S-p-e-e-e-c-h (Part 1 of many)

I plan on competing in the Illinois speech competitions this year with my original oratory so I can get used to slowing down my voice. Because, apparently, when I get excited or nervous, I talk faster than the Mercedes on the autobahn.

I knew that Illinois speech competitions are held earlier in the year than Iowa so I knew I needed to find a topic soon so it would be written soon. I meandered around with different concepts and their effect on political standing (left or right) but I couldn't find the information I wanted or needed.

In comes my sister. She suggested doing something about firewalls and comparing them. It sounded interesting since she knows first-hand the issues Chinese people have with their internet and I know from my high school blocking sites like the New York Times blogs. I mean, honestly? Who blocks the New York Times blogs?

Anyway, here I go on a journey to learn about firewalls. Wish me luck!

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Dude, it's like... an epiphany!

There's irony in the title in that my epiphany was of a higher plane of thinking (or so said a friend) and yet, here is the title that sounds very surfer-dude-ish.

I went on a visit to my college of choice: Carroll University. I'm planning on enrolling and I'm super excited, as evident by my enthusiasm during my visit, despite being asked what I was majoring in and what other schools I applied to about twenty times in a period of thirty minutes.

However, my college visit came with a drawback - I didn't have time to write much more than a few journal entries. When I got home on Sunday I was 7, almost 8,000 words behind. I thought I would try to catch up but then that night as I journaled I realized I didn't want to catch up. I didn't want to force my ideas. I know I can write a novel so NaNo is more of a push in words. And NaNo definitely has it's uses but I don't see it as a thing for me right now.

Don't doubt, NaNoWriMo has helped me write my first novel draft although because of the word goal I ended up with about 15K of crud to be cut. NaNoWriMo has given me confidence as a writer and I love it to death. But it's not for me at this point in time.

Right now I don't want to focus on word count. Sure, I want to write every day but I want to focus on ideas and not words. I think if I do that, I'll have more solid plots, subplots, characters and then eventually novels. And that's my goal - to become a stronger writer.

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NaNo Day 9

The first week is over and unfortunately, life is starting to ascert itself. I am applying for scholarships which require essays and since I know they will take awhile, I haven't started them so not to detract from NaNo. Not a great idea.

Then there's the issue of my sister's Christmas present. I need to have it done soon since I leave in 32 days and I've got to get a few special things to complete it. Sorry for the vagueness, but she reads my blog (hi you know who!) and I don't want her knowing.

Of course, I'm keeping up with my word count but not with everything else. Tonight I'm going to yoga so maybe I'll have the clear mind to get everything accomplished.

13,942 words strong!

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At the end of Week One

I should be at 11,667 by the end of tonight. I know I'll make it but at the moment I'm at 10,275. I'm not that far behind, honestly. I just haven't done my word count for the day.

It's been an interesting first week. I am still waiting very impatiently for my ACT scores and my senior fall photos to come up so I've spent quite a few fifteen minute chunks of time on the ACT.org website or Elizabeth Somes' website. Like now - I'm checking her website to see if they're up. They were suppose to be up last Sunday. Oh well. Hopefully they'll be up soon.

I've also somewhat completely scrapped my plot idea for NaNo. The Depth of Emotions is now on hold. I'm having a really hard time writing it. I think it's because the muses are saying anything right now. Which is extremely sad since now I only have real people (you know who you are ;)) to distract me in physics.

So what has my NaNo become? Well, it's a continuation in some forms, of my NaNo 2007 memoir, Outside the Inner Fence about my time in Germany. But now it's a bit different. I'm taking journal entries I've written previously and turning it into something.... well, I'm not exactly sure. But I like it. I like it a lot.

We'll see where it takes me. But for now, I'm going to go work on my word count.

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NaNo, NaNo, NANO!

No, this has absolutely nothing to do with the iPod product (although my mom loves her's). This has everything to do with something called National Novel Writing Month, affectionately known all around the world as NaNoWriMo or NaNo for short.

A little history first - NaNoWriMo is in it's 11th year run by Chris Baty - one crazy man who makes us all realize we can achieve just about anything we set our mind to. NaNo is now... well, it's over 10,000 writers so that's a big 'we'.

The goal: Write 50,000 on a brand spankin' new novel in 30 days. (1,667 words a day for the math curious.)

So far I'm about 1,000 words behind due to a cold which I have now gotten over. And of course, I'm not the traditional NaNo-ist this year - yes I'm writing a novel - I'm counting blog posts and side stories as long as they are new words. I know my NaNo novel - titled The Depth of Emotions is not formulated enough that I can do it any justice. Is this cheating? Will the NaNo police come after me?

I don't think so. Because NaNo is an honor system. I believe blogging and side stories are still words - they're still important and helping me push forward in my writing. And if I believe they're words, then they're words. :)

So I'm off to finish my word count for the day. Let's hope it goes well!

Annieca with 3935 / 50,000 words

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