Category Archives: NaNoWriMo

Novels, NaNoWriMo, and Me


NaNoWriMo_3 (Photo credit: nataliesap)

Having taken a short break from my blog, it is now time for an update.  I am currently participating in NaNoWriMo, which stands for National Novel Writing Month.  As part of this program, I have made a commitment to write 50,000 words during the month of November. Only three days into it and I am over 5,000 words.  Woo hoo!

I am simultaneously working on the sequel to Never Coming Back, which will be titled Never Forget, as well as the third book in the series, tentatively titled Never Give Up.  Additionally, I am writing short stories that will be offered exclusively through my new Members Only Writing Subscription.

Members Only Writing Subscriptions include a monthly newsletter, keeping subscribers up to date on the latest status of my writing, as well as my reviews of work from other authors of note. Additionally, members receive access to the new short stories, sequential scenes from Never Forget, and random scenes from Never Give Up.  Each piece will come with an Introduction, so readers will always know what type of writing they have received. Maintaining subscriptions for 12 months, or signing up for an annual subscription, entitles members to receive an autographed copy of Never Forget or Never Give Up once published.  Or the member can choose to receive a coupon for a free download of the book to a Kindle

If you are interested in signing up for a subscription, you can find all the details on the subscription page of my website, Jansen Books.

Other membership levels range from Introductory Membership (newsletter only) to Gold Membership (which includes having a character named after you!)

Thank you so much for being a loyal reader, and I hope you seriously consider signing up for one of my new subscription plans!  


I’m So Tired

Vote for me!

Vote for me! (Photo credit: cheerfulmonk)


Yes, I am tired.  I’m tired of this Presidential Election. I’m tired of the negative ads. I can’t fathom how these people plan to work together after the election is over. I’m tired of the automated phone calls. I won’t even answer the phone if my contact list does not recognize the number. I’m tired of the glossy campaign ads clogging my mailbox. We could start saving the environment by eliminating those eyesores and recycling bin fillers. I’m tired of everyone talking about what I should and shouldn’t do – in my spiritual life, with my body, in my job, in my bedroom, and with my vote.


Let’s spend our time cleaning up after Hurricane Sandy. Let’s spend our time figuring out how to get people back to work, turn the power back on, start an intelligent conversation about equality.


Tomorrow morning, we will all wake up and we will have elected a different government than we have now.  What will we have accomplished?  Staying up late and making us even more tired.


I’m going to bed.  I’m tired.  G’night.



Good News to Share

Lesbian Fiction.

Lesbian Fiction. (Photo credit: grapefruitmoon)


I just wanted to share that my new book, Never Coming Back, which I wrote during NaNoWriMo 2010 and published direct to digital with, just made it to #99 on the Bestsellers in Lesbian Fiction list and #17 on the Hot New Releases in Lesbian Fiction list.  I don’t know what drives the ranking, since I have only sold 12 copies so far (in 3 days), and I have no customer reviews yet, but it sure does feel good.  Basking in the feeling until I get bumped back down.


My work on the sequel continues…




Gaining Inspiration From Other Writers

Fingers Crossed

Fingers Crossed (Photo credit: Grace Miller)

Tonight I attended a talk called Come Out Writing, hosted by the Mark Twain House and Museum in Hartford, CT.  I would call the event a huge success, even though attendance was not ridiculous.  It was not an intimate venue, but the host, playwright Jacques Lamarre, made it feel that way. He did an excellent job moderating, with well-thought out questions. All of the proceeds were donated to True Colors, a non-profit organization in Hartford, CT that provides support, education, and advocacy for LGBTQ youth, adults, and families.  Participants included novelist, actor and filmmaker James Lecesne; poet and journalist Bessy Reyna; and authors Frank Anthony Polito, Tanisha McMillan, and Jennifer Lavoie.  Overall, it was inspiring to be a part of a conversation with some talented writers, hearing their unique and entertaining takes on being a writer, being gay (except for Jennifer), being a “gay writer,” as well as all the other labels we may or may not give ourselves (such as “Band Fag”).  I really enjoyed myself, and enjoyed meeting others in the audience as well.  Now… drum roll please… it is time to get back to writing the sequel to my book, and use their success as inspiration for me to keep going.  Onward, James!


