What Did I Get Up To In November?

No doubt you’ve noticed that the blog has been a little quiet lately.  Don’t worry, I haven’t abandoned it.  I was just engaged in a different king of writing.  That’s right! This year, I participated in NaNoWriMo and successfully reached my target of 50,000 words!

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As someone who loves to write in their spare time, NaNoWriMo has always been one of those bucket list goals for me.  I’ve worked away at some novels, short stories, and plays over the years, but there was rarely ever a time limit or word minimum. NaNoWriMo just seemed like more of a challenge. But it was always difficult to commit to something like this when I was in school since November is typically essay season. So when I was finished with school I decided to give it a try, but twelve hour work days or minor health issues always got in the way and I never had the physical or mental energy to stick with it for any longer than a week.

I was determined that this year would be different.  This has been my “get my life back on track year”, so I was determined to go for it.  And I was even more determined to succeed.  With getting my life back on track, I wanted to be able to better include some writing time into my daily schedule.  And since I’ve been working hard to get some health issues under control, I knew that my health wouldn’t get in the way of my writing this year.  But, once again, I ended up with extra hours at work this November.  However, I was determined not to let that get in my way; I successfully managed to figure out a good writing routine around the extra hours.

And, of course, I was extra determined to participate this year because I know I won’t be able to next year.  So far, that’s the one downside of a November wedding.  This is my advance apology – you might not read too much from me in November 2020.

I’m really glad I didn’t let anything get in the way this year, and I’m pleased I managed to develop a better writing routine for myself. But, most importantly, I’m really happy with how my novel turned out.  It will still need lots of editing (I realized part way through I kept switching the tone of the narration), but it’s a good start.

Minerva and Orla assisted with my writing – Max did not 😛

So, what did I write?

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Years ago, I had an idea for a kind of creepy clown-like character and then I started to picture some of the other characters around it in the circus.  Eventually, I knew exactly how I wanted to end the story and could picture it all very clearly, but I had no idea how I wanted to start it or what would happen in between. But, thanks to the looming presence of that 50,000 word end goal, I figured it out.  I tried something a little weird and creative that I thought, at the very least, would easily increase the word count.  Luckily, that little bit of weirdness inspired me to create a more fleshed out story and mythology for this creepy little circus that I could be really proud of.  And I didn’t even end the story the way I thought I would! That’s just how it ended up evolving over time.  I certainly referenced my original ending idea, but this new ending is a little more ominous. And since this is a fantasy/horror novel, ominous is good 🙂

So, without further ado – here is a little taste of what I’ve been working on this past month.  I hope that with a little editing and a lot of hard work I can publish this novel some day.  Hope you enjoy it.

The King of Clowns

Benny sat on the floor of the wagon, polishing his shoes.  He began to hum a little tune to himself, but decided against it.  The other clowns in his wagon were all asleep or resting, staring up at the ceiling and deep in thought.  He didn’t want to disturb anyone.  It had been a long day, and they still had an even longer journey ahead of them.

Their wagon was third in the caravan.  It being driven by Carla.  Behind them were the animals – all sleeping peacefully in their wheeled cages – being towed by a wagon that was driven by Connor.  And behind that, was a wagon being driven by Constantine and Clementine that held all of the equipment and set pieces and other odds and ends needed for each show. In front of Benny and his co-clowns, the second wagon in the caravan held the main acts: the performers that everyone came from miles to see.  Their wagon was larger and much nicer on the inside; unlike the small, stuffy, dirty wagon for the clowns.  That wagon was being driven by Corina.  The very first wagon of the caravan was being driven by the Ringmaster himself.  He liked to drive; he found it relaxing.  The inside of that first wagon was the nicest.  It was roomy and clean and covered in expensive fabrics and filled with delicacies from far off places. Or so Benny had heard.  It was the King’s wagon.

The King and the Ringmaster worked closely together.  Both ruled the circus.  The Ringmaster appeared to have the most power because he was in control of the entire circus and everyone in it.  The King was supposedly just in charge of the clowns, but not a single person in the circus would disobey his orders because they all feared him just as much as the Ringmaster, if not more.  Although the Ringmaster appeared to rule the circus, everyone knew that The King ruled the Ringmaster from behind the shadows.  The King rarely left his wagon, unless it was a performance night.  So whenever the Ringmaster shouted his orders at the performers, many suspected that those orders had been whispered to him by the King.

The sixth and final wagon in the caravan – the one at the very end, behind the animals and behind the supply wagon – was the most unpleasant.  Benny did not like to think about what was in there.  Traveling in that wagon were the new children, and the Freak.  Only a thin curtain and a few metal bars separated them in that small, dark wagon.  To Benny, that was the saddest wagon of all.

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