Friends Don’t Let Friends Screw Up a 10K Goal

This afternoon, JFCJames made a devastating confession to me:

He has never won a Camp NaNoWriMo.

I didn’t know how I should feel about this. Betrayed? Bewildered? Offended at an emotional level the depths of which could only be reached by entire buckets of chocolate? I mean, I thought I knew this guy, you know? I thought we were friends. We plotted together, we planned, we even wrote stuff together. I made him a lasagna. He bought me throwing knives. And come to find out, he’s never even won a Camp NaNo. It was all a lie.

No, seriously. He bought me these knives.

No, seriously. He bought me these knives.

I’ll be straight up here, there was a minute there where I was like SHUN HIM SHUN HIM AND HIS STUPID FAILURE. And then I remembered, dude, I’m lapixystix. I’m amazing. I’m not a shunner, I’m a motivator. And so humble, too.
So I plotted, planned, ate some fajitas, painted a chalkboard wall, and realized that I had to force James to win Camp this year by threatening to stab him with the throwing knives he bought me.

Just kidding. Please, no one stab James with rainbow titanium throwing knives. I don’t want to go to jail because he has issues hitting goals.

No, really, what I DID decide to do is barrage James with a month of motivation, and I need everyone’s help. James has seen me at both my most exquisitely motivational (and so humble) and at my most #ihavejustwrittenthestupidestpileofturd-tional, so I don’t know how far pep-talks from me will actually go. But if you, every single one of you, sends him a reminder that he needs to write and not watch that–OH DEAR GOD STOP WATCHING THAT JAMES–then maybe, just maybe, James will actually win a Camp. pester James.

…to pester James.


You can send him a pep talk at the nanolanta web site. Make a post dedicated to him on the NaNoWriMo forums, send him private messages filled with promises of rewards you totally don’t have to follow through with in NaNo mail. Pester him on the chat room if he’s around. Post a motivational meme on our facebook. Make a comically long speech via tweets @nanolanta.

If you know James personally, blow up his phone, metaphorically or literally. Nothing gets the point across quite like shards of electronics. Meet up with him for lunch and then withhold food until he writes a thousand words. Bribe him with fancy pencils and questionable anime.

Come to a Write In. We’re hosting a couple of them, starting on April first.

Oh, and since I’m launching a sort-of movement here, I felt like a name and banner were necessary. Something with a bit of zing, a bit of a hook, ad a lot of motivation. I think I got it with this one:



No, seriously. Because this will only be posted until James wins Camp, and this is an abomination.

In Support of Camp NaNo

I love NaNoWriMo. Considering how my entire Autumn is pretty much consumed by ML life, I don’t think I need to prove my devotion. I’ll always love NaNo, and I can’t see myself ever taking a break from it, but I’ve done this for eleven years now. To be honest, it’s become…easy.

2013: The year NaNo became easy.

2013: The year NaNo became easy.

I know many of you have struggled for years and have yet to get the ol’ Purple Bar. I know there’s also a minority of you who laugh at my measly 50-75k counts. I don’t mean to rile anyone in these groups when I say NaNo is easy, but I think it speaks to a flaw in the system:

Writing is not One-Size-Fits-All.

Fifty thousand isn’t a logical goal for many people. It’s probably not reasonable for most people. And I get it; NaNo is like a marathon. You have the average people who are just trying to finish and are happy to just cross that line. Some make it, and some don’t—although marathon runners are way more likely to finish than WriMos (sorry). And then you have the people who scoff at 26.2 miles, so they have to make their own motivation and set time goals most people think are insane. Analogous WriMos, you know who you are (50k days? Seriously?)

Oh, and then you have the people who are like, “Twenty-six miles? Have every single one of you gone insane? I don’t drive twenty-six miles in a morning; I’m certainly not running that,and don’t even bother to try.

Does this mean every marathon should come with different start and end points for people who struggle to finish, and clocks should be optional but not for the speedy people, they only get to win if they run it in under three hours, and hell, those of us lard-butts out there can totally get rascals to ride but make sure they’re equipped with iPads because Saturday is my Netflix binge day? Of course not. A marathon is 26.2 miles whether you like it or not.

Did someone say 'marathon'?

Did someone say ‘marathon’?

The point I’m trying to make (both poorly and redundantly) is 50,000 words is only a legitimate challenge for a few people. The rest of us have to make our own goals in order to make November meaningful. Thanks to the saved stats on the NaNo site, I can now make it a goal to be my previous year’s completion date. I’m sure there will come a time when I can no longer shave off days, but I’ll always be able to squeak out a couple more words than last year. And many of you get to around November 26th and say, “Umm, my goal is now 25,000 words,” which I respect and wholeheartedly support. You’re not a winner in the strictest sense, but you keep writing and you finish with 22,438 words and it’s not even your personal goal but whatevs, that’s 22,438 more words than you had in October.

And for all of us who don’t take 50k seriously, there is a solution:


I’m writing on my tablet, that’s sort of like roughing it.

Camp NaNoWriMo isn’t a marathon race, it’s a fitness boot camp. Which sounds really cheesy (at least in my brain), but it’s all about YOU. YOU decide what you want out of it, YOU set your goal, YOU stick to it, YOU get a Winner’s ribbon for doing what YOU said you would.

Were you only able to write 10,000 words in November before the enormity of 50k squashed you, but you really think you could do 15k because 500 words per day is easy? You get that 15k ribbon.

Does your brain say WRITE WRITE WRITE but your heart say EDIT EDIT EDIT? You get that edit ribbon.

Is your Documents folder a graveyard of unfinished stories that just need a month to hunker down and write a couple climaxes? You get that completed manuscript ribbon.

Do you just hate how easy it is for us novel writers to shove together 50,000 words while you’re sitting there with your rhyming dictionary trying to hammer out some iambic pentameter?

You can still get a
haiku omnibus ribbon
You poetic beast.

(Get it? It’s a haiku.)

And sure, maybe you have to fudge data a bit to make it work—this year my goal is to devote 60 hours to writing, so I set my goal at 60,000 words and will have to do some conversion to stay true to it—but that’s not the point. The point is write.

