Camp NaNoWriMo 2017!

This year marks my first year participating in Camp NaNoWriMo! I’ve attempted the regular NaNoWriMo the past two years, but haven’t met the goal of 50,000 words either time. For this April, I plan on adding at least 10,000 words to the novel I started in November, which I think is a reasonable goal. I wrote almost 18,000 words in November, so 28,000 is a lot better than where I started. If I meet my original goal early on in April, then I’ll add 5 to 10 thousand more words on my goal.

The biggest motivation I have to do the best I can this April is the fact that I want to finish my novel. I’ve had this idea for nearly four years and I just want to get it written down, even if I really hate certain parts.

For more motivation, I printed out the first ten pages of what I have so far, but I’m not allowed to touch them. Instead, I have to wait until I complete my novel. Then, I can go in and edit them. I already know of some of the stuff I want to cut out, but I won’t do it until I actually finish the novel.

Every week, if I feel as though I’ve written enough, I’ll print some more pages out and put them somewhere to wait. For some reason, I had such a huge motivation after printing the first ten pages, so I know I’ll keep writing this until I actually finish.

This April will be a huge help in getting me back into the swing of writing daily. Even though I’m working crew on a theatre production throughout April, I will find time every day to write at least a page, if not more. The great thing is that I’ve already written four pages today. Motivation is a wonderful thing.

Being a Freelance Writer

There’s the word that a lot of people seem to not like: Freelance. It means someone thinks highly enough of their skills that they will be willing to do that skill for you. Sometimes, they turn out to not be as great as they make themselves out to be.

I consider myself a freelance writer. I’ve done some work in the past and plan to do more in the future. Am I the most talented writer out there? No. Am I quick to get the job done? Yes.

Freelance writing is more than just getting some extra, supplemental money. It’s making sure you deliver on your promise to your client and write to the best of your ability, even if you know nothing about the content you’ll be writing about. I’ve had to research for a lot of subjects I know little to nothing about. Some of it was dry and some of it was interesting.

There’s one thing that needs to be clear: not all freelance work is easy and not all freelance work is impossible. You know what your skills are. Don’t try to make yourself out to be a fantastic writer in order to get clients. That will likely just make no clients come to you. They want someone genuine, not fake.

If freelance work sounds like something you want to do, make sure your ready. Take some classes, research what goes into it, and look at other freelancers. See what they do that makes them successful. If you want, you can better your skills before you start the work. Your potential clients will thank you for being the best you can be.

