Beautiful Books: November 2016

Beautiful Books is hosted by Sky and Cait. While Beautiful Books is focused towards NaNoWriMo, you can still join the linkup using any WIP. To find out more and to join in the fun, check out their blogs!

As with last month’s edition, I’ll be featuring my NaNo project, Tolling Bells

1.) Overall, how is your mental state, and how is your novel going?
The mental state is good. As for the novel, it’s going well too. I’ve managed to stay ahead, and have written every day so far, which is nice.

Tolling Bells will need some work, of course, but I feel like it’s good for now. It took me about 10,000 words to get a grasp of the character’s voices, but once I started writing my antagonist’s, things went a lot easier. I’m now over 30K.

2.)What’s your first sentence (or paragraph)?
The door of Doctor Sheffield’s office closed with a soft creak.

3.)Who’s your current favourite character in your novel?
I’ve written from Theo, Leo, and Albion’s POVs so far, and of the three, Albion’s is the easiest to slip into. I like all the characters, but I’ve acquired quite a soft spot for Doctor Sheffield.

4.) What do you love about your novel so far?
The challenge. I’m trying to stay as accurate as I can from a historical standpoint, but also allow myself the freedom that comes with writing fiction. If it’s not quite correct, I can fix it in a later draft. So for now, I’m enjoying figuring out who the characters really are and what they are going to do.

5.) Have you made any hilarious typos or other mistakes?
I kept switching spellings for a secondary character’s name. That’s all I can think of at the moment.

6.) What is your favourite to write: beginning, middle, or end — and why?
For this one, the middle. The beginning was weird because of the character voice problems, but the middle is actually moving really quickly! Usually, this is not the case for me. Plus, I like how in the middle of a story you can see how the threads come together.

7.) What are your writing habits? Is there a specific snack you eat? Do you listen to music? What time of day do you write best? Feel free to show us a picture of your writing space!
My writing habits this NaNo are not much different than usual. I work in 15-30 minutes segments, and take breaks in between to read or catch up on other things I have to do.

For snacks, I’ve been slowly depleting the leftover Halloween candy, or eating apples with peanut butter or chocolate spread. I’ve been listening to a playlist I made for Tolling Bells, and Christmas music.

I write best at night, but I’ve trained myself to write in the mornings mostly these days. And here’s a photo of my writing space:

8.) How private are you about your novel while you’re writing? Do you need a cheer squad or do you work alone (like, ahem, Batman)?
With this one, I’ve actually discussed it a lot with other people, mostly family, or here on my blog. Having a cheer squad is very nice—especially during NaNo. My family is super encouraging and will check in to make sure I’m writing instead of procrastinating. This year, I’ve been in a fun Twitter group chat as well.

9.) What keeps you writing even when it’s hard?
I really want to finish this first draft because I’ve been excited to write it for so long. The enthusiasm has stuck around, so that’s helpful too.

10.) What are your top 3 pieces of writing advice?
First: Take breaks. Whether it’s do read or watch something, do chores, or take a walk. You’ll feel better.
Second: Keep a list of reasons why you love your WIP. When the going gets tough, you can have that to look back on and gain inspiration from.
Third: Sometimes you have to step away from a project. That’s okay. Don’t stress too much when you have to put some distance between yourself and a WIP. You can come back to it later. :)

Are you participating in NaNo? Tell me how it’s going for you!


  1. Ugh, everyone has such cute writing spaces! Lucky!

    Also I need a family to make sure I'm not procrastinating!


    1. It's fun to have them checking in to make sure I'm writing! :) And I quite like my little writing nook, even if the cats take over from time to time. (What kind of human would I be if I deprived them of such a great sleep spot???)

      I'm not sure? Usually at this point I'm a bit worried about my word count and wondering what will happen if I fall behind and stuff. Maybe it's where I've been able to write a little extra every day? I don't know! :)

  2. YOU ARE DOING SO AWESOME THIS NANO. I loved this post and seeing how it's going for you.

    I always have the hardest time with beginnings as well. But once I've gotten a feel for the story, it goes much smoother. So I feel like in the minority myself because I actually love writing the middles!

    I love how your family checks to make sure your writing. That's the cutest! XD

    I like your idea of having a list of reasons why we love our novels. Because in the busyness of life and overwhelming amount of words, sometimes it's easy to forgot WHY we're writing it. Wonderful advice!

    I hope the rest of NaNo goes AMAZINGLY for you! Keep at it, girl! *waves pompoms*

    1. Aw, thanks! :) And look at you with over 60K! That's amazing!

      It really depends on the project, I guess. Some books I can charge through the beginning but get stuck in the middle, but this year it's the opposite. It's still going well, so I'm happy with that! :)

      Thanks! Losing inspiration stinks, so I've found that keeping a list like that is a good way to focus on the good about the story. :)

      Same for you!

  3. I'm glad NaNo is going so well for you, Jameson! Your novel sounds as awesome as always!

    Go supportive families that stop procrastination! Though mine has been horrible this month, I's way too easy to convince them I'm not procrastinating when I'm very clearly procrastinating!

    Your spelling mistakes one reminds me, that's not that bad okay because I accidentally spent a chapter spelling my MC's name (Margo) as Mango yesterday...

    LOVE your advice! Good luck with the rest of the month, can't wait to find out how the rest of your novel comes along! XD

    1. Thank you so much!

      They're great. :) When I'm behind on my word count or something, they'll be like, "Don't you have some writing to do?" The accountability is quite motivating, hehe.

      Margo and Mango are close, right? ;) I once had a character from completely different book show up in a chapter, and I didn't even notice until I went to write the next draft...

      Thanks! :) Hopefully, it's encouraging and helpful!

      Thanks for stopping by, and best writing wishes!

  4. Eating apples with peanut butter is about the best snack ever. :)
    I'm not doing NaNo this year, but I have a couple times in the past and really enjoy it.


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