Updates! Updates! Updates!

First, let me apologize for my lack of activity these past two weeks. Life decided to stop by and bring all of its friends and they’re a crazy bunch to entertain. So with that being said I have a few announcements to make. This year I will not be participating in NaNoWriMo. I need this time to finish my novel and doing NaNo would take away from that. I will, however, be rooting for all the participants of NaNo. It’s truly an amazing challenge and I would encourage all who have the time to participate. On my Facebook page, Blair Cousins – Author, and Twitter, @shmall_child3n, I’ll be posting encouraging memes and advice throughout the month of November for NaNo. So feel free to follow and share. Also for the month of November, I will not be following my regular weekly post schedule. I will post when I can, once again so I can focus on finishing up Ouji. Lastly, I will be posting a short story in honor of Halloween. I am very excited to take a break from editing and life to have a little fun writing. So check back in tomorrow!


Thanks for sticking around, hope everyone is well and to my NaNo friends, good luck and remember to have fun.


Virtual Advice

I love this!

Elan Mudrow


If you’re dating a dud of a download

And it’s occurring during an internet outing

Find a different server……

Don’t let a rude browser screw up your day

We can talk Facebook to Facebook,

Instant message me

No need to Skype, post, tweet, or offer me

A Goodread and get all Kindle

I will text you the same thing I’ve always texted you

It’s good to keep a few tabs open

Weed out crappy apps

Don’t let them waste space on your hard drive

Find the perfect operating system

Don’t share your network with any old device
You can’t afford to load pages slowly

Sometimes, it’s good to clear your history

Stay positive and keep updating on a regular basis

It keeps you safe from viruses

And eating too many tracking cookies

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There’s No Wrong Way to NaNo



It’s November 1st, day one of NaNoWriMo, I have my story freshly plotted out and outlined. I’ve been waiting all year to participate in NaNo, after the success of my first year. I feel more confident now, ready to write, but November drags on and before I know it it’s November 3rd and I have 500 words on the page. I’ve hit a wall, I don’t know what’s wrong with me. The words aren’t falling onto the page like they usually do and I’m falling behind day by day. So I’m stuck and in a dilemma; power through, drop out, or start a new, none are sounding too appetizing right now, but I have to do something. I’ve been preparing for NaNo for months. This is my schedule time to write, my me time, and yet the words escape me. So I make a brash decision to start over from scratch, 5,001 words behind, three days into the challenge and thirty-seven days left to complete it.


It’s crazy, but I finished that year. That was the year I wrote the draft for my soon to be first novel, to be published this next year. That’s the cool thing about NaNo, there is no wrong way to prepare for it. Whether you plan your novel idea months in advance or just pick up and run with an idea on day one. The challenge is not focused on simply regurgitating 50,000 words onto the page and hitting the finish button. It’s about setting aside real time to work and craft your story into something tangible. Sure, finishing is nice, but don’t focus on the word count. Trust me, just because you have a 50,000-word draft doesn’t mean all the hard work is over. Same goes to the writers who write under 50,000 words, your story is complete when it tells you. You are not bound by the word count of your project, focus instead on crafting a well-written story, one that captures the vision in your mind.


So, you’re probably getting pretty excited about starting NaNo. The NaNo staff have begun their prep and you’re pumped about attending the kick-off celebration or maybe you’re still a little nervous. Regardless of where you stand, here are some helpful tips for making the most out of your NaNo experience next month.


1. Plan. Doesn’t matter if you do it months in advance or in a day, a simple outline will go a long way and help you with pacing.

2. Check Out Your Resources. Regardless of where you are on this beautiful blue Earth, you are not alone. There are people standing by to help you, via the NaNoWriMo forums or in person at one of the meetings. No meetings in person in your area? No problem. Their online support community is extremely helpful. And DON’T forget to check your NaNo mail, there are lots of goodies in there waiting for you.

3. NO EDITING. November is not the time to edit. This is the time to get your ideas out, you’ll have plenty of time later to correct that sentence or fix that plot hole.

4. Write Every Day. Doesn’t have to be the recommended 1,667 words, 100 or even 50 is better than nothing. The challenge is designed to get you into the habit of writing.

5. Have Fun. Plain and simple. Writing is your passion and November is your month to shine. Enjoy it.


I hope this helps. Remember, don’t stress and have fun, because there is no wrong way to NaNo!


Sign up now at NaNoWriMo.org today!

The fun starts November 1st!

The Most Wonderful Time of the Year

Nano Eve is among us! It’s that time of year to start getting prepared for National Novel Writing Month, or commonly known by its followers as NaNoWriMo! What is NaNoWriMo? Well, it’s a month-long writing challenge that takes place every November with one very simple goal in mind, write a 50,000-word novel in a month. Yes, you read correct, 50,000 words in 30 days. If you’re thinking this is impossible, I completely understand. I thought so too, back in 2014, when I first participated in the challenge. Back then I was still in college juggling work, school, and other activities, but the more I researched and read, the more my mind began to accept the idea.


50,000 words in 30 days it’s a lot, but trying is the main point of Nano. There’s no fancy prize or entry fee, just the bragging rights of “Hey, I got my ideas onto paper” because the hardest part about being a writer is typing that first word. It’s a lot to commit to, whether you plan to publish or just writing for fun, it’s a personal battle. One that you often go through alone, that’s why I’m grateful for Nano because with Nano you don’t have to go it alone. The online community is amazingly supportive and welcoming. Throughout the year, they hold discussions and post seminars. During November they hold meetings in your local town, where you can meet other participates and network. It’s truly an amazing experience, at the cost of $0.00 USD!


Nano has also taught me many things about my own writing style and process. It proved to me that I can write a full-length novel, something I’ve only dreamed of doing as a short story writer. Nano also emphasizes the importance of trying. Every word you write is one word more than the last. That’s progress! Be proud of yourself, whether you write 100 words or complete the challenge. It’s all writing practice. It’s time spent developing characters, working on the plot, and developing the story. It’s a wonderful experience.


I really enjoy participating in Nano. They’ve helped me become a better writer and because of Nano, I’ll be publishing my first book in February.


I encourage everyone to sign up, even if you don’t finish. Give it a try, you never know you might surprise yourself.


Check out NaNoWriMo and join in on the fun!