Camp NaNo Recap (aka the Month of Insanity and No Sleep)

by - 4:55 PM

Seeing as Camp NaNo has been over for nearly three weeks, it's probably high time I wrote a recap post. (Remember, I'm a wizard so I'm writing this precisely when I mean to.)

It was an INSANE month. If you read my Frabjous Finalities post from a couple weeks ago, you know that I was extremely busy, even outside of Camp. But somehow I managed to write over 21k (not 22k, like what I said in that post; my bad). I didn't reach my goal, but hey, I wrote 50 pages of my book without even using an outline. Yay me! ;D

There isn't much to recap, now that I actually think about it. Basically, I stayed up till absurd hours of the night (which was perfectly normal for me anyway), had *cough* rather peculiar conversations with my cabin mates, and lived off of word wars. I'm pretty sure 90% of my book came from word wars.

I'm still slightly depressed about not reaching my goal (one of the blessings of being a perfectionist :P), but I did really enjoy Camp. ^_^ The summer was extremely stressful, and what with my first week of school already finished, I haven't been able to recap until now. BUT I'M BACK. I SURVIVED. My story is still as jumbled as ever, and I'm not really sure where it's headed. But it's fuuun! I REALLY LOVE IT. (Even though I haven't written at all this month...don't tell.)

So. That's basically all I could conjure as far as recaps are concerned. Shall I share some snippets? Yes, I think I shall. Put your sunglasses on because you're about to be blinded by brilliance and typos. (They go hand-in-hand.)


There was a burst of light, then a poof of smoke. The little golden-haired sprite was fluttering before her, crossing her arms and looking rather annoyed. “You would think you could offer me better accommodations.”

   “Valkyrie, what are you doing here?”

   An impish grin spread across her tiny porcelain face. “Oh, I just thought I would make sure you were doing all right. I can’t have you wandering off, now can I?”

   Charlotte pointed an accusing finger at her face. “You just wanted to cover his Regency’s palace with glitter, didn’t you? You still haven’t forgiven him for not inviting you to the masquerade ball.”

   Her hair glowed brilliantly with her anger. “I did not come here to glitterfy his crumby old castle.” She paused before rushing through her next words. “Besides, he deserves it.”

   “Listen, I’ve already explained. Sprites aren’t allowed to parties for humans. They would just get their glitter everywhere and make a big mess. And they could also get stepped on. That’s been a problem in the past."
Valkyrie waved a hand dismissively. “Well, it’s no honey off my comb. He can do whatever he wants, for all I care. Let him enjoy his miserable party. Not like it will be any fun with all those fuddy-duds anywho.”
   Charlotte was inclined to agree, at least in part. She wasn’t at all looking forward to the ball, though she doubted the guests would boring individuals. She wouldn’t be surprised if she saw the chandeliers dancing and the punch talking to its servers.
   Valkyrie clapped her hands. “Well, where’s the food? I’m starved!”
   Charlotte crossed her arms. “What do you mean ‘where’s the food’? What do you think this is, a restaurant?”
   The little sprite harrumphed. “You could at least have the decency to offer your visitor a bite to eat.”


“To answer your first question,” Lieutenant Bradshaw began, “that’s just Leonard. He gets upset when they neglect to feed him and always relishes the chance to swallow new people.”

   “What do you feed a living wall?”

   He shrugged. “He just eats whatever’s in reach. We’ve lost many a sofa to his wallpapery throat.”

   “Is anything normal here?” Charlotte asked, though she could already guess the answer.

   Lieutenant Bradshaw flashed his pearly whites again. “The abnormal is normal, love.”

   She shot him her most menacing glare. “Miss Davidson.”

   He just smiled.


“Something’s happening.”

   Lieutenant Bradshaw rolled his eyes. “Of course something’s happening. It’s a meeting, love. Things happen in meetings. Politicians actually do things sometime, in case you weren’t aware.”

   Charlotte raised her eyebrows. “Well, they had me fooled.”

   A hush came over the room again as the squirrel continued speaking. Whiskers twitching, he peered over his monocle at the sheets of paper in front of him. “We will first hear from Governor Theredon of the Valance Isles about the matter of inkwell taxes.”

