Nanowrimo Spotlight: Cory Beal

November 25, 2015

Good evening! Tonight, I’m interviewing Cory. You can find Cory’s website here. Cory, how long have you been participating in Nano?


This is my 5th time doing NaNo. I think the biggest difference for me this time is just the challenges of finding the time to write with three little ones running around the house. Finding the time is always the biggest challenge for me (as well as a lot of people, probably most).

I actually started out doing NaNo for the first time in 2010. My wife knew I had been wanting to write a book for a long time and I had started, but never finished one, so she bought me this book, No Plot? No Problem, and that’s when I found out aboutNaNo. I signed up right away and have loved doing it every year since.

What are you writing about this year?
This year I’m doing a sci-fi adventure novel about a guy named J.J. Collins who is in the middle of his 13th life; every time he dies he wakes up again and starts all over as a kid and each time the world around him is different. He doesn’t know why it’s happening to him and he doesn’t really care, mainly he just wants to find the one person who he fell in love with during his first life.

What is your favorite movie – you have to pick just one!
Star Wars – I remember being a kid and watching the original trilogy over and over, we didn’t have cable, but we had a VCR and the 3 Star Wars movies on VHS, so that’s what I’d watch. I still love watching them, but I think the first, Episode IV: A New Hope, is my favorite.

What advice would you give to all your fellow Wrimos?
Just keep plugging away at that keyboard. The thing I learned about NaNo is that even you don’t finish, if you don’t reach the 50k words, you still end the month having written a lot more than you probably would have otherwise, so it’s still a win. Of course, the whole point is to win, to get that magic number, to reach your goal and conquer the mountain. My advice is still the same – just keep writing – it’s the only way to win! Write everywhere – waiting at the doctor’s office, on your lunch break, early in the morning or late at night, whenever works for you. With the technology we have now it’s to write on your smartphone or tablet and have the app sync to your home computer, so there’s not really the excuse of not being able to work on your novel when you are away from home – you should always be working on your novel.

Sneaky Ninja question! What’s your hobby horse?
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Nano Spotlight: Wendy Van Camp, No Wasted Ink

November 19, 2013

Good morning, friends and followers. The end of November is in sight, so let us spotlight while we may! Today it’s Wendy’s turn, with her website No Wasted Ink.

Tell me a little about your Nano experience so far:
I’ve been participating in Nanowrimo for at least six years.  The first few times I attempted it, I did not even come close to the 50K word goal.  Three years ago, I purchased a $20 Alphasmart 3000, since I could not afford a laptop.  I went to write-ins for the first time using it to write my stories.  I made my 50K goal that year and I learned a great deal about the craft of writing by talking with the other writers at the event.

This is my second year at being the Nanowrimo ML for my region, South Orange County, CA.  It means that Nanowrimo begins a month or two before hand for me.  I, and my co-ML Rosie, meet to plan a kick-off party, a midnight write-in on November 1st, and find hosts for the various write-in in our area.  We also do a few joint events with North Orange County, CA.   It certainly adds to my workload in general each November.  As an ML I am required to host a write-in once a week for the entire month and as an ML, I like to attend most of the write-ins in our area to show support to our hosts.  I’m taking up more of the duties for our region, now that I have a year experience under my belt.

What are you writing about this year?
I am working on book III of my steampunk trilogy.  I put off writing a huge battle scene because I’ve never written about war and I’m researching methods of how to organize the scene and ways to make the action more believable. This should take up most of my word count this November.  I also have a few political scenes to complete.

Who’s the best character in your Nano novel?
My book is an ensemble cast.  I have seven main characters, each of which has aspects that I enjoy writing about and aspects that I find a challenge.  There is an assassin, a rogue, a heroine, a beautiful schemer, an insane queen, a woman that builds a business, and a prince who develops a conscious.  I’m not sure which one I would call “the best”.  I think that between my beta-readers, it is split between the assassin, the beautiful schemer and the prince.

What advice would you give to all your fellow Wrimos?
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May the Fourth be with you.

May 4, 2012

Happy Star Wars day, everybody!

I’d like to ramble just a bit tonight about my completed Script Frenzy screenplay draft, ‘Geek at Heart’. It’s a romantic comedy set in the world of fandom, and my main character and a lot of his friends identify as Star Wars fans and dress up as the core cast of ‘A New Hope.’

That was a last-minute decision, because I was planning everything about Script Frenzy at the last minute this year. Sometime well into the last week of March I was still thinking I was going to be writing about a dating agency with all of the set-ups happening on trains – still a romantic comedy, but that movie would have been very different in the details. And I’m not a big Star Wars fan myself, but I guess I’ve absorbed a lot about it, because all kinds of cool Star Wars stuff kept coming out as soon as I got familiar with those characters. 🙂

My favorite line, which is hopefully going to be in a Script Frenzy official video, is from a montage where all of Harry’s friends are working the various fan groups that have come to the big convention, trying to find dates for him – and mostly striking out. Amanda, who plays the role of Princess Leia in their group, talks to an older Klingon couple about the possibility of setting Harry up with a Klingon girl:

“We have heard of your Jedi Knights, princess, with their light sabers and mind tricks. That is not the path of a true warrior, and there is no honor in it. Do not ask again!”


Six Sentence Sunday – Geek at Heart 2

April 15, 2012

Okay, I’m continuing with my first draft script from last week. This is an establishing scene that might not actually make the final cut – my characters are waiting to get into a big fan convention, and they’re all dressed in their best Star Wars costumes.


Six Sentence Sunday – Geek at Heart

April 8, 2012

If you read my post from Friday, F is for Formatting, then you’ve already seen these six, actually, as I used them as an example in this post. They’re the first six sentences of my new script, though, (as nearly as I can count sentences in a script,) so I wanted to share them again for the SSS crowd.


My not-too-fantastic Script idea

March 29, 2012

So, it’s been crazy with the NaNoEdMo editing and the car buying and a few other things, but I’ve sorta come up with a notion for Script Frenzy that isn’t science fiction or paranormal fantasy or anything else that’s tough to produce. In fact, it even falls a little bit under the heading of ‘write what you know.’

I don’t have a crazy bulletin board of index cards for it this time, just an idea with a character and a situation, a plot idea about what he wants. I’m not even sure if there’s going to be a clear antagonist, or maybe it’ll be one of those plots where the MC is his own worst enemy. But this will be the story of a passionate Star Wars fan, who vows to find the love of his life by going on blind dates arranged through sci-fi geek groups. 🙂 I’m thinking of calling it ‘Geek at Heart.’

What do you think? Who should the bad guy be? What will the ‘All is Lost’ moment entail?


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