NaNoWriMo Eve

For some wrimos across the world, the clock has struck midnight. Writers have heard the call to action, and their fingers click feverishly across their keyboards as they begin the race toward the 50,000 words finish line. Where I’m located, it’s still October 31st, the magical night of Halloween, but in just a few short hours, writers in my area will be joining forces with the rest of the world for NaNoWriMo. Unfortunately for myself, I will have to wait until after I get home from work tomorrow before I can participate. As anxious as I am to start working on my novel, I definitely need my sleep.

Last night, I opened up a new Scrivener document and tinkered around with character and setting ideas, but didn’t really add anything new. Aside from that and my endless daydreaming, the only other thing I’ve done to prepare was skim through the first 5 chapters of my NaNo project from last year. I can’t help but feel nervous about how little it seems I’ve prepared, but I have also learned over the years that my brain is sharper and more focused under pressure, so blindly into the madness I’ll go.

If you have any writer friends or family members participating in NaNoWriMo, please be especially patient and supportive this month. This is a huge endeavor, and speaking from my own experience, the hardest thing for a writer is in fact writing.

I have some dedicated time off of work next week to work on my novel, and I’m going to carve out a section of time to post a more detailed update here about how NaNoWriMo is going.

Happy Halloween, and good luck fellow writers!

NaNoWriMo Prep 2016

National Novel Writing Month is almost upon us! For the entire month of November, I will be participating alongside thousands of writers across the country (it’s actually intercontinental now) to write a 50,000 words novel. This challenge is for aspiring writers of all ages, so go to to sign up if you’re interested.

I jumped in headfirst last year with an idea I’d been brewing for over year, and I somehow managed to make my word count goal; I wrote 50,785 words in 30 days. That was a huge milestone for me. I committed to writing nearly every single day. Only a few of those days were easy; most days I came home from work and spent hours trying just to get my brain to focus. I am not a quick writer, and my perfectionism prevents me from getting words on a page until I have tired myself out from trying so hard and desperation kicks in. The few words I end up with are often ones I am not proud of, but  I keep telling myself that’s what editing is for. Editing is a necessary part of the process, and it’s totally okay if my first draft is terrible. I can always fix it later.

This year, I am doing a rewrite of last year’s novel. In preparation for November, I am reading through my story and all of my notes. The reason I am doing a rewrite is because I need to make a lot of changes and polish it up so I can prepare for the publishing process. That’s my goal, anyway.

If you don’t want to participate, but would like to support NaNoWriMo, check out their donation and merchandise page. They have a new scarf in their store (pictured below) and some other awesome things like notebooks, coffee mugs, t-shirts and more.

Good luck to my fellow wrimos out there, and happy writing!


Summary of PAX West 2016

I attended PAX West for all four days over Labor Day weekend, and I’m officially a month behind on posting this. Overall, it was a great experience, as usual. There was so much to see, and it was impossible to do everything, but I was able to check off all the necessary things on my to-do list.

On the first day, my friends and I sped through all of the floors to take a mental note of all the things we wanted to see. The first thing that stood out to us was the Resident Evil Haunted House. I honestly didn’t take the time to read what it was all about, but when I hear the words “haunted house,” I’m sold. We didn’t get to it the first day, and we tried the next two mornings to get there with no luck. Each of the day’s tickets were capped within about 10 minutes of opening. On day four, the final day, my friends were too tired to continue with the con, so I continued on a solo mission. I made it a point to be one of the lucky few to get through the doors as soon as the clock struck 10am. And I made it. I got a pass for 12:30pm, but a girl next to me insisted on trading with me so she could go at the same time as her friends. It worked out in my favor as I got to walk right into the house.

I was called into a dark room with an old dining chair in the center, facing a TV screen. An antiqued lamp swung above. I was told to sit in the chair, and a woman put a VR headset on me. This was my first VR experience, so I had no idea what I was doing. The woman did mention that my character in the simulation would be tied to a chair and unable to get up the entire time, but she stuck a controller in my hands so I could press start. I ended up being a bit disappointed with the demo because for one thing, I don’t scare easily, so the zombie noises and a man getting attacked in front of me was little boring. Second, all I could do was sit there; it was not interactive at all. Though, I suppose haunted houses aren’t necessarily interactive either, but they do affect more senses than just sight and sound. Oh well. I got a free t-shirt out of the experience, so there’s that.

I am not a huge youtuber, but I was with someone throughout the convention that is. She had been talking for weeks about how she wanted to see Markiplier and Pewdiepie. We tried and failed in an attempt to make it to Markiplier’s autograph session, but we did make it to his panel at Benoroya Hall, and we had a good time. I certainly wasn’t expecting to see two marriage proposals on stage either, but it is a thing that happened.

The rest of my friend’s dream was completed when we discovered Pewdiepie was LITERALLY right behind us at the Sanshee booth in the expo hall. He was incredibly nice and even let my friend snag a picture with him.

On day two or three (it’s all a blur now), I waited in line for about 30-40 minutes to paint a miniature figure. Out of only two options, I decided to paint the Valkyrie, and it proved to be quite an ambitious choice. We were only given 45 minutes to paint. Yikes! If any of you have ever painted a miniature before, then you’ll know that is only about half the time a person needs to do a detailed job. I definitely ran out of time, but I packed in as much color as I could, and even though I wasn’t able to get any details in her face, I’m still proud of my results. The small backdrops that Reaper Miniatures set up for the painters were a nice touch. I liked being able to put my Valkyrie right into action and show her off.

Sometime during the weekend, my friend had accidentally left her credit card behind at a nearby restaurant, so while she and her boyfriend went back to get it, I wandered into the Exploding Kittens room and picked up a copy of the first expansion, Imploding Kittens. The creators also happened to be signing people’s merchandise at the checkout, so of course I had to ask for autographs. And what’s even better than autographs is the new “alter the future” card in the expansion, which features a picture of a creature called a furmaid. A FURMAID. What more can I say?

Another card game I love is called Cards Against Humanity. I took a stroll through their store and found a card pack inside a box of “Corn Holes.” In case you were wondering, yes, there really is food inside. The cereal looks just like the picture, but no, I haven’t tried it…yet.

There were two life-size dinosaurs on the main show floor, and I REALLY wanted to get my picture taken with one of them, but there were also so many other things I wanted to see, and I couldn’t handle waiting in line for two-three hours for a picture, or anything else for that matter. So, I didn’t get a chance to sit on either dino, but I did get to sneak a picture of the Tyrannosaurus Rex with no people around it while I was waiting for a friend who was competing in the Gears of War tournament.

The last item worth mentioning is Fluffy/Cerberus. I had to get myself a Cerberus plushie. He’s so cute and squishy! Everyone needs a three-headed dog in their life.

That’s a wrap on my PAX highlights! Let me know if you were there and what you liked about it.