Or something. Pep talks aren’t really my thing.



Oh, and there’s one generic ribbon for everyone who completes. But wouldn’t it be super fun-fun if there was a haiku omnibus ribbon?


Think you can write better editorials than me? I don’t doubt it. Contact lapixystix via NaNo mail if you’re interested in blogging for us!

What Do You Mean, IKEA?

One of our most beloved NaNoLanta traditions is back, and baffling some of our newbie WriMos. Here’s the low down on what’s going to happen:

When and Where

Crazy Lamp

November 14th, 2015 5PM-8PM

IKEA in Atlantic Station
441 16th Street, NW
Atlanta, GA 30363

If you’ve never been there before, it’s impossible to miss. It’s gigantic and looks pretty much like a 3D rendering of their logo. There’s both an above ground parking lot and a parking garage. MAKE A NOTE OF WHICH SECTION YOU PARKED IN; IT’S HARDER TO FIND YOUR CAR HERE THAN AT 6 FLAGS.

Part 1: The Writing

‘Sup, Lingonberries?

We’ll meet at 5 in the Cafe. If you follow the natural flow of traffic, you end up there pretty much immediately. They have a wide selection of pretty crazy foods and, if I remember correctly, exactly one power outlet. We’ll cozy up to the electricity and make a mess of power strips, and all will be right in the world.

During our time in the Cafe, we’ll host a standard Write-In. Meet & Greet, announcements, Word Wars, the works. If we’re super (un)lucky, JFCJames’ laptop will have a most spectacular death again this year.

I swear I’m not hoping for it, but by God, it was spectacular last year.

We’ll spend approximately 1.5 hours in the cafe, so you’ll have plenty of time to eat Swedish cuisine, socialize, and get a decent word count. At least 2 of the 3, at any rate. This is also a great time to pick up a Pep Pack from lapixystix and an opportunity to pay early admission for EWW: WonderLanta to qualify for the exclusive Swag Bag.

Part 2: The Tour and Mild Shenanigans.


Some time around 6:30, we’ll begin our tour. Again, if you’ve never been inside an IKEA, brace yourself for amazement. IKEA really is as magical as everyone lets on. They have whole apartments that are, like, 200 sq ft and totally livable, a bajillion chairs and beds and stuff to test, and fabric patterns that are straight out of a time machine, but in a good way. Plus, pretty much every home good you could ever need. Been thinking of investing in spatulas? Need a lamp with seven articulating arms so everyone in your large family gets his or her own reading light? How about a closet? Any size you can imagine a closet to be, it’s there.

They also have an assortment of stuffed animals you can only explain with one word: Sweden.

You are in no way obligated to buy anything, of course. You are obligated to take pictures of all the ridiculous things you see, particularly the borderline offensive product names. Everything you’ve heard about them is completely true.

If you come late, and don’t catch us while we’re still in the cafe, just follow the path. We’re hard to miss and there aren’t a whole lot of opportunities to veer off path.

Part 3: The Afterparty

969 Marietta St,
Atlanta, GA 30318


Quintopia and Sushimustwrite will be hosting a Bartaco write-in. It’s like ten minutes from IKEA. It’ll be loud and crowded, but we’ll manage. Any words that don’t get written at IKEA can still get written there!

All About the All-Nighter (18+ Event)

The All-Nighter is rapidly approaching! Here’s everything you need to know:


This Saturday, November 7, 2015, starting at 8PM


lapixystix’s home. This is the same place as last year if you attended. It’s in Marietta, a stone’s throw from 285 and a very strong man’s stone’s throw from 75. Please contact lapixystix or JFCJames directly via nanomail or in the nanolanta chatroom for the address. You’ll probably also want a phone # to call when you get here, as my complex is stupidly confusing.

What Happens at the All-Nighter?

Last year, it ran like a normal write-in (writing, warring, socializing and/or hiding in the corner while churning out even more words) until about midnight, at which point we busted out the Cards Against Humanity for a few hours and called it a night. I believe there was some super-late night hanging out/writing, but I’m old and programmed to wake up at 5 in the morning, so I can only go so late.

This year, there will be coffee and breakfast in the morning. I feel like I baked last year, and I have no idea why, but I’ll be making hash brown (home fries if you speak Southern).

Do I have to stay all night?

Of course not. I stopped holding hostages years ago. If you want to pop in for a couple hours, you’re certainly welcome to. If you plan on stopping by late, shoot us a message first–probably via FB or Twitter so we get a push notification–to make sure things are still going. They probably are, but I don’t want anyone to show up to a locked door.

If you do stay the night, I’ve got a surprisingly comfortable futon, an even more surprisingly comfortably love seat, and plenty of inflatable mattresses. I’d offer my plethora of hammocks but it’s getting pretty darned cold out there.

What should I bring?

If you’re spending the night, bedding. I have many blankets, and they are ALL MINE. For realsies. If you want to bring snacks or beverages, to share or to horde, you can but aren’t required. I have an assortment of bizarrely flavored potato chips and might make soup or something. And I have a Keurig if you need coffee NOW.

Why is this 18+?

I’m a single adult in a household of single adults. There is a bar as well as tasteful nudes and profane cross stitches on the wall. It is entirely possible that one or both of my roommates is not legally allowed within a certain distance of Elementary Schools. We are in no way family friendly and I do NOT want to deal with irate parents. Seriously, even my Wi-Fi password could end with angry phone calls. Sorry.

The Fine Print (in big letters)

We have an old, smelly dog, an old, smelly ferret, and a middle aged, smelly roommate who is supposed to be house sitting at his sister’s this weekend, but no promises.

You are welcome to have a bit of adult libations IF YOU’RE OVER 21 I SWEAR TO GOD DON’T MAKE ME HAVE TO CARD YOU but don’t be a derp. Don’t get drank. I don’t want you to be that guy, and you don’t want to be that guy. I’ve been promised there will be 200% less drunk roommates than last year, so if you drink too much every single other person here will point and laugh at you.

The parking situation is pretty rough. There WILL be a place for your car, but possibly not in my phase. I highly encourage carpooling. Feel free to discuss it in the NaNoLanta forum thread.

Pep Packs Now Available!

