Thistledown Hiatus 3, #NaNoWriMo Is Here

Friday, November 3, 2017

Welcome back one and all.  National Novel Writing Month* (NaNoWriMo) started Wednesday.  I made the conscious choice to be really excited about it this year.  (Sometimes you have to actively choose your attitude…) Part of me knew it might happen — that work would overshadow my progress, but I refused to think about it.  Alas, as of November 2, my low word-count is zero…  I remind myself that I’m not fast and that’s fine. I’m just in it for the “rah-rah!” as I call it. (The objective is to write a draft novel of at least 50,000 words in November.)

This is my weekly update (along with a link to a past segment of Thistledown below.)

About that abysmal word-count — one thing that slowed me down… I had outlined my plot. Really I did! I was not going to be completely unplanned.  Then I saw a movie I had never heard of before.  Sadly it had exactly the same plot I had imagined, from the steampunk to the evil scientists kidnapping the good ones…  Akkk! Yes, it had been done (and quite well at that), “April and the Extraordinary World.”

Needless to say… I won’t be using that plot.  So I will have to shift into full-on pantser mode.  It’s a good thing my box of “non-modern” things is ready and waiting for me.  It was intended to be used to keep me from getting stuck.  Now it will be a primary writing tool.

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Box of steampunky things to write about

Friends on Facebook sent me those random “things” so I can use my three things method to keep me writing.  The half-empty box you see above is now full of things from friends as well as things from my own head. (Somehow I’m more likely to keep my momentum up if the “things” come from someone else, but I mixed them all together.)

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Matrix waiting for characters

I got my story matrix set up and ready to populate with characters and characteristics.  Also I use a template I created for print novels from the very beginning, which is helpful to my writing process.  (There’s a little hint about what I’ll be writing in the matrix above, although I haven’t been keeping it a secret.

Enough of that.  Let’s get on with the thing that brought you here — Thistledown! 

Boy field smoke-ball aziz-acharki-290990
Aziz Acharki, Unsplash

For those of you who are new, or just want to review the faery serial, Thistledown — Midsummer Bedlam, here is a link to episode 3.

Thanks for visiting.  Hugs on the wing!


Copyright © 2017 by Teagan Ríordáin Geneviene 

All rights reserved.

No part of this work may be reproduced, scanned, or distributed in any printed or electronic form without permission.  Please do not participate in or encourage piracy of copyrighted materials in violation of the author’s rights.  

68 thoughts on “Thistledown Hiatus 3, #NaNoWriMo Is Here

  1. Hi there 🙂
    I klnow I’m extremely late, but only today I started having time to visit fellow Wrimos. This part year has been crazy.

    How’s your NaNo going?
    You know, I wouldn’t really bother if your plot sounds like another. It’s going to change so much as you write it. I do belive that two authors may start off with the same idea and end up in two very different places.

    Hope you have a very good NaNo!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi Sarah, it’s lovely to see you! I agree about the crazy year. Horsefeathers, it’s been nuts! 😀
      I your NaNo is going well. I’m sure the results will be wonderful. Is it another 1920s story?
      Others have said the same about my ill-fated plot. But I just didn’t want that on my mind. I have enough distractions. So I’m pantsering, with no idea where the seat of my pants is flying me. LOL. My word-count is far, far behind, but I’m having fun with the story. Hugs!


    1. LOL… Alas, Hugh, I’m not flying by the seat of my pants or any other way, but I *did* start it. Unfortunately it is not unexpected that the “9 to 5” has been a big drain. I’m off today and tomorrow, but haven’t slept much all week — and coffee and tea have not been enough to give me the wherewith-all to write yet today. But I have my trusty box of non-modern things, and hope to do better this afternoon.
      I really appreciate you taking time to read and comment. Wishing you a thriving Thursday. Hugs!

      Liked by 1 person

  2. This post has answered a question I’ve often wondered about … what happens when a writer discovers their storyline has been done before? Big-time Bummer.

    I’m assuming you aren’t tossing the entire storyline though. I would imagine that with a few directional changes in the decision tree with liberal injection of your pantzer method, it could be fresh and new.

