Tag Archives: preptober

NaNoWriMo 20 Questions Tag (2020 Edition)

Hello Writer Bees!

National Novel Writing Month is just days away! I am both wildly excited and incredibly unprepared. Recently, I was asked to do the NaNoWriMo tag by a longtime follower of this blog. Jai Lyn is this lovely writer and blogger who is always leaving me the sweetest comments. I literally dropped everything to do this tag for her and for you guys!

The rules are simple….

  1. Thank the awesome blogger who tagged you!
  2. Link back to the creator of this tag, Sophie @ Sophie’s Corner.
  3. Feel free to use the NaNoWriMo 20 Questions Tag graphics!
  4. Answer the questions.
  5. Tag some friends who are also doing NaNo this year.
  6. And have fun!!!

Thank you to the fabulous Sophie @ Sophie’s Corner for creating this tag. And thanks so much to Jai Lyn for tagging me to participate this year!

Let’s get started, shall we?

Tell me about your NaNoWriMo project this year! Give me a blurb!

The title is ‘The Case of the Drowned Mermaid’.

Coney Island, New York, 1924. When a sideshow mermaid is found drowned in her tank, can private detective G.W. Barnaby and his associate, Oscar Fitzgerald, find her killer? Or will this case be another unsolved murder?

What’s the genre?

It’s a mystery! No, really, my WIP is in the mystery/detective fiction genre. Hopefully, one day, it will become a proper whodunit. While there is a bit of romance and drama thrown in, The Case of the Drowned Mermaid is a good ol’ murder mystery.  

Describe your MC in three words.

Oscar Fitzgerald, my narrator and dapper, young man of the 1920s, is charming, sarcastic and impatient. 

Without spoilers, describe your villain in three words.

Perfectionist. Doting. Manipulative.  

What is your goal? (the traditional 50K? 20K? 5K? or……. 100K?)

I’m aiming for 20,000(ish) words this November. Really, any amount of words will do. My real goal is to break free of writer’s block. If you want to read more about my untraditional NaNo goals, check out my last post.  

Is this your first draft? Second? Third?

Feels like more drafts than I can count. This could be the third or fourth draft. Hard to say. I’ve been working on this project for about 3 years, and it has gone through many evolutions. 

Are you starting a new project (or draft), or continuing an existing one?

Nope, I’m continuing an existing WIP. It’s already about 30,000 words in length. I’m hoping to add to that this November. 

What is your favourite time to write in the day?

I’m a night owl, writing at night is my favorite time to write. Do I get enough sleep? Absolutely not. But I can’t help if I only get inspired around midnight.

See the source image

Where are you going to write?

Probably at home. And probably a bit of sneaky writing at my cubicle. 

Computer or paper?

The majority of my notes are scribbled onto various sticky notes and notebook paper. When it comes to writing the story, I will be typing my WIP on the computer. I admire those who are handwriting their work. I tip my hat to you.

NaNoWriMo is a huge commitment!! How are you going to make time to write?

I honestly have no idea. I’m gonna try my best to make time. Use every free moment to work on this project. Cross your fingers for me.  

Are you going to participate in local or online NaNoWriMo events? (e.g. kick-off parties in your city, write-ins, virtual writing sprints…)

Unfortunately, write-ins are most likely cancelled due to covid. I’m not sure if I’ll participate in a virtual writing event. Don’t think I will, but I am available to be anyone’s buddy on the NaNoWriMo website. 

Do you write from beginning to end or skip around?

Oh, I’ve been skipping around this story for a long time. I always try to juggle too many things at once. That has been a struggle for me in the past. I’m learning how to work on one scene at a time.  

Planner or pantser? (or plantser?)

Little bit of both, so I guess that makes me a plantser. I have a vague outline I’m trying to stick to while giving myself wiggle room to be creative and wander off the path, if I need to. Best of both worlds, right?

What will be your go-to NaNoWriMo snack?

I LOVE snacking while writing. Potato chips, roasted chickpeas, salsa and tortilla chips, dry cereal, popcorn. Basically, any crunchy or salty treat. I won’t say no to a fat slice on banana bread though.

(Can you tell this is my favorite question?) 

Image result for salty snacks crunch gif

Choice of caffeine? (or no caffeine?)

Not much of a caffeine drinker. I know, shocking. A decaf tea is fine for me.

