alicia_h: (Writing)
So that's my rent paid up, soon-to-be-ex-housemate's rude comment ignored and my Mum sorted for coming up to help me finish organising and shifting stuff on Sunday and Monday. Now I just need to get something nice for dinner and crank out 11,000 words at some point over the next 30 hours.


Crikey, it suddenly feels like an awful lot of words.
alicia_h: (Nell (blonde))
38,549 words and two days to go. Can I do it? I'd like to think I can. I've still got my old room to finish clearing out (I've moved to my landlord's other house, yay!) but if I try and get that all done tomorrow then I suppose I have all of Friday to be a wordcount zombie.

I can tell there's loads more of this novel left so it's just a matter of finding time to sit down and get nearly 12,000 words of it down over the course of two days. I'm only up to January 1965 of a story that was going to go up to somewhere between 1967 and 1973. Then end of what I'm going to call 'Part 1' is approaching and it looks like it's going to involve Ian and Nell deciding to get together and get married and the band releases it's first single. I've had that in note form at the end of my document for a week or more now, so that's the point I'm going to aim for.

And then maybe I can start writing 'Part 2' at some point in December. It's quite addictive this writing lark, isn't it? :-)
alicia_h: (Default)
Title: The Carnival is Over
Word Count: 2421
Rating: PG
Original/Fandom: Original
Pairings (if applicable): Steven and Nell friendship
Warnings (Non-Con/Dub-Con/etc): none
Excerpt or Link to:

Extract taken from between this extract and this extract

Read more... )
alicia_h: (Nell the fiddler)
Title: The Carnival is Over
Rating: PG
Original/Fandom: Original
Word Count: 1678
Pairings (if any): none
Warnings (Non-Con/Dub-Con/etc): none
Summary: Nell finds a book of folk ballads that sparks off her creativity.

Read more... )
alicia_h: (Nell (blonde))
Title: The Carnival is Over
Rating: PG
Original/Fandom: Original
Word Count: 2173
Pairings (if any): Nell/Michael
Warnings (Non-Con/Dub-Con/etc): none
Summary: Nell and Michael, the morning after going to the pub after leaving the folk club and ending up in bed together.

Read more... )
alicia_h: (Rosemary Hope)
Title: The Carnival is Over
Rating: PG
Original/Fandom: Original
Word Count: 727
Pairings (if any): Steven/Mary Anne
Warnings (Non-Con/Dub-Con/etc): none
Summary: Nell, Steven and Mary Anne decide to visit one of Nell's regular folk clubs.

Read more... )
alicia_h: (Pilot)
An extract from "The Carnival is Over" at precisely the point where I decided to go ahead with linking Nell to Erica, the female flyer from my previous Nanowrimo novel. I remembered I needed to get an extract up from a mandatory check-in challenge over at writerverse.

This is taken from a much longer day in the novel (a day I am still writing) but the section here is relatively self contained.

Read more... )
alicia_h: (Default)


My word count is a little on the low side today but that's all right. I've had a rough time of it lately and have come over to my Mum's for the weekend to talk over the troubles I've having and also to get away from my nightmare housemate for a bit. I had a cheering up last night seeing the folk band Jack's Rake, which has one of my old teachers and used to have another one in who has left recently to concentrate on his family. Last night another one of my teachers - my old form tutor no less! - doing the sound. I did not recognise him at first and felt bad about that until Mum admitted over dinner that she hadn't recognised him at all, and then I felt a little less bad!

I've been up to my dad's house today to talk about things with him and my stepmum. They agree that the important thing is to find somewhere that I can afford as soon as I can. If it's unfurnished, they'll help me furnish it. The important thing is getting out of the situation I'm in.

That's all for now. I'm going to take advantage of being sleepy before midnight and take tomorrow as it comes. I have two phone calls to make about one bedroom houses. Then it's coffee and a book as a reward.
alicia_h: (Erica)
In tonight's writing I've made (or revealed that) my main character Nell is the daughter of the main character(s) of my nanowrimo novel last year. I had been considering this for a while and I suppose that's why I left Nell's background vague this time round. It means a bit of jumbling round of dates in what I've written so far but that isn't really a problem. I just have to remember that Nell is 23ish in 1964 rather than 18/19ish. She herself was quite self-concious of acting like a teacher towards her housemate/bandmate Steven's 18 year old pregnant Scottish girlfriend so Nell actually being several years older is not out of the question.

