Captain’s Log, Stardate 5.9.19


This year has been nothing like I had planned so far. the past few months have been particularly stressful. I’m not making excuses, not going to give you the whole sad song and dance. I will be perfectly honest here, I’ve been struggling. Struggling to keep my head above water, struggling to get any words down, struggling to keep it together.

My planner vaguely resembles the Captain’s Log on Star Trek.

 

Date: (Stardate) March 19, 2019 (31919.1) Larry called, had to drive to Perryville to get him, his mom had a stroke. They took her up to St. John’s because Jefferson wasn’t equipped to handle a stroke. 

(31919.2) Same ICU unit that my mother was in –  kind of jarring.

(31919.3) Monitoring her for brain activity. 

(31919.4) We sat in on the doctor’s round table discussion. Looks grim. 

I  had found a layout for my bujo that worked well for me to track the things I needed, and make my daily to-do lists. All of that went out the window.

Captain’s Log, Stardate 3.28.19 – apparently chaos rules the universe. My family has gone off the deep end. My heart goes out to them and I will be praying. Sad situation!  They are transferring MIL to rehab center,  but it’s up near St. John’s. 

In planning my releases – yes plural releases – which is a huge step for me,  I had set April 23rd as my release date for Fury. The date came and went, I had other things on my mind, and occupying my time. to be honest, I’ve struggled to find words to put down on paper or virtual paper.  It’s difficult to make plans when things are up in the air so to speak, and your world is in turmoil.

To add to things, the stress that we’ve been under has manifested in aggression towards each other in arguments. Emotions are at a heightened state!

Captain’s Log Stardate 4.15.19 – I get the stressed out part from work and with family, but taking it out on me is not going to make things better. In fact, it made things much more difficult. We are about to come to blows. Shields up, set phasers to stun, prepare to be boarded!

I completely missed posting anything for A to Z in April, and I had some cool writing terms to share. Who knows, maybe I’ll still put it together down the road.

To add to all of this, I had a biopsy – benign, discovered a lump – also benign, had surgery and an allergic reaction to medications that felt like I was having a heart attack – I am not exaggerating either. All of this stirred together for a deadly concoction that left me feeling like an utter failure and worthless in life. Talk about dysfunction!

Captain’s Log Stardate 5.7.19 – What is wrong with me? I have so many books to write, and can’t muster myself to put pen to paper or get out my laptop for longer than a few minutes. It’s not for lack of want to, because I want to get all of my books out there! It’s not a lack of ideas –  I have thousands of ideas.  It’s not a lack of imagination,  I have imagination to spare! So what is the problem? 

I messaged my soul sister Misty and ironically, she’s experiencing a similar slump. You’d think we were twins separated at birth or something, it’s uncanny. We should be Gemini’s or have the same birthday or something! With Misty’s help, I’m taking some baby steps to get back in the game. My confidence has been shaken,  but she’s holding my hand.

Captain’s Log Stardate 5.7.19.2 – made contact with Admiral Harvey. This quadrant of the galaxy has proven  troublesome crossings for her as well. Our discussion included guidance for traversing the upcoming storms, and keeping crew on standby for imminent dangers. For now, we will take it slow and steady, with all systems on alert. Our course?  Second star to the right, straight on till morning. These are the voyages of Starship Mack, signing off.

That’s the point of friendship isn’t it?  We pick each other out of the muck and help dust each other off.  Sometimes we share a laugh,  sometimes we share a cry. A true friend is one that you know has your back, will go to the ends of the galaxy with you in spirit if they can’t in person,  will stand by your side and support you and encourage you. I can only hope that I am as much of a friend to her as she is to me.  That goes for my other friends as well –  I hope you consider me a good friend, one that is there for you!

It’s been a difficult few months. I’m not making excuses, just telling it like it is. I’ve been down in the mullygrubs not knowing how to dig out. When I finally cried out for help, Misty was there for me. Being an author can be a lonely career that is often not supported by family or loved ones.  It takes a friend with the “Write Stuff” to get it, and she does.