   Charlotte groaned and fidgeted in her seat, receiving a bemused look from the Lieutenant as well as several steely-eyed glares from the dignitaries.

   A portly, balding man stumbled to the podium, his eyes darting around restlessly and causing him to often lose his footing. Putting a hand on the lectern and still glancing to and fro, he addressed the audience. “There…has been a certain matter of…concern to the people of Valance—”

   He suddenly clapped his hands in the air, making the squirrel fly off his seat and jolting several snoozing dignitaries awake. Charlotte’s heart skipped a beat.

   Governor Theredon smiled and wiped his hands on the podium, seemingly proud of his disruption. “Just a nasty gnat.”

   That raised quite a few looks of disgust from the ladies present. Charlotte couldn’t help staring at the dead gnat on the podium. At least it was more entertaining than learning about inkwell taxes.


G’mornin,’ laddie!”

   James’s head popped up. “Oh…uh, good morning.”

   Smiling widely, Winnie placed a tray on the dilapidated desk. “My apologies, Mr. Sawyer. The door was open so I took the liberty of letting myself in.”

   He didn’t remember leaving the door open. But upon further inspection, he saw that the door was indeed wide open. Weird.

   “I brought ya some tea and crumblets to break your fast.” Upon seeing his perplexed expression, she explained. “Crumblets are sort of like crumpets only crumbier.”

   James nodded and forced a smile, trying to ignore the fact that the lady had just walked into his room unannounced.

   “Well, enjoy your meal.” She patted her apron pockets. Clink-clink! Walking toward the door, she called over her shoulder, “Glad to see you survived the night!”

   He wasn’t quite sure how to respond to that. So he just cautiously sat in the weathered chair at the desk and examined his food.

   There were three biscuits, a pot of tea and a teacup, and a pitcher full of some sort of pink cream. A spoon rested on top of the overturned cup, and a napkin was folded neatly beside the tray.

   “It looks normal enough…other than the pink.” Shrugging, he picked up one of the biscuits. It crumbled instantly in his grip, falling apart on his plate.

   He wiped his fingers on the napkin. “I guess that’s the crumblet.” He grabbed his spoon and attempted to shovel some of the crumbs into his mouth that way. Once he had finally gathered a mouthful, he put the spoon in his mouth.

   James coughed and spat the stuff across the room. A splatter of crumbs flew through the window. There was a loud meow from below.

   Still coughing, he hurriedly poured a cup of tea and guzzled it down. The drink did nothing to drown out the horrible chalky taste in his mouth. “That’s the crumbiest excuse of a crumpet I’ve ever tasted.”

   Assuming the pitcher of pink cream was for the tea, he picked it up and began pouring the cream into his cup. The tea began bubbling vigorously. The pink cream was solidifying into a big block of purple, growing rapidly bigger every second. James fell backwards in shock, the chair crashing to the floor and cracking. Scrambling to his feet, James watched in horror as the teacup began cracking. The purple block kept growing wider, and tea began leaking out the cracks in the cup.

   Crack! The cup shattered, and tea exploded. He ducked behind the broken chair as hot droplets of brown leaf water attacked him. He waited a few seconds before finally standing again. A blob of purple went flying towards him and hit him smack in the face.

   James staggered backwards, swiping at the gooey violet paste in his eyes. It clung to his skin like glue, getting stuck in every pore.

   There was the sound of banging from downstairs. “Everything all right up there?”

   He dug some purple goo out of his ears and wiped his sticky hands on his pants. “Everything’s just dandy.”

The doors to the assembly opened, spilling out dozens of attendees. The girl drifted closer to James in the shuffle. Her eyes shot daggers at him as she tried to edge her way back into the crowd.

   “Well, do something!” she exclaimed.

   He wrinkled his forehead in confusion. “What am I supposed to do?”

   “You’re a magician, aren’t you? Make the crowd thin out or something.”

   “I’m just a magician’s apprentice! I don’t do a lot of spells.”

   “Figures that I would have the luck to end up with a second-hand wizard.”