I am amused by how Nell's back story (which wavers between vaguely and more specifically connected to the other novel's characters) has just completely ploughed straight through the middle of the scene I was intending to write. I've both excused it and steered back to the actual scene by saying that the three of them have been deep in thought while drinking tea and chomping biscuits. Adding this aspect to Nell's back story also helps shape her views on adoption a lot more three dimensionally. She knows that it can be a good thing because she's had a settled life with her 'Auntie' Lydia but she has also been left with a lot of questions about her parents. Nell is worried that Steven is going to end up marrying too young (he's probably about 19 or 20) but she can't bear to think of him, his girlfriend, Mary Anne, and their child spending the rest of their lives being tortured with questions similar to those she had growing up.

I'm definitely looking forward to seeing how this aspect of Nell's character and the novel develops, though I'm also curious about how it will affect my perceptions of last year's novel when I pick it up again to finish the first draft. I love the surprises and challenges that nanowrimo writing throws my way. :-)
alicia_h: (Default)


So, Nano marches on. As of tonight the on par word count is 20,000 and my own word count is just under half that at 9,881. I'm happy though as 600-800 word days are much better than zero word days. I've only had one zero word day but that was the first Tuesday of nano and my night was spent gaming rather than scribbling. This Tuesday, I'll try to get myself out into town early in the day and spend as many hours scribbling (all right typing) as possible and see if I can get a little closer to catching up.

The Coffee Evolution write-ins in Huddersfield work well for getting my words down and a lot of the time make me able to carry the motivation home and write at least the same amount again. That's not always possible with one of my housemates thinking he can be downright rude and intimating towards me and speak to me the way he talks to his kitten, who he smacks and tells to disappear. His attitude is making this house a really bad environment to live in.

I'm trying to keep my head up and focus on the nice things here, like the size of my room and the wall of slightly wonky mirrors at one end of it, and I love my other two housemates. My only quick option for moving at the moment is to one of my current landlord's other houses but the only room he's got at the moment is smaller than the one I'm in (about the same size as the one I had in this house before which got messy far too easily) and it's a wonky shape because of a chimney breast and fire place. It would be a lovely room though, if I was not a chronic hoarder and therefore did not have a ton of books, CDs and LPs to try and figure out how to fit in there.

This other house is also way over the other side of town, which would lead to changing doctors (and not in a regenerating sense unfortunately!). Considering my current doctor has just put me on antidepressants, going to another doctor right now is not ideal.

On the other hand, if I did move there and got all the things I'm worried about sorting sorted, I would be living opposite and abandoned pub. Depending on how long I stayed there I might be telling a ghost story for my next nano! ;-)
alicia_h: Bob Dylan (Bob Dylan)
I seem to be back on track with Nanowrimo writing now. On Thursday I got 2100 words done and in a writing session concluded just now I wrote about 800 words in the hour just before midnight and 600 more words in the 50 minutes that have passed since midnight.

Tonight's writing has dealt with the Malcolm Green scene that I included in one of my extracts. I now have a beginning to the scene and then I've got a conversation between the band (mostly an argument between Nell and a band member called Steven, which from Nell's thoughts and reactions seems to happen on a regular basis) after Malcolm has stalked off leaving them all in a bit of a tizz about what this actually means for them.

On the whole I'm really enjoying it right now. :-)
alicia_h: (Default)
Extracts from my nanowrimo novel (tentatively titled "The Carnival is Over" after The Seekers' song) from each day since the 4th of November, which is rather lucky as days 2 and 3 were rather unproductive! I'll be tidying up this with headings, summaries and such tomorrow and, all going well, I should have a fifth extract at some point as well.
edit: they're all up now and everything's neat and tidy.

Title: The Carnival is Over
Rating: PG
Original/Fandom: Original

Word Count: 390
Warnings (Non-Con/Dub-Con/etc): drug use (weed)
Summary: Folk singer Quin Shakespeare muses on the times he's visited England.

1. Read more... )

Word Count: 559
Warnings (Non-Con/Dub-Con/etc): none
Summary: During her recording session, a grieving Rosemary Hope is shocked to see the face of a man who should not be there.

2. Read more... )

Word Count: 309
Pairings (if any): Nell/Quin
Warnings (Non-Con/Dub-Con/etc):
Summary: Nell meets Quin Shakespeare for the first time.

3. Read more... )

Word Count: 742
Warnings (Non-Con/Dub-Con/etc): none
Summary: Nell and the band meet Malcolm Green, the man who wants to be their manager for some reason.

4. Read more... )

Word Count: 582
Warnings (Non-Con/Dub-Con/etc): none
Summary: Nell listens to Joan Baez's version of The House of the Rising Sun (and some waffling about her landlady's cats' names because I needed the word count damnit! ;-D )

5. Read more... )
alicia_h: (Default)
1742 words. :-)

863 words at the cafe during the write-in and the rest at home tonight. Don't ask me how I managed it because I'm not entirely sure myself. I had about an hour's faffing about not knowing what to write before both bouts of writing.

