It happened. A nonwriter asked the question “What’s the point of NaNoWriMO anyway?”
“30 days of literary abandon, 50000 words in a month. OR in other words to write a book in a month.”
“Pffft. Right. Like anyone can actually write a book in a month.” She rolled her eyes discounting the efforts of some 30000 people. I was mildly annoyed.
“It’s getting the first draft down. I’m not saying that it is publishable by the end of 30 days, but that it is written. Any good writer knows they need to edit their work.” I add a note to my character pages, an expendible character that will die in the next chapter that bears a striking resemblance . . .
She sipped her coffee with her jaw in a stern line before asking.”Do you actually know anyone that has finished and published a book from NaNo?”
“Why yes I do!”
Foul is Fair (Book I in the Fair Folk Chronicles) is a Young Adult contemporary fantasy novel.
Lots of girls play Fairy Princess when they’re little. Megan O’Reilly had no idea the real thing was like playing chess, guitar, and hockey all at once.
Megan had known for a long time that she wasn’t an entirely typical girl. But living with ADHD—and her mother’s obsessions—was a very different thing from finding out she wasn’t entirely human. Somewhere out there, in a completely different world, her father needs help. There’s a conflict, revolving around Faerie seasonal rituals, that could have consequences for humanity—and if Megan’s getting the terminology straight, it sounds like her family aren’t even supposed to be the good guys. As she’s further and further swept up in trying to save her father, Megan may be getting too good at not being human.
“So…” Megan asked, finishing a bite of the sandwich Lani made her and occasionally wincing at the disinfectant being applied to her arm. “My dad is what, ’80s David Bowie? Glammed up, stealing babies, turning into owls?”
Lani frowned. “Sort of, but don’t get me started on owls.”
“What is your problem with owls?”
“I’m not scared of them, to be clear. I’m a big girl. I just think they’re up to something”
“Okay, okay, forget the owls.”
“So aside from something about attachment issues with the father I’ve never met, exactly what’s going on? Why would someone want to kill me?”
“I’ll take this one,” Cassia said. “Faerie is all about politics and schemes. Bad blood can last a lot of centuries, and your dad is one of the major players. He’s done a hell of a job hiding you all these years, particularly after he managed to spend four years with your mom. The people who knew were either actual allies, or weren’t willing to cross him. Now that he’s missing, somebody also leaked word on who you are and where you are. As word gets out, plenty of people want to meet you—and at least a few others are just as interested in making sure you’re not around to meet. The redcap may just be the start.”
Despite the threat to her life, Megan fixated on another part of the explanation. “My dad is missing? Like, missing from, uhm, Faerie, missing?”
“That’s what I’ve been trying to tell you,” Lani said. “I got some advance notice from Ashling, but not much. I knew it wouldn’t take long for more people to find out.”
“How did Ashling find out?”
“After the thing with her wings,” Cassia said, “Riocard took her in. She’s been his hunting guide for a while, when he’s not sending her to keep an eye on you.”
Megan scratched her head. “I’m having trouble keeping track of who is on what team here.”
Lani applied a little more disinfectant and started bandaging Megan’s arm. “It’s not always about teams. My dad might disagree with him a lot of the time, but it’s absolutely critical that we find your dad before Halloween and get him back where he’s supposed to be.”
“So he’s … he’s not even on your team. You’re just worried because he’s my dad?”
“Not just. I want you in on this because it’s important, and you deserve to know. But just because we’re not affiliated with the Unseelie doesn’t mean they’re not important. If I’ve learned anything from Neil deGrasse Tyson, it’s that without Autumn, we’d all freeze to death.”
“How are you trying to use science geek stuff to explain to me that… that we’re faeries?”
“Well, we’re only half.”
About the Authors:
Jeffrey Cook lives in Maple Valley, Washington, with his wife and three large dogs. He was born in Boulder, Colorado, but has lived all over the United States. He’s the author of the Dawn of Steam trilogy of alternate-history/emergent Steampunk epistolary novels and of the YA Sci-fi thriller Mina Cortez: From Bouquets to Bullets. He’s a founding contributing author of Writerpunk Press and has also contributed to a number of role-playing game books for Deep7 Press out of Seattle. When not reading, researching, or writing, Jeffrey enjoys role-playing games and watching football.
