Friday, 15 April 2016

Camp NaNo Novel - The Path Through the Trees

I'm back! I had a crazy fun week, got a couple dozen injuries, a sore mouth from smiling basically all the time, swam in the pool every second day, added a Spanish accent to my random accent/mimicking arsenal. So yeah, pretty fun.

So, to get to the point, as I have mentioned before, I'm doing my first time ever of Camp NaNoWriMo**. And so far I'm really enjoying myself.

I just thought that I could tell you guys a little bit about the story I'm working on for Camp. 'The Path Through the Trees.'

**A short explanation of Camp NaNoWriMo: (National Novel Writing Month) It's an online 'virtual' camp. Basically you sign up, create a 'novel profile' about the WIP you'll be working on, set a word-count-goal, and join a 'cabin' of other writers who talk about random writer stuff and cheer each other on. And you write. And write. And hope to to reach your word count. And have fun!

The idea wasn't mine originally. It was actually Jessica's, and I, the fool that I am, agreed to write the story with her. She had ideas for a couple of characters, and I added to that a little. The two main characters were rather based off ourselves (they still are, actually) and so Jessica didn't know much about 'Lydia,' (the me character) so she asked if I could write her part. And it just went on from there.

At first my half of the story was basically a fanfic of Ranger's Apprentice and Brotherband (yes, both at the same time), and I wince with horror every time Jessica mentions some of the 'brilliant' ideas I had back then. Ideas that were almost complete mirrors of scenes from afore mentioned books. *Shudders* It's truly horrible.
The worst thing was that it was all my ideas that were taken off those books, not Jessica's as that was back before she had read them.

Then I realised how very bad the story was, and suggested we get rid of the fanfic-y-ness and actually do something original for once. So we did, and that made it kinda okay-ish. (As in, marginally more okay-ish than totally dreadful.)

It's gone through a lot of different stages of awfulness, but it's slowly getting better. Particularly after I completely rewrote it a few months back.
Now I start laughing so hard whenever I read the old version, just 'cause it was so terrible. I can't believe I wrote that! I just can't.

I've been completely amazing myself with how many words I'm writing every day for Camp. I went for a 8,000 word count aim and thought that I should be able to do it. Maybe.

I got it on day six.

And almost died of excitement.

So I raised it to 15,000.

Aaand I've only got 883 words left as of today.

I'm continuing to stun myself by writing around one thousand (or even two thousand) words per day. Just like that. For Dusty Red and If Adventure Comes Your Way I struggled to write that much, but now it's just coming?! I am discovering hidden depths within me. (Except I was a little slack while on holidays and only wrote one thousand for the whole Sunday to Friday)

Now, back to The Path Through the Trees.
I wrote a synopsis kind of thing for it so I could put it in the details for camp:

Lydia Keramed's quiet seaside trading town is attacked by pirates, turning her whole world upside down. In her struggle to build a new life she meets a thief by the name of Annette Revlis of Hidden Knowledge, and is suddenly embroiled in a life and death struggle for the throne.

With Annette’s treacherous sister, Ravanor, on the loose with an army at her command, is it possible that the two girls can work together to save their new country? And is Ravanor really the force behind it all, or is there a darker, more sinister evil hiding?

With courage, stubbornness and quick wit, Lydia fights her way through, always looking for the path through the dark forest into the light beyond.

I've also got a short scene I thought you might find amusing..


The room was in uproar.

In a daze I heard the shouted words: “The invader!”, “Seize them!”

As my vision began to clear I found myself held in the iron grip of two soldiers. The cruel looking man stood before me.

“Who are you?” he demanded.

No time to reconsider now, Lydia, I told myself blearily, the only hope is to go with it. I forced a massive grin onto my face. “Did you mention Jay the Jumping Jester who enjoys jellies?” I burst out at rapid speed, raising my eyebrows in questioning innocence.

The man looked taken aback for a moment. I took advantage of the fact to add another layer of confusion.

“Judiciously jam jellies,” I nodded knowingly.

“What are you doing here?” he barked roughly, covering his bewilderment.

“Juggling,” I replied, keeping my face an innocent mask.

“What?” the confusion was back.

“Just juggling, James.”

“My name is not James,” he spluttered.

“Jude? John? Jack?—” I suggested.

“Do you know who I am?”

“Jitslanish?” I asked, thoroughly enjoying myself now.

“I am lord M├ólekae, second in command here,” he said with narrowed eyes. I opened my mouth to comment but he snarled. “And don’t keep talking in ‘J’s.”

“Okay,” I said, shrugging carelessly. “D’you ordinarily open—”

“NO!” he yelled. “Not ‘O’s either!”

I shut my mouth abruptly, deciding to not push it too far. Better to stop before he beheaded me just to shut me up.


I've got several ideas of how to improve the story, but at the moment I'm just focusing on the writing part...Although, this week's holidays have included half a hundred conversations of ideas...Of the fifty-thousand-words/twenty chapters length of my half (Jessica's is only around fifteen thousand, but I do get more time to write than she does) chapters 13-17 are being deleted and a whole new idea replacing them. The prologue and chapters 1, 2, 3, and 4 (and very possibly more) are going to be completely different because we discovered a problem with the character's ages...(the 15 year old one sounded rather older than the one aged 17)

Meh, we'll see how it all ends up. As it is, I'm really enjoying my first Camp NaNo and am totally doing it again. I'm also thinking about continuing setting monthly word-count goals every month just to keep me writing. Dunno what's going to happen with that though.

I really don't know whether 'Swords, Sails and Scoundrels' will start next week or not. I guess I'll have to inform you on that when I find out. I'll do a random post if the beginning date is to be postponed again.

Have you ever thought of doing Camp NaNo?
(You really should) 
How did you like the segment of The Path Through the Trees?

Fare Thee Well!


  1. Yayyy congrats on doing Camp NaNo and having it going well for you!! *shrieks happiness* And ohhh my first book ever was horrible fanfic of Narnia, but I thought it was original. XD EEEK. But at least we grow and learn the more we write, eh?!
    (Also that scene was very funny. xD)

    1. Thanks Cait! I'm so excited about NaNo, I couldn't believe how much I was writing! I can DEFINITELY tell how much I've improved since the fanfic days. Oh, that was truly horrible, even if I thought it was brilliant at the time.
      Glad you liked the snippet! :D

  2. Ohmygosh, I love the snippet! xD Illiteration is great. But that must've been hard to write. o.o Good luck if she continues to act this way... ;)

    // katie grace
    a writer’s faith

    1. I'd had the 'Jay the jumping jester enjoys jellies' in my head for ages, I just couldn't work out which story it would fit into. The next page or so after that scene is all of Lydia pretending to be a jester - singing random odes that she makes up on the spot (realistically bad as I made them up as I wrote them), and other such weirdness. It was quite funny to write! :D
      Thanks so much, Katie!

  3. Hmm...your character had an interesting name...I didn't realize you liked me quite that much! ;P
    I enjoyed getting a peek at your story! It sounds fun! And congrats on reaching your goal--twice!

    1. He he! I actually named Lydia way before I knew about you...but that might ruin your dreams so if you like you can just pretend I never said that. :P
      Maybe one day when I finally finish it to my satisfaction I'll have to let some of my blogging friends read it! :)

    2. Tehe! I figured as much.
      Well, this blogging friend would be delighted if she got to be part of that privileged group. :)

    3. I'll keep that in mind...


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