Sunday, November 29, 2009

My official result!

50 177


I am finished with one day to spare. 100 pages, 48 chapters and 50 177 words.

My novel has been submitted to NaNoWriMo and it has been validated and I have been awarded a winner's certificate. On December 2nd, I can log onto NaNoWriMo and download a certificate to print a free proof copy of my manuscript as well, but more importantly than any of these things, my reward is that I have a novella. A story all of my own making, rich with wonderful characters that I have found along the way.

I am doing a happy dance inside as I sit and write. I will continue to post chapters online, hope you enjoy everyone.

Thank you to everyone who has supported me along the way, to my brother and Michelle for reading along chapter by chapter. To my husband for his patience when I sat writing, rather than talking to him. Thank you to my children for their understanding and to Sarah for being the creative child who inspired my heroine.

I hope one day I inspire you all to follow your own dreams.

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Poetry Grade

I received an email from a friend this morning to say we could collect our poetry portfolios. I then checked my grades online and am so thrilled to let you all know that I received a Distinction '6' for the course.
My actual portfolio only received 66% which is a little disapointing, so I will be glad to collect it and hopefully learn from the comments. This however, does not diminish my delight in my overall grade, which is the only one that actually counts.

Now I only have to wait for my English results which should be out on Wednesday 2nd.

On the writing front I had an amazing day yesterday with 5722 words. Total so far is 38 376 words, really on the countdown now with just 11 624 words to write. The end is in sight.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

36 802 words

Only 13 198 words still to write (approx 2640 words a day or if I discount Saturday which I am spending with my friend Michelle, then 3 300 words a day).

I have had a big morning writing 4148 words.

My novella is up to 35 Chapters, mostly around 1000 words each with a few longer and a few shorter ones.

The climax is fast approaching and I am trying to hold it back. Hope you are all still enjoying the chapters day by day. Will post an extra one today as a reward both for myself and my valued readers.

Our Son Matthew

Matthew in the new mascot outfit that was purchased with funds raised by the Year Nine students, as a gift to the Middle School.

Last night it was Matthew's presentation night, he was awarded a prize for his service as Middle School Captain and also as the oldest student had the priveledge of passing on the candle of knowledge to the youngest Grade Seven student.

It was a wonderful evening with the highlight being Matthew and Madeline announcing next year's Captains.

Well Done Matthew.

Monday, November 23, 2009

31 645

Four days to go and 4589 words per day needed. Although I have until Monday 30th to finish my friend Michelle is coming up to visit on Saturday, so I am working on finishing my novel by Friday. I don't really anticipate getting any writing done over the weekend as I am sure I will be too busy enjoying time with my special friend.

Today despite having my haircut and going out to movies with Elizabeth I have managed to write 2301 words bringing my total up to nearly 32000 words.

The story is going really well and reaching the pre-climax parts. I hope you are all still enjoying the chapters. See the next post for Chapter Twelve.

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Today I became a writer.

My total is up to 29 344, I wrote over 7000 words today and it is wonderful. I cannot believe that I have this amazing story in my head. It is filled with people who live, lives that exist and prophecies to be fulfilled. Twenty-eight chapters and almost 60 pages. It is hard to tear myself away from the computer.

Thank you to my wonderful family who today have allowed me to write, who gave me inspiration for character's names and who are so supportive.

26903 words

I did it, I have written 4 chapters today and the best part of all, is that I have written the prophecy. I didn't know my story had a prophecy, but it does and in one inspirational moment it appeared. The words just flowed out onto the paper.

Now I am over halfway to the end. Only 23 097 words to go and 8 days to write it in - that is 2888 words per day. It is going to be hard work but I think I can do it.

NaNoWriMo HELP!!!

Only nine days to go and I still have lots and lots and lots of words to write. I have to write at least 2800 words per day, every single day until November 30th.

I took a week off (big mistake) to study for exams, my brother's visit and children's school activities so the pressure is back on.

