How To Write a Novel in 30 Days – UPDATE!

So, just came out of my meeting with my IP tutor…

I’VE BEEN GREENLIGHTED!

YEEEAAAAHHHHH!!!!!

Though, on one condition…

He’s asked me to up the wordcount to 60,000 words…

Yes, you read that right, 60,000 words.

That’s 2000 words EVERY SINGLE DAY.

And that’s on top of the Journal, blogging and general life. No pressure then!

I’ve never upped my word-count before, considering that when I usually take on NaNoWriMo, or the Camp equivalent, I get to about the 15/20k mark before I end up throwing the towel in, and hiding in my room for the rest of the month, so that no one can spot me and ask how the novel is getting on.

But, this time, there is more at stake than just the half-written manuscript. My grade, my reputation at university is also on the line if I don’t succeed in this challenge.

My IP tutor said one main thing to me:

‘Just get those 2000 words a day written!’

And, you know what? I may be terrified, nervous, wanting to throw it all out and run in the opposite direction, but by Gods I won’t! I am more determined to prove that you can indeed write a novel in 30 days. Even if you have ADHD, a messy flat, piles of paperwork and a weird life in general.

I am a writer, and it’s about time I started actually being one.

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Carpri Diem!

It’s been quite some time since I wrote that last post, and I’m so sorry about not keeping this blog as updated as I ought to. A lot has happened in a little while, and I just haven’t given myself the time to write!

Anyway, summer has well and truly kicked off! All of my friends have moved off campus now, and I’ve been given the keys to my new studio flat! I’m sat in it at the moment, writing this. I started moving some bits and pieces over yesterday evening, and slept here for the first time last night. I have my own kitchen, bathroom, dining room, my bed is in the corner of the kitchen, along with my wardrobe, and my desk is in a lovely little conservatory section, which I love when it’s sunnier (the rain has kicked off today, sadly).

Update on the guy, we’re actually now together, as a proper couple! I even met his father the other week, and I’ve been given the thumbs up, apparently! Next week we’ll have been together for two months, scary how the time flies! I’ve never met someone so supportive and understanding about me and my issues, and I often have him behind me every step of the way when I embark on new projects, go off to places and generally follow my dreams. It’s lovely, I feel beautiful when I’m with him, and it’s wonderful.

All my coursework is finally complete! All I have to do now is print the last bits off, which I’ll do today, and hand them into the registrar’s office, then I can sit back, and wait for my grades, which I’ll get in September before the new academic year starts. Yikes! As long as I pass, then it’ll be ok, I’ll be aiming higher next year!

Speaking of university, my job as Careleaver Liberation Rep starts properly as of now! Clearing is happening, and young people across the country are finding out if they got into their university of choice. Careleavers are doing this too, and I remember opening my results letter telling me I got into my university, and wondering ‘how is this going to work out?’. So I’ll be on Twitter today, with the hashtag #careleaverlibrep to answer any questions about leaving care and starting up at university as a careleaver. Exciting time to be had by all!

So, on top of everything else, I’ve helped out with the development of an app for careleavers to assist with pathway plans, education/work/training and identity. It’ll be promoted during Careleaver Week, in October half term, so I’ll be promoting it to my students, as well as you guys. Just because you grew up in care, it doesn’t mean that you’re society’s offcast. You still have so much to offer! I promise!

I’ve also started work on a WWI novel for young people, so am hoping to have the first draft completed by the end of the year. In the meantime, I should really start moving some more stuff over…

NaNoWriMo #11, 12, 13, 14

Current Word Count -14996

You might have noticed that I haven’t posted for a few days. This is because I simply haven’t had the time to write. 

