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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Nano Spotlight: Jeffrey Cook, First Light, Dawn of Steam

November 7, 2013

Good morning, friends followers and Wrimos! Today it’s Jeffrey’s turn in the spotlight, and I had to abbreviate his interview title. He wanted me to put: “Jeffrey Cook, author of the upcoming Steampunk novel First Light: Dawn of Steam series book 1 (with help from Sarah Symonds)” 🙂 You can find Jeffrey on the Nano site of course, at his in-development website, and on facebook.

Tell me a bit about your experience with Nano so far…
This will be my fifth year doing Nanowrimo. I was originally talked into it by my now co-author, Sarah Symonds, who had first gotten involved in 2008. Nano has gotten very big in the Seattle community, so there was no lack of motivation once I got started. Really, I think the supportive community and encouragement is my favorite part of Nano.
My favorite memory is still starting on the Dawn of Steam books that year. I’d done some short stories and such, but never anything this big, so I was kind of worried about reaching 50k. Then my narrator character really started talking to me. I had recently been laid off, so I had plenty of time, and after working a customer service job in the insurance industry for 11 years, a ton of creative energy wanting to get out on the page too. I hit 50k in 6 days, and finished the month a little over 300k, with (very) rough drafts of a trilogy. Its never been nearly that easy again – just the excitement of a new project, a lot of locals egging me on, extra time, and suddenly having energy and an outlet for it after a lot of years working on the phone.

What are you writing about this year?
Last year I kind of false started. I got my 50,000 words done, but wasn’t happy with the results. So this year I’m trying to adjust my process a little bit, and get a YA science fiction novel done and ready for editing. So – re-doing The Accidental Inquisitor this year.

Who’s the best character in your Nano novel?
The best character in this year’s novel is probably Amiko Kimura, or just Miko. She’s sort of the sidekick to my main character, and just has one of those big personalities that makes her fun to write. I’m also kind of fond of her undead car, Vlad, who isn’t quite a character so much as a feature.
Best character overall though would probably be my narrator character from the Dawn of Steam books. Once I found Gregory’s voice, it made the three books a lot easier to write.

What advice would you give to all your fellow Wrimos?
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Dragon*Con 2012: memories of Saturday

September 4, 2012

Well, friends and followers, I’m back home safe from all the excitement of Dragon*Con, but since I only got up to Friday evening last post, there’s a lot more memories to tell you about.

Saturday morning is the Dragon*Con parade, a big tradition. I didn’t get to see it last year, and I didn’t end up seeing much of it this time around either, for a few reasons. One, you have to line up early to get a good spot to watch the parade. Two, I was up so late from the Buffy Horror Picture show that I overslept and got started on my morning routine late. Third, the big Jane Espenson Q&A was scheduled right after the parade, and that was a ‘must-get-in’ on my schedule. So I wandered out the hotel doors onto the crowded sidewalk around ten, checked out the very start of the parade, and then got back up to the eighth floor in time to be third in line for Jane.

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