Okay, Planning for NaNoWriMo IS a Good Idea…

English: Mark Twain House, Hartford, CT

English: Mark Twain House, Hartford, CT (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Once again, I have gone through the entire day being distracted from #NaNoWriMo writing by things like work, which pays the bills; the pets, who require sustenance and to relieve themselves; food, because I need sustenance, as does my daughter; my daughter, who, at 11, is not quite ready to drive herself to school; shopping, because I don’t have a grocery store that delivers to my front door;, which is where I track my book sales; social networking, which I mentioned yesterday; and even paying the bills, because it is the beginning of the month.  I’m sure there will be more soon, as life will do that to you.

What does that mean for your word count, you ask?  Well, it is not good.  But I am getting there.  I am adding to an existing book, so I was up until 3:00 this morning reading it over (again) and planning which way I want the characters to go right now.  I did some writing (and I admit, some editing, for shame), but not as much as I would like.

No, I can’t catch up tonight.  I am going to a writers’ function tonight in Hartford, CT called Come Out Writing.  It is at the Mark Twain House to benefit True Colors. It should be fun!

So, what do I have?  Well, I have this blog entry… I know, get down to writing my novel!  I will.  I promise!  I know we all took this challenge, but who is willing to personally challenge me, and themselves?  We can hold each other accountable each day!  Just let me know in the comments.  And happy writing!


Social Networking Thwarts NaNoWriMo Efforts

Image representing Facebook as depicted in Cru...

Image via CrunchBase

Last night I had to decide if I wanted to stay up for the beginning of NaNoWriMo. Of course, LIFE set in… The administrative work I needed to complete kept me from writing a single word!  I guess that is why I see so many people saying they “plan” for NaNoWriMo.  My third year, and I still have not planned.  Maybe next year.  However, I am not giving up for this year.  Plan or no plan, I will keep going!  Of course, writing in my blog does not count toward my book, unless I am planning to write a book about blogging.  Well… no… Anyway, it was a good thought.

So, the administrative work I had to complete consisted of updating all of my sites about self-publishing my first novel, which I mostly wrote during NaNoWriMo 2010.  Between G+, Facebook, my blog, and all of the Author Pages you must update for all of the Amazon sites, it was overwhelming.  And I’m not even on Twitter yet!  I need to hire someone to manage my social networking for me so I have time to write!

What have I learned from this?  Planning is so important!  Had I planned properly, I probably would not have self-published on on Halloween, the day before NaNoWriMo starts!  I am so excited to have my book published, and I wanted to put that chapter of my writing to an end (no pun intended, really!), so I did it anyway.

I hope everyone that is taking this journey with me wrote more words than I did.  I will catch up with you though.  I promise!

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Should I Stay Up for NaNoWriMo?

I just self-published by first book, Never Coming Back, on and the timing couldn’t be better. I wrote most of it during NaNoWriMo 2010 (National Novel Writing Month). The main idea is to write 50,000 words during the month of November, which amounts to about 1,667 words or so per day.

Yes, I am aware that you can write every day, every month. All of us who sign up for NaNoWriMo are aware of that little fact. Somehow, this is different.  Knowing that so many other authors are making a commitment to write every day is motivating to us.

No, I didn’t hit the 50,000 word mark in 2010, though my first book is over 65,000 words.  So, what happened?  Well, after writing every day for an entire month, I had to get my friends and family back.  And proofread. And edit.  And write some more.

NaNoWriMo 2011 saw me working on the sequel to Never Coming Back. I didn’t finish it then, because at the time I was too disappointed by yet another rejection slip from a publisher. I determined that the original version of Never Coming Back was too short, and knew I needed to add more. I even considered combining the two, and started to do just that, but decided against it. I went back to the drawing board and added more to the original.

I am so glad I did. Adding more description and more thoughts from the main character really rounded it out nicely. Now I am proud enough to self-publish on Amazon. I am so glad I did! I don’t know what kind of sales I will get, but I am now a published author. Every time someone buys my book, I will make a couple of bucks. Not enough to quit my day job, but enough to give me motivation to keep working on the second, and then the third, and so on…

As long as someone likes what I am writing, I will keep doing it.  And that is what NaNoWriMo is all about for me.  This year, I will finish my sequel, and next year I will work on the third, or maybe even the fourth in the series.  Self-publishing my book is great motivation, as is NaNoWriMo, and I hope to ride that sail right through November.