    {Look at me – Ms Non-Writer, offering advice on something I know absolutely NOTHING about 😉}

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Big-time bummer is right Joanne. Similar happened with my first novel — an unpublished 700 page epic fantasy called The Dead of Winter. The entire story was centered on “Winter is coming!” a dire and creepy warning to the little heroine. I was 3/4th of the way into writing when Game of Thrones came along with a trailer proclaiming “Winter is coming!” You could have heard me screaming a mile away. It took a couple of years for me to finish the book after that (so very demoralized) and I still haven’t done the edits…
      So yes, I did scrap the plot. Figuring out how to make enough changes was just too much. Even the characters had counter-parts in the movie… The only difference was the character names and the fact that my story was set in a desert, not Paris.
      But I kept my characters, the steampunk aspect and my desert. I’m enjoying the writing of it — even though I’ve absolutely no idea what the “plot” will be. 😀
      I appreciate your visits! Thank you so much for taking the time. Hugs on the wing!


    1. Aw, thank you Christy. With just 30 days to do 50,000 words, I felt a lot better about having a plot… The only time I’ve felt I did a successful draft with WriMo I had a plot and vague outline. Sigh… But I’ll be writing by the seat of my pants again. I have a lot of catching up to do. I can’t say I’m surprised, but work has really interfered already… Thanks for cheering me on! That means a lot to me. Hugs on the wing!

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Your box of things looks like my box of dreams for the dark months of the year – how inconvenient that someone had stolen your idea – they must have time travelled and pinched it from you! Good luck with the rest of the month 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

    1. LOL, I can’t really feel robbed, Andrea, but thank you for your support. Clearly someone else had the idea first. I guess it helps that they made such a good film of it. ❤ However, I did feel awfully frustrated. Now I feel rather adrift. We'll see how it goes.
      I love your box of dreams. Thank you so much for sharing that post.
      Hugs on the wing!

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Yes, Robbie — that would have been even more frustrating. Something similar happened with my first (unpublished) novel, The Dead of Winter. The entire story was built around a phrase “Winter is coming!” Then when I was 3/4th of the way into writing that 700 page novel, The Game of Thrones came out with “winter is coming.” You could have heard me screaming a mile away.
      My word-count is not caught up, but I’ve done satisfying work during the 2 days that I’ve been able to write. Thanks for your encouragement, and for commenting. Hugs on the wing!

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Sorry about the unexpected change of plots. I guess that’ll teach you not to be so planny (sorry). I hope you have a big enough box-o-things. I’m looking forward to this story, even Moreso if it emerges as a book. Good luck Teagan.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. You are so kind, Dan — thank you. I need all the WriMo luck I can get! My head seems to be stuck in Mordor and the impossibility of escape today. I have a lot of WriMo catching up to do since I didn’t get started until yesterday. I’m still hoping to do a good enough draft that it goes to the top of my editing pile. 😀 Looking forward to see what you did with the SoC prompt today.
      Okay… got my 3 things for the morning: Porcelain, Rust, Eventide. Eventide? Did I really put that in the box? So be it. I should use some Victorian words. Cheers and hugs!

      Liked by 1 person

    1. I am writer, hear me roar? 😉 I tried to roar, but I could only muster a cough.
      Thanks Colleen. I’m looking for my positivity. I managed some good work yesterday afternoon. Hoping for more today. Best of NaNo luck to you as well. Huge hugs.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Roaring back at you. I had to stop today and clean. You know, I can’t think if my house is dirty. Ron dusted and vacuumed downstairs and I did upstairs. It’s noon. I feel better now. LOL! Go get ’em, tiger! You can do it!! ❤

        Liked by 1 person

  5. I’m sending you armloads full of good wishes on the annual novel writing thingie which I can never remember how to spell it all it. OK, I see it above: NaNoWriMo. That is hard for me. Imagine if I actually thought I could write 50,000 words in a month hahahahahahahahahaa. GOOD LUCK, Teagan! I know that you can do it!

    Liked by 1 person

  6. What are the chances of finding an almost identical plot already done and it’s a movie no less. Well, I can’t wait for the hiatus to be done, I know the wheels are turning in that brilliant brain of yours. Meeting starting will catch up soon!!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks for visiting with an encouraging word, Suzanne. OMG that apple cake of yours is still in my mind!
      Yeah… finding story similarities is common, but to be so very alike… I’m actually glad that I didn’t write it and have people saying it was a copy. But now… well, a pantsering we go. Happy weekend hugs.


