Sunday, November 3, 2013

Sunday Salon: November 3, 2013

It is hard to believe that it is the first Sunday of November, which also signals the end of daylight savings time.  Were you able to enjoy the hour of extra sleep this morning?  Unfortunately our dogs have no concept of time (like toddlers) and so my daily routine was not altered. Oh well, I suppose I could say I now have an extra hour to work on NaNoWriMo….

Today's Weather:  Sunny and chilly, with a high near 60.  Fall is most definitely here to stay.

What's on the menu:  not quite sure, but I am hoping to be inspired at the Culinary Celebration this afternoon.  There is some leftover chili in the fridge that might make some good nachos while watching the Chiefs win their ninth game of the season.

Highlights of the week:  it was a busy week for someone who typically spends her time in the nook

  • Lunch at Chili's with a good friend on Monday
  • Dinner at Bravo's with another good friend on Tuesday
  • A visit to Costco with Brynn and family on Wednesday (which resulted in signing up for membership)
  • Halloween with Brynn on Thursday
  • The start of NaNoWriMo on Friday

Teaching Overview:  a very low-key week, for which I was grateful.  It won't be this relaxing until after finals in mid-December.

Brit Lit peer edited "knightly tales" on Tuesday, which means I only oversee the process rather than teach.  On Thursday we finished discussing the pilgrims of Canterbury Tales and we will finish the prologue this week.  Students began to recite the first 18 lines in Middle English and I was once again impressed by their ability to rise to the occasion.  Two weeks ago they thought I was crazy… now they may still think I am crazy, but they were able to complete the assignment with ease.

English Comp is in the revision process of their narrative stories.  We are workshopping one narrative per class, and it is exciting to not only hear their story ideas develop, but to also witness the synergy of brainstorming, playing off one another's suggestions to help make a good story great.  This class  demonstrates that the solitary act of writing is improved with the fellowship of trusted friends.

Currently Reading:  I have almost completed, Writing Irresistible KidLit, and will begin Writing Children's Books for Dummies.  While working on the NaNo project, I will probably focus my reading on non-fiction rather than clouding my brain with another narrative.

Writing Progress:  Slow and steady wins the race, right?  I had great hopes for writing ahead of schedule on Friday, the start of NaNoWriMo, but instead I decided to plot the story chapter by chapter. While I did not write one word toward the ultimate 50,000 goal, I felt that this was time well spent.  I not only know where I am going to start and end, but I have a good map to help me get there.

On Saturday I officially began.  It took me a while to find the writing rhythm, but by the end of the day I had finished the first chapter and logged 3,173 words.  I have the goal of writing the next three chapters over the next two days and hopefully have 10,000 words under my belt.

Artist's Date:  Not a planned date, but I did make a spontaneous visit to the local Archiver's yesterday afternoon.  I always enjoy looking at the colorful paper and whimsical stickers and imagine myself creating memorable scrapbook pages or encouraging greeting cards.  It was a good way to clear my mind from the writing focus this month.

I met a friend for coffee at the Market Cafe in the local HyVee, and I was reminded how much I enjoy that environment.  There is plenty of seating, even a fireplace to add to the cozy atmosphere.  The servers do not intrude and the noise is kept at a minimum.  I need to take advantage of this opportunity more often during the NaNo season.  A change of setting could work wonders when I find myself stuck in the mucky middle.

Craftiness:  Ah… once again no crafts this week, and in all honestly, probably no crafts until November 22nd when I have registered for an overnight scrapbooking retreat.

Photography:  Success!  A spur-of-the-moment decision resulted in registering for another 365 project.  On the one hand, I wondered if I was crazy adding one more daily task while trying to write a 50,000 word story… but on the other hand, photography is a serious interest too.  However, week after week I report that no progress has been made and I had to face the truth:  we make time for what we deem important and I obviously don't consider photography a priority in life.

It is my hope that this project does not become a noose around my neck, but rather a tool to help me reconnect with this passion and improve the craft for future writing endeavors.

What's on the Horizon:  another busy week ahead (I fear this will be the norm until after the holidays).  I plan to attend a NaNo event at the local library on Tuesday; participate in the library's used book sale on Wednesday; and attend the HACWN writing conference on Friday and Saturday.  Oh yea… and write another 11,500 words.   Lots of literary goodness and I love it!


  1. Woohoo on a great start to NaNo! I love our local write-ins so I hope you have a good time at the event on Thursday.

    Joy's Book Blog

  2. Good luck with NaNo...I haven't participated since 2010...but out of that experience came a full-length novel...eventually. LOL


  3. You're off to a great start with NaNo! Your fall is here to stay comment has me laughing... our leaves are mostly gone, temps won't move beyond the 30s today, and yesterday I declared fall to be over ;-)

  4. Your cup runneth over--wonderful!