Tag Archives: camp nanowrimo

Cover Reveal and 10 Fun Facts About The Last July!

With the upcoming release of my very first novel, I thought it would be fun to share some facts about The Last July as it went from it’s very rough first draft to the final edit. Today is also my birthday, and for my birthday, I’d like to share my cover reveal with my blog followers! This has been a long time coming!

  • The Last July was originally in two different POV’s, Penelope and Sampson’s.
  • In the first few drafts, TLJ was a story about a romance between a camper and counselor. It wasn’t until the final two drafts that Penelope was almost 18 and Sampson was slightly younger.
  • The very first draft of TLJ was written in the Spring of 2014 during Camp NaNoWriMo, I didn’t go to finish it until April 2016 when it was only 31k words. It still wasn’t finished! So it pretty much took me three to four years to write this novel, I just took many breaks. Too many breaks.
  • Some of the camp activities in the novel are my favorite things that I did at camp when I was younger. Swimming, hiking, capture the flag, even the mashed potato mohawks!
  • Camp Arthur is based off of the camp I attended as a kid/teen in Ohio, but is set in Tennessee because it’s one of my favorite places to vacation.
  • I’ve hiked Abrams Falls (twice) and it’s a very tough trail! But the waterfall is so worth it!
  • I wrote about five different final chapters, never sure of how I wanted Sampson and Penelope’s story to end. I finally went to my husband to give me their ending. Yay for having a husband who is also an author!
  • In one of the many drafts, Penelope’s friend, Jenny was supposed to be a camper who suffered an awful fate of a bee sting. I quickly realized that was a bit too morbid, I was watching Game of Thrones at the time.
  • TLJ is a stand alone, but I do plan on writing in the world of Camp Arthur again one day.
  • The authors that I got some inspiration from over the years were Sarah Dessen and Katie Cotugno. I love their contemporary summer romances! Hopefully, one day I can inspire someone the way they inspired me!

 

I also made a blog post for the songs that inspired some scenes in the novel, find that one here. And a sneak peak that can be found here.

The Last July is set to come out very soon, fingers crossed. Follow the blog for updates on the release, deals, and pre-order!

This is an exclusive blog post that I won’t be sharing to any of my other social media platforms! So you guys get to be the first to hear the news!

Guys, now I’m starting to feel like an author!

Here’s the cover! Tada!

received_10212052203755287

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Cover Reveal and 10 Fun Facts About The Last July!

With the upcoming release of my very first novel, I thought it would be fun to share some facts about The Last July as it went from it’s very rough first draft to the final edit. Today is also my birthday, and for my birthday, I’d like to share my cover reveal with my blog followers! This has been a long time coming!

  • The Last July was originally in two different POV’s, Penelope and Sampson’s.
  • In the first few drafts, TLJ was a story about a romance between a camper and counselor. It wasn’t until the final two drafts that Penelope was almost 18 and Sampson was slightly younger.
  • The very first draft of TLJ was written in the Spring of 2014 during Camp NaNoWriMo, I didn’t go to finish it until April 2016 when it was only 31k words. It still wasn’t finished! So it pretty much took me three to four years to write this novel, I just took many breaks. Too many breaks.
  • Some of the camp activities in the novel are my favorite things that I did at camp when I was younger. Swimming, hiking, capture the flag, even the mashed potato mohawks!
  • Camp Arthur is based off of the camp I attended as a kid/teen in Ohio, but is set in Tennessee because it’s one of my favorite places to vacation.
  • I’ve hiked Abrams Falls (twice) and it’s a very tough trail! But the waterfall is so worth it!
  • I wrote about five different final chapters, never sure of how I wanted Sampson and Penelope’s story to end. I finally went to my husband to give me their ending. Yay for having a husband who is also an author!
  • In one of the many drafts, Penelope’s friend, Jenny was supposed to be a camper who suffered an awful fate of a bee sting. I quickly realized that was a bit too morbid, I was watching Game of Thrones at the time.
  • TLJ is a stand alone, but I do plan on writing in the world of Camp Arthur again one day.
  • The authors that I got some inspiration from over the years were Sarah Dessen and Katie Cotugno. I love their contemporary summer romances! Hopefully, one day I can inspire someone the way they inspired me!

 

I also made a blog post for the songs that inspired some scenes in the novel, find that one here. And a sneak peak that can be found here.

