November 30, 2022

Hopefuls, Monthly Author Check-In, Personal

Monthly Author Check-In: November 2022

What I’m Writing: A Hopefuls holiday special
What I’m Reading: Under the Whispering Door by TJ Klune
What I’m Loving: Still listening to Taylor Swift’s Midnights on a near-endless loop

What a month.

It started off lovely enough: the excitement in the air for NaNoWriMo, followed quickly by my birthday. Then we entered into election day, which did not end up being the complete disaster it could have, but isn’t exactly great either, and is always stressful and often prolonged. (If you’ve never had your personal freedom and bodily autonomy on the line during an election, I envy you and sincerely hope you never find out what it’s like.)

The rest of the month was honestly a blur. I had an ongoing freelance project that was both fairly easy but also kind of mind-numbing, the social media landscape suddenly shifted underfoot, and of course there was the usual business of Thanksgiving, Christmas-ifying the house, and shopping. Couple that with a computer failure, a few minor personal things cropping up that needing tending to, plus an insurance mistake, and… yeah, it wasn’t a bad month, but it definitely feels like it’s time to move on to December.

Writing updates

On the writing front, at least, things went well.

In November, I temporarily set aside my work on The Beacon Campaigns to write a holiday special novella for the Hopefuls series. It won’t be released until next year, but I wanted to write it while it was the appropriate season, because honestly I kind of hate writing stories set at holidays if it’s not at least somewhat close to that holiday while I’m working on them.

I had kind of a slow start to it. Shifting between my series always takes a bit of mental space, especially since I was only recently back into the Beacons universe. Plus, I started writing it the second week of November, and aside from the stress of the aforementioned election, it was really kind of too early for me to be feeling the holiday vibes. Now that I no longer work retail, I am firmly a No Christmas Before Thanksgiving girl—but I wanted a bit more time than the 4-ish weeks that would have given me, so. Here we are.

And I’m glad I did start early, despite my reluctance, because it allowed me time to work through all the shifting focus and figuring out where, exactly, the plot of this novella was going by the time the season started in earnest. Now that it has, all the up-front mental work is done, and I can just sit down and put words to the page.

The draft is up to about 13,000 words, and we’re starting to veer from the setup to the showdown. I won’t say too much about the actual story yet, except this: there will be a sleigh, and there will be saving the world while wearing an elf costume. You know, as one does.

Yeah, it’s kind of a blast.