Day 22 ‘V’ NaNoWriMo Types of verbs

“Words had an energy and power and I came to respect that power early. Pronouns, nouns, and verbs were citizens of different countries, who really got together to make a new world” (Audre Lorde, interviewed by Karla M. Hammond, Denver Quarterly, Spring 1981).

This will be a short post for the letter ‘V’

A verb shows the state of being, the subjects action, state of being ( am, are is, have been, was seem) or equation.

A verb shows an action: runs, jumps, is going, has been cleaning.

Typically verb tenses past, present, or future.

Helping verbs; had and been.

A two-word main verb: show up.

Complete verb  (I am paddling in the pool) or not complete verb  (I paddling in the pool)

Voices that are active, passive, middle (when the subject of the verb does action unto itself.) and imperfect, future, perfect, pluperfect, (same aspect as perfect yet results of that action moved farther into the past, translation for pluperfect is “I had loosened”) or aorist (this isn’t a tense at all it describes indefinite or underlined action. Latin word aoristos meaning ‘without boundaries or “I have loosened”)

Verb tense aorist: “… in Classical Greek, expressing action or, in the indicative mood, past action, without further limitation or implication.” ~

Then there are the moods: Indicative, Imperative, Subjunctive, Jussive, and Optative. Optative has shown up in the New Testament as a wish/prayer or potential statement.

Many languages use one form of a verb for singular subjects and a different form for plural subjects.

Here is another ‘V ‘for today. ‘V’ For Valar.

The Valar, which are John Ronald Reuel Tolkien’s creation.

As you are creating your own world, take some time to delve into the amazing world of Tolkien’s mythology.

The Valarare characters in J. R. R. Tolkien’s legendarium. They are “angelic powers” or “gods” subordinate to the one God they are the most powerful of the Ainur who chose to go into the World (Arda) ~ Wikipedia

Day 21 ‘U’ University Presses find a publishers

Day 21

U for UBI SUNT MOTIF , Latin, for “Where are….?” Some medieval European poems begin with that Latin phrase, “Where are they?” then ends with death. Very morbid

Here is the full phrase: “Ubi sunt qui ante nos fuerent?” Meaning, ‘Where are those who were before us?’

Example: “The Ballade of Dead Ladies,”
“Tell me now in what hidden way is
Lady Flora the lovely Roman?”

Dante Gabriel Rossetti [1828-1882] Read the rest HERE

Amazing as this poem is with dead ladies, I actually picked the ‘U’ for University Presses.

“University Presses generally publish books of scholarly nature or of specialized interest by authorities in given field.” From my copy of, The Writer’s Handbook, 1980

If you are looking to get your work published by one of the many University Presses, make sure to follow their guidelines to the letter. Each university press has an Author resource page stating how to submit your work.

Here is a link to the Oxford University Press- Submitting a Proposal

Confused about where to start looking? Try here at the Association of University Presses.

“The Association of University Presses has more than 140 members located around the world”~ Membership list.

Just to name a few:
University of Alabama Press
University of Illinois Press
University of North Texas Press
Manchester University Press
University of Notre Dame Press
Oxford University Press
The University of West Indies Press
Woodrow Wilson Center Press
Yale University Press

Check out the amazing list of University Presses.
Here is the link to the complete list. You will find websites, Blogs, Facebook and Twitter links.

Plan on taking your time while surfing these sites. Find what you need, make notes, take screenshots, scroll to the very bottom of the page to see even more information. and remember to keep copies of each place you submitted. Read over the information. You will have to inform them if you have an open submission sent to another


‘U’ for University Presses.

Unicorns would have been a colorful ‘U’ or dangerous. Careful with that horn. The earliest description  of a Unicorn was in Greek literature , described as “…Onoi Monokerata (One-Horned Asses).” You can read more HERE.


Day 20 Nanowrimo letter ‘T’ Twain’s Stretchers

Twain’s humor

I could use this as an ‘H’ if I wasn’t well past Day 8. Can you tell me who more than Mark Twain had a knack for the subtle and overblown use of humor?

Mark Twain used exaggeration and understatement in his pieces. He even set it out downplaying it, allowing the reader to ‘get it’. That humor that will hit you after you set down the book. It can be called, dry humor.