The Last July is set to come out very soon, fingers crossed. Follow the blog for updates on the release, deals, and pre-order!

This is an exclusive blog post that I won’t be sharing to any of my other social media platforms! So you guys get to be the first to hear the news!

Guys, now I’m starting to feel like an author!

Here’s the cover! Tada!

received_10212052203755287

Camp NaNoWriMo Recap: July 2017 Session AND July Wrap Up/August TBR

Camp NaNoWriMo Recap

Camp NaNoWriMo didn’t go as awesome as I anticipated. I slacked off…. a ton. Spent many weekends out on the lake or in the mountains (made for some good inspiration) but I didn’t write too much. Weekends are usually big for my writing, always my catch up time but I got lazy. I also got really into the books that I was reading and preferred to spend my time doing that.

I did get some words written though. The main goal I had was to not force the words to come out. I did that during the April session and it was mentally miserable. I didn’t want to write or edit for a month after that.

During July, I tried something new. If I got stuck on a chapter, I’d step away and work on another one that I had outlined. This was nice because I could knock out a couple thousand words immediately instead of being stuck.

My cabin did pretty well too, we kept up with the pace for a little over halfway through camp which is way better than normal. I created a private cabin with a few cabin mates from the first session and other NaNo-ers (that’s so not a word…) that they knew from previous years.

Here’s my stats for the month:

 

By the end of the month, I fell short and gave up. Pretty much going MIA in my cabin. I just got too caught up in reading, which isn’t a bad thing. I also got into taking Barre fitness classes and those took up a decent amount of writing time, I figured my health was more important.

Next Step? Edit what I’ve written so far, fill in some plot holes, and finish the novel.

For the official NaNoWriMo, I’m planning on working on a new piece that I got inspiration for halfway through camp. I’m very excited for it! Check back in November for my prep and recap on Novel Writing Month!

If you do NaNoWriMo, add me on the site! Username: anna.mounce

 

July Wrap Up

 

Bad Penny by Staci Hart– 3/5 Stars. Loved how this book started out, but gradually got tired of the back and forth of ‘I love him, but I don’t want to be in a relationship’. Needed different conflict.

Once and For All by Sarah Dessen– 5/5 Stars. As always, Dessen’s novels are beautifully written. I’d feel bad giving her anything less than four stars. This novel was probably the strongest and saddest subject matter I’ve ever read from her. It’s not your typical fun YA summer read. It haunted me. Once and For All is also the book that has completed my GoodReads challenge goal! I don’t plan on stopping here though! Let’s see how many books I can go over this year!

Trust by Kylie Scott– 3/5 Stars. I received this book via NetGalley in return for an honest review. I loved it toward the beginning but it fell short and the climax seemed very delayed. The beginning and end were amazing! I do plan on trying out more of Kylie Scott’s novels. Full review coming soon!

August TBR

 

 

 

The Engagement Plot by Krista Phillips– This months NetGalley ARC! I don’t know much about this one, but I’m sure it will be a cute read.

Dirty (Book 1) by Kylie Scott- Decided to give her adult romance books a try. And what’s not to like about a tattooed guy on a book cover?

Dearly Departed (Grave Reminders Book 1) by Rachael Rawlings– Plan on starting this series with the arrival of fall just around the corner. It’s a three book series by a local (to me) author.

Wonderlost by Jen Malone- I feel like this one will be a great book to close the summer on!

Everything, Everything by Nicola Yoon- I probably won’t read more than the first two books mentioned because I should be receiving my own novel back to go over edits but if I do manage to get ahead. This will be the next one I pick up. I’m dying to see the movie, so I have to read this before then!

 

June Wrap Up, July TBR & July Camp NaNoWriMo Prep!

June Wrap Up

 

 

Mann Cakes by Mysti Parker– 4/5 stars. Great beachy summer romance from a local (to me) author. The only thing that I wish was different was that the only POV’s be between Tanner and Paige, instead of all four characters.

Walk the Edge by Katie McGarry– 4/5 stars. I think I ended up liking the second book in this series better than the first book, but they’re still not hitting a perfect score with me. However, I felt more compassion throughout the book for Razor and Breanna, more than I had for Oz and Emily from the first Thunder Road book.

Long Way Home by Katie McGarry– Probably my favorite book out of this series. I feel like all the other books have set us up for Violet and Chevy’s story! Review to come!

I also just realized every book I read in June (and finished) was set in Kentucky! How cool is that? 