The story is another go at the one I tried to write for my first nano. It's gone from third person in the old version to first in the version and from being past tense to at least partly in present tense. The opening scene(s) that I wrote today take place after the point that in my vague plan was the end of the story.

Roll on day 2 (but after some sleep because I'm knackered!)
alicia_h: (Horatio/Ophelia)
When I first had the idea for this story - during an Inorganic Chemistry lecture of all times - I first had the idea that Horatio killed Ophelia within the play itself (or an interpretation of it).

It had probably been bugging me on some level that Horatio seems to be charged with looking after Ophelia, he does follow her out according to stage directions in the copy I have and it's the impression a lot of films give.

It's interesting to watch the Horatio and Ophelia interaction in various versions of this scene. In the 1969 version with Gordon Jackson as Horatio and Marianne Faithfull as Ophelia there is a great moment between them and when she leaves the first time he follows her out. Then when she bursts back in she's alone. I've realised since that this could be the moment when Horatio is waylaid by pirates/sailors with letters from Hamlet. (It is certainly so in the Laurence Olivier version!)

The next we hear of Ophelia after she's left the stage a second time, she is dead. Drowned. There's a lot of ways to think around it and a lot of people who have puzzled over Ophelia's death. They've had 400 years to go at it after all.
Read more... )
alicia_h: (1940s)
I am looking forward to seeing November out and coming into December. I'm carrying on with this first disconnected and discombobulated draft of my novel until I reach 50 000 words but my realistic view of this is to aim to get there before the end of December. And even then I want to have better handle on plot matters and take a break from it before I tackle rewrites.

There are also other things (shock horror!) to do in December. I want, nay need, to direct the obsessive and motivated spirit I've felt during nano into finding myself a job. I want to throw myself into more research for my novel, research that I can again pick up and expand on during continuation, edits and rewrites next year. I want to tidy my room, hoover the stairs, blitz the bathroom and clean the kitchen before my mother comes up to stay at the weekend.

I also want to get myself back into reading for fun. Yes, the research I've had time for this month has been fun but I think most will understand that I mean specifically novels. The problem with me is that I'll want to read a dozen different novels at once and find it difficult to stick with the book I'm on and see them through to the end when I'm in a particularly down state of mind. It's understandable then that I've fallen out of reading during my uni struggles.

What I want to do for myself in December is to get myself reading and focus on finishing the book in a decent amount of time before I drift onto the next. I'm giving myself a five book limit for the list of books I want to read and get through them before I let my mind wander over to others.

Here's my list, with the three WWII related books first, though this is not necessarily the order I'll end up reading them:

- Spitfire Girl by Lily Baxter
- Muddy Boots and Silk Stockings by Julia Stoneham
- A Game with Sharpened Knives by Neil Belton
+ this one is about Schrodinger in Ireland during the war. You may just about be able to picture my excitement when I spotted this on the charity shop shelf!
- Dracula by Bram Stoker
+ I've listened to the abridged audiobook (on cassette tape, no less) countless times and stayed in Whitby a good deal of times too but I've never yet got myself round to reading the full book
- Sophie's World by Jostein Gaarder
alicia_h: (Default)
I'm making a final two day push towards 50 000 words. I may not make it but the panic and the need to get something written has helped me break out of my little cocoon of first person perspective that I've been building around myself. I've finally screwed up the courage to say sod it, let's give Erica a bit of a rest for the last couple of days and find out who these other characters are.

I've ended up writing about Simon de la Mare. He was originally called Simon Tavener but this name fits him better. It was on a webpage listing common names in the channel islands and there is the obvious connection to Walter de la Mare, whose poem The Listeners has resided firmly in my head since we learned to recite it at school a decade ago. And while I try not to feel old, I want to plough on and add that the name means 'pond' so there's the obligatory Doctor Who reference without me ever intending it to be. It also feels very suitable for a man who has spent all his life living by and more or less in the sea.

Anyway, this is what I've written about Simon in my fevered nanowrimo catch up tonight. I must warn you that it's rough, repetitive in a few places where I was looking for ways to express certain thoughts, typos probably abound and there aren't any paragraph breaks bar one near the top, so I'm sorry for any injuries to tired eyes that might cause.

Read more... )
--

We at the very least I know Simon better and that's exactly the sort of help I need from my frantic scribblings at this moment.



25565 / 50000 words. 51% done!
alicia_h: (Default)
I've solved my title problem for the time being by taking one of the thousands of titles shared on the nanowrimo forums.

My story's title is now:
Circumnavigate Infinity

I'm starting to get a better hold on some sort of plot, though it may turn out that what I've been writing this month is a smaller slice of the whole story than I expected. It was already alongside the Greek Myths stuff, which was supposedly being narrated by my main character. It's possible that I may have a third section on my hands that is more science fiction, though again possibly a science fiction story written by my narrator. I don't know.

