Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Research: Off Ramps on the Writing Journey - OR My NaNoWriMo Reading Material

I am so very blessed. I've seen a lot of people over the blog-sphere, twitter and facebook complaining about how Christmas is crowding out Thanksgiving in the stores. Thanksgiving is in our HEARTS first and foremost. We can keep the spirit of thankfulness alive because that is where it lives - in us. I am so very thankful for all that God has given me. My house is falling apart in places, a lot of places, but it is warm, and it is home. Our dryer broke today and maybe we'll have to hang up some clothes on the line until it is repaired or replaced, but thank the Lord we have a place to hang things! Even if it is over the backs of dining room chairs or on twine rigged up for the purpose all over the upstairs hallway! So many folks are without homes or even warm places to be dry this very wet day, let alone appliances or food! The weatherman says tomorrow will be warmer, dryer. I am thankful for that, and for all those who will be supplying food for the homeless and warmth and a place to sleep until things in their lives get better. I believe things will get better as we all reach out - on our own, not because government tells us to - and spread the gifts and the blessings we have been given.

Thankfulness fills me for the ability to write, to have a place in which to do it that lets me concentrate. For my husband's generosity in buying me a comfortable (but affordable) office chair.

Thankfulness fills me to be privileged to know someone like my son Marc who, in his desire to help his friends (one who had a very bad home situation and another who was essentially homeless - living in the woods in a tent over the summer!) moved out of home and took an apartment (across the street on the college campus) with them because neither of the boys could afford a place on their own even though they all have jobs. Marc is in college with a high GPA. He could be here at home, but he is out there, making it work so it works for his friends too! He's not occupying other people's businesses, he is working his butt off and doing what is right. to be on his own and share his hard work with those less fortunate.

Thankfulness fills me for the love of my family that is always understanding and supportive and full of good humor no matter how bad things seem to get. I firmly believe (knowing my family's faults as I do!) that kind of love could only come from knowing Christ as Lord and Savior. I am thankful that God provided a way of salvation in him when I was lost and God's enemy.

Thankfulness fills me for this opportunity to connect with people I have never met whether it be writing, talking about Thanksgiving, or other topics via the blog. It is such a warm, wonderful feeling when I get to read what people have to say about what I've written because it has prompted them to offer what they think, feel and know.

NaNoWriMo, however, takes a great deal of time and attention so my blog, poor thing, suffers. And that makes me thankful for unexpected off ramps on this writing journey.

Now, I admit, I've taken a few very deliberate off ramps since NaNo started this year. Like my friend Robin (who I am extremely thankful for, especially during the difficulties of NaNo. Read about her excursions here), the luggage for these side trips I find full of distractions and everything BUT writing. Still, in an effort to do what I am supposed to be doing, I found some reading that for me does not fall into the category of procrastination. In a fantasy story, as far as I am concerned, some units of measurement sound too "science fiction" such as kilo, gram etc. I thought I rather liked the sound of stone. So I looked it up!

Stone (imperial mass) - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

I am fascinated by this sort of thing and therein lies the danger of research for me. One page leads to another:
Pound_(mass)#Avoirdupois_pound and another:

pounds-to-stones-table and yet another:

If you're writing this month, remember your log lines, your premise, your summary, your focus. Check your beat sheet, your character list, your language conversions and your world map!

Lastly, in the immortal words of Gold Five, "Stay on target!"

Have a blessed Thanksgiving.

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