I hope that each of you have a Misty in your life,  that will be there for you when you need it.  I hope  that you don’t find yourself in the pits as I have been,  but if you do, your friend(s) are there!

Write on my friends, write on!

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The Opseti Guard


Welcome to Thantyr

As the southernmost region of Nebeth, Thantyr is known for being the home of the dragon council themselves. The Treaty of Dragons series follows a group called The Opseti Guard through their journey to renew the bonds between dragons and humans alike.

In the first installment to the nine-book series, you see not only the fall of the beloved dragon council, but the creation of The Opseti Guard themselves. You are taken on a journey of friendship and defining adventures. They learn not only to work as a team, but how what their own strengths are. You will see how they grow through the hardships that they face as well.

So, with that in mind, welcome to Thantyr. May you always find joy in the journey, even when it is hard.

The first novel along this journey is, The Opseti Guard

Title: The Opseti Guard

Series : Treaty of Dragons

Author: Misty Harvey

Date of release: February 28th, 2019

Genre: YA Fantasy

Pages: 336

Cover artist: Shannon Nemechek@ Nemo Designs.

Editor: Tricia Drammeh @ Triciadrammeh.com

Map Designer: Ellie Mack @ quotidiandose.wordpress.com

Blurb:

The Treaty of Dragons is in danger.

Dragon after dragon are showing up in the infirmary injured to the point of near death. Their supposed valiant riders are claiming it as nothing more than battle wounds. During a time when Thantyr seems at peace, this draws more than a little attention. Especially, when a healer named Renna Alder can connect to the dragons on a deeper level. She sees flashes and bits of what they’ve been through and it sends her into a rage.

No longer able to sit by idly and accept that all they can do is fight to keep the dragons alive, she disguises herself as a transfer student named Elas. Under this pretext she joins the dragon rider school to investigate what really is happening to these dragons. However, what she discovers is something far darker and more sinister then she ever could imagine. Can Renna find a way to save the dragons before she falls to a similar fate? Or has she discovered more than she can handle?

 

Meet Misty:

Misty Harvey loves writing spine-tingling horror or dark fantasy novels sure to thrill readers. The psychology behind such tales has always been a fascination for her since she was younger. Even to the point that she once contemplated taking up psychology as a profession. Still, her love resides in the art of storytelling. An art she wishes to continue to share with readers for the rest of her days.

After climbing out of her writing cave and searching the house for the sound of the latest creak or pop, Misty can be found doing one of many things. Often, she spends the remainder of her day with her amazingly supportive husband and youngest daughter. While she has two older children that are out there spreading their wings around the world, including giving her a few grandchildren.

Her favorite things to do when not writing are crafts, wrestling with her dog, avoiding her cat’s bite or generally making her husband and daughter crazy. Often, she can be found creating vivid tales with her daughter about whatever mundane thing happened in their day and turning it into a crazy story. She is also an avid gamer, crochet goddess (we shall pretend there), domestic queen, and animal tamer (it’s a work in progress).

You can stalk Misty here:

Facebook: @AuthorMistyHarvey

Twitter: @AuthorMDHarvey

WWW: Mistyharvey.com

Instagram: @authormdharvey

 

Other Books Sold by Misty:

Chick Lit Flash Fiction:

A Flashy and Frosty Christmas Charity Anthology

Psychological Thriller/Horror:

Malevolent Mind

Congratulations Misty, on your release! I will start reading this tonight!

Write on my friends, (especially you Misty,  I will want to read all of them) write on!

Welcome to Thantyr – Cover Reveal for The Opseti Guard


Welcome to Thantyr

 

Map designed by Ellie Mack

As the southernmost region of Nebeth, Thantyr is known for being the home of the dragon council themselves. The Treaty of Dragons series follows a group called The Opseti Guard through their journey to renew the bonds between dragons and humans alike.