The driver was still smiling stupidly as he admired something in his hand. Clink, clink! There were four silverpence in his hand. He finally noticed James and hurriedly shoved the coins in his cap. “Just making another business transaction before we head off.” He began walking back to the carriage, a slight skip in his step. “Hope you don’t mind another passenger.”

   James groaned internally as he turned to Miss Davidson. She looked none too thrilled either. Brushing past him, she followed the driver to the small, worn-down carriage.

   James stuck his thumbs in his pockets and slowly followed suit. Before he entered the coach, he turned to the driver again. “On second thought, I think I’ll just get another coach.”

   The man raised a bushy eyebrow. “Good luck with that, mate. I’m one of the only carriages operating at this time of day.”

   “But it’s only early afternoon! Surely no business shut down this early.”

   The driver’s expression turned puzzled. “Uh, most everyone takes a break in the afternoon for carpet cleaning.”

   James wanted to burst out laughing. “Carpet cleaning? Crackleflax, you people are odd.”

James cleared his throat and struggled to find a more comfortable position on the seat. There were springs popping up through the fabric, and the jouncing of the carriage didn’t help much either. I do wish the ride were over, he thought despondently.

   “I’m here for his Regency’s masquerade ball, if you must know,” Miss Davidson suddenly said, her voice cold. “I’m an honored guest at the Alabaster Palace.”
   James nodded, unsure of what to say in light of the circumstances. He didn’t have much experience in conversing with people, especially lovely young ladies who wished he were dead.

There you have it: some more Mary brilliance. In case you couldn't tell, my story is getting a little strange. *cough* FEAR FOR MY SANITY, PEOPLE.

Did any of you do Camp NaNo? ARE YOU EVEN ALIVE? And what did you think of my story so far? Any suggestions?


 (Postscript: I have no idea what's up with my font. XD)

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  1. FIRST COMMENT!! XDDD Oh my gosh those EXCERPTS!!!! I love it all so much!! Your grammar and punctuation were good *wink* and all the weirdness totally sucked me in. Promise me that when Hannah screen writes this into a movie that I can play a part? PLEASE?!?!?! *clasps hands and falls on knees*

    You already know I barely survived NaNo ;)

    1. YAY YOU. XD *hands you cookies*

      AHHHH, THANK YOU SO MUUUUUCH! You're so sweet! <3 I'm glad that the grammar and punctuation are decent. I DID write this during NaNo, after all. ;)

      YES, I WILL HAVE TO FIND A PART FOR YOU. But first I have to finish my book, edit it a bazillion times, and get Hannah to screen write it. XP

      Ha, we all just barely made it. ;)

  2. Replies
    1. Thanks so much, Miss Evie! I'm glad you like it! :D

  3. I mean your story sounds like fun to read! Sorry dear lack of sleep getting to me #unistudent

    1. Hehe, don't worry, I understood what you meant. ^_^

  4. AHH! Those snippets are the best ever! (psst, when you've finished writing, may I pretty please with a cherry on top beta read it for you?)

    Pish tosh, of course I'm alive. Whether or not I'm writing much is a different story entirely though.

    I did do Camp NaNo. However, I did not complete my word count goal because, school and life. D:

    1. EEP, THANK YOU, CHLOE! (Hehe, it will have to go through a round of edits first. But when I do end up looking for betas, I'll definitely let you be one. ^_^)

      SAME. I...actually wrote nothing during August. *hides*

      Join the club. :P I didn't meet my word count goal either. *sighs* Hey, at least I got 21k written, right?

  5. AHHH, GO MARY! You did awesmazingly, getting those 21k words/50 pages written in a month! ;D

    And these snippets. OH MY WORD. Squirrels and crazy breakfast and sprites and lovely young ladies who want people dead? And walls that eat sofas? YOU ARE BRILLIANTLY FUNNY. Don't you just love what happens when you completely pants a story and absolutely anything is fair game? XD I couldn't do it all the time, but the few times I've experimented with less planning, it's been a wild ride.

