Shawn L. Bird

Original poetry, commentary, and fiction. All copyrights reserved.

Camp NaNoWriMo WIN! April 19, 2014

Filed under: Writing — Shawn L. Bird @ 12:00 am
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YAY!  Celebrate with me!  Today I met my monthly word count goal of 15,000 words!

I shall continue working on my goal to write a minimum of 500 words a day.

Small steps still complete a journey!

I’ve won NaNo twice before, but always by the skin of my teeth, catching up desperately at the end.  This is the first time that I finished more than a week ahead of schedule.  It’s quite exciting! 🙂



500 words is a rather modest goal, but it’s more about the habit.  No excuses.  Write a little bit every day.  It worked.  When I was too tired to write, I’d think, “Well, it’s only 500 words.  I can do that.”  And I could.  So far, I only missed meeting the goal one day, though even that day I wrote something.  I averaged 800 words a day, some days barely over 500, some days nearly 2000 words.  The project is supposed to come out around 40,000 words, and I had 10,000 before I started CampNaNoWriMo, so I’m around 25,000 now.  I check the outline, and write a bit that fits in somewhere.  Lately the plot has turned in an intriguing direction.  It still fits within the parameters of the outline, but in unexpected ways.

Of course, I am also doing NaPoWriMo this month.  I can’t rush that, so every day a new poem (for better or worse) arrives on the page.

Chug. Chug.  Chugging away with assorted writing projects.

The most challenging projects at the moment are the academic ones.  I have a series of articles to write for a magazine to promote my school, and I have papers  to get written for a grad school class I’m taking.  I’m really glad to have this four day weekend, so I can write all day for a few days!

How about you?  What are you writing?


51 Responses to “Camp NaNoWriMo WIN!”

  1. Maxima Says:

    Easter is a promise of joy and renewal
    May this one before us
    Marks a new beginning
    Of happiness, love and prosperity.
    Wishing you a Happy Easter!
    With love Maxima

  2. winterbayne Says:


  3. macjam47 Says:

    Congratulations! You are very dedicated and your diligence has paid off.

  4. mrfluidnotion Says:

    Congratulations, good for you :-).

  5. We’ll done, Shawn, and you look to be enjoying it which is the main thing 🙂

  6. uniqusatya Says:

    Wow Congrats…Practice makes a man perfect.and that might have worked for you 😉
    Jokes apart,that a huge task with Work on one hand and blogging on the other.I see that now, while i have taken up the A to Z Challenge this month 🙂
    Happy writing

  7. davidprosser Says:

    You’re doing really well Shawn. Keeping up an average like that isn’t always easy so one day missed is nothing. It will be exciting to see it all put together at the end. I’m concentrating on the blog since I still haven’t found the writing muse from before Julia died. Nothing lost though as I am enjoying the blog.
    xxx Mega Hugs for Easter xxx

    • All the best to you, David. Keep posting about Reuben’s adventures. Likely he’ll inspire something really great! 😉 Reuben as a Welsh Flavia deLuce (a la Alan Bradley’s Sweetness at the Bottom of the Pie) would be entertaining…

  8. Joanne Corey Says:

    Congrats on meeting your goal! You have so many writing projects going on. Good for you!

    This week, I have been working on my blog posts, the never-ending comments on articles about fracking, and a poem for my parents’ 60th wedding anniversary today.

    • Damn fracking. What on earth do they think they’re doing? Destroying our fresh water for more oil? You can’t drink oil! Keep up that work! I just saw about a workshop coming up for writers who write about social issues. I’ve gone through my email looking for it, but I can’t find it. I’ll post a link if I do.

      • Joanne Corey Says:

        We’ve managed to keep fracking out of my state (New York) for over six years, but it is a constant battle against a very powerful industry that has wrapped too many government officials around its finger. We are also helping to fight the industry nationally and internationally and working on getting action on renewable energy and conservation. It’s frustrating and time-consuming, but part of my social justice calling. Poetry helps keep me sane!

      • Well done! Keep up the good fight! NY is too small, with too many people to risk it. Our frackers tend to be up in unpopulated areas and they are having less trouble because ‘who are they hurting?’ but I really don’t understand this “me me me” attitude that forgets there needs to be a healthy planet after we’re gone!

  9. words4jp Says:

    Someday I would love to participate in a writing challenge. For me the habit of scribbling everyday and posting is challenging enough. I feel it has become a habit – I want to, I look forward to it, I feel the need to – maybe, someday. In the meantime I am awestruck by writers like yourself who create such beautiful work everyday.