Just in time (okay, we cut it super-close on this one) your MLs are proud to announce a brand new motivators: the Pep Pack!


Each Pep Pack comes with 4 cards:

  • Coloring Postcard
  • Bingo Card
  • Score Card
  • EWW: WonderLanta Tea Party Invitation

Consider this to be three parts motivation, two parts competition, and two parts pretty (depending on your artistic ability). With the postcard you can schedule a pep talk written for you, by you, to arrive in your mailbox when you think you’ll need it most. Both the bingo card and the score card are redeemable for a small prize and will go into a drawing for much more awesome prizes.

I’ll be announcing prizes a little later, but spoiler alert: If you like cheesecake–and get out of my region if you don’t because omg amazing–there will be a prize for you.

Disregard the previous statement if you’re lactose intolerant. You deserve a support group.

Pep Packs are available for purchase in-person at all ML hosted events or online (contact lapixystix via NaNoMail) for $2. The cost is to cover materials, postcard stamps, and shipping/processing fees for online orders. Any leftover money will be donated to NaNoWriMo.

Coloring Postcard

peppack5The Coloring Postcards are stamped and ready for you to decorate and fill in with an encouraging message to your future self.

If purchasing in-person, just let your ML know when you want it sent–be it on a certain date or when you hit a specific word goal–and we’ll get it in the mail for you. If purchasing online, include the message you’d like and lapixystix will write it out in her super-fantastic cake decorator handwriting. We’ll even color it for you if you’d like, but you should do it yourself–according to the internet, adult coloring is all the rage these days.

Bingo Card

peppack3Who doesn’t love Bingo, even when minor technical difficulties make the cards kind of ugly?

Seriously, Excel, why you gotta break my heart?

I will be accepting horizontal, vertical, and diagonal lines for completion. I will NOT accept 4 corners. I want 5 boxes filled in. YES, you have to hit 50k to fill in the center. There are no free squares.

Some squares are honor system (obviously). The prizes for completion aren’t all that exciting and the grand prizes are great but not amazing or of exceptional monetary value. If you cheat, you really are only cheating yourself. Don’t be that guy. This is supposed to motivate you to write more.

Instructions for filling in squares:

  • Write 10k/25k: Mark these when you’ve posted that count on NaNoWriMo
  • Attend a Write-In: Any Write-In is fine. Have host initial.
  • Attend a Major Event: This includes Kick-Off, All-Nighter, IKEA, EWW, and TGIO. lapixystix and JFCJames will initial these.
  • 2k/3k in One Day: Date square and make sure you post your count on NaNoWriMo!
  • Participate in a Word War: Any IRL/Virtual Write-In, NaNoLanta chatroom Battle Jesus war, or Twitter word-sprint is acceptable. Honor system.
  • Write 1k in a Word War: Honor system. Some wars are really long, so don’t despair if you’re a slow typist.
  • NaNoLanta Selfie: hashtag yourself writing to the NaNoLanta twitter or instagram. Include your NaNo screenname.
  • Make Up a Word: This year’s theme is WonderLanta Tea Party. Do Lewis Carroll proud. Honor system.
  • Donate for a Halo: Make a $10+ donation to NaNoWriMo to get your halo!
  • Post on the Atlanta Forum: Valid anytime in November, new thread or reply.
  • Anthropomorphize Something: Turn a not-human into a human. It can be a dream, a hallucination, or an entire novel about the war between dogs and vacuums. Honor system.
  • RetCon: Did you just realize Sue and Jim are married and not siblings, as stated four chapters ago? Roll with it. Fix it later. Honor system.
  • Add a 100+ Word Quote: I’m not encouraging you to cheat, I swear. But sometimes your characters go to karaoke, and you don’t want that lame, “I didn’t want to pay for rights so I made it up” karaoke. And sometimes you need a religious zealot to quote a chunk of bible. Honor system.
  • Use a Writing Prompt: We’ll be starting these up on Twitter and elsewhere once November gets going. Honor system.
  • Use a Generator: These are great for character names, but there are all kinds of other generators out there. Honor system.

I’m pretty sure the rest are all self-explanatory and honor system based. I’ll probably put up a thread for you to post your usage of these–because who doesn’t like to brag about the five words of Swahili they know–but don’t feel obligated.

Score Card

peppack4Similar to the Bingo cards, complete the card to win! Note that you do NOT need to complete every single task on the back of the card; when you complete something, mark off a tea cup on the front in the method of your choosing. Color it, X it, stamps. Whatever.

There are 26 tasks and only 16 tea cups. You can do this. Plus, most of the categories overlap the Bingo cards. Easy-peasy.

For both Bingo and Score Cards, I’ll set up a submission system later in the month. Grand prizes will be drawn at TGIO. If you can’t attend, don’t worry; we’ll get your prize to you somehow!

EWW Invitation

peppack2They’re pretty and printed well. That’s all.

I might have OCD, and the other cards may not have fit in with my plan for how the Pep Packs should look.

Just accept this and move on.

But seriously, I should make wedding invitations for a living.

That way I can have access to a printer that doesn’t have stupid margins that make everything crooked.






You can pay with this button now! In the first box, include the note you’d like me to write on the post card. In the second box, include the screen name you use on NaNoWriMo and when you’d like me to send your post card. We can go by date or word count, i.e., ship when you hit 25,000. If you’d like me to color the post card for you, mention that here.

If your address is different from what’s listed on the PayPal account, please let me know. Expect 48 hours for shipping and no confirmation or tracking or anything. I’m not a business. If you don’t receive it in a week, though, ABSOLUTELY shoot me a reminder. It’s November. I’m crazy.

Post Card Message
NaNo Name+Shipping Date/Word #

5th Annual Evening of Writing Wildly: WonderLanta Tea Party


EWW is back and better than ever!

For our 5th Annual Evening of Writing Wildly, the NaNoLanta MLs are going all out with a brand new theme: the WonderLanta Tea Party! We’re ramping up the schedule with Alice themed games and challenges, awesome new prizes, and ML cosplay.