On Tuesday I woke up late, had to go to a lecture and a seminar, then straight out to Bath with my flatmates for the Christmas Lights Switch-On, which was actually rather disappointing. We then went out for Pizza Hut, before going home and sleeping, so I never actually got any scribbling done. Yesterday was the dreaded three hours of lectures that I have every fortnight (how they sort the timetables out at my uni is beyond me!), followed by a mammoth laundry and cleaning session straight afterwards. Today I did a tiny bit of writing, then popped into town for a little while to do some shopping, and then came home and watched television. I did see my mentor today, and she’s given me a load of paperwork to fill out for my upcoming ADHD assessment, as well as a coloured overlay (a piece of coloured transparent plastic that you cover pieces of work with to read through), and I sat and read my critical extracts with it. I’m thrilled, as it’s already really helping me, and I’ve only had it an afternoon! She said that if I show signs that I have the condition where text seems to move about (spaces between words on much smaller, old fashioned prints used in academic writing tend to seem to get bigger, and I can only see certain words or letters if I concentrate) I might get funding to get special tinted glasses made for me so I can wear them rather than fiddling around with the overlay. I’m thrilled at the thought! 

I’ve also got a big essay due on Monday that I haven’t managed to start yet, as I keep getting distracted with NaNo, as well as life in general, so that means I won’t be able to write as much as I have been doing. It sucks, because I haven’t written an academic essay since I was sixteen, so am really worried that I’ll write like a total noob and fail the assignment…

Such fun.

Update Time!

So, I figured that I haven’t really written a proper update post in a while, so before I go off to have the opening chapter of my novel to shreds…  I mean workshopped by my peers, I thought I would update you on what I’ve been up to.

Firstly, the Novel finally has a title! It’s called No Day But Today, based on a line from the musical Rent, which is one of my favourite musicals ever! I felt it fitted because this novel is essential a comedy coming of age piece, about a young university student who finds out what it truly means to love, and to sieze every day as it comes.

I’ve also decided against the Elphaba Halloween costume, as I can’t afford to buy better facepaint at the moment. However, tomorrow I’ll pop into Bristol’s Primark to replace the button-up shirt I lost so I can go all Femme Doctor on people’s asses! I’m also thinking of doing Femme Shaun, although this means replacing my tie, as that’s gone walkies, sadly. I need two costumes now because I’ll be going to the Monster Mash on Wednesday, and going out on the town for actual Halloween. Geeky costumes are the way to go, I’m pleased to say!

It’s my birthday on Wednesday, hence the very serious ‘Dear Younger Heidi’ post, and I’m trying to cram as much immature behaviour into the next two days as I possibly can! Also, happy birthday Josh, we can be the same age for two days! But then I shall be twenty, and will have to start acting, well, more like an adult. It doesn’t mean I actually will act like an adult all the time, quite far from that. But, I do like my birthday, as people always want to celebrate it because it’s so close to Halloween.

I’m also going back to Hampshire for the weekend, which is very exciting! I’ve missed Portsmouth, in a weird kind of way…

So, I’ve typed up the firat draft of my novel, and am starting to write out the second one, but I dread to think what people will think of it.

And, on that note, I have class in a bit.

Signing out!

Weekly Catch Up!

So, I haven’t done a proper catch up post in a while, but I shall make sure I do one every Sunday.

Anyways, this was my first full week of lectures and seminars, the lectures were all introductory, whilst the seminars were a lot more enjoyable. I haven’t actually started my assignments yet, because my brain turns to mush post lectures and therefore means that I have to do something completely unrelated to bring my mind back to the real world. And by the time that happens, it’s three in the morning, and I really ought to go to bed. I need to get into the swing of things so bad. 

I also had a job interview! I had signed up to do bar work at the local rugby club, and they had asked me to attend a recruitment night, which I assumed to be formal and all interview-like. So, with my paperwork in hand, I headed off to the rugby club, filled out a few forms, and was offered the job, which I start on Thursday! Whoop! I’m finally employed, which is very exciting, as I’ve never actually worked for a wage! I mean, the museum did offer me a job, but I would of been unable to accept it as I was to hand in my notice that same week, which kind of sucked. 

Besides, I’m getting busy with the Comedy Society! I missed the bus to go earlier, to be on time, but now I’m going to be late.I guess I need to pay more attention to bus timetables. But there is Oxjam in a couple of weeks, so I really need to get some material together for my (gulp) first stand up performance. I’m nervous, but I’m sure it’ll be all worth it.

The past few days I’ve had fresher’s flu, so I’ve spent most of my weekend in my pajamas feeling sorry for myself. I’m feeling a bit better now I’ve had some rest, and tomorrow I have a meeting with my university mentor, and I need to drop in a form to work, followed by a hunt for suitable shoes for my shift.

Until then…