Monday Musings on Nano, Dust, and Prophets In Their Own Land

So, fine. I didn’t earn all my swell Nanowrimo badges.

I did write a swell beginning for the next novel in my series and hash out an outline for that book as well as the next book. And I earned the Creative Nonfiction badge by placing barely disguised friends and family members into my novel as characters. Although, if I’m being perfectly honest, I earn that badge everytime I write. Sometimes, I even earn a few good-natured threats to sue me if I don’t remove certain things about certain characters in my novels.

Next, I learned a little thing or two about cleaning, due to the fact that I spent Thanksgiving, as well as the weekend, with a throbbing sinus headache. Thing One is that I disturbed the perfect balance of dust and germs in my home, thereby releasing said dust and germs into the air and straight up my nose into my brain. Thing Two is that I always harbored a sneaky suspicion that cleaning was highly overrated, and now I have scientific proof that dusting and such will make you sick.

Finally, one of the Junior Halls shared that a college friend visited my blog. The conversation went something like this:

JUNIOR HALL: So this friend said she checked out your blog. She was like, “Hey! Do you ever read your mom’s blog? ‘Cause she’s really funny!”

ME: Why, thank you! Do you read my blog?

JUNIOR HALL: Um, no.

ME: Not ever? At all?

JUNIOR HALL: Do you want me to say yes? ‘Cause I sense that you want a certain answer here.

I’m putting that in my next novel. And I’m not even bothering to cleverly disguise it.

Earning NaNoWriMo Merit Badges

I know I usually do my horn tooting on Tuesdays, but I’m just so proud of myself for earning these swell badges that I had to share!

First, of course, I earned the Procrastination Badge. According to the little pamphlet thingie that comes with the badges, one can earn this cute vacuum cleaner badge in a variety of ways:

a. skip writing for more than three days in a row

b. spend over 30 cumulative hours on the forums

c. clean your home instead of working on your novel

Guess how I earned it? Keeping in mind that dog hair is swirling around the keyboard as I type. And that I don’t even know how to get in the forums.

But one badge is never enough, is it? So I went for two. And honestly, I’m really thrilled over earning the Word-Count Padding Badge. I mean, this badge requires mad writing skills.

I had my main character study for a World Geography quiz and added about 30 countries and their capitals. Isn’t that brilliant? I think I may have earned bonus points for choosing countries like Central African Republic and Democratic Republic of the Congo. And the best part is that I can always go back and add more!

And last, but certainly not least, I earned the Nano Socializing Badge by dragging a few friends into Nano with me. Friends who have tons more words than I do.

But do they have any badges? Hah.

If It’s October, NaNoWriMo Must Be Right Around the Corner

I’d like to say that I’ve been working hard all week, thus missing my normal posts. I’d like to say that, but I can’t. I’ve sorta, kinda been playing hooky.

Then I found an email in Ye Olde Inbox from the NaNoWriMo folks, reminding me that in just a few short weeks, the writing frenzy will begin. Egads! I don’t have a plot idea! I don’t have any protagonists rattling around in my Closet of Characters! I don’t even have a single, scathingly brilliant sentence simmering!

So, no more hooky for me. I’ve got some thinking and planning to do. And a whole month of Giveaways to start um, giving away. If you haven’t left a comment yet, you still have a day left to win a scary book and a hunk of chocolate. Dash over here and type your thoughts. Then check out NaNoWriMo’s info to get a head start on thinking up your splendiferous novel idea. ‘Cause that’s what I’m going to do. Right after the playoffs.

Finding Something Friday on Writing-World.com, The Muffin, and Me

I found the holiday edition of my free newsletter from Writing-World.com in my inbox this week. And that means I found “Santa Baby for Writers” by yours truly!

I do so wish I could share Santa Baby with you (the song, not my SB, the Beneficent Mr. Hall) but it’s only available in the newsletter. I can give you the sweet link to Writing-World here so that you can dash away and sign up. Then, you’ll get the latest newsletter, full of all things from the world of writing, including Cathy C. Hall’s cool Yule song for writers. Absolutely free!

And after you sign up for Writing-World, dash away over to the WOW! Women on Writing’s blog, the Muffin, to see who went on and on for Friday’s Speak Out guest blogger. The topic’s “After Nano: Rewrites Can Be (Sorta) Fun.” Off you go to The Muffin

Okay, I admit that wasn’t much of a surprise. But it’s not like today’s post was titled “Writing-World, the Muffin and Yul Brynner.”You knew I’d be coming up sooner or later. Or more or less.

Turns out, it’s more. ‘Cause I’ve been a very busy little elf the last few days, making over the Cathy C. Hall website. Nothing too drastic; Gladys the Goose is still there, doing her thing. And I hope I’ve made my thing more about humor writing, and less about “waterfowl writing.” Not that there’s anything wrong with that.

It’s just that all I want for Christmas is…well, Santa Baby’s heard that song before.

Tooting My Horn Tuesday on TH Stuff

The Nano Lament (Sung to the tune of “I’ve Been Working on the Railroad”)

I’ve been working on the novel, all the livelong day.
I’ve been working on the novel, and I’ve got a lot to say.
Don’t you see your shouting hubby? He’s starving and he’s mad!
Don’t you see I’ve got to finish? Peanut butter’s not that bad.

First TH: 30, 000 words on my novel-in-progress! Count ’em and weep, fellow writers. (Come to think of it, the Beneficent Mr. Hall is almost on the verge of tears himself. Perhaps for an entirely different reason. Perhaps it has something to do with my personal hygiene. Perhaps I’ve shared a little too much.)

A quick word about Thin Threads, which is a new book series based on stories about thin threads or life-changing moments. Many moons ago, I sent a story and forgot all about it. Until I received a recent email saying, Whee! You’re a finalist! (I’m paraphrasing, but it was something along those lines.) Then, I received another email saying, Whee! Your story’s been selected for a Thin Threads book or whatever we decide to do with it! (Second TH) So, check out their recent contest if you’ve got one of those thin thread moments.

Finally, when I looked back at the Tooting My Horn Tuesday posts, I realized I had more toots than last year (Um, you know what I mean, right?). And I’m darn thankful for the throngs (Third TH) of folks who put up with my tooting, and always have such nice things to say. (Okay, maybe throngs is stretching it. But I’m all about the THemes.)

Oh! And have a blessed and bountiful THanksgiving! (Gee, I sure hope the Beneficent Mr. Hall picks up a turkey for us or it’s going to be a very peanutty holiday at the Hall house!)