In the first installment to the nine-book series, you see not only the fall of the beloved dragon council but the creation of The Opseti Guard themselves. You are taken on a journey of friendship and defining adventures. They learn not only to work as a team, but how what their own strengths are. You will see how they grow through the hardships that they face as well.

So, with that in mind, welcome to Thantyr.

May you always find joy in the journey, even when it is hard.

The first novel along this journey is, The Opseti Guard

Today, I get the honor to bring to you for the first time –  The cover reveal for The Opseti Guard!

 

Title: The Opseti Guard

Series: Treaty of Dragons

Author name: Misty Harvey

Date of release: February 28th, 2019

Genre: YA Fantasy

Pages: 320 pages

Cover artist: Shannon Nemechek@ Nemo Designs.

Editor: Tricia Drammeh @ Triciadrammeh.com

Map Designer: Ellie Mack @ quotidiandose.wordpress.com

 

Blurb:

The Treaty of Dragons is in danger.

Dragon after dragon are showing up in the infirmary injured to the point of near death. Their supposed valiant riders are claiming it as nothing more than battle wounds. During a time when Thantyr seems at peace, this draws more than a little attention. Especially, when a healer named Renna Alder can connect to the dragons on a deeper level. She sees flashes and bits of what they’ve been through and it sends her into a rage.

No longer able to sit by idly and accept that all they can do is fight to keep the dragons alive, she disguises herself as a transfer student named Elas. Under this pretext, she joins the dragon rider school to investigate what really is happening to these dragons. However, what she discovers is something far darker and more sinister than she ever could imagine.

Can Renna find a way to save the dragons before she falls to a similar fate? Or has she discovered more than she can handle?

You can preorder HERE

Meet Misty:

Misty Harvey loves writing spine-tingling horror or dark fantasy novels sure to thrill readers. The psychology behind such tales has always been a fascination for her since she was younger. Even to the point that she once contemplated taking up psychology as a profession. Still, her love resides in the art of storytelling. An art she wishes to continue to share with readers for the rest of her days.

After climbing out of her writing cave and searching the house for the sound of the latest creak or pop, Misty can be found doing one of many things. Often, she spends the remainder of her day with her amazingly supportive husband and youngest daughter. While she has two older children that are out there spreading their wings around the world, including giving her a few grandchildren.

Her favorite things to do when not writing are crafts, wrestling with her dog, avoiding her cat’s bite or generally making her husband and daughter crazy. Often, she can be found creating vivid tales with her daughter about whatever mundane thing happened in their day and turning it into a crazy story. She is also an avid gamer, crochet goddess (we shall pretend there), domestic queen, and animal tamer (it’s a work in progress).

You can stalk Misty here:

Facebook: AuthorMistyHarvey

Twitter: @AuthorMDHarvey

Her website: WWW: Mistyharvey.com

Instagram: @authormdharvey

 

Other Books Sold by Misty:

Chick Lit Flash Fiction:

A Flashy and Frosty Christmas Charity Anthology

Psychological Thriller/Horror:

Malevolent Mind

Soul Reaper

Make sure you preorder your copy of Opseti Guard, and check out her other books. Congratulations Misty Harvey! It was an honor to create your world on a map for you!

Write on my friends, write on!

Malevolent Mind Release!


 

Last week I  had a post for Friday, but failed to get it linked in time to post. I actually had two of them for the same day and with all the other stuff, failed to get them posted. The first was the release of Misty’s book Malevolent Mind.

My apologies to Misty Harvey for the delay,  but . . . better late than never.

Thank you so much for taking the time to share in Malevolent Mind’s release day and thank you to Ellie for being willing to host me here. This book has been a lot of fun for me to write and I hope in turn that readers will enjoy it as much as I. You can join me also over on my website for more release weekend fun.