This morning I have written about 2300 words, but still need another 2800 words a day. Luckily it is Sunday, so might get another session in later.

For all those who have been following my story, please let me know what you think so far. Feedback good, bad or indifferent is inspiring, because it means someone out there is reading. Chapter Eleven will be up later today - am off for a swim with my family now. Back to the writing later.

Friday, November 20, 2009

What a girl!

My amazing daughter Sarah received an envelope at school today regarding School presentation night. When I picked her up we opened it and these are the opening sentences:

Dear Sarah,

I have great pleasure in informing you that you are to receive the following awards on Presentation Night:

Mavis Reath Awards for Literature - Years 4, 5 & 6 Poetry
Mavis Reath Awards for Literature - Years 4, 5 & 6 Short Story.

My talented girl has won not only the poetry award, but also the short story award, which had to be 400 words or less (Sarah's was exactly 400 words). She entered her poem 'Circus' and her short story 'The Picture'. These competitions are judged not by the class teachers, but by a recognised poet and writer. So this achievement in winning both categories is even more impressive.

Sarah I am so proud of you. Your creative talent is amazing. Well done! See below for the poem and story.

by Sarah Adair 6S

Red and white stripes of the Big Top
Jumping, catching, flying, landing
Acrobats on wires, large trampoline
Flexible people want to be seen.

Lion tamers, elephant riders
Little French poodles riding bikes
Candyfloss, popcorn, peanuts and more
Everything you can buy from the stall.

The Ringmaster calls in the clowns
Funny faces, big floppy shoes
Smiles painted on chalky lips
I love the circus and all its tricks.

Droopy eyes in the car
Dreaming of being a circus star.

The Painting.
By Sarah Adair 6S

A light stroke of a paintbrush is all it takes to bring a painting to life. The dots and lines covered the canvas in rich, earthy reds and browns. The people that stood before the famous piece of art in the gallery didn’t understand the new painting.
“I don’t understand why the artist painted such a little kangaroo?”
“It doesn’t even seem to belong in the painting.”
The little kangaroo felt even smaller and sadder as he heard these comments.
“Five minutes to closing time,” the speaker crackled.
The little kangaroo watched the people leave the gallery and the lights slowly dim.

A sigh crept around the gallery as all the figures stretched and groaned.
“I hate posing all day for those art critic snobs” said Lisa Mona.
“That’s not a smile, well what would they know” said The Scream.
“Well at least they don’t call you small” said the tiny kangaroo.
“Hush Junior, don’t talk to strangers” said the sun, peeking from behind Uluru. “We are far from home in this cold, wet land. Don’t annoy the locals.”

“Locals, who are you calling locals?” screeched The Scream.
“I don’t know why they have let dotted riff-raff into the Louvre” whispered Lisa Mona.
Everyone leaned out of their frames to peer at the strange foreign painting that now hung in the gallery. Junior tried to hop behind the big mountain, but fell out of his frame.
“Ha, ha, ha,” laughed The Scream.

Poor Junior felt sadder than ever, he was so far away from Australia and all alone in this new place.
“Don’t listen to them,” said Vinnie Gogh, “I don’t.”
Junior decided explore to escape the comments that made him feel small. Hopping from room to room, he met many famous sculptures and paintings. Some were very friendly and some were just plain rude.
Junior realised that he had been hung with some very special paintings and started to feel a lot bigger and more important.
Junior wandered back to his painting.
“Oh look Spotty’s back,” snickered The Scream and Lisa Mona.
Vinnie Gogh said, “Leave him alone, he is far more important than you think. He represents his whole country. We are all from here.”
Suddenly, Junior felt a whole lot bigger and better. He hopped back into his painting as the sun lit the gallery.
“Thank you,” he whispered before the visitors came to stand before him once more.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

It is all over

I have finished. Now it is just time to wait for my results. The exam was fairly easy and I was well prepared. I am hoping that I covered everything well enough and I now have that horrible post-exam analysis feeling in my stomach. My previous assessment in the subject has given me sufficient marks to pass the course, but to maintain my High Distinction I need 27/40 so am holding thumbs.