    1. Ha! Thanks for being in my corner, John. Since you already do 1000 words a day, I expect Novel Writing Month would be a breeze for you. Since I can’t write every day, and when I do, I’m very slow, it is a huge challenge for me. Hugs right back — and cheers!

      Liked by 1 person

    1. I’m flattered, Jacquie. Thank you. I actually had a typo with describing that — I call them character matrices. I add some story detail, but it’s mostly about the characters. The columns sometimes change to fit the nature of the story. For example, one story seemed to mention what each character drove. So I had a vehicle column to help me find that detail easily. I do one for every novel or serial.

      I also “bastardize” MS Word as I write, to keep track of things and have a visual of it as I write. I’ll show a picture of that next time. Between the two, it’s great — for me anyhow. It works so well that I’ve never cared to experiment with other things.
      Thank you so much for visiting. Hugs on the wing!

      Liked by 1 person

        1. Great ideas, Jacquie. I usually have a column to track what episodes characters are in for the serials (since they have so many characters). Sometimes I add more “worksheets” for different kinds of info so it doesn’t become too cumbersome. Sometimes I have a separate “tab” for physical appearance, or for descriptions of buildings/places that I want to reference more than once…
          I like the “map” idea. Cheers!

          Liked by 1 person

  7. I might have the book Diana referred to in her comment or one similar: 20 Master Plots (And How to Build Them) by Ronald B. Tobias. He mentions what she says. I think the Three Things will work perfectly for you during NaNo, Teagan. Not only that, even if the story is similar to what you saw, the idea hasn’t been written like you can write it. I have confidence you can do this. Hugs.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. You’re so kind, Mary. Thank you for that. If the idea had not been so very very close, I might do that. But the only differences were that it’s set in Paris not my desert. Even the main characters in the film had counterparts in what I imagined. Yeesh… talk about the “Creative One Mind.” It’s a truly bizarre thing to happen. And it’s not as if I saw it and forgot. It is a 2015 French-Belgian-Canadian animated film. I haven’t even had cable in years, so I hadn’t heard of it before. Plus, being animated, it would have caught my attention. So odd…
      Thanks for taking time to visit. Great big hug.

      Liked by 1 person

  8. Well, that’s a bummer, Teagan. Although you know there are theories that there are only between 7 and 36 actual plots played over and over again – just tweaked to make them fresh. (Avatar and Pocahauntus for example – same plot!). But I get it. Enjoy your pantsering and don’t put too much pressure on yourself. It’s supposed to be fun! Hugs ❤

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I haven’t heard those numbers, Diana, but I came to a similar conclusion seven years ago, when I set out determined to write a novel that had never been done. It’s all been done, and multiple times. My next step was realizing, when I listed books and movies, that even though they had been done, I still enjoyed them.
      Even so, that plot was far too similar to what I had in mind for me to want to do it now. I’ll just put the “things” in charge, even though I wanted to go about this one in a more “proper” way.
      Many thanks for this encouraging comment. TGIF hugs!

      Liked by 1 person

  9. Sorry about the story, although I must confess it has happened to me more than once. By the way, I couldn’t believe it but I was listening to the radio yesterday and they mentioned Cornelius Drebbel and I thought, what are the odds? It must be a sign, Teagan, so I’m sure everything will be fine. Good luck!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Haha! Love that you got a sign for me, Olga! 😉 That really is funny.
      *After* I got into writing that serial, I learned that Cornelis had been used as a fictional character in a few TV shows or movies. I had not heard of him before I started research for the Copper serial. I googled for a list of “alchemists” and found his name.
      TGIF hugs my friend!


  10. I think it would take me the month of November to come up with an idea let alone write 50k words. But you have a way of coming up with good stuff. Have fun win NaNoWriMo.

    Liked by 1 person

      1. You write at light speed compared to me. I’m so slow at writing that more words jump off the train on the way to my keyboard than make it to the page. I once had a brilliant thought that surely would have gone viral, except it took a wrong turn at a fork in the nerve path on its way to my keyboard.

        Liked by 1 person

        1. LOL, Tim. I’ve had that train to keyboard issue — many times. In some parallel world, those brilliant ideas have happily gone viral. I didn’t get started until about noon today (day 3). I managed 1,100 words… my daily average should be close to 1700, so I doubt I can catch up… But I remind myself that for me, this time, it’s about the “rah-rah!”
          I appreciate your encouragement. Hugs on the wing!

          Liked by 1 person

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