Wednesday, May 2, 2018

IWSG: The Cruelest Month

Well, I'm back from Camp NaNo

My Camp NaNo t-shirt and Minion pajama pants are covered in chocolate and peanut butter and marshmallow. I refused to use those creepy Camp showers so I smell like fear-sweat. And wine. (Oh, come on, of course I didn't use the showers! Where else would a serial killer/giant rat/super-flu lurk?) My huge flashlight has run out of juice and is battered and cracked.

Much like me and my WiP.

I have picked up and put down this story for years. I lugged it to this conference, shoved it at that critique group. I wept bitter, angry tears. I know in my gut the story is alive and breathing, buried somewhere in the muck of pacing problems and point-of-view issues. It's waiting for me to dig deeper, harder.

And I will.

Camp NaNo is over, but the year is not. I've got time - to get this done, to get this right. And so do you. If your creative plans didn't work out last month, don't give up. Let's go into May with a plan and a positive attitude.

My plan positively includes eating more s'mores. And writing, of course. Care to join me?

*****

How was your April? Accomplish a goal? Make progress on a challenge? Have any big creative plans for the summer? Anyone going to Camp NaNo in July?

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68 comments:

M.J. Fifield said...

I would like to go to Camp NaNo in July, but I have to wait to see what's going on with my other writing endeavors at the end of June. I'm definitely on board for eating s'mores! It'll help me get over not accomplishing anything I wanted/needed to in April. :)

Madeline Mora-Summonte said...

I'm not sure if I'll tackle the July Camp session either, but good luck to us if we do. After all, the s'more, the merrier! :)

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Saving that peanut butter for later?
You will figure it out!

Madeline Mora-Summonte said...

Peanut butter has little chance of lasting long in this house. :)

Crystal Collier said...

Ah, the problem manuscript... I have one of those just sitting and waiting for me to find the time. It even got a little agent love back in the day, but I couldn't get myself to love it enough to fix it. Some books are like that, eh? One day.

Madeline Mora-Summonte said...

Yep, this one got some love, too. It needed work then. It needs work now. I've shelved many manuscripts, but this one still calls to me.

Christine Rains said...

I have one of those too. I wear my pajamas all day when I can! Mine has Avengers and kitties on them. Too bad the kitties and Avengers aren't on the same ones! Keep on pushing forward. :)

Chrys Fey said...

Great attitude. We all have time. And we can all do it! :)

Jennifer Hawes said...

Yes! I finished my NaNo project and am very pleased with the outcome. A month ago, I felt like chucking it out the window. Keep going!!

Madeline Mora-Summonte said...

What if the kitties were dressed as Avengers? :)

Madeline Mora-Summonte said...

We can! We will!

Madeline Mora-Summonte said...

Excellent, Jennifer! Good for you!

Michelle Wallace said...

I did very well the first few months of this year, completing my #100words100days challenge. It was hectic... but so worth it!
I'm thinking of going to CampNaNo in July. Depends. I'll work on it.
Happy IWSG Day!
Writer In Transit

Madeline Mora-Summonte said...

Great job, Michelle!

And you've got plenty of time to decide about Camp in July.

Caitlin Coppola said...

I love that you're refusing to give up. You owe it to your characters and they'll repay you in kind. Keep moving forward!

Tyrean Martinson said...

I'm not sure about Camp NaNo in July, but I'm considering it. I definitely didn't get as much done in April as I had hoped, but ... I am still writing, still going. That's the best I can do.
Happy writing in May!

Lee Lowery said...

Not to mention spiders. Welcome back. So far, nothing as worked out as I've planned this year. But hey, plot twists! I'm with you for plowing ahead, because quitting is just not an option.

Madeline Mora-Summonte said...

Not sure about my characters repaying me - some of them are rather nasty, and the nice ones won't like what happens to them.... :)

Madeline Mora-Summonte said...

You ARE still writing, still going, Tyrean - hang in there! And you've got time to decide re Camp in July so no hurry on that.

Madeline Mora-Summonte said...

And, of course, those spiders were huge and hungry.... :o

And yes on plowing ahead!

Rachna Chhabria said...

Hi Madeline, don't give up on that manuscript. My April was good, I wrote quite a bit. I plan to write more in May.

Rebecca M. Douglass said...

Hang in there and nail that book! I can sympathize--I've dug more than one book out from under a chaotic pile of never-mind.
—Rebecca
My IWSG Post

emaginette said...

Working on something that isn't quite right can be frustrating. But I have no doubt you can do it. Pick it up and try to see it with a critical eye. If that does't work try websites on revising. Something will hit and all will be well again.

Anna from elements of emaginette

Madeline Mora-Summonte said...

Glad your April went well, and I hope the same holds true for you in May. :)

Madeline Mora-Summonte said...

I'm hanging in and hanging on! :)

Madeline Mora-Summonte said...

The revelations keep coming, bringing with them more and more and more work. I hope it will all be worth it in the end.

Ronel Janse van Vuuren said...

I'm sure you'll get your book just right. Good luck!

Ronel visiting on Insecure Writer's Support Group day: Autumn Decisions

Nicki Elson said...

Wait - s'mores with peanut butter? That sounds AMAZING!

Thanks for this little pep talk - was doing good on writing but I'm cutting myself some slack to tend to life's busyness, and this helps me know I'll get back on it...soon.

Madeline Mora-Summonte said...

Thanks, Ronel!

Madeline Mora-Summonte said...

I was talking peanut butter cups AND s'mores but now...oh, yum! :)

You'll get back on the writing - no worries.

cleemckenzie said...

You're not giving up on that story, so that says you know it's worth the struggle. Congratulations!

Madeline Mora-Summonte said...