The idea for this novel came from a lot of different places. One being that as a child my nephew and I, whom I was extremely close to would write these horror stories. We’d take our younger siblings down into the creepy basement of my house and we’d read them bits of it. As the story hit its scariest peak we’d run out of the room, flipping off lights as we went and leaving them screaming down there. More often than not our parents would be waiting for us at the top of the stairs and we’d be punished afterward. Still, it did little to deter them from joining us to hear the next installment of ‘Red Eyed Guy’ (We were so creative over the title, don’t you think? Lol).

There are bits of me in the father figure as well as Kade. I’ve always loved to write horror stories to be able to create such a physical and chemical reaction in a person with words is the most incredible thing to me. So, out of fun and to celebrate the release of Malevolent Mind write a two sentence horror story. The winner of a Malevolent Mind ebook will be chosen on Monday! So do your best! Don’t forget to leave a way I can contact you later if you win.

 

Malevolent Mind

Horror

Blurb:

A story so dark, twisted, and unfinished has a way of driving the sanest to the brink of insanity.

Between the constant state of bullying from Heath and his friends, and the unrest of not knowing what happened to her twin, Raven seeks revenge. Years later, she becomes the nanny for Heath’s young son, Kade. She helps him start a horror story with the plan to bring the horrible creature Kade created into the real world to torment Heath and his friends. It was perfect, until everything began unraveling. When Kade’s creation no longer wishes to do Raven’s bidding, it becomes a fight for life or death. The only way to survive is to figure out how to finish off the creature before she finds her freedom. Will Kade find a way to stop the creation of his malevolent mind? Or will Raven’s revenge consume them all?

Excerpt:

 Kade sat there in the middle of the room. He pulled his legs up against his chest, wrapping his arms around them. There was nothing to see now that his head cowered there in the darkness of his own lap. If tonight was the night that he’d die, he wasn’t so sure he’d want to see either of the girls coming for him.

His ears perked up. Behind him came the sound of wet clothes slapping together. He lifted his head, unable to keep it down. It was just his imagination. That was all.

The feel of icy breath slid over the back of his neck. Each tiny hair stood at attention as the stench of decay washed over him. Was it the girl from the river or was it Zilla? Kade flipped onto his knees, the beam of the flashlight straight forward.

There, inches from his face, was Zilla. She stared at him. Her mouth was open at an angle as her tongue flicked out against the air. It was too late to run anywhere.

Death stared him right in the face. Part of him felt relief that it was only her. Of course, that was if the other one wasn’t waiting for him as well. He didn’t dare move the flashlight beam to find out. Zilla had appeared out of nowhere so who knew what would happen once the light wasn’t on her?

Kade watched as her blue-tinged hand reached up for him. She held her hand for him to take. Something told him that doing so would be the end of him. Panic gripped his insides and he knew he had moments to make the first move. If he didn’t react soon, she’d overpower him.

He swung out with the flashlight, catching her on the side of the head. Her body rolled across the floor with a sickening thud. Kade was sure that the magnum flashlight had cracked her skull. It had nearly broken his foot when he’d dropped it one time. He jumped across his bed, darting into the hallway. His gaze moved around the hall as he tried to make out anything.

The sound of her rapidly skittering toward him had him running down the hallway. He stopped at Raven’s door, trying her handle, but the door wouldn’t budge. Instead, the old wood rattled in the frame.

In a flash of lightning, he watched Zilla skitter into the hall on her hands and feet, her body parallel to the floor as she let out a sickening hiss. Half of her head remained dented in from where he’d clocked her with the flashlight. It was a terrifying image to behold. The fact that she continued to chase him regardless turned his stomach.

Kade looked back only briefly before he ran. She was close on his heels. In the distance, he could just make out his father’s door. His bare feet padded against the wood flooring.

Goosebumps raced up his spine as her icy fingers wrapped around his ankle. The weight of his body hit the floor with a loud thud. His head bounced against the hard surface blurring his vision. Tears filled his eyes making it even harder to see. At least now, he wouldn’t have to worry about seeing his death coming.

The cold sensation crept up his leg, over his knee and toward his waist. He could feel the weight of her above him as she crawled up his body. Time slowed so that each second felt like eons. The stench of her undead body burned at his nostrils. Kade gagged on the smell that was so strong he could almost taste it.