Talking of my main character, she's carrying off a romance with someone she wasn't supposed to be interested in or even particularly like. Maybe I should have expected that. I did have the idea that he was interested in her but now it definitely seems to be a mutual and genuine attraction. And yet she's still marrying her fiance for some reason.

I was actually quite shocked at how tense things have become between her and her fiance. I really liked the first scene idea I had with the two of them - meeting in a cafe and swapping postcards before they even talk talk to each other. So the question I'm asking myself at the moment is how do they go from love at first write to a long term romance and engagement to wanting to get married to growing frustrated and resentful to her falling in love with a German army captain to them (possibly) getting married after all. And then there's beyond that point, because there definitely is a beyond.
alicia_h: (Writing)
I've got 20000 words of my NaNoWriMo novel written so far. This is not at all bad considering I'm an expert in the arts of procrastination and oversleeping. It does mean that, if I want to hit the target of 50000 words, I have to pull my finger out and write over half the book in just over a week and considering I'm meeting with someone for coffee on Thursday and going shopping in Leeds with someone else on Saturday, there's a slim chance that 30000 extra words is not the most realistic goal in the world. However, if I push myself to get as close to that as possible I'm more likely to give myself the extra push on to reach it.

Regardless of whether I 'win', I've still got 20000 words of a story set during an historical event that I knew nothing before I started trying work out where the lighthouse in my story was supposed to be and ended up placing it on a rock a few miles off the coast of one of the channel islands. The rock is at the moment vaguely based on Les Casquets which is 13 km off Alderney, while my island is probably not Alderney. My lack time time to research thoroughly means that the island I'm keeping in mind is the fictional St Gregory from Island at War with some details borrowed from Whitby, Reeth and Huddersfield. Once I can get into describing it a bit more, I'm sure I'll have a much better mental picture of it to work from.

What was I forgetting? Did someone say plot? I'm sure there is one… somewhere in that mass of words. It's a little lost at the moment but it'll pop up when it's needed.

A lot of what I've written is snippets of scenes and scraps of sentences. I jump around my various ideas a lot and often go back to those old ideas later and write most new stuff to the end of the document, unless I'm purposefully going through to see what I can add to certain bits and pieces. Yes, the editing is going to be very fun indeed… um… okay… Don't Panic!



20161 / 50000 words. 40% done!

(I do wish that my macbook wasn't making me want to tear my hair out. It keeps highlighting things randomly as I type which is not what I want at all.)
alicia_h: (TARDIS)
Daedalus, father of Icarus, presented his son with his greatest invention: a set of wings constructed painstakingly from the fallen feathers of the birds in the skies over Crete by day and sealed to the wood and copper frame with the wax of the candles that lit the workshop by night. Daedalus gave his son freedom in the form of flight. His breath caught as Icarus bravely stepped forth, up the steps to the window.

Read more... )
alicia_h: (Writing)
I've made a start on my NaNo novel. I'm nowhere near the word count at the moment because I've been poorly since I got home from a friend's house on the last day of October. What I don't have in words at the moment, I'm making up for with an almost crystal clear image of my two main characters exchanging postcards in a Paris bar or cafe and carrying on a whole written conversation before they ever meet face to face. My next idea was of the man (a keen pharologist and later a lighthouse keeper) trying earnestly to convince the woman (a flyer along the lines of the lines of Amy Johnson and Amelia Earhart) to marry him while she avoids answering but at the same time persuades him to let her fly him back home.

I've been glancing over Amy Johnson's wikipedia page and it tells my that her husband (another famous pilot - Jim Mollison) proposed to her mid-flight, eight hours after they first met. The parallels seem to be drawing themselves without me even knowing the original circumstances all that well. This story has to be worth sticking with, I'm sure of that now.

I have a couple of different ways the events that follow could affect the rest of the story but what I'm going to do as I write on with both in mind. Eventually I might see if one explanation is favoured or if the ambiguity works best. There's even a possibility that I'll discover whether it's me or Schrödinger devising this plot.

I have just two more things to add for now. One is another interesting fact about Amy Johnson - she went to University in my home city of Sheffield and the other is that when Tuesday arrived, the actual beginning of story turned out to be my flyer telling the story of Daedalus and Icarus. I still have this first part to pick back up when I have energy tomorrow. At the end of her telling the myth, my idea was for her to talk about her father, who was very important in inspiring and encouraging her to fly. It's possible that throughout the story she'll paint herself in the role of Icarus and she at last feels a connection to Daedalus when she says goodbye to her lost plane.

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Alicia

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