Results December 2nd or 3rd!

Time to now kick back and relax, enjoy the next few days with my brother and then 3 months holiday and Christmas.

Crunch Time

It is finally time to face the music or in my case the exam room. In just 3 hours time I will be sitting my very first exam in 25 years. I have prepared as much as I possibly can so now just hope that my hand holds out for the 2 hours of writing and then at 4.30pm it will all be over.

Thank you to all my family and friends for your best wishes and support, it means such a lot to me. I didn't realise just how nervous I would be when faced with an exam situation, so thank you.

December 2nd, results should be out - so will let you all know.

Monday, November 16, 2009

He is here!

My brother arrived last night for a week with his family in Australia. His beautiful wife and children were not able to come with him and it was with sadness that he arrived without them; and it hit me that he is not just my brother now, but a husband and father to another family.

I have been counting down the days until I could selfishly spend the time with my baby brother and last night as I sat with him, laughing and sharing him with my family - all of this happened.

Then he spoke to his beautiful daughter's Michelle and Laura-Ashley on the phone and his amazing wife Wendy and I realised how much they were all sacrificing, so we could share him for the week.

So this I dedicate to Wendy, who is the best woman my brother could ever have wished for in a wife. Also to his beautiful daughters, thank you for sharing my brother with me. I hope you cope okay without husband and Daddy and thank you from the bottom of my heart

Monday, November 9, 2009

Another chapter

Apologies to everyone for the shift from 3rd person to 1st person in chapter three. It felt better to write it in first person. So hopefully that is the way it will stay. Editing process will fix the problems after November 30th. Word total is climbing now over 17 000 words. I will be glad when I reach the halfway mark. Please excuse the wordy descriptions at times, but faced with the daunting task of 50 000 words, sometimes this seems the best option.

Thanks for the email comments, hope it is keeping you interested.

What do you get when you add a trampoline, fun and a heavy big brother?

Yes a broken big Toe!
Sarah and Matthew were playing on the trampoline on Saturday evening and he bounced awkwardly, landing on her big toe. She came limping into the house in tears. We applied lots of ice, elevated the toe, strapped it up, but today the doctor confirmed that it is fractured.

So for the next week, Sarah is on crutches and then no PE, trampolining for the next 4 weeks.
What a Pain!

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Still writing!

The little bump in the road occurred. I didn't get to write on Friday (just 77 words) and nothing yesterday. Thank goodness my total was ahead of schedule as I think that I would have thought about giving up otherwise - (my old reaction to adversity).

This morning I have found a few quiet minutes well almost an hour and have got back into my story. Writing another 2000+ words, my total is now up to 14 271 (942 words ahead of schedule still). Fifteen chapters written and more importantly I am enjoying the process.

I like my story, I hope you are enjoying it as well.

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Do you want to read the story chapter by chapter?

Hi everyone,

I am writing furiously every day, avearaging about 2388 words per day.

I am thinking of posting up the story chapter by chapter (undedited of course) to get your reactions, this is in response to a couple of requests. What do you think? I now have over 22 pages and twelve chapters - that is 11 944 words.

I will wait for everyone's response and then decide, if not I will post little bits and pieces as I go along to wet your appetite and then you will have to wait for the edited story.

Here is a synopsis so far:

Sarah McCandless is a young 16 year old teenager. She is ordinary, a normal girl.
A group of Selectors appear at her school and she is chosen by a Selector called Melissa, while other people have been chosen for guilds such as healing, special forces etc, she is chosen for the mysterious Creator's guild.

She leaves her family immediately and travels with a group of about 50 young people to a school in Los Angeles, where she finds out more about not only the school but also her strange gift - a talent that she shares with all the other students. A gift for writing.

Along the way she makes a new best friend Chloe, and a fantastic group of friends, Janine and James - twins and Richard and Lucas.

And then . . .