Even better news? No more pot luck! We’ll be providing light fare, including veggie, meat, and cheese platters, various sweets, and totally legit cucumber sandwiches. We’ll also have a selection of hot beverages and ML lapixystix’s completely amazing autumnal punch.

In order for us to ensure that everyone is well fed, please RSVP at This Google Doc and pay in advance if possible. Payments ARE refundable; just ask lapixystix.

Here’s the deets:

When is it? Where is it?

November 21st, 2015, from 6:00PM to 10:PM. We’re returning to the Agnes Scott College campus, site of the 3rd Annual EWW in 2013. Room to be announced closer to the date.

How much is it? Where do I pay?

This year, the entrance fee is $20.

You can pay in cash at the door or in advance directly to lapixystix or JFCJames, or you can pay via credit card at YouCaring. They don’t withhold any money for themselves, so it would be nice if you slipped them an extra buck or two (you’ll see the option) but you don’t have to. If you pay through YouCaring, be sure to leave a note about who the payment is for. Otherwise it will get really confusing at the door.

As mentioned before, we would absolutely love payment in advance. It’s really hard to cater for anywhere between 10 and 30 people. So as an incentive, we’ll be giving everyone who pays on or before November 19th a little swag bag. Nothing crazy of course, but a token of appreciation from lapixystix and JFCJames to you. They will also be available at the door for a nominal fee.

Where does all that money go?

Mostly to NaNoWriMo. Some of it will be going toward expenses, but lapixystix is pretty much the most frugal party planner on the planet. A budget will be available upon request soon.

Why aren’t you using stayclassy?

Unfortunately, money donated through stayclassy doesn’t get credited to NaNoLanta. lapixystix likes getting credit. Also, she likes getting the donation gifts to use for prizes next year.

I’m coming from out of town! Is there somewhere I can stay overnight?

Yep. Just let us know and we’ll figure it out.

I really like to cook and/or I have some dietary restrictions! Can I bring food?

Of course you can! If you’re bringing food to share, let lapixystix know in advance so she can make a sign and bring appropriate dishes for it.  If you’re just bringing stuff for you, enjoy. 🙂

I want to help! Do you need a hand with this?

<3. We do. We’re looking for 2-4 volunteers to give us a couple hours before the event and under an hour afterward to help with set-up and break-down. The admission fee will be waived for volunteers. Contact lapixystix directly for details.

You didn’t answer all my questions.

I’m not psychic. I thought I was, but it turned out to be too many margaritas. Ask away on the EWW Thread or contact the MLs directly.

Character Creation with JFCJames

NaNoWriMo is getting closer! Time to go through a character creation. I am usually a pantser and I don’t plan much of my novel at all like this, so this is a whole new world for me. Feel free to download your own copy to try at A lot of this will be blank as this was a mock sample from me and as a pantser it was really really hard to come with anything.

Character’s Full Name:


I will think of this later, I am not that good with character names, I usually come up with names after story to fit the story better.

Since most of my novels do not happen in the modern times, a lot of the modern things do not apply to my characters.


Name origin:  I don’t usually do name origins I just come up with my own
Nickname, if any
(if so, explain its origin – e.g. who created it?):
 I usually don’t do nicknames either
Does s/he like the nickname?  N/A
Birth date:
Place of birth:  The Village of the Dragons
Ethnic background:  Dragon
Religion:  Religion of the Dragons
Degree of religious practice
(e.g. orthodox, casual, lapsed):
 Relaxed, but one religion
Current address:
Does s/he rent or own?
Brief description of home
(apartment, house, trailer, etc.):
They live in caves since they are dragons.



Does s/he live with anyone?  Dragons are very social creatures
Describe the area in which s/he lives
(big city, town, rural, other):
 The cave where the dragons live are in the wilderness, in a great valley. Protected on all sides.
Is this his/her ideal home and location?
If not, what would s/he prefer?
Home decor: N/A
When someone walks in, what’s his/her first impression?  N/A
Pets? No pets
If yes, what kind and how many? Name(s)?
How important are they? How well are they treated? They are a regular dragon and thus gets treated similar to other dragons.
Current occupation
(include length of time, location, job title):
Job satisfaction (happy, discontent, ambitious…):  N/A
Income level: N/A
Education:  N/A
Does s/he drive? What kind of car does s/he own, if any? (Make, model, color, age, etc.):  N/A
(e.g. straight, gay, bisexual, asexual, unsure…):
 They are a bisexual dragon
Marital status:  Single
If married or currently romantically involved, with whom, and for how long?  N/A
List any significant previous romantic partners:  N/A
For current spouse/partner, what does the character call him/her (pet names, nicknames, etc.)?
How did they meet?



Any children (include names, ages, other parent if different from current partner)?
No children


Describe relationship with each child (if any):


Height:  9 feet
Weight:  500 lbs
What is his/her body type (skinny, slim, athletic, curvy, overweight, muscular, etc.)? Pretty regular for a dragon
Eye color?  Dark Teal
Does s/he use glasses?
Contacts? Hearing aid?
Skin tone (pale, ivory, ruddy, tan, olive,
brown, black, etc.):
Any prominent features, freckles/moles/scars/tattoos/
other distinguishing marks?
Face shape (round, oval, chubby, thin, long, square, heart-shaped, etc.)?  Triangular
Whom does s/he most look like (e.g. famous person or relative)?  N/A
General health (good, excellent, poor…)?  Good health
Any chronic conditions?  No
Any current health problems?  No
How does s/he dress : N/A
Does s/he dress to be noticed? Why? N/A


Any special jewelry?
If so, why is it special?
Grooming:  All Dragons neatly groom themselves as a part of their society rules
(long, short, crewcut, locs, bangs, side-part etc.):
Natural hair texture
(thick, thin, wiry, smooth, wavy, curly, nappy, etc.):
Current hair texture (if different from above):   N/A
Natural hair color:   N/A
Current hair color (if different from above):   N/A


Pace (does s/he talk fast, average, slow?):  Slightly slower than average speech speed to show respect
Accent or dialect, if any:   N/A
Voice tone
(shrill, high, average, deep, squeaky,
hoarse, harsh, authoritative, cultured, etc.):
Any favorite/habitual words/phrases or curse words?  N/A


Describe general vocabulary or speech pattern (e.g. educated, precise, pretentious, average, childish, uneducated, vulgar…):  Educated as all Dragons received education at some point in their life.
Mannerisms/demeanor? Cool and collected.
Typical posture: Relaxed
Gestures: Doesn’t use gestures much.
Common gestures (e.g. nail-biting, hair patting, drumming fingers, clenched fists, hands in pockets, etc.):  N/A


Finances: (prudent/cautious, average w/some debt, lives paycheck to paycheck, deep in debt, criminal activity, etc.):  N/A
Describe any personal habits, e.g. smoking, drinking, drugs, gambling, etc.
Are any of these addictions?