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July TBR

July is not going to be a reading month for me since NaNo will be going on, but I am going to try and finish one book that I started in June and read a few chapters from a book I recently purchased.

I’ve been reading chapters here and there on Letters to my Daughters, it’s one of those feel good, faith books. I’ve been trying my best to read up more on my bible and books like LtmD:TAoBaW, it’s just a book that I’m making a habit of pulling out before bed to read and relax.

Once and For All, Sarah Dessen’s latest release, just came out a few weeks ago and I thought this would be a good book to focus on in July during camp NaNo. You’re supposed to read how you want to write, right? I’d love to be as successful of a writer as Dessen. Here’s to hoping.

And I’ll also be reading a romance novel, just to take a break from CAMP and all the other marriage/wedding stuff haha. Sometimes it’s nice to read something sexy! I’ll be at the lake for a weekend, so the romance will be a fun breather.

 

 

 

Camp NaNoWriMo Prep

July Session

Camp-2017-Participant-Twitter-Header

Back in April, I started writing a new summer contemporary YA novel. Since then, I’ve been editing here and there trying to prepare for July’s session of camp. If you’ve been following my blog, you know I struggled the final week of camp in April, especially that final day and I only have a goal of 40k. I’m hoping this month goes a bit smoother, with a goal of 30k. I have a pretty good feeling about this one now, better than anything I’ve written before.

During edits this June, I haven’t had to scrap too much, just the last couple thousand words because they didn’t even fit with the plot. I was just writing to hit the word goal that last day in April. Probably the worst writing month I’ve ever had.

I’m excited for this coming camp NaNo though. I have a great cabin (some people from April’s session and my husband), so I should be pushed to finish. Wish me luck!

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Camp NaNoWriMo (April Session) How did I do?

Screen shot 2017-04-30 at 6.47.59 PMThe final day of the April session was this past Sunday. I honestly don’t think I would have made it through camp without my wonderful cabin mates who kept up with the message board conversations and word wars every weekend. April’s session was the first time I ever had a great cabin that worked the entire month to reach their goals.

I’m pretty happy with what I’ve written during April for my new novel. I still haven’t came up with a title I like and the novel is only half way finished but I think it was one of the most successful Camp sessions I have ever had, content wise. I kept a pretty good pace for the most part too.

Screen shot 2017-04-30 at 6.48.21 PM

I plan on writing the other 40k words for this novel during the July session and then working on edits after that. Filling in all the plot holes, correcting mistakes and what not.

There will be two months in between the camp sessions so I’m going to get back to reading and try to do some editing on what I have done so far. Honestly, I wasn’t sure I was going to make it to the end and the final 5k that I wrote will probably be deleted. On Sunday, I pretty much just typed words to reach my word goal and I feel like everything that happened with my characters after that point, shouldn’t have happened. Sunday was probably my worst writing day ever and it was very draining for me.

Here’s the breakdown of the progress I had during camp:

Screen shot 2017-04-30 at 6.49.01 PM

Now that camp is over for the month, I’m going to get back to reading. I only managed to read one book this month and it was very annoying trying to get my reading and writing time in while also having a social life. The first thing I did after I validated my word count was go on a nice walk, the second thing was read because I missed it so much!

I do look forward to finishing the novel in July and hopefully reuniting with some of my cabin buddies!

Camp NaNoWriMo: Week 1 Recap

It’s been a little over one week since the April session of Camp Nano began. One week already! I’ll admit, I’ve been a bit distracted due to trying to finish watching the final season of Sons of Anarchy (yes, I still haven’t finished that show) and 13 Reasons Why (based off the book, it’s so good and I’m only 5 episodes in)!

Sunday we had a cabin word war that ended up being very successful! Four or five of us ended up participating. Since we all had different schedules and live in different areas, the word war went from midnight Saturday to midnight Sunday and I ended up writing a little over 3,000 words. I’m still about 3k behind, but this weekend we’ll be having another word war, so I hope to catch up then.

One of my cabin mates told me a really good idea that helped with my writing Sunday. It’s the ‘write one page’ task. Where you can’t get up to do anything until you write one page. This helped tremendously!

I’ve also used some advice that my husband heard once where you can’t stop writing at a chapter break. That also helps a ton, because I don’t forget what I was previously writing. It’s hard for me to continue on something if I finish the chapter.

Planning on doing another cabin word war this weekend, hopefully I can catch up!

