Friday, October 29, 2010

Happy Halloween and Beginning of NaNoWrimo

First off, I wanted to say happy Halloween to everyone who celebrates. It's one of my favorite holidays, though the past few years we haven't done much. This year, we hope to find a party or two and have a little fun. Please be safe if you plan to go out on the town! Some weird crap can happen on Halloween (I was actually in a car accident on Halloween several years ago).

Be sure not to get too crazy come October 31st. The next day is a special one...the first day of NaNoWrimo. What's the best way to get through the first week? Eat the left over Halloween candy, and if you don't have any left, be sure to stop by your local store to buy the crazy discounted candy they have to get rid of!

Speaking of NaNoWrimo, are you ready? Our critique group shared our ideas for plots and decided just last night which to work on. I had two ideas that are very different and wasn't sure which to pick. Both had potential, but with the girls' help, I was able to decide.

Right now, I have a basic idea of my story, and a very very very (did I mentioned very?) rough synopsis. I'm at the point where I wonder if I have enough to write 50,000 words in the 30 days ahead, but each year I go through self-doubt. Don't let it swallow you up, or you will never get past the first 5,000 words, let alone 50,000. I hope I can use my own advice.

I've been in a writing funk lately, so I hope that writing the first draft of a new book snaps me out of it so I can get back to editing my current WIP, Parlor. I'm stuck on the editing part, prodding along but just don't know where to take some of the chapters. By cranking out a lot of crappy words in the month of November, maybe I'll have them out of my system and only the good ones will be left to finish editing my book!

Here's to hoping! Next week, I'll give an update on how my first 5 days of NaNo has gone. I'm keeping my fingers crossed that I have around 9,000-10,000 words. I'd love to write most of my week's wordcount during the week so that I have the weekend free to not stress over it and plot/research for the next week.

What do you hope to accomplish the first week of NaNo? Do you have a schedule planned out?

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Pure Speculation Festival

My hubbie, my 2 crazy labs and I were on one hell of Joy READ this week. We travelled 7 hours to Grimshaw, Alberta for a few author visits to grade 7 and 8 students (well, just me, the rest of my crew hung out at the hotel room). From Grimshaw we drove another 6 hours to Edmonton to attend the 6th Annual Pure Speculation Festival - a small (but growing!) sci-fi / fantasy con where I sat on a few panels.

As we drove around the Radisson Hotel, desperately trying to find a place to park (I swear every nerd worth his/her weight in gold was at Pure Spec), we spied a green-skinned gentleman getting out of his vehicle. "We're in YOUR world now," my hubbie announced. Yes, we were. I was in nerd heaven the entire day. Walking amongst the costumed, the gamers, the keeners taking notes and the Geek Calendar Girls was quite the adventure. I presented a session on the SKINNED Series, gave an overview of the beasties in the SKINNED world and showed a sneak peek of the trailer for SECOND SKIN. But the best part - the cool people I met during my panels.

Tanya Huff (creator of the Blood series of books, turned into Blood Ties - a 2 season TV show) is so damn smart and well read and passionate. She kicked the snot out of any point she made and yet had time to chat with the newbie (that'd be me) and enjoyed hanging with fans.

Dan Brodribb is a nifty guy - a self-professed shy comic - a wrestling referee - and all around fantasy fan. His self-effacing humour is endearing.

Then there's Mike Perschon, an English prof / Steampunk Scholar who makes the classics come alive - ALIVE! Plus, he's up on his YA fiction and even shared some steampunk titles my high school History teacher hubbie could use in class.

As panelists, we engaged in heated discussions - the sparkling vampire debate, paranormal fiction as the modern fairytale, which sci-fi title should "stay on the island", the morphing of paranormal fiction into genres like steampunk and what was next for the genre in general. I left the fest with my inner nerd fully charged.

I hope I'm invited back next year. I'm going to get me a kickass costume. I wish I had taken pictures of the wicked cool costumes, but alas - epic fail on my part. (Many thanks to my brother, Blaise, who kindly took pics of the SKINNED session for me - and my sister, Brenda - who helped me setup!) Until next year, Pure Spec.....