Morning Routine:

Describe the character’s morning rituals. Who else is sleeping in the same bed? What time does he/she wake up? Is he/she cheerful in the morning? What wakes him/her up — alarm, spouse/lover, kids, pet? What does he/she do during breakfast-read, watch tv, feed kids, etc.

Wakes up and goes to see the Queen Dragon as all dragons are required to do this.






Now describe the character’s workday or afternoon behavior. Does s/he work outside the home? How does he/she get there? Does he/she anticipate, dread, resent the work ahead? Does s/he give the job genuine attention and effort? Does s/he enjoy this work? Is s/he good at this job? What would he/she rather be doing? How long and hard is the work day?


Does s/he stop for lunch? Where?


 Hunting for food is usually the biggest chunk of any dragon’s life for they must not only feed themselves, but also help feed the community.

Does s/he eat at home or go out a lot? If the latter, what is/are his or her favorite restaurant(s)? At home, who prepares the meal? Who does he/she eat it with? What does it typically consist of? What goes on during dinner — tv, conversation, fighting, reading, etc? Who cleans up?



What does your character do on a typical evening? Where? With whom? How much does he/she enjoy it? What is the ideal evening for him or her?







Does he/she go to bed at a consistent time? Alone or with someone else? Does s/he usually fall asleep right way, or is s/he an insomniac? Does he/she dream — a lot, a little, never? Are most of his/her dreams scary, pleasant, sexual, imaginative? Are there any recurring dreams? Does s/he sleep well or poorly (e.g. tossing & turning)?



All dragons have consistent sleeping times where they go back to their individual caves and lay down to sleep.

Skills/Talents:  N/A
What is s/he particularly unskilled at?  N/A
Any hobbies (sports, arts, collecting, gaming, etc.): N/A


Home town (if different from current home): N/A
Was his/her childhood happy? Troubled? Dull? (And does the character remember it accurately?)  


5000 years ago when the dragons were looking for a new bigger valley than the one they previously had.


Saddest memory:  


Happiest memory: Seeing this new valley for the first time


How much school did s/he attend, if any?
Did/does s/he like school? Why or why not?
Most of the childhood



significant childhood event:


Other significant childhood events, if any? N/A


Significant past jobs: N/A


Any police record?  N/A
If so, what was the arrest for? When/where?  N/A
Convictions? Sentence(s) served?  N/A
First crush or romantic love? N/A


What was his/her first sexual experience?
Is it a positive/negative memory?


Major accidents or traumas?
How is s/he still affected, if at all?




Mother’s name (include maiden name if known/applicable):  N/A
Mother’s current status: Alive
Mother’s occupation, if any:  N/A
Describe the mother’s relationship
with character:
The mother helps the library of the dragons, but since for dragons once they hit a certain age, they have to be independent. They do not see each other much


Father’s name:  N/A
Father’s current status: Alive
Father’s occupation, if any:  N/A
Describe the father’s relationship
with character:
Any step-parents, foster parents,
or birth parents (if not same as above):




If s/he is adopted, does s/he know?  N/A
Any siblings (include age and birth order, i.e. relative to main character):  No siblings
with each:
Nieces/Nephews, if any:  N/A
In-Laws, if any:  N/A
Other than the above, who else in the story is part of his/her extended family (e.g. cousins, aunts/uncles, grandparents, etc.)?  N/A


Who, if anyone, is his/her best or closest friend?
Other close friends:
How in general does s/he react to or is perceived by…

Past spouse/lovers?

Own children, if any?
Other family members
The opposite sex?
Children in general?
Others who are more successful?
Others who are less successful?
Boss (if any)? N/A
Underlings at work?  N/A
Competitors?  N/A
Authority (police, IRS, politicians, attorneys, doctors, etc.)?
Anyone who challenges him or her?
Anyone who angers him or her?
Anyone who asks for help?
What do most people consider likeable about him/her?
do most people consider his/her biggest flaw?
Any secret attractions? If so, does the other person know it? Has there been any actual romantic/sexual activity?
In romantic relationships, is s/he generally monogamous or uncommitted? (If the latter, is s/he honest w/ partners?)
Is his/her sexual behavior inhibited, average, experimental, or reckless? Has this changed
(and if so, why)?
Whom does s/he dislikes most, and why?
Whom does s/he like most, and why?
Who’s the most important person
in his/her life right now, and why?


Whom does s/he admire (nonromantic), and why?  


Biggest influence, and why (famous or not)?  


Whom (if anyone) does s/he consider an enemy, and why?
Person s/he most misunderstands or misjudges:
Person who most misunderstands or misjudges him or her:
Has s/he’s lost touch with anyone who was once significant in his/her life? If so, why?
Worst end of a relationship (could be friend, romantic, colleague…)
Whom does s/he most rely on for practical advice?
Whom does s/he most rely on for emotional support?
Whom, if anyone, does s/he support (e.g. advice or emotional support)?


Any psychological issues (e.g. phobias,
depression, paranoia, narcissism, etc.)?



Is s/he an optimist
or pessimist?


Meyers Briggs Personality Type:
(Don’t know? Take a sample test for your character.)
comfortable when …
(alone, hanging w/friends, drinking, etc.):
Most uncomfortable when …
(in a crowd, alone, speaking in public, etc.:
Is s/he cautious, brave, or reckless
in his/her approach to life?
 Cautious with life
What does s/he most value/prioritize?
(family, money, success, religion, etc.)
 The community of dragons
Whom does he/she really love best? N/A
What would he/she be willing to die for?  The queen dragon
Is s/he generally compassionate, sensitive to others?
Or self-involved/selfish/oblivious?
Personal philosophy: Where life goes, so should you.


