Sunday, December 1, 2013

Updates: A Close Shave and One Not So Much

It's December 1st and I'm back to give you an update on my two November experiments.

Experiment #1 was to use Dollar Shave Club for a month to see if their razors were better than the cheap Bic disposables I've been using for years.

The answer is "yes." I've been quite pleased with these razors that were delivered right to my mailbox and have been impressed with their durability.  I'm on my last razor of the month (the next shipment is in the mail) and I believe I'll be using the razors from now on.

Experiment #2 was to attempt to write a novel in one month as a participant in National Write A Novel Month. By the website's definition, a novel consists of 50,000 words or more. Man, I was on a roll for the first two weeks and churned our over 12,000 words in two and a half weeks. The new novel is entitled Breathe, and I guess it would be best described as a young adult romantic comedy. I was so confident that I'd be able to get that first draft completed by the end of November.

Alas, those 12,000 words were all I could get out.

A number of distractions took me away from my novel. I did my best to multitask, but the book took the hit. However, I realized that I'm never happier than when I'm writing prose and I'm really dedicated to completing this book. Most likely no one will ever read it, but I need the story to get out. I'm not giving up.

Experiment #3 was tied to #2 and it proved to be a game changer. I decided to use the Livescribe Echo pen, a special computer ballpoint pen that has actually records everything I write in free hand. Then, by hooking the pen to my laptop, the computer uploads my handwritten documents and I can convert them to computer text.

Holy crap, this has blown my mind. The one chore that taxes me the most when I'm writing is transcribing my handwritten pages. Now, that step has been removed. The computer translation isn't perfect and I still have to edit the uploaded text, but I've been saved HOURS of my life.

So there you have it. I may have not completed my book, but the attempt at completing the novel was a good thing for me.

Now, if I could just figure out how to market Basement Songs better, maybe I could sell a few more novels before the holidays.


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