So I gave myself a summer vacation through August. Basically an excuse to relax and recharge. I feel like I’ve been gunning on full-blast for… Crikey, at least a year! And when I haven’t been pushing forwards, I’ve been beating myself up about not pushing forwards. So yes, I decided I would zen out for a month. And it was wonderful.

I still wrote plenty, but staying in the moment and just really enjoying the words as they came. A couple of blips, but the story is moving forwards and my characters are working with me more than they’re fighting me. I predict I’m about a quarter of the way through this draft (at 40k) so it’s gonna be hefty and I seriously doubt I’ll be done by November, but if I can get to the end of Part One, I’ll be happy.

Speaking of November, we’re little under two months away and I’m getting the pre-NaNo jitters again. I’M SO EXCITED!!! November will always be the highlight of my year; there’s nothing quite so exhilarating as diving into a new story with your eyes shut! A little nervous as this’ll be the first time not working in the MP-World since 2013, but I’ve been making time to get to know some of my new characters and work out bits and pieces of their story. I think I’ve got the ending? And I tend to find that if I know where I’m going, it doesn’t really matter how I get there. My goal for NaNo2016 is to finish the draft. Which makes the whole thing a little trickier to plan when I don’t know how long it’s going to be! But I figure if I can do between 7-10k on all my days off and make sure I hit minimum word-count on my work-days, I should be okay? It was super frustrating leaving the story unfinished last year, even though I got to 60k. I’ve decided not to plan too much in advance and see where pants’ing takes me, though I’ve still got a fair bit of world-setup to do before I’ll be reasonably comfortable playing in the new sandbox. I’ve realised that I’m a Character –> World –> Plot writer.

I’ve had plenty of non-writing, non-working time this month, which I think has really been the difference. Been doing lots of reading, and my friend lent me Fire Emblem: Fates which just took hold of me and refused to let me go (still hasn’t!) I’ve completed the Birthright thread, am a couple chapters from completing Conquest, and then I’ve got Revelations to start. I’m going to be devastated when it’s all over. Give me all the fic!

On the subject of fic… Cursed Child. I still don’t know. We were lent it by a friend (refusing to pay money after hearing about the awfulness) and I read it in a sitting and I just don’t know. There was so much that made me angry — the laziness of the plot, the lack of  continuation, the butchering of canon, not to mention to everything surrounding it concerning J.K herself — but I found myself loving it despite all that. I suppose it’s what comes of being a life-long Malfoy fan and expecting nothing and suddenly getting everything. It was a shock — a good one — and it resparked my Potter trigger, which was wonderful and made all the rest worthwhile. I would definitely like to see it on stage.

I’ve been reevaluating what I want out of my writerly social life too. I’ve been on the fence about things for a while, and finally decided to pretty much peace out of my writing group, choosing instead to participate more widely in forums which I haven’t really done since we all got together. I’ve been branching out into new forums too, which is scary but exciting. It’s fun to meet and get talking to new people, and people who are hanging out in the same waiting-room as you. Definitely make Purgatory more bearable realizing you’re not alone! Also realised that July was my last Camp. I’m just not a Camping sort of person. Apart from last April, all the Camp events have basically been just me doing what I’m already doing but with added pressure. So I’m ending my commitment to it.

Come September, I’ll be reworking my query and trying to nail my summary, and jumping back into the submitting pool. I know I need to keep up momentum no matter what, because I know I’m liable to stall if I get Bad News. I need to stay prepped. *deep breaths* Ugh. I also need to stop hating the process, and I think staying connected to the new forums will help with that.

I’ve two days left of self-prescribed summer holidays, and then it’s back to business.

I’m excited for it!