What is his/her biggest embarrassment? N/A



What is his/her greatest wish?  



Any prejudices (race, culture, sexuality, religion, etc.)? N/A



Political party or beliefs, if any: N/A



Does s/he believe in fate or destiny? Is s/he superstitious? Believes in destiny and fate.



Character’s greatest strength:  


Character’s greatest flaw:  


Other good characteristics:  


Other character flaws:  


What are his/her own favorite attributes
(physical and personality)?
What about least favorite?


Are these feelings accurate?  


How does s/he think others perceive him or her?
(And is this accurate?)






Proudest accomplishment:  




Biggest secret(s):  


Does anyone else know these secrets?  


If yes, how were the secrets revealed?  


does s/he react to a crisis?


What usually causes the problems in his/her life (romance, finances, friends, colleagues, personality flaws, health, etc.)?  


does s/he react to change?


Quirks: N/A


would s/he most like to change about her-/himself, and why?



Write a paragraph (~100 words) of the character describing him/herself:  N/A
Short term
Long term goals:  N/A
Does s/he plan to achieve these goals, or does s/he think they’re unrealistic?
Will others be affected?
If yes, does it matter to the character?
What, if anything, is stopping him/her from achieving these goals?
What does he/she actively work to gain, keep or protect?
What event or occurrence does s/he most dread or fear?
Which person in his/her life would s/he most want to emulate?
Which person in his/her life would s/he least want to emulate?


Drink: Water
Color:  N/A
Book:  Anything history related
Film: N/A
Music/Song: N/A
TV:  N/A
Sport:  N/A
Motto/Quote:  N/A
Hangout(s):  N/A
Possession: N/A


Copyright 2004 –by EPIGUIDE.COM, the Guide to Web Entertainment
This chart may be reprinted as long as above credit is included

As a pantser, taking the time to attempt to fill one of those out really opened my eyes to the world of people who plan their story. I admire the ability to plan all that out with so much detail.

Pixy’s Primers: Write-In Guide


This is the first part of a 2-part series on hosting Write-Ins.


What is a Write-In?

Thanks to Atlanta being super awesomely populated, we get to meet in person easily and frequently. Pretty much every day in November, there will be one or MANY, MANY Write-Ins where we WriMos gather and chat and share our stories and ask stupid research questions without fear of the NSA tracking our Google searches (I swear I wasn’t hiding a body when I searched for the weights of both a car battery and an 8 year old human). Hopefully, we’ll write ALL THE WORDS as well. First and foremost, a Write-In should be an escape from the outside world where words flow like funky fresh rhymes from our fingers into our word processors of choice. Or something. I don’t know, my metaphors have been off lately.


Where can I host a Write-In?

Meh, wherever. Coffee shops are the norm in Atlanta, but don’t limit yourself. Fast food establishments work if you’re on a tighter budget, as do diners if you’re looking for late night. Your local library is probably free. Talk with your librarian about scheduling in advance as their rooms are used by lots of organizations, but they’re typically very accommodating. Some grocery stores have seating areas, or you can brave the wilderness at the park. Heck, you can even open your home (at your own risk!). Be creative.

Some things you’ll want to consider: Is there Wi-Fi? Convenient power outlets? Seating to accommodate a group of possibly 2 but potentially 12? Food and beverages? Public transportation nearby? Is it suitable for the teenaged WriMos? Will it be quiet enough that you can concentrate on writing, but will it also be acceptable if the Write-In gets rowdy? Because that happens. Don’t let a ‘no’ to any of these questions stop you from. Others of us need to be told in advance to keep our lips zipped. It is what it is.


When can I host a Write-In?

Meh, whenever. Literally. Nine-to-fivers like evenings and weekends, the rest of us love those lunch time, no-one’s-around-to-bother-us-so-we’re-gonna-write-for-the-next-four-hours-then-leave-early-enough-to-dodge-the-worst-of-rush-hour, or, whoops-it’s-five-so-let’s-keep-going-until-seven-to-dodge-rush-hour write-ins. If you’re a night owl who likes to write at 2AM, you’re not alone and IHOP is 24 hours. As for the duration, that’s also at your discretion. A minimum of 2 hours is recommended, beyond that is however long you’ll want to sit there. If you want to host weekly, be sure to list all dates.

I do recommend you check out the previously scheduled Write-Ins before you choose your date(s)/time. It’s okay to schedule yours at the same time as another Write-In elsewhere in Atlanta—there’s certainly not a conflict in scheduling in Buford when there’s already one in Peachtree City—just try not to schedule when there’s another Write-In nearby.

Enjoy a delightfully ’90s narrated PowerPoint presentation from lapixystix!

Stay tuned for the second part of the series, airing as soon as lapixystix and JFCJames find time to film the stupid thing.

2015 Schedule

It’s official, NaNoWriMo is upon us! Here’s a list of events that the MLs have put in stone for dates and events.


4PM – 6PM
The Varsity Downtown
61 North Avenue
Atlanta GA 30308

All Nighter

11/7 – 11/8
7PM – 10AM
ML lapixystix’ home in Marietta – contact either ML for address


5PM – 8PM
IKEA Atlantic Station
441 16th St NW
Atlanta, GA 30363

EWW: Wonderlanta Tea Party

6PM – 11PM
Location TBA

We’ll update this list as NaNoWriMo closes in. So keep checking back for more updates!

Welcome to NaNoLanta 2015!


It’s hard to believe we’re just a few weeks away from a new NaNoWriMo! In fact, it’s SOOO hard to believe, your MLs are a smidge behind schedule. Have no fear, all your favorite events from years past are coming back; we just haven’t finalized the dates yet. We’ll have that by the end of the week.

In the meantime, we’re working hard to get the website up and running again. We’re archiving all the old posts, reorganizing to make it easier to navigate, and adding tons of new content. We’ll be posting lots of old Pep Talks from current and former MLs as well as the NaNo higher ups, updating our events page to keep you up to date on what we’ve got planned for this month and give highlights of past events, and adding links to all our favorite sites.

