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Thank You, Grapenuts!

OK, so I lied about the time. :)

First of all, going out of alphabetical order, onegrapeshy 
would like to say this: YOU ARE ALL SO INSPIRING! Every year I hem and haw, thinking, hmmm, should I do GRAPEMO again? Especially this year when I was stuck in limbo, with nothing really tangible to work on. Revisions for Rinn? Still waiting for them. A sequel? Kinda got talked out of that. My old WIP? Nope, not lovin' it at all. Not even liking it.

What about something totally new and different? Omigod, that means I have to…like…think!

I have to admit, the first 1-2 weeks were rough for me. True, I was hosting and that takes some time and effort—but you were writing and I was not. Your host was glued to Nancy Grace’s Swift Justice and CNN and one movie after another. When I wasn’t transfixed by the TV, I was yammering on message boards, or texting people, or reading, or eating, or taking naps. I outlined a workshop on self-editing for an AOL group, wondering the whole time why I wasn’t putting my money where my mouth, er, fingers were.

I. Was. Not. Writing. For someone who writes, this is a scary place to be.

Then your updates began trickling in. I saw progress being made. I also saw the lack of progress for some, and, with that, the same feelings of guilt I was experiencing. I read notes from people who were flying through their projects and found their excitement heady and contagious. I also heard from those of you who wanted so badly to participate, even in a small way, but life’s circumstances dropped a brick wall in your path. Whether you wrote 10,000 words, 2000, 100, or none, I had no doubt in my mind that you were participating, even if to let me know you hit another roadblock.

It's true that "thinking" about writing isn’t the same as writing. But there’s much more to writing than putting words on a page, right?—and sometimes you’re simply not able to put those words down. But your story is there, ever-present, prodding you along, pricking and nagging. One day, when at last you can, you’ll sit down, touch the keyboard, and all your magic will appear.

I’ve said before that the TEASERS days are my favorite part of GRAPEMO. Reading through your excerpts is always a delight, especially because I know how hard it is to put yourself out there for the whole world to see (well...my LJ friends, anyway). Whether you bang one out in an hour or less, spend days trying to perfect it--or, like me, cheat and pick one that’s a year old already--it still takes courage to post your work. Thanks so much to all of you who shared.

After a couple weeks of this, thanks to you, I felt motivated enough to get up off my butt, turn off the TV, and write something already! Then, just as I found some renewed interest in my thoroughly unlovable WIP, my revision letter arrived. I swear I expended more energy trying to get through as much of that ms in the 2 weeks we had left than I spent writing the first full draft. Because NOW I had a Project, a solid PWG--and all of GRAPEMO behind me. Although I didn’t reach my goal, as many of you did not, at least I know I got a damn good start.

So here are the final progress reports, in your own words. If any more land my way, I’ll be happy to add them.

another_wip "I averaged 2.3 pages a day and completed a chapter a week. Not bad. In fact, considering the way my schedule is these days...pretty good. :)"
brian_ohio  “I wrote 7,000 words on a new project and finished edits on 2 others. Not a bad month, really. Thank you Grapemo!!!” 

dare2imagine  “Well my last ditch effort was a bit more productive than my prior week.  While, I only managed just shy of 1,000 words, I consider the whole effort a success. This month, I completed approximately 3,000 of the desired 5,000 words, but I can honestly say that it is 3,000 words that probably wouldn't have been completed without the incentive of the GRAPEMO project. Within those words are two important scenes that, with expansion, will be valuable additions to my novel. The scenes are necessary for the plot and characterization so I'm very pleased.
“Thank you for hosting GRAPEMO. It gave me a short term goal and even though I didn't achieve my PWG, I DID work on the project I wanted to. Even the small achievement gives me personal satisfaction. I know you have been pretty successful yourself with your revisions and I see a lot of others have come away with significant accomplishments. I think your project was a major success and I'm glad I was able to participate.”

edgyauthor “This month, I managed to edit and add 2686 words to my YA fantasy WIP, but did not come close to completing it as planned. (This will now be my goal for March, despite it being GRAPEMO-less!)

fandoria  “I'm really proud of myself this month. I may not have written as often as I'd hoped to, but I still added 5 new scenes to DREAMWALKER which is way more than I'd written in the six months prior to GRAPEMO. It really helped jumpstart me back into writing which is exactly what I needed.”

inknbeans "Here's a breaking news story: I have rewritten seven of ten chapters in my project. I don't know that I'll be able to finish tomorrow, but I will have met my goal of sixty thousand."

