Thirty-Two Days in a Month

Actually Finishing Something July

Did you reach your goal?

Not strictly speaking, but not through lack of trying, I think.  This scene has proved to be a kind of watershed and, perforce, very difficult to plot.  I have been inching my way along by 500 words.  I did finish, but I finished today, August 1st.  Close, but no cigar.

If you didn't complete your goal, were you able to make a good amount of progress in your project?

"A good amount of progress" is a relative term.  Also, while I have sat down dutifully and written 500 words before getting back up, and have therefore got my way through this scene, I feel as if I have made little progress in the plot.  Puts one down, you know.  Perhaps I will find someone who is not paying attention to me and I will read it aloud, and that person will say, "Mmhmm, Jenny, quite good."  And I will go away heightened in spirit and write something fantastic.

Did you maintain a writing schedule?  How often did you write to meet your goal?

Half of my time was spent brain-storming (or flogging - felt more like beating my brain-pan than anything else), and the other half was spent in actual writing.  Can't write if you haven't got words.  Hadn't got words.  Piffle.  But when I did sit down to write, I forced myself to push ahead by 500 more words, and often I was able to push ahead a little farther than that.

List some of the musical tracks and artists you listened to most frequently this July.  Tell us why they inspired you and how they fit with your story.

I listened almost exclusively to Loreena McKennitt's performance at the Alhambra, which is one and a half hours long, so I can put it on and let it go without having to poke Youtube every three minutes.  Most distracting.  I particularly like this video because, while Gingerune is not at all Celtic, her music often bears an Eastern flare which is excellent for the mood.  Very few of the songs in this performance have anything remotely to do with Gingerune, but I like them, and playing music that I like sets me in a good frame of mind to feel any equanimity toward the whole writing business.  My favourites are "The Bonny Swans," "The Stolen Child," and "Bonny Portmore."  Of course, I can sing very little of any of them.

Snippets!  Share as many or as little as you choose.

"Egyptian princes,” he added with a delicate upward kick to his lip, “do not countenance shabby driving. Perhaps—” He, too, stopped at his perhaps, but in a moment he chose to go on. “Perhaps later, when you are feeling better, I can take you out for a real drive. You would like it. There is nothing to compare.”

The Earth-Master appeared only slightly mollified to find he was not, after all, to be used as a target for blame.

Everyone began looking at Ginger and Ginger, responding as she always did to such attacks, felt her blood drain from her face and her lips part a little from her bared teeth. 

then the soldier was on top of the archer, his movements made heavy by pain. Ginger pulled Roxane aside, falling back as the soldier grabbed the archer by the ears and slammed his head into the marble flags. Athanassoulis hung on for two more crashing blows and then his body fell open, the bow cascading out of his grasp and the sheaf of arrows clattering across the floor.

Pick a character from your July writing project and describe his or her daily wardrobe. Imagine how this character would dress is he or she were living in the year 2013.


We'll do Ginger, since Ginger is my main character.  She wears (for her culture) very simple clothing: belled skirt (which would be pleated if she had the opportunity to iron it), fitted bodice and three-quarter-length sleeves, all in white and without embellishment; she owns no shoes.  In today's fashion, I've fitted her out with a salmon-coloured maxi dress (she can get away with maxi dresses: she's tall), a plain pair of gladiator sandals with heels, heavy bracelets, and some sharp turquoise jewellery to set off her freckles and violent red hair.

Bonus Question (skip if so desired - I shan't be offended)! What was your favorite part of Actually Finishing Something [in] July? What could be done next year to improve the challenge?

 I was very glad for the motivation which this challenge lent to my writing, especially since the scene I just finished was such a finicky one. 
thanks, Katiebug!

5 ripostes:

  1. As you know, I've been listening to that 1.5 hr. concert as I did my writing today, and it was quite helpful! I enjoyed not having to stop my writing every so often to change music (even with Pandora, I find myself skipping around...). The mood was similar to Psithurism, and adventurous and wild enough that it worked and I got 1000 words done. Score!
    My stylish side loves Ginger's 2013 outfit. Splendid, and so colorful! :)
    And then my writer side sits back, drinks up the snippets (the second one especially!) and laughs at the easily-amused stylish side.