We’ve got a lot of other great ideas we’re bouncing around, but this isn’t the MLs’ site, it’s YOUR site. All of NaNoLanta. So we need your help coming up with stuff that makes you want to come back. Help us help you by letting us know which of the following content you’d be interested in!

  • A NaNoBlogMo, in which our Tech ML JFCJames blogs this year’s NaNo Novel
  • An Off-Season Book Club
  • An Off-Season NaNo Novel Swap/Beta Reading Circle
  • Writing Contests and Challenges
  • A Directory of where to find NaNoLantans on literary sites
  • Writing guides—not that the MLs are any better at writing than you, but sometimes we have good ideas!

Help us help you by filling out the following survey! Just check all the extras you’d be interested in seeing and let us know in the comment box if there’s anything else you’d like to see. Anything that gets enough support we’ll be sure to implement as soon as possible.

Happy planning until November!


[mlw_quizmaster quiz=1]

lapixystix’s Tour of (Mostly Marietta) Atlanta and Write-a-Thon

Today’s the last day. By now, you know if you’re going to win or not. You’ve already won, you have an impossible (for most people) number of words left, or you’re in range. Even if you’re in that incredibly daunting range–for most of us it’s the low 40k’s–you know if you’re going to win because you’ve already decided to spend your entire day writing or you’re throwing in the towel. I’ve never known anyone to lose with over 45k; somehow, you’ll do it.

I don’t want you to give up if you’re in that 10k-to-go range, but I won’t judge you. Not to your face. And if you do want to face a truly incredible challenge today, I want to be there with you. I’m not coming to you, though, because that’s crazy, a bit stalkery, and impossible if there are two of you who exist independently of each. So I’m going to tell you exactly where I’ll be, all day, writing.

In honor of you. I’ve already won. Suck it.

STOP 1: Loving Hut (Sandy Springs)


Loving Hut
220 Hammond Drive NE
Sandy Springs, GA


This is NOT the Norcross Loving Hut. This is by the Sandy Springs Whole Foods and Kroger off of 9. There are two floors so if you don’t see me (look for the hot pink laptop), check the other floor.

STOP 2: Dunkin Donuts (Marietta ATP)


Dunkin Donuts
2022 Powers Ferry Rd
Suite 100
Atlanta, GA


If you went to the All-Nighter, this is the Dunkin Donuts across the street. Small but plenty of seating plus a nice patio if we happen to get good weather.

STOP #3: Cool Beans Coffee Roasters (Marietta Square)


Cool Beans Coffee Roasters
31 Mill Street
Marietta, GA


Come prepared; we may end up sitting outside, which WILL be cold. We’ll do our best to get a spot inside, but it’s limited. The good news is: HOT COFFEE!

STOP #4: IHOP (Marietta)


179 Cobb Pkwy S
Marietta, GA



Come count down the final hours of NaNoWriMo 2015 at IHOP! This is the location just south of the Big Chicken on Cobb Parkway.

JFCJames’ Nanoblogmo novel goes wild

Ahem. So, I was about to give up on nanowrimo because my lack of time and what not. But thanks to my good friend Ali (<3) I feel like I should try to finish. I AM FUELED by the power of a winner. The idea is, it doesn’t matter what I write, I should just win instead. Sometimes, during a year like this, I bet many of you have had years like this as well. Be it all the plot bunnies ran away, life got in the way, or some other reason. There is not any way for you, in your mind, to finish your nanowrimo. You’re so far behind and life isn’t giving you time to write novels, instead it throws lemons at you as if they are going out of fashion. Or it is lemon season. It is okay in times like this to abandon your plot and focus on winning first, if it is to win. HOWEVER, I do think plots are as important and if the story really matters to you. Even losing is winning because publishing is a good feeling too. I personally am not publishing this novel, it was an idea that I wanted to try out. To try to write a depressing novel very alike that of Mattkinsi, one of the municipal liaisons of nanolanta past. Unfortunately, it seems that I was unable to accomplish this idea in the end, however that doesn’t mean that I should ultimately give up on nanowrimo as a whole regardless the amount of time I have to write a novel. I think that “lead by example” was my ultimate goal this year. But I have instead given a lethargic approach that is a bad example of how to nano. I want everyone out there to do whatever they need to do in terms of their novel. Yes, many feel winning is everything, but also many agree that their novel is mor]e important. Neither are wrong. Both are ultimately important. Nanowrimo is an adventure that brings people together, it is not really about winning, it is about a sense of community and friendship for it is the least competitive thing. Even the rebels are welcome though many regions like you to believe rebelling is “illegal” or “wrongful”. They are very much welcome. There is no need to feel like what you are doing is right or wrong. Nanowrimo should be a celebration of our love for writing and an accumulation of our aspiration of wanting to be published one day. Twisting it to any other way, I feel is just against the very essence of nanowrimo itself. That being said, back to the novel. By “back to the novel” I mean “I am going to do whatever I feel like and ramble”

Continue reading

JFCJames’ Nanonovel 2015 Chapter 11

Erm… my plot bunnies all ran away and I am without a plot now. But even then, this has to continue until we reach 50,000 words. So far we are at the 20% mark yay~ I personally am very excited about IKEA and the rest of the events. And even with my ridiculous amount of behindness. I feel like that I can make it to 50,000 words. I am not quite sure how I am going to update these chapters that follow. Since making several chapters while behind breaks the flow whenever I post one. So I guess I’ll do the logical thing which is to e plot best just to restart and try again with all the plots. Or at least attempt to rescue the plot. I don’t know how successful I am going to be, but I am going to try. Being behind is never quite good and I usually am not this behind. But hey, EWW is around the corner and so is thanksgiving. Then again, without a plot to go at this point, I might have to start anew.

