Lyla Campbell

During my morning news crawl I discovered this coffee gem. The concept of pour-over coffee has potential in my mind to produce a better cup. If I'm completely honest though, it seems much to fussy. I think I'll be sticking to my french press for now.

Have any of you tried coffee this way? Is it better, or just some hipster craze?
Lyla Campbell

It's NaNoWriMo eve and I'm busy preparing for the maelstrom to come, so here is a favorite post from last year that will hopefully prove useful to you as we stand on the brink of November...

October is the calm before the NaNoWriMo storm. Having lived in Houston all of my life, I'm no stranger to battening down the hatches. Like clock work, we get together bottled water, canned goods, and other non perishables as each new hurricane season approaches. We go through a laundry list to make sure that if all of a sudden a depression pops up in the gulf, so we won't be up the creek when the masses make a run for the grocery.

In this same fashion, I created a NaNoWriMo survival kit in preparation for a month of writing with literary abandon. Putting everything together before the tempest strikes will save me from wasting time on midnight runs for NaNo necessities. The kit includes (see pic above):

  • My writing totem - the goat the sings "High On a Hill Was a Lonely Goat Herd" from the sound of music

  • My computer - obvious I know. However, I have heard tales of people doing NaNoWriMo by hand.

  • Coffee - preferably with chicory

  • Tea - of the English afternoon persuasion

  • Betty Boop mug - Betty in the painting of the birth of's deliciously tacky with a hint of inappropriateness.

  • Whiskey - sometimes coffee just isn't enough

  • Chocolate bacon bar - yes, you read that correctly my friends: CHOCOLATE COVERED BACON!!!! It's a heath bar with bacon pieces substituted for toffee bits.

  • Various frozen dinners, savory bake in oven snacks - one must eat during the month of November without much prep time.

  • Snickers Ice Cream Bars - dessert to top it all off.

  • And last but not least, my furry minions of doom:

    the big one told me that on the days I didn't meet my word count goal, he would poop on the carpet. He's a 92 pound Lab/Elephant/German Shepherd mix, so I take that threat very seriously.

    What would you add to the survival kit list?

    Lyla Campbell

    We're almost over the hump in October. That means every other part of the country is watching the tendrils of fall unfurl. I live in Houston so it's still hot and, well, hot. Regardless of the fact that autumn landscapes are not universal, National Novel Writing Month happens every November. Period.

    I'm excited. This will be my fourth and hopefully my best NaNoWriMo yet. I'm using the Snowflake Method to organize my ideas this year. So far I'm really liking this method. It speaks to my engineering sensibilities. At this point, I'm through step 2 and working on step 3, fleshing out some character charts. While I'm getting to know my characters better, I wanted to share this year's novel synopsis with you. My story centers around a post apocalyptic world mixed with Arthurian legend.

    Centuries ago, a breakthrough in medical science solved the disease of aging. Dying became a choice that fewer and fewer chose as each decade passed. One night in the dark hours of the morning, Emma, a young woman living on the mainland is woken violently. She is left disoriented and in total darkness as the fabric of science unravels suddenly and absolutely. As the sun rises, it reveals a landscape not seen for more than a millennia. In order to stay alive, Emma joins with two others who survived the event on their journey off the mainland and across the channel to an island where it is rumored a settlement of people have been living according to the ancient ways in hopes that they still remain. During their travels they discover ancient myths are proving to be more truth than fiction as they relearn how to live in an old world that is new to them.

    The idea formed out of two TV shows. One on the science channel about the effect of free radicals on aging and how it can be slowed down and the other from a show on the History Channel about the truths behind Arthurian legend. (I guess it just goes to show that you can find inspiration anywhere.) The synopsis is still evolving and I don't yet have a title that I really like. But, that will begin to gel as the story unfolds

    I hope everyone had a great writing weekend! I'll have more on my NaNoWriMo progress and writing goodness soon.
    Lyla Campbell

    Happy Friday everyone! It's in the wee hours of the weekend and there's so much possibility for writing productivity laid out before us. Make the most of it with the best of the writing interwebs I stumbled upon over the last week.

    So let it be written. So let it be done. (-Yul Brynner)

    Lyla Campbell