He didn’t want to die. Life was too short for him. There was still so much that he wanted to do. Besides, he wasn’t sure who would take care of his father if he wasn’t there any longer. That thought rolled inside of him. He wasn’t going to go out like this, a cowering lump of fear on the floor. If she wanted to kill him, she’d have to fight a lot harder for it.

Kade grabbed her arms, rolling them over as he kicked out with both his legs. Her body smashed into the wall across from them, freeing him to run. He scrambled onto his feet, darting for his father’s room.

The bright light blinded him as he ran for it. That was it. He’d found his end and now he was headed into the light. Just as he’d read in another book. It was his time to cross over.

 

If you’d love the chance to read more about Kade, Heath, Raven and Zilla you can purchase the ebook here. Or if you’re more of a physical book type of person as myself, that can be purchased here.

 

Misty Harvey loves writing spine-tingling horror novels sure to thrill readers. The psychology behind such tales has always been a fascination for her since she was younger. Even to the point that she once contemplated taking up psychology as a profession. Still, her love resides in the art of storytelling. An art she wishes to continue to share with readers for the rest of her days.

After climbing out of her writing cave and searching the house for the sound of the latest creak or pop, Misty can be found doing one of many things. Often times she spends the remained of her day with her amazingly supportive husband and youngest daughter. While she has two older children that are out there spreading their wings around the world, including giving her a few grandchildren.

Her favorite things to do when not writing are crafts, wrestling with her dog, avoiding her cat’s bite or generally making her husband and daughter crazy. Often times she can be found creating vivid tales with her daughter about whatever mundane thing happened in their day and turning it into a crazy story. She is also an avid gamer, crochet goddess (we shall pretend there), domestic queen, and animal tamer (it’s a work in progress).

Stalker Links:

Website: Mistyharvey.com

Facebook: Author Misty Harvey

Twitter: AuthorMDHarvey

Goodreads: Author Misty Harvey

My apologies for the delay in posting,  but please don’t delay in getting your copy now! Leave the lights on to read it!

Write on my friends, write on!

Malevolent Mind Cover Reveal


Today is a very special day. I have the privilege of sharing an awesome cover reveal with you. I’m not going to bore you with my incessant babbling,  I’ll just hand it over to my special guest and bud – Misty Harvey!

Thank you, Ellie for taking the time to share in Malevolent Mind’s cover reveal. This book has been a lot of fun for me to write and I hope in turn that readers will enjoy it as much as I have.

 

Hello, Readers!

Thank you for taking your time today to stop by to read about my novel and partake in the cover reveal. This novel has truly been a labor of nightmares. I mean that in the best possible way. Raven’s revenge certainly came straight from those sleep-filled nights. There are pieces that are intricately woven into the story line that I’d conjured up to terrify myself awake. Thank you again for that subconscious. Still, there was something so intriguing about the characters in this novel that I had to write their story.

After a nice talk with my editor, I came to realize that there are bits of me woven into each one of them. From Heath and his childhood antics of writing stories to scare others, to Raven and her wild dreams to visit haunted places around the world. Even Kade holds parts of me as well.

As a young child, my nephew and I used to write these grand tails to tell our younger siblings. We’d try to make them as scary as possible. Being the young, inventive things we were back then we weren’t going to leave anything up to chance. We would take them into the basement, in one of the backrooms and read the scary tales to them. Just as we’d get to the climatic part of the bit we were reading we’d haul our behinds through the basement, flipping off lights as quickly as possible to leave them alone down there in the dark.

While we were busy laughing so hard we couldn’t breathe our parents were right there, ready to ground us. Still, it didn’t matter how many times we did that to them they kept returning to listen to more of the story. We knew we were onto something when it even managed to scare us.

These things continued to stick with me as I grew up. I wove these stories trying to scare me and others around me. Sometimes I succeed and sometimes I don’t.