“We ought never to do wrong when people are looking,” ~ A Double-Barrelled Detective Story.” You can read that here in


Exaggerations: Mark Twain called them “stretchers” ( lies) Twain, (Samuel Clemens) used those lies to stretch the truth, showing us the emotional truth, by exaggerating it, enlarging or overstating the truth.

Mark Twain used the understatement. Providing the reader just enough to imagine the scene, with the added surprise of the advice given.

“If at any time you find it necessary to correct your brother, do not correct him with mud—never, on any account, throw mud at him, because it will spoil his clothes. It is better to scald him a little, for then you obtain desirable results. You secure his immediate attention to the lessons you are inculcating, and at the same time your hot water will have a tendency to move impurities from his person, and possibly the skin, in spots.” ~You can find Mark Twain’s ‘Advice for Good Little Girls” written for San Francisco magazine the Youth’s Companion, June of 1865

And just enough humor to get feathers ruffled while tickling your funny bone:

“All Democrats are insane, but not one of them knows it; none but the Republicans and Mugwumps know it. All the Republicans are insane, but only the Democrats and Mugwumps can perceive it. The rule is perfect: in all matters of opinion, our adversaries are insane. When I look around me, I am often troubled to see how many people are mad.”

Just so you know a Mugwump is: ” a person who remains aloof or independent, especially from party politics”

Thrown for snicks and grins, Shakespeare’s humor Example:

Act 3 scene 2, As You Like It, “I was seeking for a fool when I found you.”

Henry IV, ~ “Thou art as fat as butter!”

That last one wasn’t subtle or an understatement, just a humorous simile.

Yes, I know, ‘S’ Day 19.

Day 19 Nanowrimo  ‘S’ Narrative slaying choices

Day 19 *Narrative Slaying Choices



Finding a subject for today’s post was literally easy.
Just Googling: Googling the letter ‘s’ term in writing a novel

I found Scribendi : A Glossary of Fiction Writing Terms


Satire: I love this definition; “…criticize people’s stupidity or vices,..”
Setting: “place, time and condition “….a story takes place.
Simile: comparing one thing with a different thing using,’like or as’
Subject: “what the story is about”
Subplot: minor plot in a story flowing alongside the main plot
Symbol: “something that stands for something else”
Synecdoche: a word or phrase refers to a whole. Example: ‘sails’ referring to a whole ship, ‘hired hands’ referring to workers.
Syntax: Words put together to form dialogue, phrases, clauses

Those are great words starting with ‘S’ but not the one I decided to use for this example. Slayer. I read this term in ‘Story Structure Architect’  Writer’s Digest Books (2005)

This is where this word, ‘Slayer’ started along a slippery slope of selections. Even an anti-hero will choose to kill or not.

In this book, the use of ‘Slayer’ is used as a situation.

1. Slaying a family member for the greater good. (Justifiable homicide?)

2. Then there is the Slayer who is ‘not known’ to the protagonist, (kidnapper, serial killer)

3. Or the one that is known. (Maybe a Stalker, a neighbor, or the magic creature living in your garage)

4. Then there is the Slayer who challenges a situation. (I know this one. Here you stand up for what you believe in and get fired. )

All four of these are situations; situations used with a choice to kill, metaphoric or literally. Subplots or main plots.With  situations that needs to be overcome with Chutzpah (audacity; nerve.)

An example of this type is in the story ‘The Transporter’ where the main character goes against what he was hired to do. He decides to not follow the ‘rules or laws that harm’ this is where the protagonist’s beliefs come into play, what he or she thought was right, no longer works for the protagonist.

Think of it in terms where you got this great job and loved following the rules. Then one day you saw that your company’s beliefs, and yours, had parted company. You can’t take it anymore, and told them so. You saw something happen that could potentially hurt others and you were done with it. This would be challenging the status quo. Slaying the dragon that is your boss or co-workers, then showing the backlash of that decision.

Slayer and recognized victim: the Slayer knows the victim and believes in his core with what has to be done. Could be a little off…did I say little! The Slayer needs to have his own internal dialogue that will convince himself to do the deed.

Think of ‘Buffy the Vampire Slayer’ she has her reason for killing, vampires, demons, and any supernatural evil being and as the reader we except this Slaying, we even agree.

Slayer and unrecognized victim: a person the Slayer is hired to kill then he decides not to. Example of the victims; kidnapped a hired killer, a person who gets in-between, accidentally and now is dragged along to save their life.

