NaNoWriMo ’17 Week #2 – Getting (and Staying) Ahead

Hey, y’all!

I just wanted to check in really quick and tell you guys about how my novel’s going.

Short answer: great! Long answer: a little harder than last week, but still going really well.

And what I mean by that is this: I’ve reached 30,000 words early. And I’m SO excited about that, because of the fact that it puts me about 7,000+ words ahead. But with 30k comes the question: where are the rest of these words going to come from? Do I barrel towards the end of the plot and hope that my word count follows, or do I need to build on story elements that I’ve already established and bolster my word count that way? I guess these are questions that I have to answer as these days go on and the last half of the month rolls in.

But the good news is I’ve been getting tons of good writing done this week. I’ve learned I can truly write anywhere to some extent. AND I’ve loved writing at my local library (no surprise there).

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Onward to Week 3!

NaNoWriMo ’17 Week #1 – All Over the New England States

Hey hey!

So, Week One of National Novel Writing Month is over. I can barely believe it, but it’s been the best ride and I can’t wait to tell y’all about it.

For starters, I started NaNoWriMo on the road from Portland, Maine to Bennington, Vermont, while on family vacation. We would have stayed longer, but Maine had to deal with the aftermath of a windstorm that shut off power for days, so we couldn’t stay where we originally intended.

But this diversion to Vermont was the very best for two reasons: one, there was the best writing spot just at the top of the stairs nestled right next to a bookshelf.

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Two, I had so much time to write. So much so that I was able to write at least 2,100 words a day (and 4,200 on Double Up Day on the 4th! But those 4,200 words were a doozy for sure).

 

After Vermont, we ventured into Boston, one of my favorite cities in the whole wide world. I adore this city; I have since I was in high school, and it’s become more and more familiar to me. And certain parts of it are my favorite.

It’s there that I got to do one of the coolest things EVER, and it was the highlight of my week…

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…I wrote part of my novel at the Boston Public Library.

I. LOVE. This. Building. I wrote 1,667 words in the reading room on the 7th (adding to the 1,000 I’d already written in the car from Bennington).

And here’s the part that I think is really cool (and, bear with me, I’m about to get a little deep). I am writing a retelling of The Little Mermaid. I won’t explain plot or even reveal the title yet (because I need to give y’all SOMETHING to look forward to, right? πŸ˜‰), but I will say that the scene and chapter I wrote had to do with my mermaid protagonist getting her legs. In that moment, writing in a building so epic and historic that it’s almost more of a museum, I felt like I’d truly gotten my “author legs” writing in such an awesome space. It’s something I won’t forget.

Welp, that was Week 1! Stay tuned for next week’s update. Have an awesome day!

How I Got Started in Self-Publishing (Using Amazon!)

The story of how I got into self-publishing is long and vast, and it probably spans a few volumes and can’t just be contained in one blog post…

Nah, it’s not that long. Let me tell you all about it.

It started as simply as when I freelance-edited a project back in February to March of this year. It was a short story that I really enjoyed reading. When it was finally done, I received a copy of it as a thank-you gift. When I looked at the copy, I noticed that it was published in the USA…and I also noticed that it was through Amazon.

The gears started turning then.

I have to give credit to my mom. She was the one who initially suggested I self-publish, saying that one of her good friends (who had previously published traditionally and felt like she lost control of her work) had gone that route and wouldn’t ever go back. So, in short, I went for it.

I’d had a short story called “Turn the Town” in my head for awhile. It originally started as a writing challenge for myself, and it eventually progressed into a pretty substantial shorter short-story, but it was a story I was extremely proud of.

When I decided to self-publish my work, I decided to do it throughΒ Amazon Kindle Direct Publishing. I designed the cover from scratch (to avoid janky copyright stuff right out of the gate), and after uploading my manuscript…

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…on April 20, 2017, I published my very first work to Amazon.

So, would I recommend self-publishing to get your name out there as a writer? Yes. And would I do it again? Absolutely.

And do it again I did. (I don’t even know if that’s correct grammar, but we’re rolling with it.)

I self-published my second short story, “The Pirate College,” on August 15th, 2017.

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So, what’s next?

I intend to keep self-publishing for right now. I love the ease of use on Amazon KDP, and I love how much control I have over my own content. All you do is upload your own manuscript, upload or create your cover, set your own price, and presto. You’re self-published, FOR FREE.

Plus, you can distribute paperback copies of your work (provided they’re long enough to meet their minimum), which is amazing. Being able to hold a copy of my work in my hands will always and forever be surreal to me.

I also self-edit (don’t worry, I have a group of beta readers for feedback), and I design my own covers using art that’s available for commercial use/my own work.

I’m just thankful that I went this route, and I’m thankful to God for giving me the talent to write in the first place. πŸ™‚

To buy any of my work on Amazon, click here.

Hey, I’m Savannah Cottrell!

Well, here we are. This is the start of a new chapter. All books start with new chapters, right?

Welcome to savannahcottrellauthor.com. This is my “author website.” Man, it feels good to write that.

I’ve been a lifestyle blogger for the past three (going on four) years, so I’ve been around this internet block for awhile now. That being said, I was ready for something more for my dedicated author space. I wanted a dedicated spot on the internet to show my work that was different than your typical lifestyle blog.

That’s why this site is here.

As of my writing this post, I’ve published two short stories to Amazon via Amazon Kindle Direct Publishing: “Turn the Town” and “The Pirate College.” If you want more information (including purchase links), click the “Short Stories” tab in the menu.

I’m so excited to have this platform to share my work with you guys, and I wanted this platform to reflect that, first and foremost. But, most of all, I’m so excited to share my writing adventures with you. πŸ™‚