Mini-NaNo – Week Four (and Moth!)

We briefly interrupt this weekly check-in post to bring you…

HTD web
(Click to embiggen)

That’s the Very Stylish ebook cover of Moth’s second novel: HUNTING THE DARK!! (Coming to an e-reader near you at the beginning of January.) I have to say that it looks fantastic on both my phone and my Kindle, so I am pleased that Random House did their best to find an artistic compromise between the prequel e-story (‘Moth’), and of course the first novel, FALLING TO ASH.

You can see all three side-by-side on my website here. Don’t they look pretty?

Here’s the official blurb, which is a bit vague I suppose. But trust me: this is darker, more action-packed, and more romantic than Book One. Also, despite how dark it gets for poor Moth at times, it is probably one of the most hopeful books I’ve ever written. Hmm… That sounds strange, but I guess you’ll just have to read it to find out what I mean. 😉

Moth’s adventures in the dark and twisted underworld of modern-day Boston continue in this thrilling sequel to Falling to Ash.

Once bitten . . . never shy

Adjusting to life as a vampire hasn’t been easy for Moth. Torn between her family and her maker Theo, Moth spends her time running from one deadly situation to the next.

That’s not her only problem. There’s a killer on the loose and no vampire is safe. Even worse, the prime suspect is Jace Murdoch, Moth’s friend and one-time crush.

He is in serious danger. Moth needs to hunt down the killer before Jace is destroyed.

Time is running out and the darkness is closing in . . .

* * *

Okay, back to the #MiniNaNo update for this week. Our fourth and final week(!) – but I will do another check-in post next Monday to wrap things up and see what totals we finished with.

coffee writing

I somehow managed to increase my output this past week, despite a lot going on outside of writing. I’m still working in longhand, so really big word counts are out of reach for me, but despite that I just hit… *drumroll*

15,000 words


Which means I’ve reached my minimum goal a week early. I am thrilled and, quite frankly, amazed! I’m now tempted to dust off my trusty Alphasmart for the final push and try my hardest to write 5,000 words by the end of the week. I’d love to check in on Monday with 20K, but I don’t want to get my hopes up as all kinds of things could potentially get in the way – plus I’ve been having a few migraines, lately. (What else is new, Kaz? I hear you ask.) I am, however, loving this new YA book. I think I’d like to just write the whole thing on-spec, and worry about whether it’s something I could actually sell much later on. This project is all about me trying to remember that creating something just for the pleasure of creation is very much worthwhile.

So, I am doing pretty well and have learned that sometimes it pays to revise your goals and aim a little lower – especially when you know that Life is going to be challenging. How are you doing? Let me know in comments…

See you next Monday! 🙂

Posted in Art, Publishing, Writing | Tagged , , , | 6 Comments

Mini-NaNo 2014 – Week Three

coffee writing

Just a quick update today. We’re officially on Day 17 of NaNoWriMo – and of course Day 17 of this cut down version of the challenge. How are you getting on? Are you still with me? Do you like what you’re writing?

By the end of today I should be at around 9,000 words to be on target for my minimum goal of 15,000 words for the month (500 words per day). We’re just over halfway! I think I might be a tiny bit ahead of schedule – but that’s good as I am writing longhand at the moment so some days are more of a struggle than others. It would be nice to edge closer to 20K, but I’m not going to pressure myself. All progress is good progress. I might make that my new mantra. Maybe I’ll try using my Alphasmart again later in the week, to speed things up, but at the moment the notebook and pen are beckoning… 🙂


I’ll try to post a pic of my star calendar next week – or at the very end, when we’re all finished. We’ve got two more check-ins to go. (I will definitely post a final one on Monday, 1st December to look at totals.)

Happy writing, and see you next Monday!

Posted in Writing | Tagged | 6 Comments

Mini-NaNo 2014 – Week Two

coffee writing
Let’s just pretend that this post went up on time yesterday, okay? Thanks. 😉

So, Monday 10th November took us to Day 10 of NaNoWriMo – or, at least, Day 10 of my extremely modified version of it. If you’re still with me, how are you getting on with your goals?