Jean D “THANK YOU for Grapemo.  I think besides the writing I finished I learned a few lessons.  That I CAN write every day (almost!) I just have to make it more of a priority.  And that there are snippets of time in the day (on my lunch hour at school or when I get there early and have a few minutes) that I can use productively.  Fortunately, I've kind of forced myself to work on writing (mostly revising from a print-out) when I have some "down time"… even if I'm interrupted and I only have a few minutes.  Those valuable minutes can add up to a fair amount of productivity, if I use them wisely. Looking forward to Grapemo 2012 :O)!

Kathie C “Kathie C wishes she'd done more or that GRAPEMO was longer but accomplished the following: a] [trumpet voluntary please] dug through boxes and boxes, FOUND the Novel-in-the-Drawer, and got it OUT for the first time in years, b] reviewed the critiques of it from times past and finally understood the one from the Famous Writer in the Genre [thanks, Patricia!], c] wrestled with and finally came up with a viable backstory for the mc's bully, d] did some heavy revision [on Monday too!] of Chapter 1, light revision on Chs 2-3, and e] did both some research and some writing-in-my-head to create the first part of the coming-of-age ceremony/quest that is the heart of the book. The bad news: I LOVE the characters, still, and the basic story but I'm just not HAPPY with the revisions or the original at least for Chs 1-3.”

 kbaccellia “I was able to get to 43K! I'll be on vacation next week and plan to also take a vacation from writing, reviewing, and critiquing. Hoping this will have me more on the ball when I come back!” 

Laura H I have to sadly report that I've only achieved half of my stated 20,000 words. But, despite that I feel like I've been really making progress this month.I guess it doesn't really come down to word count but rather quality time spent working toward the end game! THANKSSSSS! 

newport2newport  “I hope this doesn't preclude my membership in GRAPEMO next year. I'm not a slacker, but....I have to say up front that my intentions were good. I wrote reasonable, achievable goals. But life intervened, and I ended up spending much of February tending to family-related matters. I don't regret for a moment the fact that my own plans got waylaid--it was for the greater good, and I'm good with that. I just wish I had something of substance to report for your posting, but alas, I do not. Maybe March will be better? I hope so!”

ophelialaughs  “I basically did poo all month, writing-wise. My first goal was to keep five queries out, and since I already had eight out there and didn't hear back from any of them during February, it was a non-goal. My other goal was to write one scene, which I did in two chunks, with weeks in between. I would blame this long period of no progress on this year's family medical crisis, ice storms, power outages...but I have to take the blame for this inability to concentrate in the presence of almost any ado whatsoever. Anyway, by the time I got to the second part of the scene, the first part had begun to fade in my mind, like the memory of that book I think I read once. Scariest part being, I actually did catch myself thinking, I wonder what book that was? before I remembered it was mine. It was this as much as anything that inspired me to get a move on.

“So that was my grapemonth.”


( 3 comments — Leave a comment )
Mar. 2nd, 2011 12:33 am (UTC)
I, for one, am grateful that you still decided to hold Grapemo again. I'm also grateful for all the encouragment and support you gave me this month.
Mar. 3rd, 2011 12:24 pm (UTC)
You're very welcome.I hope to see you next year!
(Deleted comment)
Mar. 3rd, 2011 12:25 pm (UTC)
I can squeeze it in if you like...
( 3 comments — Leave a comment )


Jeannine Garsee

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