Anyone else doing Camp Nano? Any tips and tricks to share?

Current camp stats:

Screen shot 2017-04-10 at 8.58.12 PMScreen shot 2017-04-10 at 8.58.22 PM

Also, some side news. On April 17th, my husbands new YA Fantasy novel will be released! This is going to be a good one! If you’d like to check it out, find it at any of the 1490375765404following links:

You can also get a signed copy at any of his events he’ll be doing this year! Or he takes orders off of his website and will sign.

So You Finished Your Novel. Now what? (The Last July Update)

This week I finally finished my novel that I’ve been working on and off since the summer of 2013. I finished all the edits from my editor (my husband) and I’m not feeling too bad. Well, I wasn’t until I went to consider submitting it. This week, to my surprise, has been a rollercoaster of emotions over this manuscript.

You see, I felt pretty good about this novel until about 90% of the way through the edits and then I began second guessing myself. Is this book good enough? Have I literally just been rewriting my favorite books? What if I get rejected my first time? I don’t know how to take that.

My novel is my baby. A novel I struggled with reaching 50k during NaNoWriMo, and 70k for edits, has grown over 81k words! That amazes me! I pretty much scrapped the original document, I think there’s only 15% that resembles what it originally was.

Now what? I’ve made contact with a publisher and now we wait. The hard part is trying not to edit anymore. Literally, woke up this morning thinking, maybe I should change some things.

Luckily, the first session of Camp NaNoWriMo begins next Saturday, so that will take my mind off writing on my finished novel and concentrating on a new one. I’m pretty excited about this new one too! I pretty much have over half of it mapped out!

Have you ever submitted a manuscript? What part of the novel writing process is the scariest to you?

 

2017 Writing & Reading Goals +Books I Read in 2016

 

 

I can’t believe 2016 is almost over. It went by so quickly! Now it’s time to mark myself down for the 2017 GoodReads challenge and take a look back on the books I did read in 2016. How many books did you read in 2016? What was the best book that you read this year?

 

Books Read in 2016

Sadly, I didn’t meet my GoodReads book challenge. I only finished 15 out of the 30 books I said I would read in 2016. I’m not going to beat myself up over that though. It was a busy year of traveling and writing. I participated in two Camp Nano’s and the official NaNoWriMo. Here are the books I finished this year along with the rating I gave them.

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3*                                        2*                                    2*                                   5*

9780316213097-220x345 firsts 51zb1Ggd5VL__SY344_BO1,204,203,200_ 51R01tTjjtL__SY344_BO1,204,203,200_

4*                                    2*                                     5*                                         3*

 

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5*                                        2*                                      4*                                        2*

book five blue-lily-lily-blue 27276645

5*                                  5*                                                 3*

 

 

2017 TBR

The entire Harry Potter series. Yes, I’ve never read them. This will be a first.

harry-series1

Between the Harry Potter books, I plan on reading some of the following:

 

 

Obviously, I’m going to run into some books I want to read on the spot, but these are just the ones that I must finish next year because they’ve been sitting on my shelf for awhile now!

 

Writing Goals

As for my writing. I plan on participating in Camp NaNoWriMo, both months and normal NaNo possibly. I’m going to outline my next novel earlier in the year and figure out what I want to do. I plan on writing 25000 words for each Nano, instead of forcing it all out at once. This will give me time so I don’t get burnt out and quit.

As I currently write this post, I’m working on editing one of my novels in the hopes to have it finished before New Years. Fingers crossed that The Last July will be published before July 2016.

Book Review: Peter & Wendy

I am so proud of myself! This is the first ‘classic’ book I have read (and finished) since my required reading in college about three years ago. I had been wanting to read Peter Pan (and Wendy)250px-PeterAndWendy since I was in high school. I’ve honestly had a fascination with Peter Pan since the live action movie came out in 2003 (I was 13 at the time). I loved the idea about this boy who refused to grow old and die. It’s amazing to me how close that movie was to the book, but also, how much they romanticized Peter in the movie that was aimed towards kids.

Romanticizing Peter

We all know that movies (especially Disney) changes the original drastically to make it more kid friendly, have you ever read the original Grimm fairy tales? People die in those, there is no ‘happily ever after’. Wendy and her brothers are living a decent life with their parents and then all of a sudden Peter shows up and whisks them away to Neverland (kidnapping?) where he puts them in more danger than they would have been at home. I admit, I had a huge crush on Peter Pan, forget all the fairy tale princes, give me Peter Pan! After reading the book through, I see that Peter actually has a ton of faults. He’s that cocky boyfriend you had in high school or college that acted like he didn’t need anyone.