Still, I will continue to create these tales where I not only get to frighten others and myself, but it’ll give me a chance to delve into the psychological aspects that come with such things. I can’t wait to release more novels in the future for readers to enjoy.

I hope you will take time to enjoy the excerpt that I’ve chosen from Malevolent Mind and will keep your eyes open for its release on March 16th.

malevolent-mind-cover

 

Malevolent Mind

Horror

 

Blurb:

A story so dark, twisted and unfinished has a way of driving the sanest to the brink of insanity.

Between the constant state of bullying from Heath and his friends, and the unrest of not knowing what happened to her twin, Raven seeks revenge. Years later, she becomes the nanny for Heath’s young son, Kade. She helps him start a horror story with the plan to bring the horrible creature Kade created into the real world to torment Heath and his friends. It was perfect, until everything began unraveling. When Kade’s creation no longer wishes to do Raven’s bidding, it becomes a fight for life or death. The only way to survive is to figure out how to finish off the creature before she finds her freedom. Will Kade find a way to stop the creation of his malevolent mind? Or will Raven’s revenge consume them all?

Excerpt:

 Kade sat there in the middle of the room. He pulled his legs up against his chest, wrapping his arms around them. There was nothing to see now that his head cowered there in the darkness of his own lap. If tonight was the night that he’d die, he wasn’t so sure he’d want to see either of the girls coming for him.

His ears perked up. Behind him came the sound of rustling clothes. He lifted his head, unable to keep it down. It was just his imagination. That was all.

The feel of icy breath slid over the back of his neck. Each tiny hair stood at attention as the stench of decay washed over him. Was it the girl from the river or was it Zilla? Kade flipped onto his knees, the beam of the flashlight straight forward.

There, inches from his face, was Zilla. She stared at him. Her mouth was open at an angle as her tongue flicked out against the air. It was too late to run anywhere.

Death stared him right in the face. Part of him felt relief that it was only her. Of course, that was if the other one wasn’t waiting for him as well. He didn’t dare move the flashlight beam to find out. Zilla had appeared out of nowhere so who knew what would happen once the light wasn’t on her?

Kade watched as her blue-tinged hand reached up for him. She held her hand for him to take. Something told him that doing so would be the end of him. Panic gripped his insides and he knew he had moments to make the first move. If he didn’t react soon, she’d overpower him.

He swung out with the flashlight, catching her on the side of the head. Her body rolled across the floor with a sickening thud. Kade was sure that the magnum flashlight had cracked her skull. It had nearly broken his foot when he’d dropped it one time. He jumped across his bed, darting into the hallway. His gaze moved around the hall as he tried to make out anything.

The sound of her rapidly skittering toward him had him running down the hallway. He stopped at Raven’s door, trying her handle, but the door wouldn’t budge. Instead, the old wood rattled in the frame.

In a flash of lightning, he watched Zilla skitter into the hall on her hands and feet, her body parallel to the floor as she let out a sickening hiss. Half her head remained dented in from where he’d clocked her with the flashlight. It was a terrifying image to behold. The fact that she continued to chase him regardless turned his stomach.

Kade looked back only briefly before he ran. She was close on his heels. In the distance, he could just make out his father’s door. His bare feet padded against the wood flooring.

Goosebumps raced up his spine as her icy fingers wrapped around his ankle. The weight of his body hit the floor with a loud thud. His head bounced against the hard surface blurring his vision. Tears filled his eyes making it even harder to see. At least now, he wouldn’t have to worry about seeing his death coming.

The cold sensation crept up his leg, over his knee and toward his waist. He could feel the weight of her above him as she crawled up his body. Time slowed so that each second felt like eons. The stench of her undead body burned at his nostrils. Kade gagged on the smell that was so strong he could almost taste it.

He didn’t want to die. Life was too short for him. There was still so much that he wanted to do. Besides, he wasn’t sure who would take care of his father if he wasn’t there any longer. That thought rolled inside of him. He wasn’t going to go out like this, a cowering lump of fear on the floor. If she wanted to kill him, she’d have to fight a lot harder for it.