Katherine Perkins lives in Mobile, Alabama, with her husband and one extremely skittish cat. She was born in Lafayette, Louisiana, and will defend its cuisine on any field of honor. She is the editor of the Dawn of Steam series and serves as Jeff’s co-author of various short stories, including those for the charity anthologies of Writerpunk Press. When not reading, researching, writing, or editing, she tries to remember what she was supposed to be doing.
Pirate Princess by Catherine Banks (written NaNoWriMo 2014, published 11/2/15)
Pirate Princess was written during NaNoWriMo 2014. I had challenged myself to write 100,000 words in November instead of the normal 50,000 word goal. I exceeded 100,000 words on Day 14 and ended on Day 22 with 122,964 words.
Pirate Princess’ Blurb: As the daughter of the Pirate King, Tilia Swanson has an unusual upbringing learning skills that aren’t often available to women. As the heir apparent for the Kingdom of Crilan, her skills set her apart as she is trained by the best in the land and taught to harness her magic. However, piracy is in her blood, and draws danger to Tilia in the way that treasure draws pirates. Some treasures are more valuable than others. Will this lesson be learned in time or will the betrayal of those around her be her undoing?
NaNoWriMo can seem daunting and unobtainable when you first look at it, but even if you don’t finish, at least you tried! I recommend anyone who has ever considered writing to join in this free challenge. You may surprise yourself like I did and write more than your original goal. If you just write 1,667 words a day for 30 days you’ll end up with a 50,000 word novel! Try to find your writing style, I’m a pantser so I can’t plan things out or I end up not writing as much as I would have without planning. Just give it a try and try to think positively. Fifty words in a novel is more than the person who decides not to participate just because they “might” fail. So join NaNoWriMo and if you’d like to add me as a buddy, my username is cbanks. Happy writing!
Createspace (paperback): https://www.createspace.com/5672005
Christopher Cullum is living at home. He works fast food. His mom does his laundry, but she’s ready to move on. If he doesn’t accomplish something notable soon, she may invoke some tough love. He may even have to clean his own room.
If he can write a novel in a month and get it published, maybe he can continue living at home. Unfortunately, Christopher is more in love with his main character, Elsa, than he is with writing. His book won’t get finished by itself—and neither will his laundry.
When he falls through a plot hole into the pre-published world, he finds character Figments who aren’t very happy with the Writers who’ve made their lives a literal hell just to finish a story. To top it all off, that plot hole he fell through is eating up the very fabric of space-time-space. Can he survive parody flux, plot bunnies, and Nana Romo to get back to his own world before he destroys the written one?
The night lead them too a throne room, oh penned the door, and mow shunned them inn sighed.
As soon as the door closed behind them, something clicked back into place and they gave a collective sigh of relief.
“You didn’t think I’d let that continue in my throne room, did you?” Ellie was human again and sitting on the throne. “How annoying.”
“Why would you do it at all?” Christopher asked. “That’s…”
“Evil?” The queen laughed. “Exactly the point. Now, if you don’t mind, I’d like my crown back. In exchange, I’ll give you a free pass to your destination.”
“If you’re evil, why would you do that?” Elsa asked archly.
“Boredom, my dear. Besides,” she fingered the necklace around her pale white throat, “I like being the most evil being here. If he stays, who knows what kind of evil would show up.”
Eric looked at the crown in his hands, then at Elsa and Christopher. He sighed. “Just when I get something nice.” Dragging every step, he walked up to the throne and returned the crown.
“That’s better.” Ellie settled the crown on her head. Her elaborate hairdo immediately styled itself around the crown. “Time to die.”
“But you said…”
“I’m sorry. Did you miss the part about being evil?” The queen clicked her tongue. “Honestly, I cannot understand why anyone trusts me. It’s like you’ve never read a book before.”
Christopher blushed. “I read books. Sometimes. I have to read for classes.”
The queen waved a hand airily. “Not my concern. Time to die. If you could scream a bit, I do like that part.”
Zanzibar 7. Schwarznegger is a fictional Figment-Writer who escaped through a plot hole into the real world. He resides somewhere on the west coast of the United States and moves frequently under the Character Witness Relocation Program. He has spawned a number of plot bunnies, tribbles, and squirrels. His hobbies include oxymoronic acrostics, weekend adverbial warfare, and braving the terrors of parody flux on a dare. He occasionally remembers to update his website.
Three very different stories by three very different authors. Hail NaNo-ers! (Oh and did you notice that Zanzibar named her evil queen after me???? I do love that part!) Support your NaNo authors!
Now it’s time for another character to die in my newest NaNo novel.
Write on my friends, write on!
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