Fall colors for NaNo

NaNo — you may have heard it, but what does it mean? Well, it stands for National Novel Writing Month, but it’s actually international, so perhaps it should be called InNo. Well, NaNo is how it started and will remain.

NaNo is a huge excuse to write a crazy number of words in a month, fifty thousand to be exact. It’s an excuse to ignore the housekeeping, survive on leftovers and take-out, drink too much coffee, get out of bed when it’s still dark, and write, write, write.

There are so many writers participating, like Sheri Kennedy, which makes it fun. I was up at 6 today to join friends on Twitter for two 50-minute sprints. That’s early for me, and it’s good for me!

I am working on the sequel to the novella I submitted. Sadly, it wasn’t a fit for the anthology, but that’s okay. It’s an international romantic spy thriller, and getting that novella done and turned in inspired me to do a series. I plan to write the sequel then go back and turn the first one into a novel. Onward!

To inspire us for the week ahead, here are some fresh new Autumn photos from Nevada:


Mount Rose

Chronicles of the #CaliforniaDrought 7 and National Novel Writing Month

Great news! We don’t have to drink eight glasses of water a day.


That should help with the drought, not to mention that water-logged feeling that drinking way more water than we really want causes, at least for me! Plus, our water is tasting like, for lack of a better word, mud.

Even better news, it poured rain for five and a half hours here this morning. Poured. And it’s snowing in the Sierras. I hope the lake level starts to rise.

Here is the photo I sent in for Leanne Cole’s Monochrome Madness challenge this week. The subject is clouds. This is a cloudy day in Squaw Valley, which is near Lake Tahoe. I took this photo in August 2014, and just made it monochrome for the challenge.

Mountains in cloud
Squaw Valley California

The National Weather Service had a long video about the effects of El Nino, and the conclusion was inconclusive. Apparently, the warm waters off the US western coast do not guarantee a lot of precipitation, BUT, things are looking very positive with this storm. Maybe the “storm door” has opened? We received about .75 inch of rain. I think 17 is California’s normal average. With the drought it has been down around 5, so that gives you some perspective.

I can’t complain about the rain stopping right when I had to venture outside today to meet writing friends for a birthday lunch and writing session. Lucky me!

It’s National Novel Writing Month. If you are a writer, sign up. It’s awesome. For example, here’s something from the Inspiration tab:

Writing stories is hard work. Don’t let your friends or family tell you any different. From the outside, it looks like sporadic tapping on the keyboard, distracted sips of coffee, and long stares out the window. But inside, you’re wrestling demons.

Gene Luen Yang, an author and artist whose graphic novels include American Born Chinese, Boxers & Saints, and The Shadow Hero.

This is the first time I’ve officially done NaNo, signed up and everything, yet two times I’ve written 50k in November with my co-author, John Holland. (We have written a middle-grade fantasy novel and a sci-fi novel together.) So why not just sign up already? This year I did it. It’s not hard at all to sign up and figure it out, and you can have buddies. It’s fun.

Do you have any major goals that you are working on this month?