Camp NaNoWriMo Prompts

Camp NaNoWriMo Pompts

Camp NaNoWriMo Prompts

Here comes Camp NaNoWriMo! Are you participating? Are you going to try to win? Or, like me, are you just planning to write and see where you go? This July my plan, so far, is to write to a new prompt each day, shooting for a full story that is anywhere between 50 and 2,000 words. At the same time, I will be editing Biomalware, my work in progress, and plotting a novel that I want to write in August. Crazy, you say? Why, yes, thank  you for noticing. Care to join me? Aw, heck, here’s half my prompts for July, help yourself. I think they work whether you are writing short stories or just want to work one or more of them into your story. I’ll post the other half next week.

  1. “Finally, a lie too big.” from Doctor Who – Write a story with a lie or series of lies and one that is simply too big to be believed.
  2. A shaved bear is a scary creature, looks nothing like a bear and much like a werewolf in a modern fantasy/horror film. Have you seen that picture going around? Put one in your story somehow.
  3. “In vain I have struggled, it will not do. My feelings will not be repressed. You must let me tell you how ardently I admire and love you.” Pride & Prejudice by Jane Austen. Obsessive or passionate? You decide, then write it into your story.
  4. “Why don’t guys ever look at me like that?” “Because, you’re never looking when they do.” Also, “The best feeling is when you look at him and he is already staring.” Two memes, don’t know where the quotes really come from. Perhaps lots of the first then the latter?
  5. “Every villain is a hero in their own mind.” Write a story about a villain who truly believes he is doing the right thing.
  6. “May you never forget what is worth remembering, nor ever remember what is best forgotten.” Irish blessing. Work forgetting and/or remembering into your story.
  7. “Imagine meeting someone who understood even the dustiest corners of your mixed-up soul.” Is that good or scary? Put it in your story.
  8. “Life becomes easier when you learn to accept an apology that you never got.” Sometimes people apologize without saying the words. Refusing to remember what they did so wrong, re-writing the past as in “I would never do that, or say that!” is agreeing with you that what they did was wrong and is an apology in a way. What other ways might people apologize without saying the words? Write it into your story.
  9. “I wonder how many people I’ve looked at all my life and never seen.” Write about a person who you never noticed or thought were one way then you find out they are totally different than you imagined. (Yes, I have someone particular in mind.)
  10. “You and I are more than friends. We’re like a really small gang.” Thelma and Louise? Earl Had to Die? Write about two friends who decide to take the law into their own hands. Do they go too far?
  11. “It’s not the load that breaks you down, it’s the way you carry it.” Lena Horne. Two characters, same “load” – carrying it very differently. Go.
  12. “I am the designer of my own catastrophe.” What mistakes can your character make? Make ’em BIG and messy.
  13. “Always wear your invisible crown.” Someone attempts to humiliate your character but they hold their head high.
  14. “Forgiving someone is easy, but being able to trust them again is a totally different story.” Can your character do it? Is the person worthy of being trusted again?
  15. “I got hurt. Really hurt. And sometimes when that happens, something inside me shuts off.” I actually have had this experience, have you? Whether you have or haven’t, explore it in a story.
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Hey! Who wrote this book?

Open Book

 

Hey! Who wrote this book?

It all started earlier this week when I was preparing a talk on Their Eyes Were Watching God by Zora Neale Hurston. There was an intro by Edwidge Danticat and I decided to look her up. I’d known of her writing for years and always thought of her as an older woman.

She’s only FIVE years older than me!

AND she’s been wining awards and recognition for her writing since I went off to college.

Argh!

I posted about that on Facebook, questioning what the heck I’d been doing all this time with my writing, and an old friend suggested we share works in progress to help move things along. Being as he is a really good editor, I pulled out my Biomalware manuscript from last August that I wrote during Camp NaNoWriMo.

Now, what I want to know is, who wrote this book when I wasn’t looking? Because there’s 149 pages and it’s not nearly as bad as I remember. I guess what they say about giving it time in a drawer is true.

So, yesterday I took the afternoon off to work on it. Of course, I got a stomach virus but that’s a story you don’t want to hear and I STILL managed to get the novel outlined and rearranged some pieces of it – after a nap.

(I’m sure I’ve mentioned Biomalware before but to bring everyone up to speed, the novel is set in the near future where a new strain of genetic modification to crops has created food which isn’t food for everyone, some people cannot derive nutrition from it. Now it is infiltrating even the organic crops through pollen contamination, and that’s not all it’s doing.  The short story that started it is here, in case you’re interested.)

My next step is to use the information on Scenes and Sequels that I learned from Jim Butcher’s LiveJournal to focus the action in each chapter. (If you haven’t checked it out, I highly recommend it. He hasn’t written much lately but the information on how he writes is really useful.)

Then I’ll go back through and tighten up things using the rest of the info in his posts on things like characterization and THEN I’m going to look back at it and make sure I’ve done everything I learned from Donald Maass in his book, Writing the Breakout Novel.

Luckily, after posting on Facebook, I have several more interested readers to give me feedback once I’m ready, as well as my writer’s group.

Now, the problem is that I want to apply for the James Jones Fellowship Contest because I think my book fits in AND because the first prize is TEN THOUSAND DOLLARS.

It’s awarded to “an American author of a first fiction novel-in-progress” and “is intended to honor the spirit of unblinking honesty, determination, and insight into modern culture exemplified by the late James Jones.”

What’s the problem there, you ask? Well, the deadline is March 1st. Luckily they just want the summary and first fifty pages so I will send that out to my readers at the end of the weekend.

Of course, we also plan to celebrate Valentine’s Day on Saturday and we have a family gathering on Sunday.

*slump*

Maybe I can get some rest next week.