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November 15, 2021

NaNoWriMo Day 15: From Locked-Away to Locked-Down

My journey along the way has been a rather unique one, I would imagine. The first year I wrote, I was “locked” away in my bedroom for the month, writing between bursts of fundraising, ministry, and theatrical endeavors. The following year, similar. The third year, I lived in a run-down motorhome in the backwoods of Florida, awaiting my move to Chicago. I had no full-time job these three years, so they didn’t take me that long to win (apart from the first one when I was gaining my “NaNo legs”).
November 14, 2021

NaNoWriMo Day 14: Writing Exercises to Try When You Get Stuck

Throughout this month, I and others from the Roost staff have offered some tips and suggestions for getting those juices flowing again as you push through NaNoWriMo, aiming for that 50,000-word goal. So today, I thought I’d offer up some specific writing exercises instead of merely directing you to other websites for resources. These are the ones I’ve found most effective for myself.
November 10, 2021

NaNoWriMo Day 10: Writing in Memorials

November is a busy month in our household. From day 1 to day 30, we have NaNoWriMo on the brain. In the month, we also have my birthday, two birthdays of those who’ve passed, the anniversaries of passings, several friends’ birthdays, a local event we participate in each year, and, of course, Thanksgiving. These days lead to many reflections for me – and many memorials in written word.
November 8, 2021

NaNoWriMo 2021 Day 8: Just Keep Writing

“What is wrong with me? Why did I write that? It’s fatal trash….” I think many of us can say that during NaNoWriMo. We’ve written a page, chapter, or even a 10,000-word chunk of writing that we think is the worst thing ever composed by any human. And, so, we face that problem: “What do I do now? Trash what I’ve written, take the loss, and move forward from somewhere else? Or do I keep going and realize this manuscript will only ‘win’ NaNo for me and nothing else, ever? Or do I move on and just hope, somehow, I can come back in December and redeem this piece of literary vomit?”
November 7, 2021

NaNoWriMo Day 7: Rethinking the Strong Female Lead

So, as I’ve worked on my own character development, I’ve noticed something in much of the world’s “strong female lead” design. This pattern I’ve seen is this: the “weakening” of women and feminine characters by “masculinizing” the characters in order to have them considered “strong.” Let me explain via some examples.
November 6, 2021

NaNoWriMo 2021 Day 6: Speed Writing Method – How I Write 10,000 Words in Under 4 Hours

Earlier this month, I mentioned my process for writing 10,000 words in less than four hours. I thought I’d give you the full run-down. May it help some of you as you tackle your NaNoWriMo 2021 writing goals this year!
November 4, 2021

NaNoWriMo Day 4: What’s In a Name?

While I am not about to question Shakespeare on his famous line, I am a names person, and that means they are vastly important to me, no matter what the aroma! Names of characters, names of bands, book and song titles…you name it, I’ve got a list of at least three or four hundred ideas.  And the list grows longer every day. Good character names are vital for powerful novels.
November 3, 2021

NaNoWriMo 2021 Day 3 – Here There Be Hurricanes

Every person who writes a novel is crazy. We are the captains of leaky ships who believe the rigging will be mended, the crew will not mutiny, the sky will return. There is something inside us that demands we make sail, that points us directly into the hurricane.