Camp Nanowrimo Day 4

Main Story Idea: You can drop your 1 line here, or your "Before" (main character’s Ordinary World).

  1. Beryl has lost everything and is starting a new life, working as a spy for the country she was exiled and thought dead, she’s forced yet again to prove her worth as a mage.

Inciting Incident: What happens to change everything from what WAS to what IS.

  1. ​(What are the dark under currents in the city?)​

Turning Point: Transition where the character gives in (or is dragged) to the adventure, journey, what​ ​
have​ ​

  1. ​She begins to care for those around her and she sees them in danger.​

Stakes: What’s the risk to the character or to something the character cares about to move forward–or to not move forward? Is there a ticking clock?

  1. ​If her cover is blown she will be forced to flee.​

Characters (major and minor): List specific names of character or the roles that you’ll need to fill along the way. (ie: Pilot, R2-D2, Wookie, Luke Skywalker, Old dude who knows stuff about the force….*ducks*)

  1. ​Beryl Marcian, called Mage
  2. Beryl’s bond mates, Argent and Rune
  3. King of Orlean
  4. Love interest 1
  5. Love interest 2
  6. Political Rival​

Setting: Places the character will experience–sensory.

  1. ​The Royal Palace
  2. The Capital of Orlean​

Props: Objects that characters will need to be introduced to (whether or not they are on the page beyond conversation–ie: a gun on the wall, a jewel reported stolen, a body dropped right in front of the main character)

Camp Nanowrimo

Well, Camp Nano has started and I’m slowly chiseling my way into part two of my novel.
I’ve written about 3000 words in the last three days, wrapping up part one though I might wind up expanding a few sections and starting part 2.

  1. Main Story Idea:
  1. Beryl has lost everything and is starting a new life, working as a spy for the country she was exiled and thought dead, she’s forced yet again to prove her worth as a mage.

Hook/Inciting Incident/Catalyst:

  1. War is brewing in Orlean and Beryl is sent to investigate. The cult of Aedus has it’s hooks in several high ranking officials and are using their influence to push the country to extreme actions as unrest shakes the capital.

Act 1 turning point: (What’s the conflict? What’s the action?)

  1. Love interests.

The Stakes:

  1. If caught as a spy she will be executed and her bond mates will die (at worst), (at best) she will be captured and forced to work for the King of Orlean while he holds her bond mates in captivity to keep her docile.

The End: (Where does the main character finish the story? Have they changed?)

  1. Her enemy is defeated but she’s lost her edge in the fight. Aedus is still seeking to gain power and she’s gained new enemies.

The Big Boom: (Toward the end, what’s the key thing that will happen to the MC(Main character) for them to succeed?)

  1. The gods start choosing sides. She is blessed by several so that she can survive the fight with Aedus.

Conflict yet again: What can elevate the issues between the MC and the antagonistic force of the story?)

  1. (Kidnapping is so over used, sigh)

Remember: (What happens to make the characters remember what’s important, the stakes?)

  1. She is forced to see the issues between the have and have nots in Orlean society.

Conflict: (What can happen between the MC and the AF of the story, early on?)

  1. Discovers Deloran is in the city.

Mad Skills: (Something the MC learns via practice, conversation, or self discovery, on the way to the story goal.)

  1. New form of magic.

The end of the beginning: (Something that makes the character finally move down the new path and away from their safe zone.) The beginning: (Where does the MC start – what is their attitude toward the setting?)

  1. She starts part two depressed and fighting to keep moving. She’s determined to continue as a spy but doesn’t really have the energy needed to keep up the masks she should.

Writing Updates


So for July and August my local NaNoWriMo group is doing a two month push to get 50,000 words completed. We’re using the Book in a Month system, and I’m fighting to keep up already only a few days in. Would anyone reading this blog want to see daily updates on my progress and the worksheets we are using? Trying to find my motivation.

Hit up the comments please.
For those interested the hand outs for Book in a Month are available here.

Links and Articles




All the Language in the World Won’t Make a Bookshelf Exist

Originally posted on Longreads Blog:

Nina MacLaughlin | Hammer Head, W.W. Norton | Spring 2014 | 18 minutes (4,383 words)

The following is an excerpt from Nina MacLaughlin’s memoir Hammer Head—the story of MacLaughlin’s journey out of a drag-and-click job at a newspaper and into a carpentry apprenticeship. In this section MacLaughlin strikes out on her own to craft bookshelves for her father and meditates on the relationship between writing and carpentry, and learning to build with wood instead of words.


The maple leaves dropped, the temperature fell, and we slipped into winter. After the skylight, in the slowing of the year, Mary planned to pause the progress on her third-floor office space in favor of redoing a bathroom downstairs, the one with the paintbrushes in the tub and the crumbling walls.

I swung by her place to pick up the last check she owed me before we took our annual break. She walked me through her bathroom plan.

“Give me a call if you…

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The Craft of Cooking

Originally posted on Longreads Blog:

Jessica Gross | Longreads | June 2015 | 18 minutes (4,479 words)

In 1980, 29-year-old Christopher Kimball enrolled in a cooking class and was so frustrated by his instructors’ inability to answer his questions that he started his own cooking magazine. Cook’s Magazine, since reborn as Cook’s Illustrated, presents a small number of recipes refined through extraordinarily rigorous testing by the cooks in Kimball’s 2,500-square-foot kitchen lab. The bimonthly magazine—which features only black-and-white illustrations—eschews a focus on “lifestyle” in favor of treating cooking as a discipline and a craft. Over the years, Cook’s Illustrated has garnered a large and loyal readership—and spawned an empire, including a second magazine, Cook’s Country; many cookbooks; and two television shows. “America’s Test Kitchen,” the most popular cooking show on public television, is currently in its 15th season. We spoke by phone about what it takes to write a…

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Women Writers Taught Me To Be Brave

Originally posted on Thought Catalog:

Hillary BolesHillary Boles

Why do we need to talk about women writers as opposed to just writers?

First off, there are the statistics, reports, and articles that all address the gender gap in publishing and marketing of women writers.

Secondly, it’s important because of the limitations and expectations a woman writer must combat when she brings her work to the market:

We don’t want this book, because girls don’t like books about space, and boys don’t like books about girls.

But hey, don’t jump to conclusions. This common marketplace sexism runs deep. It’s not exclusively a case of men-versus-women. This casual sexism is held as a sort of common wisdom for many professional women who wish to succeed in the current marketplace.

What’s between the speaker’s legs really doesn’t change the content here. And yes, many of the women saying these things were honestly trying to help me!…

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