These are choices that the protagonist makes that move the story forward. They are made with using life or death situation.

I thought this could also be described as the choice that changes the character for better or for worse. Their inner conflicts and dilemmas and how your protagonist chooses, but with a little more close up detail on the need and want. Where we give our protagonist a reason to take a stand. Back him or her into a corner where they have to choose. Make that hard choice to show their hearts or let the voices in their heads take over.

Once they decide they become the Slayers of their demons then the story unfolds.
Their choices can be used as a subplot as in ‘Sophie’s Choice’ Slaying of a loved one.

I bet if you tried you can see this narrative choice running through your favorite stories. Some as main storylines other as subplots.

I recommend ‘ Story Structure Architect’   The author-Victoria Lynn Schmidt- places the Slayer situation with an example of Beginning -Middle and End.

Day 18 #NaNowrimo ‘R’ Research without telling a thumper

Research! Research! Research!

I feel like a kid running in circles after eating a ton of sugar. I love searching out information. So much so that I get lost in the mundane and lose my plot line.  Too much information is a hindrance. Too little has the same effect.


Researching your novel helps to add that touch of realism.  Double checking your information will ensure that your readers will not be taken out of your story, due to a  timeline  that doesn’t connect with real timeframes. There is so much information to find, that you should double check sources. Keep a detailed list.

Photo by Startup Stock Photos from Pexels

Finding this information on your own can be overwhelming.
Do an Internet search by using what you want to find, and adding dot org (.org) as the extension. This will pull up government sites, colleges, medical, and everything else. Be very specific with your search it will save you time.

The difficult history of Russian Jews

You don’t want to be pointed out as ‘telling a thumper,’ unless your characters are out of the 1800s. “American Slangisms’ from the NPR history dept.

Nautical Language Here…

Research can take time. Research can be used to find out how you need to protect your rights. Look into them  here… Author Rights

If you are looking for statics of immigration, Homeland Security is where you will find that information.

These are amazing sites with so much information you can get lost. Use your computer and pen and paper to keep on track.


Check out your own local library online resources.

U.S. History: Here 

Internet History HERE

Teaching History

Authors Guild HERE

“Les fossoyeurs se mirent a rechercher la tombe qu’ils avaient préparée.”~
Ben Jelloun, Tahar La nuit sacrée


For images  check out pixabay

Day 17 ‘Q’ Questing plot asking Quem Quaeritis NaNoWriMo

Day 17 ‘Q’

I was stuck in a quagmire of questions. The letter ’Q’ requests from me, Quem Quaeritis (Latin, for “Whom do you seek?”) And a quire. (Medieval manuscript)

I will focus on the quest plot: a goal or a searching for something. The quest will have a group of main characters ‘questing’. Questioning the  ‘who’ and ‘why’.

The main character is incomplete in the real world and doesn’t quite fit in.
That ‘It’ is being searched for and must be extremely important.
Overwhelming obstacles will stand in the way of the main character from getting his/her hands on ‘It’.

The main character changes into a better person by the end or may end in tragedy.

ACT 1: introduce the lead characters and their inner lacking. A lacking that can be corrected by this quest. There must be a lacking in the character.

Example: Lion is a coward (Wizard of Oz) by the end of the story he finds his courage.

ACT 2: Characters suffers setbacks, struggles, conflict- but- the characters struggle on. Dangerous Journeys with physical and internal struggles

ACT 3: The ‘IT” was found. Now, show how everyone has changed.

Here are examples of a Quest plotline:

Beowulf  by an anonymous Anglo-Saxon poet
Jason & the Argonauts  from Greek mythology
Alice in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll
Raiders of the Lost Ark by George Lucas and Philip Kaufman.
Lord of the Rings by J. R. R. Tolkien
Ready Player One by Ernest Cline ( I am currently reading book)
Harry Potter By J.K. Rowling
The Gunslinger By Stephen King
Neverwhere by Neil Gaiman
A Wizard of Earthsea By Ursula K. Le Guin

“Remember: Plot is no more than footprints left in the snow after your characters have run by on their way to incredible destinations. Plot is observed after the fact rather than before. It cannot precede action. It is the chart that remains when an action is through. That is all Plot ever should be. It is human desire let run, running, and reaching a goal. It cannot be mechanical. It can only be dynamic.” ― Ray Bradbury-the Zen Writer …

Photo by Simon Migaj from Pexels foot prints in snow

Day 16 Plot for Nanowrimo letter ‘P’ find your story’s why

This will be a short blog post. A winter cold caught up with me, and my head is aching.