Thanks so much!

T. Powell Coltrin said...

There is nothing like an ole WIP to keep us company AND inspire our creativity.

Anonymous said...

I had a good April and am hoping to continue that into May. No S'mores for me though, it triggers my IC. =(

Madeline Mora-Summonte said...

I love the idea of the story keeping me company! Although, some of the characters? Not so much. :)

And thanks for Following us here at TSR!

Madeline Mora-Summonte said...

Good luck in May! And s'mores are not necessary - okay, for me they are! - but anything that's a treat for YOU works. :)

Elizabeth Seckman said...

I hear ya- both on the camp showers and the frustration. I just sent my latest to some trusty readers because I'm honestly kind of sick of looking at it myself.

Nick Wilford said...

Sometimes those stories that are the most troublesome are the most worthwhile in the end. You won't rest until you've got it right. Here's to a productive May and rest of the year!

Susan Flett Swiderski said...

Sure, I'll hang out with you and eat s'mores any old time. I haven't written alongside anyone in many years, but that might be fun, too. Better skip the wine until we reach a word quota, though.

Good luck with that manuscript. Obviously, you love it and believe in it, so I'm confident you'll get it straightened out to look the way you envision it.

Madeline Mora-Summonte said...

I've come up with so many variations on the title - so I don't lose track of which version I'm on - that I've lost track. Now I just refer to it by its initials.

Madeline Mora-Summonte said...

I hope you're right, Nick! :)

Madeline Mora-Summonte said...

Ha on the wine and writing! When I took cooking classes, we weren't allowed to drink the wine until we were done cooking and about to eat. Wine and knives? Not a good combination. :)

Olga Godim said...

Good luck with your story. You'll make it to the end, I'm sure.

Madeline Mora-Summonte said...

Thanks, Olga!

Susan Gourley/Kelley said...

LOL. You make pain seem so funny when I know it's torture. Tackle that thing and getherdone.

E.M.A.Timar said...

Keep believing and persevering, and you will make it through. My Camp started strong, but I was ill for the last two weeks. Although I kept writing and editing as much as I could (not much), I completely failed to track it or update it on the site. I may not have reached my goal, but I made progress. So I will continue to persevere and believe I will get this project done despite the setbacks.

Lynda R Young as Elle Cardy said...

Best wishes for getting it done and right :)

Raimey Gallant said...

What a fun post! And I just want to say that when I first heard of camp nano, I thought it was a writing retreat, and I would so have gone on that writing retreat! :)

Kalpana said...

Your description of Camp Nano had me chuckling. I'm sure your WIP will see the light of day soon.

Pat Garcia said...

All the best with your manuscript. Keep at it. As for me, my April was really okay. I got the final revision in chapter 12 in my manuscript finished.
All the best.
Shalom aleichem,
Pat G @ EverythingMustChange

Madeline Mora-Summonte said...

If I didn't laugh about it, my peanut butter cups would get all mushy from my tears and there's no way I would allow that to happen. :)

Madeline Mora-Summonte said...

Some progress is better than no progress. The fact that you kept working on it, even though you didn't feel well, shows your tenacity. You will get it done!

Madeline Mora-Summonte said...

Thank you, Lynda!

Madeline Mora-Summonte said...

If I was going to go to an actual Camp NaNo, it better be one of those "glamping" type camps, where there are gourmet s'mores and an actual bed in the tent. :)

Madeline Mora-Summonte said...

At this point, I would settle for it peering out from under the bed where it's hiding and seeing the glow from the nightlight.

Madeline Mora-Summonte said...

Glad to hear your April was productive, Pat!

The Cynical Sailor said...

Sound super frustrating. Eat plenty of smores and keep at it. It will all come together in due course. I don't like marshmallows, but save some Hershey bars and graham crackers for me.

Madeline Mora-Summonte said...

The more s'mores I eat, the more words I write...and the more pounds I gain. Sigh.

Juneta key said...

Good luck with the story. You can do it. I will probably do July NaNo as do most every year, but will decide the closer it gets.

Madeline Mora-Summonte said...

Interesting you do Camp NaNo every year! I've only done Camp a few times, but I like the flexibility of the goal. Although, I'm not sure the flexibility likes me. :o

Jen said...

A positive attitude is the best way:) I am trying to do that. I'm taking a break from my novel I wrote during camp, unless it haunts me :) And working on some short stories as I have a goal to finish and published some. I think all we can do is keep trying, best of luck:)

Madeline Mora-Summonte said...

Sometimes it's good to set aside one project, shift gears and work on something else for a bit. Good luck with those short stories!

JEN Garrett said...

Yep, I hear ya! I didn't do Camp NaNo this year, but I have a manuscript that's breathing inside me, and I'm trying to get it "right" enough to let it out into the world. In my case, it's a picture book, but no less sweat-inducing.

Madeline Mora-Summonte said...

First let it out on paper/screen then worry about the world later. You can do it! :)

Jen said...

I love this! I have a story that I've kept alive for 20 years but it still needs a major overhaul. I'm not worried about it but I am excited to bring it to life in the near future. You're right! As long as we keep moving forward, keep working on the story, it will tell us where it wants to go. Best of luck to you with your NaNo novel! And welcome back from camp :)

Madeline Mora-Summonte said...

Good that you're excited about bringing that story to life! Go for it!

J.H. Moncrieff said...

Congrats on surviving Camp NaNo! For some reason, only NaNoWriMo works for me. The camps don't have the same effect--can't figure it out.

Madeline Mora-Summonte said...

A lot of people feel the same way. I'm on the fence - I like the structure of NaNo, but I also like the flexibility of the goal for Camp. Big surprise, I can't decide something! :)