Sodaro's Stories

November 1, 2018

NaNo

Filed under: Writer's thoughts — michelle sodaro @ 6:20 pm
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For the past six years, I have taken the month of November and hid out to participate in National Novel Writing Month or NaNoWriMo (or as I lovingly refer to it as “nano”).

The goal is simple: 50,000 words. 30 days. See…easy 😀

Four of the six years, I have been successful. I have gotten my 50,000 words in 30 days. I have broken down the word count to 1667 words a day, and I have reached the goal. Go me.

What I have found that works for me is

**an outline

**Prompts for plot points

**good pens

**music in my ears

**tasty beverage in my cup

**notebook for project

**comfy chair

**food I can eat with my left hand

**my wrist brace for days I have pushed too far

**abandoning friends and family in order to hit my word count

Love you all. See you in December. I will post about my other books and post updates on my progress

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November 2, 2017

Day 2 of Gratitude: Sleep

Filed under: Writer's thoughts — michelle sodaro @ 2:51 pm
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So there is a lot going on in my mind and world at current. Today, and every day it happens…I am grateful for restful sleep. It’s not an every day thing…even on the best of days. Being a writer is sometimes a challenge to restful anything…but between my move and my job and my other job and NaNo (which I only got 700 words on today, but that is okay…progress is progress)…I am definitely grateful for restful sleep.

 

November 1, 2017

Day one of Gratitude: NaNo start

Filed under: Writer's thoughts — michelle sodaro @ 2:54 pm
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So, I am going to do this again this year, and hopefully I make it all 30. There is just a lot going on, but all of that is something to be grateful for, so I should be just fine.

I move on Friday. I am working a full-time job and a part-time job. I also am planning on getting 2 more projects finished before 2017 sees its closing. No one has ever said I was sane or realistic. So, of course, to add to the mix…is NaNoWriMo (or NaNo) 50,000 words in 30 days.

I woke up this morning at 2, with an idea for a perfect way to start chapter one…but my muse was sleeping, so I put it in Color Notes and went back to sleep. I didn’t think I would get my word count in today…I have boxes to move…work to do…more work to do…so I just thought…okay…just get it started. Start NaNo off…you can get caught up this weekend after you are moved in and settled.

I started writing…and except for my pen dying around page 3, I couldn’t write fast enough. The words poured out of me. I quickly grabbed another black pen whose color was close enough to the dying pen to be a match and kept going. I didn’t want to break the flow…didn’t want to have the magic die and have to face reality of boxes and work tasks.

So today…on day one of NaNo, I am grateful for 1804 words…chapter one of Quarterfinals being done. For this one moment, I am ahead of schedule.

November 14, 2016

Grateful for: Trying New Things

Filed under: Writer's thoughts — michelle sodaro @ 2:05 pm
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Yes, I know…I had to read that one again too…this is MY blog right? And I’m grateful for trying new things? Did I type that right…but yes, yes I did.

In the last few months, I have tried three new things…which is 3 times more than I have tried in most years prior.

  1. Guacamole — most of you who know me, probably know I have an issue with food and textures…and if a food is too busy texturially speaking (it’s not a word, but it should be) I avoid it…add that and it’s a color that reminds me of my least favorite part of babysitting (I am trying to say it without saying it, folks)…and really poor guac never had a chance for me to try it.
  2. Sushi — So take texture issues and add in “unknown” foods and those who know me probably understand why I have avoid this food for 41 years. Words like “raw” and “seaweed” have never been sales pitches for food for me…so, again, sushi never really had a chance with me.
  3. Typing my first draft — So…every paper, short story, poem, essay, novel, etc. I have ever written, I have handwritten my first draft. I love the feel of pen on paper, watching my thoughts appear in ink as my hand moves across the paper. It has been as natural to me as breathing. It also takes one extra step because then I have to type what I have written (or get typed by others, when I can) and this can take time.

The first one I tried because a friend had spent all morning making this beautiful salsa…so colorful and fresh…and it had Jalapenos in it, so I couldn’t eat it. SO when he made guacamole and said, this will be fine because it has no Jalapenos, how could I be that rude and NOT try it. So, I did…and it was amazing!!!!! The texture and the color still bother me…but so much deliciousness.

The second one…well, there are three people in this world who can get me to agree to just about anything…one of them used her powers to get me to go to Chucky Cheese…TWICE…and one of them used his powers to get me to try a Vegas Roll (which was cooked salmon and no seaweed that I could see…and I didn’t ask questions about what was in it…I just grabbed my chopsticks and shoved it in my face.

The third one…a fellow writer challenged me to do NaNo this year…on the computer first. No writing out my whole rough draft. He made the point that I’ve completed NaNo 3 of my 4 years and that it wasn’t really a challenge for me to write a novel since I have 5 of them self-published and like 6 more that have first drafts done. I couldn’t make a counter argument, so I am trying it. I will say it is nice to have the word count done for me, but I haven’t gotten in as good of a writing zone as I do with pen and paper. Also I edit…something I don’t do while I am writing by hand…so we’ll see. I won’t let go of my notebooks…but maybe for other non-fiction projects, this will be an option. I do love options..

 

November 2, 2016

Grateful for: NaNo

Filed under: Writer's thoughts — michelle sodaro @ 12:42 pm
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About five years ago, I stumbled across the website for National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo) and I was intrigued. A novel in a month? 50,000 words is not a “novel” according to Writer’s Digest magazine, but it is a solid first draft. And written in a month? 30 days? 50K in 30D? Interesting.

The first year my attempt was a mess. I went in with no game plan and figured I could easily get the 1667 words a day. I mean I write ALL the time…it’s kind of my deal. I started of getting 2000 words a day and I was thinking I got this. Then I slowed down. Then I slowed down some more until coming to a complete stop at chapter 12. I didn’t have this. What I did have was Writer’s Block and it was as disgusting as every author has ever described it to be.

I’ve never been an “outliner” for my novels thinking they would imprison my creative spirit with their rigid rules and that was something that had happened far too often already (fer people and fewer jobs can handle me at 100% ME). I am grateful to NaNo because it helped me to appreciate the beauty (and surprising flexibility) of an outline. My outlines are written literally in pencil and are not English teacher approved (sorry “Ms. Sodaro”) but they keep me focused on what comes next and what has to happen “here” for “this” to happen “there.”

I am also grateful to NaNo for it’s ability to help me focus. On my best days, I tend to have a rather sporadic attention span span (picture having 45-60 of your favorite television programs and you keep flipping channels to see what interesting things are going on in each one). That is my brain on a pretty daily basis. NaNo helps me have a primary project to focus on…helping me get a project’s first draft done instead of it joining the pile of about 10 projects I have where the first draft is half done.

So yes…I am grateful for the NaNo challenge as it has made my novel writing process more effective and organized, which I now use on non-NaNo projects as well.

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