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Saturday, January 5, 2013

The Crazy Things We Do Sometimes

Sometimes, I like a challenge.

I have been struggling to make time to write an early chapter book for a long time.  A long time.  And I am really frustrated with myself that I always put it on the back burner.

Not today. Today I turn the flame on under the pot.

As a self-inflicted challenge, I am giving myself 48 hours to write said book.

Impossible! you might say.  And you might be right.

But why not try?  I mean, who's it going to hurt if I can't do it?


At this point, I have the concept and a few pages.  I have no idea how long the book will be, but I'll count it a win if I get 5k words by my deadline.  (Magic Tree House books are 5k-7k, as are Junie B Jones books, however, Geronimo Stilton are 8k-10k, as are Marty McGuire books. And Humprey the Hamster books weigh in at an impressive 30k.)  I really have no idea how long this little book will want to be.  I am pretty sure it will wind up between 5k and 10k, but that's because that is where I WANT it to fall.  Sometimes stories have other ideas.

So, in addition to that little challenge, here are my January goals:

1.  Finish revisions of new middle grade novel.  Decide on a title.  (I have a couple of working titles, but I still keep thinking I will find the one that makes me go--WOW!)

2.  Start a picture book.

3.  Look at Chicken Wizard again.  It's sitting in my computer--no one has really seen it, and yet, I wait for this one piece of it so sing.  I need to figure out what it's problem is!!

Okay, I think I am good with those goals for the next few weeks.


Looking back on 2012, I am thankful for:

*Going to ALA in Anaheim and meeting the great folks at FSG, including my editor.
*Going to SCBWI for the first time.
*Getting starred reviews for the Seven Tales of Trinket from Kirkus, Publisher's Weekly, and Booklist, in addition to a really lovely one from School Library Journal.
*Having an amazing launch party (and getting to see my girls dance together  one more time!!)
*Working with extraordinary third-graders.
*Having a talented artist like Dan Craig paint the cover for Trinket.
*A new desk.
*A husband that realized I needed a new desk and found the perfect one.
*Beautiful, talented, smart daughters.
*Henry and Mikey

Okay, back to the craziness at hand!

ETA:  12:20, January 6th

Already 1,367 words into the story!  Now off to run a few errands.  I'd like to make Thai curry chicken lettuce wraps for dinner and need to get some things.  

5:43, January 6th

I've got 2,163 words, and will probably write for a bit again later tonight.  I  like where it's going, but something REALLY wild needs to happen in the next part.  Folks, this is way fun.

9:24, January 6th

2,416 words.  And I just named a box turtle after a president.  So there.  But now I am second guessing myself.  Is George Washington a better name for a box turtle, or is Teddy Roosevelt?

6:26, January 7th

2638 words, but I've barely had the time today!  In a few hours, my time limit will be here!  Oh no!  

9:45, January 7th

2949 words.  I wanted to do more tonight, but I am so incredibly tired--and the Nyquil is kicking in so I'd best pull up the covers and drift off.  

5:48, January 8th

3,305 words.  yeah, yeah, I know.  I am way over my time limit--almost by a day!  But I look at it this way, this is 3,305 more words that I would have had without my crazy goal.  I still think I can finish soon, but I am pretty sure that this is going to be at least 6,000.  (I really don't want it any more than that.)

8:55, January 8th

3,643 words.   Really cracked myself up with a certain scene. And the turtle has been named Teddy Roosevelt, in case you were wondering.  I really think I can finish this in a few days.  So jazzed!

7:06 January 9th

4,145 words.  Homestretch time...maybe.  But yeah!  

10:12 p.m. January 10th

Dudes--4,724!!  It is not done yet, but I think it will be under the 6,000 mark.  Okay,so it was not a chapterbook in a day--but it might be a chapterbook in a week, and I'll take it.

And I named the turtle Teddy Roosevelt.