// nano progress report //

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hey, guys! here’s some news on how my nano project is going. (making this post is just another way that i’m procrastinating. help.)

word count

i’ve written 10,591 words out of 15,000!

according to some graph on the site, my daily word count is a bit screwed up. sometimes i’ll write a few hundred more words than is necessary. others days, i’ll reach the bare minimum. i don’t know why i do that, but i’m currently about two days ahead of schedule, so it’s cool.

the first week was really tough. i hadn’t written anything since nano 2016, so my skills were a little rusty. i had to discover my style again, but now it’s going smoothly. well, as smoothly as writing can go, which isn’t really saying much.


i wasn’t able to do much plotting before nano because i switched stories last minute. when i write, i like having something to follow, so i started freaking out when i reached the end of my preplanned plot in chapter three. i have this huge empty space in the plot (between my characters leaving titan and reaching earth) that i’m not sure what to fill with. guess i’ll just wing it.


i finally decided on a name for “tommy,” the annoying kid that sneaks onto their spaceship: keirnan. he’s named after this kid in my co-op who was a couple grades below me. i’m pretty sure that boy and his siblings are demons, but *sips tea* that’s none of my business.

i didn’t flesh out my characters very well before i started writing, so it’s exciting to see their personalities develop as the story progresses. zen is a sweet, soft child that must be protected at all costs; taz is already done with everyone’s crap; and lulu has somehow morphed into izzy, my best friend (brilliant, kind of rude, has crazy ideas). a good thing about this is that if i ever get stuck on what she would say/do in a certain situation, i can text izzy and get her opinion.


some of you asked me to post an excerpt for my novel, so here you go. this is where i am in the story right now. it’s not the greatest thing i’ve ever written, but i’m ok with that, because i’m more concerned with getting the words down than if they’re good ones.

Sleep has almost wrapped its soft arms around me when there’s a thud close by. Then a moan. I open an eye and glance around. Zen is still out cold in the front, likely getting drool on the collar of his favorite sweater. He probably wasn’t the one who disturbed me, then.

“Lu?” I rasp, my voice scratchy and too deep.

“Nope.” She sounds tired. It must be awful, having to pay attention to the creeping traffic for this long. “I thought it was you?”

I shake my head. Not that she’d be able to see.

Maybe it was Zen, after all, twitching in his sleep. Or it could have been the ship. I don’t know. I lay my head back and yawn.


I jerk up. There it is again. “Lu –”

“Check on the engine, would you?” she asks distractedly. I can practically hear her fighting off a nap, struggling to keep herself aware of the pilots around us.

“I don’t know how –”

“Just do it! Unless you want to fly?”

“Uh, I can take care of it. No problem.” The engine is hidden in the floor, concealed by a trapdoor. It’s located right next to the emergency exit, which means that if I accidentally pick the wrong door, I will be sucked out into space and hit by the ship behind ours. That would be an unfortunate way to end the trip. “Lu –”

“Left one.”

“My left, or . . .?”


“Right, right.”

“No, left.”

I decide to shut up before we get any deeper. Yanking up the trapdoor, I bend close to the engine, craning my ear toward the whirring gears. Heat radiates up from the cavity, warming my cheek. “It sounds fine,” I tell Lulu, shrugging.

She growls in frustration. “Still. Try whacking it with my wrench. The toolbox is in one of the cabinets.”

I let the door fall. “Which one?”

“How should I know?”

I don’t even bother this time. I work my way around the ship systematically, opening each cabinet in turn, giving myself no more then a second to scan the inside for the toolbox. When I’ve peeked into all but the two closest to Zen, I hear a cough from the nearest one. And this time, I’m sure it’s not the engine, or any of us. “Lulu, there’s . . . ah, well, there’s someone in the ship with us.”

Lulu tenses, her back straight, her hands tightening around the yoke. She speaks slowly, her voice low and strained. “I can’t help you right now. The traffic is letting up. Don’t do anything till we get close to the police ships up ahead, where the accident was. They can help.”

I face the stowaway’s hiding spot, preparing myself to strike. “We can’t. No offense, but the fake IDs might not be convincing enough. We can’t risk it.”

She snarls again. After a moment, she breathes in a trembling voice, “Open it.”

Whoever is in here is scaring Lulu. I can’t allow this. I reach forward, rip open the cabinet, and launch a kick into the small space.

“Ow!” the intruder yelps, followed by whimpering. “Holy Pluto, dude, what was that for?”

My mouth drops in disbelief. Curled up in the cupboard is none other than the bratty nephew of our neighbor Nadala. “Keirnan?!” I sputter, letting go of the door in my shock. It catches his finger as it slams closed.

“Ow, ow, ow!” he wails.

“Lulu!” I screech, rousing Zen with my cry. “Keirnan’s in our ship! Our freaking ship, Lu!”

Suddenly, we’re picking up speed, everyone’s screaming, I’m losing my footing and toppling over. The world inside our fixer-upper, peaceful just moments before, is in utter disarray.

“Zen, take over!” Lulu orders, leaping out of her seat. “It’s just like driving your hovercraft. Well, not really. You’ll figure it out.” She tugs me off the ground and we crowd around the cabinet.

My brother, having just returned to consciousness in a loud, confusing world, sobs as he throws himself at the controls. The ship rears up and down, the result of shaky hands. Vehicles around us blare their horns irritably.

i need to write some more today and decide keirnan’s fate.

anyway, how are your nano projects going? do you think you’re going to reach your word count goal in time?




21 thoughts on “// nano progress report //

  1. Clara says:

    That was amazing, Loren! I love your writing style and the names/personalities of your characters. Names are always really difficult for me. And to answer the question at the end of this post, my NaNo project is going pretty badly. XD I’m really behind on my goal, and I’m not sure if I’m going to be able to reach it thanks to school. :/ Anyways, great post, I really enjoyed reading it!

    -Clara <3

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Rutvi says:

    great job so far! i really love your writing style, and your use of description is just. so. amazing. and, no pressure, but HOW AWESOME WOULD IT BE TO HOLD A BOOK PUBLISHED BY THE ONE AND ONLY LOREN????????????


  3. gracie chick says:

    Hi Loren,

    I am doing a discussion post on makeup and as part of it I wanted to collect the opinions of a few other people. I was wondering if you might be happy to contribute a couple of sentences? If you’d rather not, no worries.



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