Last year I made a lot of writing goals for myself. I was going to finish the first drafts of two novels I was co-writing with friends. I was going to finish my 2010 Nanowrimo Novel (National Novel Writing Month for the uninitiated). I would revise my 2006 Nano yet again. I think there were also plans to edit two of the other Nanos I have written, finish a few first drafts that I had started at various points in time. I was going to get things done, clean them up and get them out the door.
Enter real life. I love working as a teacher librarian (and will hit my one year anniversary as such on January 3). I have so much to learn though about being an effective librarian, technology and children’s literature that I put writing on the back burner. I love coming up with ideas so I’ve been pursuing different library ideas, professional development, and learning celebrations.
That said, I am pretty pleased that I edited the Essential Guide to Supervillainy, which is the story of a girl writing a book for her senior creative writing class. I am more pleased though that I found a reader outside of my usual circle to read the first fifty pages. That outside perspective was what I needed to decide I need to rewrite the story so it starts at a later place in the timeline. I am also making sure to introduce Chance – my zombie loving, dyslexic prankster – earlier so the story makes sense. In 2012, I would like to complete the first draft of this rewrite.
I was also happy to complete the first draft of Third Fencepost with my friend Kit Campbell. This story was a lot of fun to write. It is a madcap misadventure at a summer camp. We each took a main character from one of our stories and had them be staff in training at a summer camp together. In her case, she wrote a character named Ali. I borrowed Chance from EGtSV. It was a great exercise in getting to know characters. At the start of the project, we had to check each other’s dialogue constantly to make sure it was in character. Both Kit and I used to work at summer camps (different ones) so that was fun to bring out in this story as well. We’re thinking of starting the first edit on this story in summer.
If I can get to it, I would love to do a proper edit on Jeremiah Was a Werewolf, my 2009 Nano effort. This story is the result of my library school Young Adult literature class. I read Laurie Halse Anderson’s Fever 1793 concurrently with Jim Murphy’s An American Plague. This led to wondering what else could be spread by mosquitoes. This all ended up with Miah, who becomes a werewolf because of a mosquito bite. (Playing What If is a dangerous thing).
The other writing goal I have for this year is to finish beta-reading two drafts for friends that I have been sitting on. It is difficult for me to find balance between reading, writing and betaing.