Wednesday, November 2, 2022

November? No way. Lies, I tell you. (#IWSG November 2022)

NaNoWriMo time!

Not for me, though. I don't NaNo. November's always a busy writing month for me already, but it's usually finishing/editing Christmas presents. I don't have time to write 50,000 new words on something. Fortunately I already have a first draft of this year's story, so I only have to finish the many (many) illustrations that need to go along with it.

October was crazy. The whole family came down with Covid, so that really threw us for a loop. Fortunately none of us were hit too hard, but the effects certainly do linger. The fatigue and mind fog are certainly real, and I hope there are no further long-term effects.

Didn't get much writing done in October, but there was lots of other creative stuff. The big thing was the annual haunted house that we did for the kids in the family. It took weeks to plan, involved painting the entire basement black, and then four more days to set everything up - but in the end we locked our kids and nieces in the basement and gave them 90 minutes solve an escape room and get out.

It was a lot of work but the kids had a ton of fun. I set up a camera so the adults could watch them, and I think we had even more fun than the kids! The story of the escape room was that a disgraced toymaker was luring children into his workshop to help him build toys, which were unfortunately murderous and the children rarely survived. They had to solve puzzles, decode riddles, cut open stuffed animals to find keys and clues, objects hidden in the ventilations ducts, plus a few creepy surprises hidden to give them a fright or two. There was also secret messages written on the walls in invisible ink, and a UV flashlight used to find them. It was all INCREDIBLY involved, and my wife and I swore again we won't do it again next year, but who knows...

I also took up painting gaming miniatures again. Tiny little figurines about an inch or so tall that requires a lot of attention to detail and a steady hand. Funny it was much easier when I was 25 years old... and didn't have Covid... But I do really enjoy it and have already spent too much money on paint and models and may have put a lot of research into getting a 3D Printer...

The Stormtrooper on the right was painted while I had Covid, the one of the left was done after I got better. I don't know if you can see the difference in the picture, but it's substantial...

And of course I made the kids' Halloween costumes... and may have already booked myself to make my niece's costume for her next year...

Writing? What's that?

Hugs & Kisses,

The first Wednesday of every month is officially Insecure Writer’s Support Group day. Writers post their thoughts on their blogs, talking about their doubts and the fears they have conquered. It's a chance for writers to commiserate and offer a word of encouragement to each other. Check out the group at


  1. So sorry your family got COVID. It sounds like you've gotten a super lot done in October anyway. It's so cool how you create the haunted house for your kids. Your kids have cool costumes too.

  2. You painted your entire basement?? For a haunted house? Commitment! I'm sure it was memorable. Glad your covid experience wasn't super awful. We've had it several times. First time was the worse. But we're all good:) Happy November!

  3. Sounds like your haunted out was deliciously creepy. Good job pulling that off.

    I've considered getting a 3D printer to make my own figurines. I've even played around in Blender to see if I could master it. Unfortunately, it's not one of those talents I excel at. The paint job on your figurines look great to me!

    Hope you recover from the lingering COVID effects soon!

  4. Sorry to hear about the covid, but I'm glad the kids had a good Halloween. :-)

    Anna from elements of emaginette

  5. I have not been here in apologies. I love how much fun you and your wife had for Halloween. You love scaring your kids plus making them think. I would still be down there trying to figure out how to get out. Did they make it in under 90 min.? I have been lucky to avoid Covid and have had my 4th shot. My hubby has rheumatoid arthritis which is an immune disease so we always try to be diligent but I think, now, it's just luck. I hope you get stronger every day and no issues in taste or anything else weird. What are your kids supposed to be? I bet it's from shows I don't get

  6. For now, I'm with you on Nano. This year I'm just way too busy and no way I could write 10,000 words let alone 50,000. I did it in 2010 & 2011 but it was really too much for me and after failing in my 2012 attempt I let the idea go. Maybe when I'm older and can't get around to do things like I've been doing.

    I had COVID a few months back after my three vaxxes. Actually I would probably have never noticed if I hadn't have tested positive after one of my daughters said she had gotten it. My wife and I were both "sick" at the same time, but it was no big deal. We just stayed home and took it easy--kind of like we do much of the time. But if I hadn't gotten the test I would have never thought I was really sick--just tired like normal.

    Take care!

    Arlee Bird
    Tossing It Out

  7. Hey CD!
    Aren’t you creative! Terrific pictures, I bet your kids were thrilled. I feel the last three months of the year ought to be committed to the comforts and pleasures of family – especially with kids. Because the minute we don’t, they remind us ;-) Besides, it’s not like we mind, right?
    Wishing you – and yours -very happy holidays!

  8. I love your kids costumes. Little Nightmares! ;)


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