Excerpt from My In-Progress Fiction Novel

Hello! I thought I would motivate myself to start writing my novel again by writing a small excerpt from it on here. This is from much later in the book than where I am, but it’s always nice to know where the story is going in the future.

~~~

His face was contorted into something grotesque and painful. The gun dropped from his hands as they gripped the sides of his head. I tried to look away, but I was transfixed on his eyes. They were bulging from his skull, looking terrified. They slowly rolled to the back of his head as he fell over. He hit the ground with a thud, blood flowing from his eyes and ears.

My hands were shaking. I tore my gaze from him and looked around. No one else was anywhere in sight. I turned back to him and felt my heart beat faster.

It was me. I had done that to him.

He was trying to kill me, so of course I would defend myself. There’s nothing wrong with that. It’s all part of human nature. Plus, he threatened the life of my best friend. I wasn’t going to back down from that.

I had no idea that I was able to do that. I shouldn’t be able to hurt someone in that way, just read their immediate thoughts. It couldn’t have been me. There has to be someone else around here.

Even as I looked around for the tenth time, I knew that no one would be coming out to claim their kill.

I was the killer.

Flash Fiction – Don’t Move

By: Samantha Keeney

It was uncomfortable. My hip dug into the middle of the two seats and my leg had fallen asleep. Mark’s arm pushed into my back, his shaking hand resting on mine.

Mark’s hand suddenly gripped mine. The silence around us was broken only by the undeniable rasps coming from behind the car. They were far away, but we both knew where they were headed. Time was up.

The door rattled. A man was trying to get in. His hair was matted to his face, dried blood cracking on his cheek. I couldn’t help but stare at him. The wild, barbaric look pierced through me.

Mark shook his head violently and looked away. I stared at the man, who pulled out a gun and tapped the glass with it. His other hand came into view, three fingers up.

His ring finger went down.

My hand was white. Mark wouldn’t, or couldn’t, let go. I tried to soothe him, but there wasn’t enough room.

His middle finger went down.

I wanted to close my eyes. Everything would fade away and it would be okay. I wouldn’t have to see Mark’s pained face. I could let my imagination do everything for me.

His index finger went down.

The man disappeared below the window. The gun was useless as they piled on top of him. One of them looked in the window.

Mark and I held each other as the world around us was covered in shadows.

Words

Words are hard, as any writer knows. Sometimes, the one word we know we need just isn’t coming to us. Sometimes, sitting down to write is an impossible thing. Words don’t always jump out at us and flow through our hands onto the page. However, that doesn’t mean that we can’t still write.

The amount of times I’ve sat down to write and ended up writing something different than I was planning is astounding. My brain doesn’t always allow me to write what I’ve been wanting to write.

I have a story that I’ve been working on for four years. After getting around 100 pages in, I scrapped it and started from the beginning. It just wasn’t doing what I wanted it to do, so I had to completely restart it. Surprisingly enough, losing all of those pages didn’t bother me. I already know what I want the story to do, it’s just the process of writing it that’s difficult.

Now, I’m in a flash fiction class. I would love to see if I can take at least some of my story and transform it into a flash fiction, just to see what happens. I could even take the general concept and make it into a flash fiction, if I don’t decide on a specific spot instead. I honestly didn’t think I’d like flash fiction all that much, but I’ve found it to be pretty interesting and helpful. It’s definitely something I will use in the future.

 

Writing Helps Better Yourself

I’ve been doing a freelance writing job for almost three months now. I mostly write articles and it’s completely ghost writing, which isn’t what I set out to do, but is what happened.

For the most part, the articles haven’t been about things that I want to write about. I personally think writing about plastic surgery rumors is completely unimportant in the grand scheme of things and we shouldn’t care if a famous person got a nose job.

Occasionally, however, I’ll get an assignment that is actually interesting to research. I’ve had some that aren’t exactly the most interesting, but then I was assigned a few eBooks to write. The last one I worked was mostly about connecting with nature. There was a lot more to it than that, however. A lot of it had to do with helping yourself achieve the best you can possibly be.

It was really interesting to write and ended up actually having some things that I would apply to my own life. They might just help me better myself overall and make my life that much better in the long run.

Writing can help anyone better themselves. The same, of course, goes with reading. Both of these things can spark something in you to help you become a better you. Writing has always made an impact on my life, and it’s not going to stop anytime soon, only become much bigger.

Is Too Much Writing Bad?

I’ve noticed that throughout the past few years, I’ve been doing more and more writing. I always did a lot of writing, but it was spread out and not very consistent. Thanks to college, I was doing more consistent writing because of my creative writing classes.

I think two years ago, I took a lot of writing classes to the point where I felt like I couldn’t do much of any writing for a while. Of course, that didn’t stop me, but it still crossed my mind.

Now, I’m not only taking three classes with a lot of writing, but am also doing an online writing job where I’m rewriting sometimes two articles a day on top of doing homework for my super stressful senior year. Not to mention, during most of my free time at school (of which there is little), I’m writing a story down by hand that I’ve had in my head for years.

Am I writing too much?

It’s funny that this came to my head tonight as I’m doing work for my online job and doing some homework. It’s even funnier that I decided to write it down here, just as an easier way to get my thoughts out.

In a way, I think it is too much. I feel like I can’t do anything besides write, which isn’t really what my main goal is in life. Whenever I think I have time to myself, I remember that I have ten pounds of stuff to write.

In another way, it’s far from being too much. The fact that I’m still doing it should tell you something.

I love writing. I’ve always loved writing, ever since I was super little and had an extremely active imagination. I love creating stories, which is part of the reason I’m also an actress. Stories are really what keeps me sane.

Maybe it’s not all that far-fetched to say that maybe writing so much is actually keeping me sane, in a very strange way. I just love coming up with ideas and figuring out something to do with them (that’s why I like creative writing so much).

I answered my own question a lot faster than I thought I would.

Even with the question answered, I still need to keep in mind that I can’t let writing take over my entire life. I need to do well in school in order to graduate with really good grades. I also need to keep my focus on my acting if I want to do anything with that in the future.

Writing will always be there, but the acting is something I really have to work for.