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Camp NaNoWriMo:
Did I win?

Crazy times, crazy choices!
Over April, if you're following my social media you will know, I participated in Camp NaNoWriMo!
For those who don't know, Camp Nano is the more flexible April / July versions of the November NaNoWriMo, in which many insane souls around the world undertake the task of writing 50,000 words (or, in the case of Camp Nano, a goal of your choice) in the space of 30 days. 
With all the chaos in the world, it seemed only natural that in lieu of my usual day to day activities, I should redirect my focus to my writing - and that's what I did.

For the past month, I've sat at my computer every single day, sometimes hours on end, to work towards the goal of 50k. Let me say, it wasn't easy!
The project I chose was Forbidden - my first ever penned novel, at the wee age of 13, which has been in desperate need of rewriting ever since. Since, when Twitter rudely reminded me of Camp Nano's existence not two days before it started, I'd been working on the new outline for Forbidden, it made sense to make that my focus.
So, how did I do?
On the 30th of April, I sat down to the mamoth task of typing out 6,000 words, in order to hit my 50k goal. As time ticked on, I got steadily closer and closer - and before going to bed that night, I did indeed, reach 50,000 words... at 1am.
So, technically... no, I didn't Win Camp NaNoWriMo. I finished just an hour late - but I finished all the same!
That may not be a win in the eyes of NaNoWriMo, but it's certainly an achievement where I'm concerned!

Life in Isolation

I consider myself so, incredibly lucky to be living in New Zealand right now as Covid-19 wreaks havoc across the world. When the virus reached our shores, our Priminster Jacinda Ardern put everything into lockdown to prevent it's spread.
As a result, we have had very few deaths, and the rate of infection began to decline.
For me, not a lot has changed. As I've been on break from study, I did not have a lot to lose in my day to day life. I've spent the duration of Lockdown at my mothers, with her and my sister, in a small town an hour from my home. It's been... an interesting experience, but certainly not a bad one, despite the stress.
I feel so deeply for those who have been affected by this virus, the losses people have suffered, and the stress endured. I'm so thankful to those who were deemed Essential, for keeping the world running amidst this chaos. I hope you all are well, and that this virus is soon behind us.

The Quiet Blog

Despite my return to writing, I've felt endlessly guilty about the lack of content being posted to my blog. I know it's been rather quiet since the beginning of the year, and I hope to change that. I'm currently putting a schedule together to try and ensure more regular content.
A reason for this has simply been the quiet in my life. I'm not currently studying, or working, and the lack of activity makes it difficult to raise the motivation to produce content. 
This is soon to change!
In July, I will be starting back at university to finish my degree. I have a year and a half left, and I'm eager to get back into it. While this will load up my schedule, and naturally, send my stress levels through the roof, it will also have me moving and functioning on a daily basis, and that is simply key in regular content production.
I'm hoping all goes to plan, but with the way things are going in the world... I'm quite worried!

Book Review

Fireborn
Keri Arthur
3.5 stars

Rereading this book was a very... long experience. I struggled to find the motivation to pick it up, in all honesty - though I don't think that's a reflection of the book itself. When the mood took me, I devoured this book in chunks. I've been a fan of Keri Arthur for a long time, and her works have hugely inspired my own writing.
Unfortunately, it's now been a while since reading Fireborn, and I don't recall any of the particulars I would've liked to discuss. All I can say, is that I did actually finish the book (not a common achievement, I'm afraid), and I have every intention of reading the next one. Make of that what you will, I apologise for the lack of proper review.
Please follow this link for more information and proper reviews.

Giveaway Results


A few months ago I ran a giveaway for Daniel's Story, S.M. Holland's new release in the Get in My Head series, which follows people dealing with mental illness.
The winner was selected from you lovely people, my newsletter subscribers. Sadly, despite two emails to two subsequent drawn winners, I never heard back from either of them!
I was so disappointed. It's unfortunate that that's how things happen sometimes, and after discussing the situation with Holland, we decided to let it be.
Please check your junk folders to see if you were contacted about winning - you can still claim your prize!
Thank you to everyone who entered, and I hope to run another giveaway later in the year.

Author Interview

S.M. Holland

S.M. Holland is an author, mental health advocate, and world traveler, currently living in Indonesia. She spends her time writing the “Get In My Head” series, books that focus on teens with mental illness. Her mission is to continue to open conversations about mental health so others can be free to share their stories.

Read the Interview...

Book Update

Outlined & 50,000 words written!

Book Update

Plaguing my mind and preventing sleep, I think this will be my focus over the next month!

Camp NaNoWrimo:
A Forbidden Excerpt 

 

My hands trembled as I pulled out my phone. I took a couple of steadying breaths and turned on the flashlight.
I threw a hand over my mouth.
It was there. The blood. Right under my boots, the blood splattered the full length of the corridor, two lines, from walking with arms extended either side, steadily bleeding.
There was no holding back the panic now. This was… evidence. Real, tangible proof.
I wasn’t crazy.
I shook my head as I looked at it, struggling to comprehend the full implications. This couldn’t be happening.
“You came.”
Ice slithered down my spine and froze me where I stood. Oh dear god, no. I recognised the voice. I knew the face I would see when I lifted my gaze. I didn’t want to look.
Because if he was here… I was staring at the blood from last night. I’d seen his eyes.
“You’re… him…  aren’t you?” I was impressed by the volume I managed, surprised there was only a slight tremor to give away the storm of emotions raging inside me.
He didn’t answer. Seconds ticked by until I was forced to look up, to be sure he was really here, not a production of my mind.
And there he was. I shone my light at him. Curly black hair. Sharp features. Violet eyes. I should have known the moment I saw those eyes in the library. I should have put the pieces together the moment I saw him. It’s funny how denial works.
I wasn’t sure whether to laugh or to cry, “I’m not crazy.”
He laughed, “No, I’m afraid you aren’t.”
That meant… “You’re a vampire.”
He smiled, “You’re taking this well.”

That's all from me. Thank you for taking the time to browse; if you want to see more, check out more content on my blog!
 
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Ace Parks · None · Palmerston North, Manawatu 4410 · New Zealand

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