“Let us define a plot. We have defined a story as a narrative of events arranged in their time-sequence. A plot is also a narrative of events, the emphasis falling on causality. ‘The king died and then the queen died,’ is a story. ‘The king died, and then the queen died of grief,’ is a plot. The time sequence is preserved, but the sense of causality overshadows it. Or again: “the queen died, no one knew why, until it was discovered that it was through grief at the death of the king.”— E. M. Forster, Aspects of the Novel

Narrative events. Dramatic action and structure of the story. The basic part of the story holds the ‘who, what, and where’. The plot is the ‘why’ of the story.

Going back to the queen you can read all the information showing you ‘who’ she was? The queen.

And where does she live, – in the castle

And what’s going on in her life?  Her husband just died.

I wonder why he died?  And, why did she die of grief?

Photo by Alain Frechette from Pixels

The curiosity of those ‘whys’ has the story moving along on its crisis, conflict, and the set up to the plot.


The plot. She died from grief.  So, we ask, ‘why’? Why did she die from grief?  Maybe the big question was, why did the king die? Finding those answers brings up to  the conflict the crisis, the plot.

‘The king died and then the queen died,’ is a story. ‘The king died, and then the queen died of grief,’ is a plot

“The queen died, no one knew why, until it was discovered that it was through grief at the death of the king.”— E. M. Forster, Aspects of the Novel


Here is the link back to Day 15 ‘O’ for a kiss Outline-A simple  basic outline

Day 15 ‘O’ for a kiss outline Nanowrimo

Todays walk was cold, snowy, with pastel colors caught in the moment. Looking like a  Claude Monet winter scene painting.

And I forgot my camera…

Looking closer I spot tracks in the snow, rabbits, raccoons, opossum, rat, ground squirrels and the birds shaking down the seeds still holding tight to the tops of frozen wildflowers. Floating over the newly fallen snow.

Going out on a snowy day is like following an outline to the story of the day. Those tracks can steer me to newly dug borrows, traces of a fight, or an area packed down after a full nights sleep or a few minutes of catching their breath.

Who is your main character? The rabbit? The raccoon? Or a family of deer? How about tigers?

You will pick up companions that want to join the story.  You will follow those tracks picking up figurative breadcrumbs. Being shown new characters that joined the rabbit’s path.

Possibly, at the stories  end  you would have seen  a herd of deer disappearing under trees. Magical helpers? Heroes?

Photo by Anthony from Pexels

An outline for a novel can have 60 or more scenes. So that Fuzzy rabbit will be a very busy-bunny-hopping around maybe humming a song, until he needs to find Ricky the raccoon, who didn’t come home last night.

You don’t have to lay out every hop, skip, and jump at this point.

Just get the entire plotline out on paper, just the basic outline.

“a general sketch, account, or report, indicating only the main features, as of a book, subject, or project:” ~

Keep it simple stupid. {{GRIN}}

The first outline you write is very basic.
Who is your main character?
Where is the story happening?
What needs to be done?
Who or what is the antagonist?
How does the antagonist slow down the protagonist?
What happens at the end?

Act One:
The setup. Where is all this taking place?
The inciting incident-the crisis. What just happened?
Stakes are raised. If you don’t help what will happen?
Should I go and help or should I stay home? Why risk everything for Ricky the raccoon? When the pretty Susie Skunk bats her big eyes at him. Now, we know why he went looking for Ricky the Raccoon.

In Act Two:
You can add a ticking clock. A snowstorm was moving in, to follow those tracks you have a limited time before they are covered with snow.
Have roadblocks to jump out at Fuzzy.  They grow more difficult; until-Fuzzy needs to face the antagonist….

Act Three:

The final battle is where Fuzzy rabbit steps up and fights for her beliefs and saves Ricky Raccoon’s life. The fight can be a coyote, a human or that approaching snowstorm.

With a happy ending, they dance all the way back home.
Sad ending, we let the camera pan out over a battlefield.