—————————————————————————————————————————————————————————- Continue reading

JFCJames’ Nano Novel Chapter 10

Finally, 10,000 words. I broke that mark! I feel like I have achieved something. Despite being 2525 ish behind, I am feeling good about my chances of catching up now. Instead of being insanely behind like how I started yesterday. Now that I am slightly caught up, I lied, instead of sleeping, I am going to try to at least hit 11667, which was yesterday’s goal, or at least that. So that when I get the chance to write again, I will be even less behind. In fact, that wold probably make me somewhat caught up so I can go back to my state of being a schrodinger wrimo, simultaneously behind and ahead. Actually, nevermind, more life happened, now I am as behind as I was again. I guess it goes to show that life really happens during nano. But fear not, I will try to catch up best I can. While you guys should write more too.

Continue reading

JFCJames’ Nano Novel Chapter 9

Yay~ I was able to finally double the word count that I started yesterday. I was almost there last night, but I wasn’t able to update it as I was in the middle of a chapter. But I am able to get to almost 10,000 words. I am almost 3333 words from where I should be, which means I am on schedule to get my wordcount that I am behind by from the previous 6000+ to under 3000. When that happens, I think I should sleep, I can make up about two days of words some other day. I already halved what I owed. Problem is, plot has become rather metaphysical. So apologies, my stories always do this. Or maybe it wouldn’t I am not 100% sure yet. I didn’t plan it out this far, I actually thought the original plan for the novel would go a bit farther than it has. But now that it has come to this point, I have no choice but to try to at least give it a new direction as it is definitely not going anywhere at this point. When I get to 10,000 I would celebrate by sleeping. I haven’t slept in too long. Also, if I am repeating myself it’s because I am actually very very tired at this point. But word on wrimos, you can do it! Yes! Continue reading

JFCJames’ Nano Novel Chapter 8

Alas, I wasn’t able to hit the goal of the day, but I was able to write a lot of words. And that is good! So write all the words and maybe you’ll be surprised by how much words you’ve written. Thanks for all the people who were worried about me and my excessive energy drinks. I am slightly okayer now. I am at least not shaking and I have delicious tea and all is right with my world at this moment. Word on wrimos~ You can make it to 50,000 I believe in you even if you have lost a bit of faith in yourself.

Chapter 8

When Jasura and Lamuras came upon the core of the world, they didn’t even realize it. For it was cold, dark and without a sign of life like the rest of the world. They could not see anything, but they know they have reached the core for they have stopped sliding, even in this darkness without a sense of up and down. They know that they are no longer moving, all they are doing is standing atop of something cold which could be the core. It’s either that or they have finally reached the end of the depths. Here, at the center of the world, Lamuras clung onto Jasura. Jasura, surprised, looked back at Lamuras “Are you afraid?” she asked
“Not really captain, but I don’t want to lose you. Even though I cannot see anything. I want to know that you’re there and we are in this together.” Lamuras answered”I see” Jasura replied “you can hang onto me. I am here and I won’t let you go, I promise. Just follow my lead like you always have.”
“Yes captain” Lamuras replied and followed Jasura

There was not a light in sight, yet Captain Jasura continued forward. She knew that the moment she stopped and thought about their direction and position she would immediately be unable to tell anything for there is nothing to help with that. In this darkness, the only thing they had was determination and silence. Utter complete silence.
Captain Jasura pulled Lamuras closer to her as they went deeper into the darkness. There it was, in the distance, a very very faint flicker of light. At first Captain Jasura thought she had seen something from her eyes cheating on her as she has been in this darkness too long. But it was there, in the distance, calling out to them. Thus they went towards the flicker of light, hoping to find some sign of life there. When they reached it, they saw that it was indeed a very faint sign of life. There was a very very faint beating sound, as if it was the heart of the power, begging to be revived. Captain Jasura got up and close to the source of the light, it was very warm to the touch. Yet it did not burn her, from it looking like some sort of energy beyond her understanding. She could feel it pulling her in, trying to use her energy. Looking at Lamuras, she spoke “I do not know what this holds for us, we might have to allow ourselves be absorbed by this to recreate the universe.”
“Let’s do it.” Lamuras answered. “For the sake of humanity. What is this little sacrifice?”
Captain Jasura nodded and together they touched the light source, they both felt it slowly dissolving their bodies. Pulling them deeper into the infiniteness of the singularity. Then for both of them, the world went dark.

The city of K’nura have all but faded into the sands of time. Suddenly, the room of corpses felt something come into them. Every one of them felt a surge of energy into their bodies and everything they have been unable to feel for the past eternity came rushing into them. They felt every bit of decay their physical bodies have been going through. It was unspeakable pain and suffering. The smell was so unbearable, they couldn’t even scream from the pain as their bodies are just piles of decayed and dried up bones. Noting could have prepared them for the immense amount of pain, they wished for death and release. They prayed to go back to whatever they had before all of this, but no, that did not come either. So were they finally dying? They did not know, all they knew was pain, suffering and unspeakable horror. Despite the decay, they still cannot die, even with this energy and wave of pain, they cannot get what they wanted most. The soundless horror spread throughout the room, they could not even curl up in pain as their bodies have already nothing but skeletons. Every attempt at motion or sound would end up in just more pain and suffering.

Lamuras and Jasura saw in front of them things they could not understand. An orb of dark brown and many many other sparkles of light stretched in front of them. Where were they? They did not know. They saw the world around them turning darker and darker as a cloud of dark covered the orb of dark brown. They saw the dark cloud seep into the world, silent screams raised from the world. They couldn’t hear the screams of pain, but they could definitely feel the suffering and pain.  They couldn’t help the pain, all they could was cry for the world and its inhabitants. Then they realized, they were indeed looking at their own world. How did they get here? Were they a part of the power of the universe that created the world now? What has happened? They wanted to right all the wrongs and reset everything, but as they tried, they realized that they cannot. They could only watch as the world suffer.

They are only watchers and they saw the power that created the universe next to them. It was trying to reset the world as well, but every time it tried, only more pain and suffering went into the world. Leaving the world’s inhabitants to scream silently as they are unable to scream as their bodies have already decayed into nonexistence. They are no better than the living dead, but now suffering all the pain the world went through without being able to do anything about it. It hurt so bad and yet it was such a small percentage of what they should be getting. It was futile, any attempts to right this would not end well. The power that ruled the universe now did have energy to reset the world, but it cannot do so until the inhabitants of the world go through all the pain the world have gone through without any help to ease the pain. Nothing at all.