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Gender Roles

Here’s what bothered me in the book… how all the Lost Boys assumed Wendy wanted to be their mother. At the time this book was first published, I know that was the norm. Little girls grew up watching their mother’s be housewives and stay at home mother’s, while the father was the bread winner. Wendy especially saw this and all she wanted to do was be someone’s mother. The problem was, Peter didn’t want to be the father like Wendy wanted him to be. Yet, Peter tells Wendy to come with him so she doesn’t have to worry about grown up things, but she does! She worries about caring for the Lost Boys!

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Movie VS Book

So which did I like better? The movie or the book? Of course I liked the movie better because the book gave off too much reality. Looking back, I wonder what made me possess such a crush on Peter Pan, hearing him say things like, “Oh, the cleverness of me.” should have been an eye opener on his cockiness and selfishness. The book was great though, if you haven’t read it and want to get into a classic, I totally recommend this one! If you have to read a book for an English paper or woman’s studies class, I think this one would be really good to check out. I can’t believe it took me so long to read this. If you haven’t seen the movie from 2003, watch it! I personally have never seen the Disney animated version, so I can’t give you a comparison on that.

To Die/Live Would Be an Awfully Big Adventure

In the end, I feel sorry for Peter Pan. He’s spent his whole life thinking he wasn’t loved, so he tries to convince other boys that they weren’t loved either. He has this void in his life that he tries to fill with adventure and danger, instead of owning up to his issues and trying to solve his problems. He doesn’t get a happily ever after and I’m honestly not sure he deserved one either.

What do you think? Have you seen the movie? Read the book? Let me know!

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***Announcement***

For the month of July, I’ll only be doing one post a week and it will be on Sundays. I’m really wanting to work on my novel and I do best during Camp Nanowrimo. For my weekly blog posts, you can expect an update on my novel, a normal discussion or possibly a book review if I find the time to read. My blog will just have to take a backseat for a few weeks while I work on my novel. I’m also traveling to Alaska for 8 days, but I’ll be sure to schedule two blog posts to go up while I’m gone! Please stick around and bare with me! Summer is a busy time! Thank you to all of my followers so far!

World’s Worst (NaNoWriMo) Camper

Well, another month of Camp Nanowrimo has come and gone. I’m just sitting at my desk, my eye twitching while staring at that little target that only says 50% finished. My plan was to finish editing a novel I previously started and add on the ending, but that didn’t really happen.

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What did happen is a ton of changes to my novel. GOOD CHANGES. I finally feel like my novel is going somewhere instead of just sitting on my laptop, taking up space. So what changes have I made?

  • I expanded my novel from only being a one month time, to a whole summer.
  • My main character is now a year older, on the brink of college. This made it more believable that a college guy would fall for her.
  • I took out my death scene, it was unnecessary drama in a YA Contemporary.
  • I’m planning on shelling out my characters more.
  • I’ve turned my camper into a junior counselor, giving her an extra week at the beginning of the novel to get to know her surroundings.
  • Will be changing the name, currently it’s called ‘The Last July’.
  • I also took out every part where I was writing a male perspective. I can’t write male perspective…

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I started this novel with 31,651 words and ended with 26,894 words… I took out about 8k words and I’m still taking out parts but I’m also adding in way more quality sections. What I felt when I took out all those chunks of words was awful, that’s why I hate editing. It feels terrible when you wrote so many words, only to realize that you need to delete all the progress you made. I guess that’s why they say you should never edit during camp!

 

Here’s a screenshot of my statistics:

Screen shot 2016-04-30 at 5.53.55 PMScreen shot 2016-04-30 at 5.54.09 PM

One thing that drives me nuts, is when I get assigned to a cabin and no one writes! I like the competition! I’m a competitive person when it comes to things I’m doing. The last two Camp Nano cabins I’ve been assigned to have been lacking. If you enjoy doing Camp NaNoWriMo, let me know! We can be cabin buddies!

So here’s my new plan! The next round of camp starts in June, I’m going to keep writing through May, sign up for camp again, finish my novel in June and then I’m going to have my husband help with edits. And then…. hopefully The Last July or whatever I end up titling it will get published.

sdfs