Kade grabbed her arms, rolling them over as he kicked out with both his legs. Her body smashed into the wall across from them, freeing him to run. He scrambled onto his feet, darting for his father’s room.

The bright light blinded him as he ran for it. That was it. He’d found his end and now he was headed into the light. Just as he’d read in another book. It was his time to cross over.

 About the Author:

misty

 

Misty Harvey loves writing spine-tingling horror novels sure to thrill readers. The psychology behind such tales has always been a fascination for her since she was younger. Even to the point that she once contemplated taking up psychology as a profession. Still, her love resides in the art of storytelling. An art she wishes to continue to share with readers for the rest of her days.

After climbing out of her writing cave and searching the house for the sound of the latest creak or pop, Misty can be found doing one of many things. Often times she spends the remained of her day with her amazingly supportive husband and youngest daughter. While she has two older children that are out there spreading their wings around the world, including giving her a few grandchildren.

Her favorite things to do when not writing are crafts, wrestling with her dog, avoiding her cat’s bite or generally making her husband and daughter crazy. Often times she can be found creating vivid tales with her daughter about whatever mundane thing happened in their day and turning it into a crazy story. She is also an avid gamer, crochet goddess (we shall pretend there), domestic queen, and animal tamer (it’s a work in progress).

Stalker Links:

Website: Mistyharvey.com

Facebook: Author Misty Harvey

Twitter: AuthorMDHarvey

Goodreads: Author Misty Harvey

Are you thoroughly creeped out now? Make sure to leave the lights on tonight and be sure to mark your calendar for March 16th!

Thank you for stopping by and sharing with us today Misty!

Write on my friends, write on!

 

 

Nano Madness


NaNoWriMo – National Novel Writing Month aka November.

NaNo WriMO is an annual internet-based creative writing project that takes place during the month of November. NaNoWriMo challenges participants to write 50,000 words of a new novel from November 1 until the deadline at 11:59PM on November 30. The goal of NaNoWriMo is to get people writing and keep them motivated throughout the process. To ensure this, the website provides participants with tips for writer’s block, local places writers participating in NaNoWriMo are meeting, and an online community of support. The idea is to focus on completion instead of perfection. NaNoWriMo focuses on the length of a work rather than the quality, encouraging writers to finish their first draft so that it can later be edited at the author’s discretion. NaNoWriMo’s main goal is to encourage creativity worldwide.  The project started in July 1999 with just 21 participants, but by the 2010 event over 200,000 people took part – writing a total of over 2.8 billion words.  This year,  expectations are for 50,ooo participants.

I will be one of those participants. This week will be spent preparing my  outline,  gathering info,  loading my basic info into Scrivener, gathering necessary  materials –  you know, chocolate, notepads,  stickies,  more chocolae,  cherry coke, mountain dew, coffee, more coffee,  subway coupons – the essentials.

Most of November my blog will be dedicated to NaNo,   allowing other Nanoers the opportunity to share with you why we nano.   Today, to kick off the PreNaNo celebration,  I’m going to let Misty share her insights here.

Please welcome my friend Misty Harvey  as my guest today. She’s going to share a little insight to the craziness we are about to undertake.  While she shares I am going to  go work on my outline for my NaNo project. 

Nano Madness

By Misty Harvey

 What is this Nano Madness you speak of? It’s the craziness that happens right before NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month). Those of you that don’t know what NaNo even is, I’ll let Ellie explain that half of it to you. (see paragraph above) I was honored when Ellie asked me to come over to her blog and talk about some of the NaNo prep that I do, and how I get through it.

I have heard of those that start prepping for the next year’s NaNo the month after. I’ve also heard of those that wait until midnight on Nov. 1st, no plot in mind, and they just pound out a book. As everyone keeps saying, it’s about what works for you.

This will be my third year participating in NaNo.

