“When anybody asks, 'What are you writing about now?' if I try to reply, the book-in-the-works sounds so idiotic to me that I think, 'Why am I trying to write that puerile junk?' So now I give up; if I could talk about it, I wouldn't have to write it."
- Madeleine L'Engle, A Circle of Quiet


Lessons in Procrastination

Monday, November 10, 2008

You would think that at the core of NaNoWriMo would be hard work, dedication, and insanity, and you would be right. But there is another value at the core of NaNo that is dear to the hearts of it's followers:


There's even a category in the forums which is dedicated to those who are willing to share their most beloved (and often creative) forms of procrastination. (It currently has 18181 posts in it!) Heck, there's even a Procrastination Station on the front page of the website!

So, today, I would like to introduce you to my very own favorite form of procrastination. It's called Elouai, and it's just so darn cool. It's kind of like paper dolls for the new millennium. The site lets you choose a head shape, eyes, nose, mouth, clothes, hair, shoes, etc. So very cool.

I figured out a couple of years ago that it was a great way to visualize my characters, and I did it again this year. So, today I'm going to introduce you to the darlings of my (yet unnamed) novel. (If you remember me doing this 2 years ago, or followed that link, don't worry. The format is different this time so there will be no danger of these characters losing their heads or their clothes.)
Pru is a no-nonsense, single (widowed) quadragenarian (soon to be quintagenarian) who owns a cooking store in NYC – a thousand miles away from her closest friends. She has pewtery hair and striking blue eyes (though they are not nearly as big as that picture makes them look). And her glasses are not green. They're pewter, to match her hair, of course! Her favorite color is purple, which is reflected in her clothing and in her store where the walls are all painted in shades of purple.

Charity is a brilliant 23 year-old from Minneapolis who hates her name – Charity Love. She has been in Bible College for five years and is still no closer to her goal of an MRS degree (or any other degree for that matter) than when she started. In the meantime she works at an Italian restaurant where she hopes to find a dishy Italian guy who'll change her name for her since she can't seem to find anyone acceptable at school.

Evie (who you'll meet next) was her youth group leader when she was in high-school and Charity absolutely adores her. She loves her kids too, but don't tell Evie that; Charity needs her social time and when Evie asks her to babysit, she can never say no.
Evie tends to dress for ease and comfort since she has eight kids to chase after every day. Yeah, that's right – eight – and only one set of twins. They range from 14 years down to 6 months and all have pretty normal names, except for the last one, who for some reason (she can't really remember why now) ended up with the name Ocean. They call him Jack.

She once had a dream of being a fashion designer, but now that she's a mom, the only models to wear her creations are her kids. Despite her typical look of whatever clean clothes she can find to throw on, she cleans up pretty nicely when she has the occasion to do so – like this...Ahh. Much better. She told me that she would really rather that skirt was a nice robin's egg blue (her favorite color), but the store only had it in this bronzy color, which is okay, since it goes with just about anything and it's the only dressy skirt she owns.

So there you have it. Despite my valiant efforts at procrastination, I'm actually doing pretty well. I have written 15,816 words so far, and as long as I can write another 800 or so tonight, I'll still be on track for the 50,000-word goal. Guess I better get busy!

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