    1. TRACEY. THANK YOUUUU! *tackle-hugs*

      AHHHH, THANK YOU SO MUCH!!! I thought my story would totally flop, but it's actually going along quite nicely. It's taken about five hundred thousand deviations from what I thought it would look like but still. XD I might just continue pantsing the rest of it to see what happens!

      Thanks so much for your words of encouragement, dear! <3

  6. Replies
    1. THANKS, JONNY. *would insert BB-8 thumbs up gif if I knew how*

  7. Whoa. I am severely impressed. :O I loved the snippets. Anytime you need an alpha or beta reader, please know that I would love to help! :)
    I had a blast getting to know you as a cabin mate for a month and beyond. You are a delightful girl, and one whom I consider ma friend forever. :D
    Thanks for sharing your beloved story with us all! <3

    1. Oh, and just so you know, I tagged you on my blog. I totally understand if you're too busy, but I am curious what your answers to my questions would ;) Here's the link:

    2. D'awww, Rebekah, your comment is so sweet. <333 THANK YOU MUCHLY!!! I'm so floored that you liked it so much! I'll be sure to let you guys know when I need betas. (That will most likely be a loooong time. XP)

      Aww, the same to you, dear friend. <3

      You're so welcome! Glad you enjoyed it. Ooh, and thanks for the tag! I don't know when I'll be able to do it, but maaaaybe I can squeeze it in sometime. :D


    Yeah, Camp NaNo was pretty crazy for me. I was attempting to write 40k, and thankfully I was able to make it!! But I think that I was drained of all my sanity...


      WHOA. You write 40k?! I think we know who the REAL wizard genius is. ;D I barely made it to 21k, and I know for sure that my sanity is long gone. XD

  9. GIRL. YOU DID AMAZING. I mean, your month was already INSANE, and then you wrote alllll those words. I THINK YOU'RE A ROCKSTAR.

    And...and... DA SNIPPETS. *faints from all the genius and hilarity*

    Okay, okay. I just...I CAN'T. THESE SNIPPETS.

    The sprites getting glitter everywhere! :D I LOVE IT. I'd totally get along with those sprites. Happy glitter everywheeere! *twirls*

    And the wall that EATS things? Brilliance!

    James's adventures with his breakfast had me rolling. XDD

    Then the carpet cleaning. Oh my word.


    1. *blushes* D'aww, Lauri, you're always so sweet. <3 You're the ultimate rockstar for EDITING. The very idea of editing this monster of a book makes me fear for my life. XD

      *faints from all the nice things* WHY MUST YOU GUYS BE SO NIIICE?!

      LOL, I somehow can see you doing that. XD ALL THE GLITTER.

      Ahhh, thank you!

      I had a lot of fun writing that scene. ;D (And basically every scene, let's be honest.)

      THANK YOU, LAURI!!! Gosh, I honestly don't know what to say. YOU'RE TOO SWEET FOR YOUR OWN GOOD. XD

  10. Marryyyy. If you EVER need beta-readers for this story...I'm your girl!!! =)

    1. Oh goodness, thank you so much!!!! It will be a while, but you guys will be the first to know when it's ready. :D

  11. YOU SURVIVED!!! *tosses candy in celebration* *also cake, because cake is good*

    OH MY GOODNESS THOSE SNIPPETS. They were the epitome of hilarious genius and I MUST BETA (or alpha, even!) FOR YOU RIGHT THIS MINUTE. Or ... ya know, whenever you need a alpha/beta reader XD. I JUST LOVE YOUR WRITING SO MUCH!!!

    1. YES, I DID! (sort of :P) *devours cake and candy because I need fooood*

      Asdldlsjsldj thank you!!!! ACK. I already have like four potential betas, and my story's not even near finished. XD THANK YOU SO SO SO MUCH, SAVANNAH!!! *hugs*

  12. YAY, MARY! Great job. <3 Even if you didn't reach your goal, what matters is that you wrote words and you had fun. :D

    1. Awww, thanks, Emily! Yup, that's all that really matters. :D I had such a blast writing this!

  13. LOVE IT. I must read the book ASAP. (Why are you so amazing, Mary? This story is incredible!)


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