Wednesday, November 4, 2009


Story is coming along well, word count is up to 7388 words, averaging 2462 words per day, I only need 1666 so am storing up a few extra every day in case I have a bad one.

The joy of this project is that I can be as verbose (meaning wordy) as I wish. I need the extra words. The story is really flowing and at the end of the month, I might have something special.

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

It is all about inspiring others and being inspired in return.

Why do writer's write and poet's 'poet'? I don't really know? I don't think it is only because we wish to entertain others, I think it is mostly because we have something inside us that needs to be said. The reward is when someone stands back and says: "That is fantastic" or "I loved that" or even "I hated that." With words we can inspire others, share joy, sadness, love, hate and just stories.

So I am going to share a story with you.

My Mom has a friend, they have been friends for over 40 years. Friends through good times and bad, happy times and sad and luckily now with the amazing technological age we live in; friends across the world - emailing, skyping, chatting on the phone and just staying in touch. This lovely lady is extremely talented, but like many women of her generation, she was given very little encouragement in her youth. She believed[s] that she isn't very good at things. We know different, but years of messages to the contrary take years to rewrite.

This lovely lady has been enjoying some of the poetry that I have been writing and also sharing the news of my year at university. The other day she sent Mom an email with a story idea for me. Mom told her to write it herself. Her reply: "I couldn't do that, I can't write."

Well isn't it amazing, but guess what yes she can. Below is a beautiful poem, that our dear friend has written. I am honoured and thrilled to share it with you. She has a really good sense of rythm with this poem and has used a very good 2nd and 4th line rhyming scheme. It flows, it expresses a beautiful sentiment and it is worth sharing.

So enjoy a poem, written by a talented friend, Margaret from South Africa.

A Rhyme Dedicated To My Best Friend

I have a friend from long ago
Who's heart is true and caring
She never focuses on herself
Her love is so endearing.

She loves to plan and seeks to find
Someone she can assist
She is selfless in every way
A heart you cant resist

I'm glad she is a friend of mine
We have known each other for years
If I could be as nice as her
I wouldn't cry so many tears

She's been with me through thick and thin
She's got me through hard times
I owe a lot to this dear friend
That's why I wrote this rhyme

Am I going crazy
I don't normally write a thing
It must be her good influence

Cause now I want to sing

Monday, November 2, 2009

Day Two and still on track.

The Creator's Guild (my novel) is still on track, today I have written another 2000 odd words, word count now up to 5207, my average is still up over the required number of words thank goodness.

The ideas and thoughts are flowing easily at this stage, so am hoping to capture as many of them while I can. This week I do not have too many appointments, so am trying to stay ahead of the game.

Next week is chaos, so will have to see how it goes.

Another installment will follow soon.

Sunday, November 1, 2009

The Creator's Guild

An extract from my Novel that I am writing in November. My target is 1666 words per day and today November 1st I have written 3166, so am ahead of schedule. It is written with young people in mind and is the story of a special young girl 'Sarah' who has a gift. A gift that she doesn't know she has. I hope you enjoy this little taste . . .

Sarah sat stunned as another Selector stood up and selected another group; she thought she heard she was from the Artist’s guild and then a couple more for the Developer’s guild. She didn’t even notice that she was the last person in the room. Her hair covered her face and she stared at her desk. A light tap on her shoulder made her jump and she looked up into the greenest eyes she had ever seen; green serious eyes that appeared to be able to read her thoughts. She looked away quickly and only then noticed that she was the only person still left in the room. Looking back she tried to speak and shut her mouth on her words as the Selector began: “Sarah, you are special. Sarah you are different and until now this has been your curse, now it will be your gift. We have left you alone to suffer, we have left you alone to grow and learn. Through your life and experiences you have learnt empathy, you have learnt fear and compassion, all these things are necessary for what you will become. We have been watching you for some years now and all of us agree; that you are the only one of your class that is worthy of selection into the Creator’s guild. In fact you are the only one who has been selected over the last four years.”