For me, I have definitely let go of the hope that I’ll get anywhere near the ‘dream goal’ of 30K that I set. I’d hoped to write somewhere between 15,000 and 30,000 words, with 15K being my minimum. I am actually (amazingly) on track with the minimum goal right now, but I’m pretty sure I won’t be managing to produce more words than that. The month is indeed shaping up to be full of Life Stuff – as I suspected it would be – and I feel very pleased to even be getting anything done on this new project. So my current total, for 10 days, is 5,000 words. Yay! It was touch and go to begin with, and I did have to do a couple of ‘catch up’ sessions, but hopefully I’ll be better at writing a little each day from now on. Not convinced about that, though, as I’m also working on HUNTING THE DARK ebook proofs…

Here’s my progress calendar, with each star representing 500 words written. You can see I didn’t write anything at all for the first two days, but I’m still doing okay:


Trying this is interesting, though. I really had hoped to consistently write 500 words per day, but it’s more like… no writing on some days, and then 1000 words on others to make up for it. Oh well, I’ll keep going and do my best. You do the same, too. As I said on Twitter the other day:

I’ll check in again here next Monday, to keep me honest. See you then! 🙂

Posted in Writing | Tagged | 6 Comments

Mini-NaNo 2014 – Week One

coffee writing

So! This is not really an official ‘check in’ post, because NaNoWriMo – and my mini version (details here if you want to join in) – only really started two days’ ago. And those two days took place over a weekend, when not everyone can write as much as they might like to. (Though, of course, it can also be an excellent opportunity for those with Monday-Friday day jobs.)

I’ll put up a check-in post every Monday – including the final one on Monday, 1st December, which works out perfectly to see how we all did at the end of the four weeks (30 days).

For me, I knew I wouldn’t get much done on Saturday (though I did manage plenty of thinking about my project and wrote a few notes). Then yesterday was supposed to be a day when I’d write 1,000 words to get ‘caught up’… but I had major technical problems, which ended up swallowing the whole afternoon and evening. SIGH.

Which leaves me about to jump in for the first time right now. 🙂 I’m hoping for that first 1K today, then if I write another 1,000 words tomorrow I’ll be caught up to my minimum goal of 500 words per day. Good luck – whether you’re joining me with #MiniNaNo or doing the full challenge.

See you back here next Monday, 10th November, and on Twitter in the meantime!

Posted in Writing | Tagged | 2 Comments

Mini-NaNo 2014

crest-nano So. Guess what? It’s that time of year again. Yes, it’s time to get your NaNoWriMo on – if that’s something you like to do. 🙂

I have had very mixed results with my (many) attempts at NaNo. I talked about it a little last year, and in more detail back in 2011. Despite my generally positive feelings toward the writing challenge, I am NOT signing up officially in 2014.

Basically, Life is crazy busy and I know that getting anywhere close to writing 50,000 words next month is nothing short of madness. So I’ve decided to do my own ‘mini-NaNo’ (something I’ve done in the past with the various KazNo writing things I’ve run here on the blog – although I’m not calling it that this year). I have a brand new YA project whispering in my ear, and I think I’d like to try writing at least some words in November – otherwise there is a very good chance that all that Life Stuff will take over and I won’t write anything at all.

In the interests of keeping myself accountable/inspiring myself, here is what I am aiming for:

At best, I think I could hit a high of 30,000 words.
(Honestly, I still don’t think I’ll manage this, especially if certain things in Real Life shake out a certain way. Everything could come off the rails. But I will attempt this as my absolute Dream Goal.)

However, because I know that even reaching 30K is hopeful, I’m going to set a minimum goal of 15,000 words for the month.

That way, I can aim for a minimum of 500 words per day, just to keep my head in the story – just to keep the project moving forward a little.

I’m going to use my own version of Victoria Schwab’s ‘Star Sticker System’ for November to help keep me on track. I already have a calendar – and stickers (pink and purple, because they make me smile), with each sticker representing 500 words written. So I’m good to go!


All that remains is for me to finish figuring out at least the basics of the story I’m going to tell. I have characters and setting and conflict. Kind of lacking in actual plot, but hopefully that’s what I’ll address this week – before starting Actual Words on Saturday, 1st Nov.

Good luck if you are participating in the full NaNoWriMo. I wish you much inspiration, speedy writing, and as many words as you can comfortably manage!

If you’d like to join me in my mini-NaNo (anywhere between 15K and 30K for the month), let me know in comments. We can cheer each other on, and I’ll make sure to post weekly updates. 🙂

Posted in Writing | Tagged | 13 Comments