Daily Archives: April 16, 2014

On Writing & Feeling like a Hamster in a Wheel (NaPoWriMo/ Camp NaNoWriMo)


I will start with my list of excuses;

  • I have been busy! (You can tell because there aren’t usually this many days between posts!)
  • I lost 14 poems through a file saving error and haven’t had time or heart to rewrite yet.
  • It is coming up to Easter and I still haven’t made plans for the weekend.
  • The weather has been GLORIOUS and the flowers we planted are in full bloom and in need of watering.
  • I have enjoyed getting a base tan* in the Garden.
  • I spent the weekend partying.
  • I am in recovery after a friend’s 40th and a weekend of poetry events (soon to be blogged about)!
  • Time has flown.
  • I have been working on submissions.
  • I have two performances to create a set for.

I could go on….

motivation auth

* Not strictly true – I am so pale skinned, I just freckle and burn.



Instead of filling me with excitement and revelling in words, both commitment to Camp NaNoWriMo and NaPoWriMo have left me cold. I know this happens to lots of participants, but I wasn’t expecting the experience myself.

I am WAY behind with poems for NaPoWriMo napo as I have to re-write from Day 3 -7 (lost files!) and then play catch up – a poem a day is a challenge but 14 + poems seems like a mountain I am not able to climb! Hoping for one crampon at a time and as I have 2 sets this week, tomorrow lunch time and Friday night, I could use some new material.

I have the added pressure of no working printer, Mr G has taken half day holidays as the weather is so good and I will be performing before he finishes work tomorrow and Friday is Easter weekend/ Bank Holiday so any poems to be printed need to be emailed to him before 11:30 a.m. today!


Submissions & Competitions

My plan yesterday was to catch up with NaPo – I had submissions (2 of them – 11 poems and a competition) that I had to hit deadlines for, leaving it to last minute again (the hamster is really whizzing around its wheel at this point!) I didn’t manage a catch up and thus fell a further day behind!

I did manage to enter my 2nd Poetry Competition though and it was an old fashioned postal entry, which included a jaunt to the main Post Office and back!

black-tablet-pcThe online submissions were not as successful, we spent the afternoon in the garden – I was catching up with reading writing articles – I am currently near the end of my March issue magazine with April and May waiting in the wings! By the time we went in, it was late and my brain was not playing ball.

After checking out the websites I found that none of my poems really fitted the bill. I have pencilled one in for next month, hoping I can write some suitable poetry over the next 4 weeks (perhaps some of my NaPo marathon!) and the other one I will leave until the next reading period in November and again try to write a suitable style entry.



There is NO POINT submitting work to magazines when it doesn’t suit there style, if you find yourself in my position it is far better to pencil in the next opportunity, read the last few issues and see if you are able to write in the preferred style or be true to yourself and back away, find a publication to suit your work.


PLANS (The best laid plans of Hamsters and Men!)

My plan now, today – is to carry on running with the wheel – keep up as not to fly out! I have already got the business emails out of the way.

  1. I will sort poetry for sets and email for printing
  2. I will re-write NaPo poems – the LOST file days
  3. I will catch up with NaPo as much as I am able


Camp NaNoWriMo camp_12_mug_detail2


For the 1st time I have an active cabin and I am the one not conversing – they are probably giving me pinches to wake me up or complaining about me on the forum.


The saving grace is that previously (2013) I completed 55K on Camp NaNo – April, 35K on Camp July, and 40K for the main NaNoWriMo in November – WIN! WIN! WIN! However, as yet I have done NOTHING with this writing. So this year I set about planning short story submissions to be completed as part of camp.

What I didn’t consider was the proximity of deadline to writing time, a short story should rest a few weeks before editing begins. Also (see list of excuses at the top of this post) I have missed some of the deadlines.

I am only hoping for 10K so I can still do it.  715 words a day is still a manageable target… if I start today…

I have re-jigged my plan, I know what I need to write – just need my muse to kick in with storylines.



Don’t be disheartened – if you haven’t started, there is always today. Just DO IT!

Work out the remaining word count – if, like me, you haven’t started more than a fortnight in, I suggest to re-adjust your target word count, make it manageable. The smallest you can have is 10K.

Make sure your writing is working towards something – don’t just write into a hole.

Believe in yourself and your ability to catch up! Think Fables – The Hare and the Tortoise!

writing plan



I also want to catch up with Blog Posts:

Poetry and Place Event at The Hive – Ledbury Poetry Festival/ WLF. (Friday 11th) poetry and place

Najma Hush’s Photogiraffe Exhibition Part 3 – Female Force – Event (Sat 12th) female force

Young Writer Group – WWM (Sat 12th) Write-On-2013-300x287

Guest Blog inkspill questions