Category Archives: NaNoWriMo

NaNoWriMo 2014

Sophie-keep-calmSo it’s the middle of November and that means that it’s the middle of NaNoWriMo also known as National Novel Writing Month. The goal is to write a novel, of at least 50,000 words, during the month of November. This works out to 1667 words a day or 50,000 in one day, but no matter how you break it down, it’s a task to be conquered. I am proud to say that I did it but that’s not what this post is about. It’s about the beauty of what can come from completing the task.

First, you feel great because no matter how shit your manuscript is, you’re writing! I remember it was about this time of the month that I got lost in how to continue my own novel. So I just went for it. I just kept writing and the second half of the novel was so utterly bad I was embarrassed to read it, but at the same time I just went with it with the ethos that editing is the most important task besides writing.

So, second, you realize how important editing is! Even writing this post, I wish I had edited the last sentence so it didn’t end in a verb! The manuscript I wrote for NaNoWriMo has been edited through 10 drafts and I finally got it to the point where I felt comfortable enough to pitch to agents. It’s been summarily rejected so far but at least I’m doing it and it all started with NaNoWriMo 2009.

So, third, it can all start with NaNoWriMo 2014! It’s not too late to start. You have until December 1st! But even then, just because thousands of people won’t be writing along side you around the world, doesn’t mean you can’t make every month NaNoWriMo, or every week. Take December and write a short story every week or a short play, or whatever the hell you want.

The most important thing is to keep writing. Why NaNoWriMo is so important is that it breaks down a schedule for you to know what can be accomplished in a month. By writing 1667 words a day you can have a novel written in 30 days. And what’s better than that? Well, a lot of things but also maybe not!

Keep writing! Good luck!


“Ex Gratia” update…

We made it to the “Best of Toronto”!

So proud of this film and the team.

More to come.

Internet’s not working as best as it should right now.

All love!

Happy NaNoWriMo (which is also going well)!


Everything & Everything Else

Yes, the title of this post is pretty weak, but it’s short and because I decided to pack everything that’s been happening in the last couple of weeks it’s more than appropriate.

Alright, well, what’s been happening?

Let’s start with the most important weekend of my creative life. Two and a half weeks ago my dear friend (I’d name her, but I’m not sure she wants to be named so henceforth she will be referred to as MDF) contacted me about an upcoming screenwriting opportunity wherein production teams have 48 hours to write and produce a short film. This was my introduction to the The 48 Hour Film Project. What an experience. Wow. MDF, who was also my writing partner, and I got together at 7pm on the night of October 18th and began our writing process. After two ideas, some delicious soup, a banana, an epic larynx crushing hug, two moments of goosebump inducing revelations, consultation with the production team, and a bunch of other stuff, we nailed an idea and had a first draft put into Final Draft at around 4am the next morning.

And that was just the beginning. The team then took our script and turned it into a BRILLIANT visual experience. As cliche as it may sound, words do not do justice to any part of this experience. It was truly a blessing to work with the uber-talented individuals that I had the pleasure of collaborating with on this project and I feel indebted to each and everyone of them. I describe this as the most important weekend of my creative life, because it gave me a chance to help create something, but also to work with such an amazing group of people who, without ego or personal agenda, committed their time, talent and effort to creating a film in a scant 48 hours. I am truly humbled to have been a part of this project and feel as though I should message each person every day to express my gratitude. Now, I haven’t done that because then, instead of the team thinking of me as “that writer guy who worked on the 48 Hour film project”, I would be, “that crazy, overly-grateful guy who needs a thesaurus to find other ways to say thank you and maybe a valium because he keeps sending me really happy and rambling thank you emails and now I just want to go to his house and shut off his internet”…so ya, maybe I should stop it here.

But Damnit! Good job to all! And Thank You!

Our contribution, “ex gratia” will be screening at the Revue Cinema, Monday November 4th at 7pm.

After we wrapped I met MDF and her lovely and talented boyfriend, MDCT (those are his initials), for a couple beers a few days later and I thanked her again for asking me to be a part of the experience and she said that one of the reasons she did so was because she felt I needed a creative kick in the ass. And without knowing it, she was right, I did need that. As good friends tend to, they know and can read parts of us that we have maybe let fall, unintentionally, dormant and after she said that I realized that I had been feeling disconnected from my creative self. This past year I went back to school with the intention to change careers and find something more stable to pay the bills until my writing career can handle them on its own. During that time, I keep up with reading, editing and story plotting, but the actual writing muscle was rarely exercised. I remember feeling as though I had “lost my muse” for lack of better phrasing. This project ignited it and combined with another reading of The War of Art by Steven Pressfield – I know I have posted about it before, but as a refresher it is easily the most important book ever written about creativity and living a creative life – the muse is back. And this wouldn’t be a blog post on without the accompanying music to express a sentiment. So I give you, “You” by Matt Skiba and the Sekrets (I’ll post the song and lyrics below…the vid is pretty guerilla.) The lyrics in this song perfectly encapsulate how it feels to have the muse back and to be able to create again, while looking toward the future and the bound copy of this first vomit draft that I am currently spewing out for National Novel Writing Month.