    • It’s all about taking desire and turning it into action. A little is better than nothing, so to get the habit, challenge yourself to 250 words a day, why not? If it’s a challenge to you, it’s challenge enough. Schedule your time, and make that appointment with yourself. You might enjoy Julia Cameron’s The Artist’s Way. She suggests “Morning pages.”

  10. Annette Rochelle Aben Says:

    I am excited as I need to require myself to reach a word count instead of being project completion oriented because placing the focus on projects leads me to the park instead of staying parked in front of the keyboard… YAY, thank you

    • It is the key to everything, that daily diligence. 500 words a day gives you 15,000 in a month, 182,500 in a year. The most popular size of novel is about 70-80,000 words, so you could write 2 of those a year, with about 30 mins in front of the computer each day.

  11. releaf1954 Says:


  12. theburrfoot Says:

    At the minute I’m busy arranging new and old scribbles into some form of cohesion! I’m hoping for the motivation to concentrate on the new more, could you explain what NanoWriMo is? Or point me in the right direction, I’ve only really started on here with any conviction and it’s a bit overwhelming 🙂

  13. narble Says:

    Writers write. You are a writer. It’s a wonderful life.

    • That’s true. Though sometimes writers waste too much time on social media, clean the house, do craft projects, play with the dogs, talk to their children, cook, bake, and work regular jobs, often as an excuse to avoid sitting down to write!

  14. Elouise Says:

    I’m writing my life, one word at a time. What a gift–to be able to do that.
    Happy Easter everybody!

  15. mrssebring Says:

    Thanks for the follow, Shawn! I’m still trying to get my book finished. It’s fantasy fiction and I’ve been at it almost 3 years now, with world building and what have you. Now the book is about halfway finished. I have a similar goal for myself as you have; trying to be finished by the first of June. We’ll see! 🙂

    • Good luck with it! Inch by inch! “Write like a mighty hippo!” (This is my personal encouragement. Fantasy writer Sam Sykes and I were tweeting back and forth about word count last week and how minimum is better than nothing, and this was his line. It makes me laugh, because of how hippos do nothing for ages, but then they poop, wag their tails and spray it everywhere. It’s an entertaining metaphor.) Small movements with bouts of drama!

  16. Happy dancing for you! 🙂 500 words/day really works — I heard Terry Pratchett some years ago say that’s what he’s done for years, and I’ve lost count of the number of books he’s written. Keep up the good work!

  17. thesewordsiwrite2012 Says:

    It’s always a great feeling when a goal gets accomplished. Congratulations!

  18. 7128788elf Says:

    Great! well done it sounds like despite all the distractions things are going really well. I am writing, editing, cleaning my study and the house, walking on our mountain, and the beaches, and getting winter clothes out. Enjoy the break, and many blessings to you.

    • We’re trying desperately to put AWAY the winter clothes! lol

      All the best to you Charles!

      • 7128788elf Says:

        Hope the warmth will get to you soon, and you can put away all the heavy winter clothes. Here I walked down the coast with some friends, had a pick nick on the beach and swam, so still quite warm. Had along interesting chat about the arts out here. best wishes.

      • Oh it’s spring here. I’m going about with just a sweater or light jacket now. 🙂 (Finally)

  19. motherbethel Says:

    Wow congrats to you and enjoy your post…

  20. Heather Says:

    Congrats and go you! I’m still working on my Camp NaNoWriMo goal. It’s all prep for November and the future. 🙂

  21. seanbidd Says:

    Sounds like a lot of business for the article writing coming up, and congrats on the other count.
    I’ve been messing around of late in tidying up four small books of short stories (editing), two novel concepts mapped and underway, another two in some sort of strange research mode (not sure what that means), while taking an axe and crowbar to various poetry workings, some 500+, to see what can be manufactured.
    All the best with all your projects, Shawn

    • Aren’t you busy! They sound like satisfying projects. I’m feeling grumpy and stressed myself.

      • seanbidd Says:

        Yes, but I’m not rushing, just shuffling each through its different phases.
        Grumpy, Shawn, will that be the must/need to do articles, not the want to do fun stuff, right? A classroom (and at home) is never fun when the teach is stressed, hope you manage to navigate the grumpy okay.

      • I’m rediscovering the fact that thoroughly cited in APA papers are apparently not nearly as much fun to write as fiction!

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