Any rewards for milestone achievements? For finishing NaNoWriMo?

If I reach my goal of 20k, or any significant word count goal, I plan to spoil myself with NaNoWriMo swag. I’ve never set up rewards for myself. I want to this year. Plus, I’ve always wanted a cool NaNo sweater or mug while also supporting this amazing charity.

Share a tip for other NaNo-ers!

With word count goals, don’t be too hard on yourself. NaNoWriMo is meant to motivate writers to write and to encourage creativity. Any amount you write, whether it’s 5 words or 50,000 words, is progress. Celebrate progress.

How are you feeling about NaNoWriMo? (Excited?! Nervous!? Terrified?!)

All of the above. Lately, I’ve been feeling so stuck with my WIP, I’m afraid I’ll still be stuck during NaNoWriMo. On the other hand, I’m determined to work on my WIP and excited to share my experience and connect with other writers.

Share an aesthetic for your NaNoWriMo novel!

See the source image
See the source image

Hope you all enjoyed my answers for this tag. I tag any other NaNoWriMo participants who want to share their project. Shout out again to Jai Lyn. Please go check out their blog, there’s some wonderful content to be found.

To all those attempting NaNoWriMo this year, I wish you the best of luck. Let me know in the comments what you are working on for November. As always, I love to hear for you writer bees.

Stay safe and keep writing!

— Lady Jabberwocky

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My Untraditional NaNoWriMo Plans

Hello Writer bees!

It’s that time of year again. NaNoWriMo season. Can you believe it?

For those of you who don’t know, NaNoWriMo is a non-profit that supports creative writing and educational programs for aspiring writers.  It’s also an event that challenges writers across the country to write 50,000 during the month of November. With National Novel Writing Month fast approaching, this really is a fun opportunity to connect with other writers and share creative projects.

Which leads me to the big question you’re probably wondering:

Am I participating this year?

Short answer? Yes, of course, I wouldn’t miss it! Maybe fourth time is the charm.

Here’s the thing. My goals for this year’s NaNoWriMo are untraditional, to say the least. Some probably won’t be impressed. However, they are the writing goals I’m shooting for nonetheless. And who knows? Maybe they will change during my NaNo adventure.

My NaNoWriMo Goals

  • Write 20,000(ish) by November 30th. Not the usual 50,000. Keep in mind, my WIP is well underway word count wise.
  • Push past writer’s block and self doubt.
  • Write without deleting or editing. This has been a problem for me in Previous NaNoWRiMo trips.

I’ll admit, my WIP has been stuck lately. Writer’s block is intense, as is the writer’s doubt. Feel like I just need to get over this hill to make it to the finish line. I’m using NaNo as a vehicle to get… unstuck. To workshop new ideas and to gain momentum once again. My greatest hope is to have a finished story by the end of it.   

Prepping for NaNoWriMo

Whenever I see other writers preparing for National Novel Writing Month, my heart swells with pride. Seriously, you all are remarkable. The way some of you are prepping inspires me. I only wish to have a morsel of that enthusiasm. Here’s how I’m getting ready for the main event.

  • Straighten out plot outline (again)
  • Create an aesthetic and inspiration board/file.
  • Flushing out characters.
  • Brainstorm possible additional scenes.
  • Organize all these sticky notes! They’re everywhere!

In an effort to share my journey with those interested, I’ll be posting weekly updates on this blog and staying active on Twitter during NaNoWriMo. I look forward to connecting with more fellow writers out there. As always, thank you guys so much for following my writer adventures. Your support means everything.


Are you participating in National Novel Writing Month? How are you prepping? How are you feeling emotionally? What are your writing goals? Talk to me in the comments, I love to hear from you!

Stay safe and keep writing!

Love, Lady Jabberwocky

Third Times the Charm? – Signing Up for NaNoWriMo Again

Hello writer bees!

Time flies so quickly and it’s already October! And I’ve only just started to think about NaNoWriMo. Geez, I’m behind. Honestly, I wasn’t sure If I should, or even could, participate in NaNoWriMo this year. The last two tries ended in “failure“.

Frankly speaking, I’ve been distant with my WIP as of late. Life and freelancing get so busy and drafts get put on the back burner. I want to change that.

I have to get back in touch with my characters. I want fall in love with the setting again. I want to add more to the story and create something special. That’s my plan for October and NaNoWriMo.