Therefore, this is how my NaNo prep madness works. October rolls around, and I argue with myself going back and forth on whether I’m going to participate in NaNo this year or not. November is one of my busiest months; the only one that tops it is December. After I fight with myself for a week, I sign up.

I kid myself that it is a commitment I don’t have to keep. I mean it doesn’t cost a thing to sign up, and nobody cares if I finish anyway. You know, that’s all supposed to relieve the pressure of it off your shoulders. The problem is – I care. I care very much that I make it to that finish line.

Last year was a crummy November for me. If one thing wasn’t going on, another was. I found myself 25k behind with only 3 days to make that finish line. I thought I was a goner for sure, but no. I spent 2 days of that typing as quickly as I could. I buried myself in my work, and guess what? I made it. 25k in two days. I was so proud. I was hurting good, but I had ‘won’.

Now, as I’ve signed myself up for another year of utter chaos with only a few weeks to prep, chaos ensues. First, let me state – I had no idea what book to even write. There was no flicker of a book idea inside my cranium. Oh the madness. I knew first up I needed some form of a plot, or even a flicker – I’d take the flicker.

Time ticked down to fourteen days before the starting gun went off. I was lying around stressing myself out. I needed that idea. Once I quit trying to force it, guess what? Yeah, it came to me like a lightening bolt. After all of that, it became time to sort out plot issues, which meant brainstorming. I jotted down notes all over the place of various things that could happen, scenes I thought up, and types of characters. Nothing was definite yet, but I was working. I felt pumped up. Research ensued. I started to fill out various papers on how to plot your novel, and character worksheets. Oh yeah, I was cruising. (Mind you, I’m not a plotter, not really, I’ll explain. Just hang in there.)

Two days after I began work on all the plotting of characters and worksheets, I quit. I hated the whole concept of the novel, the stupid characters, and the project in its entirety. Yup, I was in the usual process I go through with NaNo. It’s a love-hate relationship with the preparations.

Do you know what I did at that point? Research. If I think I’m failing in some mental comprehension way then I will research plotting, how to write certain genres, how to make stronger character….and I will continue this destructive behavior until I’m moments from taking a lighter to all of my notes, and work.

Once I get over the anger, I mull it all around in my head for another few days. I have that ah ha moment, usually helped along from friends and family. All the puzzle pieces click into place. I’m off and running once again. The plot formulates with minor plots included. I ignore character sheets, because by this point the characters are very real inside of my head. (Is this the correct way to do things? Probably not, but it is what works for me.)

Now that things are on the run, and I am down to less than 10 days (eep), I need a plot to run with. I am convinced at this point that within that plotting procedure is the glorious hidden secret of how to be successful, and succeed at living through November writing 50k words in 30 days. Anyway, I sit my toosh in the chair and start plotting. I fill out index cards with chapters, and outline the chapters on guess what? Yes, more index cards. I tape it all to my living room wall after removing the couch and pictures. I end up mindmapping all over that wall.

Not sure what that looks like? Here is a picture.

MIsty's madness method

MIsty’s madness method

By the time I’m finished we’ve lost space in the living room, but hey that’ll teach my family to not allow me an office.

Once all of the mindmapping is finished, it’s a day or two before NaNo begins. I’ve all ready fallen in love with my novel idea. My mood changed and I hated the entire thing, and wanted it destroyed. All to circle back in love with my novel once again.

November rolls around, and I pull down each chapter piece I’m going to work on, day by day. I’m determined to see NaNo a success. A week comes and goes. Do you know what I find? Yeah, I stopped following the dag blooming plotline I spent twelve hours a day for a week busting my rump on.

Guess what? It doesn’t get any easier either once the month begins. Like Chris Baty and Grant Falkner talked about it the webinar for NaNoWriMo. You have four cycles to make it through the month that line up with the weeks – euphoria – the crash – grim determination – euphoria.

Haha, sounds like great fun to me! Bring on November. It’s time to sort the last bit out, and get it ‘plotted’.

See you all on the flip side of November.