course, she had a fit when the Assistant Principal ordered the dog off the campus ("I've seen lots of people do it!" she yelled. True - but she's the one who got caught). And then she announced that she was no longer going to do any volunteer work at the school. No amount of reasoning with her ("You know, the school doesn't know what a nice dog he is - if a child gets bit, they would be liable") would dissuade her. She was pissed off because she wanted to be pissed off. And that's pretty much how everyone I met behaved this week.
With drama like this, I've been sorely tempted to abandon my little kids' story about a group of girls who are gymnasts and do a poison pen on the women around me.
"The problem is you've got all these highly educated women who rose to executive status and then retired to be stay at home moms," my sister says. "They have nothing else to do with that experience but apply them to this world."
The winds have abated and the temps have cooled off -- but by the end of the week, it should be hot and sunny again -- which could mean more Santa Anas.