So originally, I wasn’t going to participate in Camp Nano for July this year. There’s a lot of reasons why—I wanted to try art fight, I wanted to buckle down on my mental health, had to figure out the whole “no job” situation. The last one’s still a major stressor. But! I pulled up the site and was looking through the message boards and just…got excited for it again. And before I knew it, I had a goal set up! Good thing it’s still week 1!
For camp, I like to keep it pretty simple. Right now, I plan to work on project “Singlegate” for at least 30 hours this month. This project is in a weird first-second hybrid draft phase, so I’m hoping to use this camp to get it out of that and maybe publish it this year!
Singlegate is a YA mystery about when homeschoolers named the Baldwins move into a little town called Singlegate. The main character, Cordelia, finds a secret room in their new house with journals from the old woman who used to live there. In those journals are sinister notes about the local school.
I actually started this project during the main Nano event back in 2021! I had won the event by hitting 50000 words, but didn’t exactly finish the first draft. Then I started editing it before finishing it, which is how it’s in this hybrid phase now. Whoops! My main goal is to come up with an ending, because that’s still up in the air, but usually I figure out my endings while working through the middle, hence the 30 hour goal!
I thought it’d be nice to have a sort of journal of sorts on here to keep track of my writing? See how it’s going, when my motivation dips, etc. I probably won’t be able to update every week because of the stressors listed before, but I at least want to try!
Saturday, July 2nd
Technically, Camp Nano started on July 1st, but I hadn’t started yet because I was then adamant of skipping this year. I should know better by now.
On Saturday, I was scrolling through the Nano message boards, viewing topics like people’s writing routines, their favorite writing snacks, building a writing nest, etc. This is what really got me hyped up and ready to participate!
Singlegate is already a project in the Nano site, so I just had to add the July Camp goal to it! I started off with my usual—work for 30 hours at least in the month of July. The Nano site doesn’t have a way to put in hours quite yet, so I have to make do by stating that I’m aiming for 30 “words”. We’ll just pretend that the words are hours!
I hadn’t worked on Singlegate in a hot minute, so I had to review the story and my goals. The main one, of course, is to come up with an ending. I’ll be mulling over it in the back of my mind.
Then I got to work revising for an hour! Revising is pretty easy for me—what I basically do is pull up the first draft and retype it word for word while reading aloud. That way, if something sounds clunky, I can rework the sentence right then and there. Once I hit a point that needs serious reworking, that’s when I pull out my notebook and start delving into major rewrites that require a lot of my focus.
I ended up revising about two and a half chapters! It was easy enough this time, but I know I’ll be coming up to a more difficult part soon and I’ll have to spend a little longer on a single chapter to get it right. For now, though, the first draft was pretty much good from the get-go!
Monday, July 3rd
I was able to get even more chapters done! About three and a half are completed now. I worked for two hours so I can catch up for the first day that I missed. Now I just have to focus for at least an hour every day to hit my goal!
Tuesday, July 4th
This day, I first got some editing for Stolen House out of the way. I wanted to edit one full chapter and have it scheduled ahead of time, so that I don’t have to worry about it next week, which I was able to do! After that, I switched to editing on Singlegate for a couple hours as well. I find that having multiple projects works best for me. Constantly hopping between works keeps me from being bored!
After that, I watched fireworks with my siblings! They were done close to our house so that we could see (though the trees were in the way). They were super pretty and really set in the mood for summer. Have I mentioned that I love summer?
Wednesday, July 5th
This is the day that I realized that the new meds I’m taking are actually working. Sticking with a routine for a day or two is pretty standard for me. Three days in a row? Unbelievable, yet I did it.
Completed 2 more hours on Singlegate! I did hit my first major road bump this Camp session. I nerfed a character’s abilities and that ended up with a chapter needing serious reworking.
Besides writing, I also experimented with my food more! If you follow me on Twitter, you’ll know that I’m not too great at eating regularly, but today, I was actually able to do it! Even made myself a lunch: peanut butter and honey sandwich with a strawberry smoothie~
After that, I rewarded myself with lots of reading and working on a little plot bunny I’ve been thinking of.
Thursday, July 6
Another day where I’m sticking to my schedule! It’s getting really weird, but weird in a good way.
I worked through that difficult part in Singlegate only to hit another difficult part. This is probably going to be the standard from now on, because we’re getting to the point where I was desperate for words and just making a mess of things.
Friday, July 7
And now we have today! I worked for an hour, spending the first half journaling on how to get through this tough part and the second half executing my plan! Not finished with it yet, but I just wrote this line and gotta take a break. Can you imagine saying this to your mama? I sure cain’t.
The rest of the day, I’m going to spend taking care of myself! Making good food, giving myself a manipedi, playing with my dog~ It’s the end of week 1 and it’s Friday, which is ruled by Venus, so it’s the perfect day for a little self love and care! Hope you’re all giving yourselves plenty of love too <3
By the way, tomorrow Stolen House will update again for the first time in a bit! It’s a chapter that I like a lot. If you wanna read the previous chapters before it, you can view the table of contents here!