I don’t know what my word count goal for the month of November will be yet. Maybe 30,000? Maybe the big 50,000? The basic skeleton of a plot is mostly done, hovering at around 20,000 words. Perhaps my goal should just be to write everyday, even if it’s a small amount.

Sounds like I’m just convincing myself to commit to NaNoWriMo this year. My boyfriend said “What’s the worse that could happen? You write words?” Thank you, handsome voice of reason. And who knows? Maybe third times the charm.

What do you guys think? What should my word count goal be? How are you guys planning for NaNoWriMo? Would you be interested in my weekly updates during November? Tell me everything in the comments. Any advice would be greatly appreciated.

– Lady Jabberwocky

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Starting Prep for NaNoWriMo: Learning from Past Mistakes

So, I’m starting my NaNoWriMo prep a bit differently than most.

Last year, I participated in National Novel Writing Month, the challenge for writers to write 50,000 words in one month. And last year, I failed that challenge. Don’t cry for me, Argentina. Despite not reaching my goal, I still learned a lot about myself as a writer. That experience lit a fire under me, and I’m happy I tried NaNoWriMo. With November right around the corner, I’m ready to try again.

I’m incredibly critical of myself. And an incurable perfectionist. In previous blog posts, I made notes for improvement on my writing during November. Today, I’m tackling the mistakes I made during my last NaNoWriMo run head on. Here are, what I consider to be, my weak points, and my plans for improvement. (Cue the demise of my self-esteem)

Stop Trying to be Perfect

Remember when I said I am an incurable perfectionist? I wasn’t kidding. Last NaNoWriMo, I feel like I did not let myself free write because one bad sentence was nagging at me. Or the ideal phrasing wasn’t immediately coming to mind. And then there’s that self-doubt that all writers have. “Everything you’re writing is trash. Everything you’re even thinking about writing is trash. You should just stop, stop forever and eat potato chips all day.” I mean, that’s what my voice of doubt sounds like. I just want my story to be perfect. But I know that no story is perfect, and I should get over that idea.

Solution: Accept that writing garbage is okay. That not every word out of my brain will be amazing. That at least half of those 50,000 words will probably be changed. Just to write without stopping myself because something doesn’t sound right. In the words of Hemingway “The first draft of anything is garbage”. Next month, I’ll fight the urge to edit and perfect until December.

Focus On One Scene At A Time

If you can’t tell already, my brain is easily distracted. I have a bad habit of jumping around from scene to scene, writing small bits here and there. Then, I find myself losing focus and becoming frazzled. When I try to write a bunch of bits for a bunch of different parts, I become overwhelmed and nothing gets done.

Plan of Attack: This one’s hard. I need to work on my focus. I need to push myself to concentrate on one scene at a time. I can’t write the whole novel all at once. My best bet is to tackle certain sections or scenes during November.

Write More Descriptions

Well, writing descriptions wasn’t, and maybe still isn’t, my strongest suit as a writer.  Actually, I recently wrote a post centered around tips for writing setting descriptions. I talked about how I struggle with writing about the setting. Usually, dialogue comes first to me when I’m writing. But a forest is just a forest right? Wrong.

Plan of Attack: Let’s just say, I’m working on it. I’m more mindful of how the people and the places in my stories look. My goal is to paint a vivid, realistic picture for the reader. Trying my best to tap into sensory details of settings and also the unique physical features of my characters.

Lost Connection

I’ll be honest, there were moments I didn’t feel connected to my characters nor to the time period. To quote myself from the previous year “It was like we were once roommates, living together and then, they became the neighbors down the street. An unexplained distance came between me and this story idea.” Think about it, I’m a modern-day lady writing in the perspective of a young man living in the roaring 20’s. How can I possible fit into those shoes?

Solution: Well, for starters, this year, the big bang happened. By completely changing the plot, I feel much more confident in my story idea. As for the characters, I’m gonna try a couple of things this October. Really flush some characters out and get to know them inside and out. I want to make sure that they’re 3-dimensional characters. As for the setting, research is important. I’ve already collected some resources to help me understand that time period. The goal is to be as accurate as possible.


What would you say was your weak point from last NaNoWriMo? And what are you doing to overcome it and improve for this year? Let me know in the comments, lovelies.

Write with Heart,

Lady Jabberwocky