    But such is life. ;D

  2. I begin to believe Pandora was not named Pandora for nothing. But isn't that video splendid? I love Loreena McKennitt's voice, her style, her composition. She is positively ethereal and elemental at once. It baffles me.

    I hoped you would like Ginger's style! I determined to do a Polyvore image (with some straining and confusion) but before I could get around to it, you had already done it for Psithurism. :P But now that I have the mechanics down, I may do a few more in my "off time." Whatever that means. But Ginger, as you know, is a red-head, and finding a wardrobe for a red-head that doesn't horrifically clash like two trains going full tilt is hard, especially for someone so bad at putting outfits together as myself. But there, I thought, "I can't let Bree 1) down, 2) laugh at me, 3) laugh at me some more. Gotta do this right." And I don't think I did too shabbily all told! The salmon seemed to be on speaking terms with Ginger's red hair, and I adore auburns and bright blues: the blue is definitely the pop-piece of the ensemble.

    Yadda yadda. You like the snippets? What a chore it was to find them! I have elbow-crawled my way through Actually Finishing Something July. Hmph. Personally, I'd like to throw the whole thing at you, and wouldn't you love that...? But this is only a momentary weakness. It will pass.

    No doubt not as soon as it should.

  3. 500 word plunks are amazing (thank you, Anne Elisabeth!). I've utilized them several times this past month — they're just the thing to pull you out of writer's block and get the wheels rolling. Setting myself a small goal like that makes it much easier to go above and beyond it. When I tell myself I'm going to write 2,000 words, I barely crank out more than 500 or so, but when I set my standard at 500 in one sitting, I tend to go to 1,000 or beyond. It's a good system!

    All the talk between you and Bree about Loreena McKennitt's performance at the Alhambra has made me dreadfully curious — methinks I've found my writing music for tomorrow! I love being able to settle on one piece for a long period of time; it's such a pain to pull yourself from the middle of a scene every three or four minutes to change the song. I normally choose a film score and give it full reign for the next hour or so, but it's always fun to have new music!

    I love Ginger's modern outfit! I would wear it myself. I'd be outlandishly tall in those heels, but I'd still wear it. :D

  4. It would be cliche to say 'I loved your snippets', but, heck, I did! I always do of course, so this is nothing new, but anyway, I thought you'd like to hear it again. I am awful fond of the Egyptian Princess one, actually. Indeed I am! "Egyptian princes,” he added with a delicate upward kick to his lip, “do not countenance shabby driving. there is something of the toying of those words together... *sighs* beautiful! I read your other tantalizing snippets in the past few posts, and my interest was caught by the 'etherdune' snippets as well as the Cinderella short-story. How is that coming along? It seems quite a while since I've been involved around The Penslayer - so many understated things of interest to catch up on!

    You and I, Jenny, we are caught in this beating of our brains into producing plunks of words! I have been feeling the difficulty of it with my novel, A Love that Never Fails... dear, dear me! But as Captain Haddock would have it, 'you hit a wall, you push through'.

    Ginger's contemporary outfit is perfectly splendid! Funny enough, it is of a Greek/Roman style, modern though it be; I am not at all surprised by the choice as I thing it suits well indeed with Ginger's fire of hair and freckles. I love this salmon colour and the vivid ice blue and gold. Believe it or not, that's the colour scheme for my new blog design ^_^

    God bless, Jenny!

  5. Elizabeth Rose - Bah, all you tall people. Bah. :P I hope you enjoyed Loreena McKennitt! Happy scribbles!

    Joy - I always like to hear that people love the snippets. It doesn't really go without saying: one is almost always beset by the fear that perhaps one's writing isn't quite good enough and does anyone really like it at all? I don't write just for me, I write for you, and I like to know that you have enjoyed my offerings. :)