The next chapter: November 2014 update

So. Just to get it out there, I didn’t meet my NaNo goal this year. Honestly, I thought it was going to be a tall order writing 50k words while working full time.

If you remember my pre-NaNo post, I said that if everything went to hell and I only got 20k words written, that I’d still be happy.

Well, I wrote 28,355 words on my new novel idea and I’m more than happy with that.

NaNoWriMo participant 2014

I didn’t do more than maintenance housework.

I did try to live as normal a life as possible.

I did not abandon my blog, though I was less present on social media.

I had two birthday celebrations, two weeks of training (which always drains introverted Mellie), two weeks of travel, a workshop on publishing, a Christmas party fiasco, and a new critique group meeting to attend.

I’m surprised I got as much done as I did.

I’m still in recovery.

So here, briefly, is what the month looked like.

November's Writing Progress

5,269 words on the blog and 28,355 on the new novel.

33,624 words total for the month.


I’ve taken a few days’ respite so far in December (sorry about the time warp, folks), but I’m getting back on that wee writing horsie next week.

As Chuck Wendig says, I gotta finish my shit. As Kristen Lamb says, life rewards finishers.

Specifically, I’m not only going to work further on Marushka, which is another YA urban fantasy/fairy tale re-envisioning, but I’m also going to get back to my other draft-in-progress, Gerod and the Lions, my MG fantasy, and work on a few short stories for upcoming contests and anthology calls.

I’ve written Marushka in Scrivener, my first project using that program. To be honest, while I can see the value of Scrivener, I’m organized enough, and well-versed enough in Word that I’m content to return to it.

Unless, of course, Microsoft does what it’s threatening to do and make Office into a subscription-based service. If that happens, they’ve lost a heretofore faithful customer and I’m jumping ship to Scrivener.

I don’t know why MS has to go and screw up a perfectly good office suite.

I’ve had the pleasure of being on the launch team for a fellow author for the past few months as well. It’s been an interesting process helping Jane Ann McLachlan choose a title for her novel, a cover, reading the ARC, and writing the review for her.

I’ve also gleaned a few things for my toolbox. I knew that one must place one’s review to (as opposed to .ca) but now I know that I should also find other reviews helpful and click that little button on as many of them as possible.

Apparently that’s another little tip: Amazon will give preference and weight to helpful reviews, as opposed to reviews on which the button has not been clicked. Amazon also prefers it if you have purchased the book or ebook through them prior to posting the review. A verified purchase carries more weight again.

Interesting stuff. And here I thought I was helping people out by posting my reviews of their books. Now I know how to help them even more.

And that was my month.

I got a little present in my inbox this past week. See that lovely Excel spreadsheet depicted above? That was created by the wonderful and talented Jamie Raintree. I got her newsletter, and a link to the 2015 version (happy dancing commences).

You need to subscribe to that lovely lady 🙂

I spent most of today cleaning the house after my month of sloth. Phil helped (bless him) by doing the pots in the kitchen and cleaning the bathroom.

Now Mellie has to toddle off to Bedfordshire. She has five submissions to critique for tomorrow’s meeting and Christmas decorations to haul out of storage and place artfully around the house.

You know what? I love my life 🙂

The Next Chapter

9 thoughts on “The next chapter: November 2014 update

  1. Congratulations on all you achieved during November which considering all the other stresses was quite a lot.
    You can see my age is having an effect now. I read you were going to Bedfordshire and had to sit back and think- I thought Melanie was U.S. based before it finally dawned on me what you meant. Doh! I hope you’re suitably rested.
    xxx Massive Hugs xxx

    Liked by 1 person

    • It’s something my friend says when she’s online late . . . off to Bedfordshire 🙂 Yes, I was so well rested I even slept in!
      I’m in Canada rather than the US. I know, same continent, but you wouldn’t want be confusing Wales and Ireland, would you? 😉
      Bear hug!


      • I’m so sorry, of course I knew you live in Canada, it was a stupid oversight Nope, I wouldn’t want Wales and Ireland to be confused, you’re right. Maybe I should have gone to Bedfordshire a bit earlier myself. I’ve heard many people use the term over the years so it was a poor joke to play. Forgiven ????
        xxx Massive Hugs xxx

        Liked by 1 person

  2. I wish I could actually get my head round spread sheets, I can only use them in the most basic of ways and have no chance of understanding using graphs and formulas, thankfully I have found a decent one ready to keep track of expenses and earnings ready for my book going on sale or I would never have managed it myself lol

    Liked by 1 person

    • Once you do get your head around them, though, they’re kind of fun (sez the geek in me). I’ve been watching you comb through my archives over the last weeks. I hope you’re finding lots of useful information 🙂


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