Remember. Keep it simple stupid. {{GRIN}}

Day 14 ‘N’ for writer’s notebooks or Nanowrimo


Photo by Jess Watters from Pexels

I started this blog post and it came out as a poem, a poem about my  own notebooks, my own  writer’s journals. .

Worrying Pearls

by Gerardine Baugh

A few words, in my notebook- of odd thoughts.
Surprising about today was the cold
it froze my nose as if January.
Ice beckoning to me, in one great fall,
while sun passed overhead, inline struggling
with melting ice, ice set to keep its shape.
I could taste the hint of snow in the air.
I realized, my snow thrower was checked
Inspecting its inners. Will it still work?
Nor did I check dark corners of the barn
brushing aside abandoned spiderwebs
digging out shovels. Winter has started.
I don’t want to give it deeper power
by conceding its power over me.
My Notebooks filling with lines of odd thought.
A few words or a full chapter scribbled
into many notebooks taking up space
like a gnome on my shelf, making me smile,
Releasing ideas for characters,
places to have them act out and struggle.
Spit, swear, surely worrying pearls with words
my notebook written one cold November.

This was written in blank Verse, iambic pentameter,  unrhymed, ten syllables.

Notebook or journals are the homes of  snippets of thought you come up with while standing in line for coffee, at work when you’re supposed to be listening intently during the office weekly meeting.  A word or phrase that sounds amazing. A dream you don’t want to forget. An idea. That perfect description of a character that you haven’t yet written a story for. Those ideas all belong in your journals, your writer’s notebook. So when you are bogged down with can’t-do, you can open your notebook and see what triggers your muse’s can-do.

I was flipping through W. Sumerset Maugham’s Writer’s Notebook.

“The night is wonderfully silent. The stars shine with a fierce brilliancy, the Southern Cross and Canopus; there is not a breath of wind, but a wonderful balminess in the air. The coconut trees, silhouetted against the sky, seem to be listening. Now and then a sea-bird gives a mournful cry.” ~pg 145

The interesting part about a writer’s notebook is that reading it can help shake up your muse. Keep flipping pages- keep looking until- suddenly you see it…. and your imagination takes off.

From the Inside Flap of  W. Sumerset Maugham’s Writer’s Notebook.~
“From 1892, when he was eighteen, until 1949 when this book was first published, Somerset Maugham kept a notebook. It is without a doubt one of his most important works. Part autobiographical, part confessional, packed with observations, confidences, experiments and jottings it is a rich and exhilarating admission into this great writer’s workshop.”,

I like using paper, -hard copy- notebooks. I find them easier to access than getting lost in amaze of emails or folder in my ‘documents’ on my computer.

day 13 the letter ‘M’ do you feed your Motivation

The Letter ‘M’ for  Motivation

I could use this word to swear, stomp my feet and bang my head on a feather pillow.

After pulling words out of my muse for the past 12 days, I will accept day 13 as my good luck day. Tuesday, November 13, 2018, a very lucky day.

Photo by Sudipta Mondal from Pexels

I have made it to day 13. I am still writing loads of horrible scat. I will use that word, ‘scat’   with the implication  of music, jazz with a beat, a sound that has me tapping my toes as my fingers dance across my keyboard.

Hey, don’t take that away from me, the music –words- are flowing –with coffee and lots of eye pain.

So let’s get on with this ‘motivating’ day, with a little swing in your step and broken lead in your pencils.

How to find motivation on this 13th day, of NaNoWriMo

First I set up what I want to get done in the morning the night before.

I don’t write down my schedule. What I do –as I am falling asleep is go over what I need to do first thing, starting at the moment I open my eyes.

Then as the day starts  before I even open my  eyes, I am going over my story ideas.

Before I even get out of bed- I stretch. Pulling out the kinks in my back. I spend some time on a few yoga stretches. Then, I roll out of bed and immediately fix my bed.

My day starts on myself. Then I feed my pets, make coffee, and turn on my computer. By the time I have butt-in-seat, my fingers are hovering over my computer’s keys dripping words out on the page.

My characters motivations: Physical such as food, water, a home, a family, painful death, beliefs, exercise, the hiccups even the taste for ice cream.

Characters have the same motivations as we do. Picture your characters motivation as your own. Feel their emotional side; love, hate, longing, your character’s motivations for dating, for hate, or sadness.

Motivations move my day along. A motivation for my characters moves the plot forward. Giving them a reason for moving through their story and mine.

My Walking Path