Ta DA! I have previously posted about NaNoWriMo, however, a quick refresher: the point is to write a novel, the baseline of which is 50,000 words, during the month of November. You can write an entire story or just the first 50,000 words, but the word count is what matters. You can write 1667 words a day, or 50,000 on November 30th (good luck!), but you have to get it done. The manuscript I’ve been editing for the last 3 years was written during NaNoWriMo 2010. So yes, this is my second attempt and with the muse back I’m killing it. Though it is only November 2nd.

I think that sums “everything and everything else” pretty succinctly. If not, I’ll hopefully write something here tomorrow, as the dates on my posts show I have been an utter failure as maintaining this blog. But “You”, my dear muse, are back and thus, so am I.

Be good to yourselves and each other. All love.

and the lyrics as promised:

“Its alive once again
I feel it pounding in my chest and it hurts like it should
A sharp pain that feels so good
With your arms ‘round my neck leaving me a melting wreck
Now with you by my side I can breathe once again I have nothing to hide

And You – I watched you dancing, you
Out of the ashes, you – dreams of demons kissing in the fire so deeply
You – ya found me hopeless
You – ya gave me solace
You – dying for your kiss I can’t imagine my life without you

Its alive once again
I feel it pounding in my head and it kills all the pain
It’s been powerless vicodin with your hands on my face
Pulling me out of my hiding place with your mouth upon mine
I can breathe once again I do nothing but smile

And you – I watched you dancing
You – out of the ashes, you – dreams of demons kissing in the fire so deeply
You – ya found me hopeless
You – ya gave me solace
you – I’m dying for your kiss I can’t imagine my life without you

Dance with me, dance with me, dance with me
you’re the name of the place where time stands still
Dance with me, dance with me, dance with me
Dismembering this memory its true, I lost myself in you

You – I watched you dancing you
You – out of the ashes
You – Dreams of demons kissing in the fire so deeply
You – ya found me hopeless
You – ya gave me solace
you – I’m dying for your kiss, I can’t imagine my life without you”

NaNoWriMo 2012

NaNoWriMo is here! Well, day 2 of it at least. Has everyone started? If you’re not participating what are you writing instead? I’m using this years NaNoWriMo to help me get in my daily word count for my new manuscript. It’s looking to be longer than 50,000 words at this point, which means I’ll be plugging away passed the November 30th deadline. That’s the beauty of events like NaNoWriMo, it provides writers with the motivation and inspiration to continue writing knowing that thousands worldwide are doing it along with them. Good luck, good times, good writing!

Danny & Isabelle vol.6 + Music

Hello, hello, hello. Against Me!’s “Borne On The FM Waves of the Heart” is probably the song that best represents the story of Danny and Isabelle in aural form so that’s why it’s at the top! 🙂

Anyway…after a long summer, involving writing and not writing, I’ve finally finished another draft of my manuscript about Daniel Porter and Isabelle Foster and how they just can’t seem to get together. More on that later, as in much later, as in not in this post.

What is in this post is a list of songs that: 1) I listened to while I was writing. 2) Acted as inspiration for the plot. 3) Are contained, without breaking copyright laws, in the manuscript itself. There’s a ton more than what I’ve included here, but these ones were the essentials. Also after the cut, I posted the 4 other videos for the songs that I think best pertain to the story. Hopefully this is the draft or one of the last drafts I write before I start pitching. To be honest, I’m glad I finished when I did because I needed time away from this story. I can’t read it again! Not for a while at least.

Pilate – “Melt Into The Walls”; The Lowest of the Low – “Rosy and Grey”; Against Me! – “Borne on the FM Waves of the Heart”; Smashing Pumpkins – “Landslide”; My Chemical Romance – “Vampire Money”; Snow Patrol – “Open Your Eyes”; Josh Ritter – “To The Dogs or Whoever”; The Avett Brothers – “If It’s the Beaches”; The Weakerthans – “My Favourite Chords; Sleepercar – “Wednesday Nights”; Delta Spirit – “Bushwick Blues”; The Gaslight Anthem – “1930”; Young The Giant – “My Body”; Coldplay – “Us Against The World”; Ray LaMontagne – “Burn”; The Gaslight Anthem – “Howl”; The Gaslight Anthem – “45”; The Gaslight Anthem – “Handwritten”; The Pogues – “Love You ‘Til the End”; Train – “Hey, Soul Sister”; Train – “Drop of Jupiter”; Train – “Marry Me”
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NaNoWriMo update

I hope everyone is NaNoWriMo-ing. If not, it’s not too late. DO IT!


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