Seasons/Summer of Life

Last weekend, I posted a blog about how I printed out the incomplete manuscript for the novel I started writing back in November.
This weekend, I am taking another trip down Memory Lane and sharing two of my favorite things that go along with my National Novel Writing Month experiences.

First, the cover art.
My junior year of high school, I took what amounts to a computer graphic design course.
It ended up being one of my favorites - I still have my portfolio from it if anyone ever wants to see it in all of its late 90s beginner designing awesomeness.

Ever since then, I've taken great pleasure in the (extremely) occasional opportunities I've had to play around with what I learned.
For NaNoWriMo, that means seeing how well I can translate the cover I envision for a book into an actual book cover design.
I never have been, and probably never will be, a professional, but I'm pretty happy with how NaNoWriMo 2013's effort turned out (although 2011's attempt will always have my heart).

NaNoWriMo 2013
NaNoWriMo 2011

Second is the playlist.
Most of the time, when it comes to this part of NaNoWriMo, I cobble together a playlist of songs I think will suit the tone of the story I am writing before November 1st and hope it helps inspiration along.
This time, I let the characters tell me what songs put them in a place where they wanted to spill their guts as I went through the month.
I don't think I've ever been happier with a playlist at the end of the month than I am with this one.
As a matter of fact, I'm listening to it right now. :-)

In the order they were added:

Track 01 - Oh My Dear - Tenth Avenue North (from the album The Light Meets the Dark)
Track 02 - The Struggle - Tenth Avenue North (from the album The Struggle)
Track 03 - Something Beautiful - Newsboys (from the album Go)
Track 04 - Need You Now (How Many Times) - Plumb (from the album Need You Now)
Track 05 - Beautiful Again - Ryan Corn (from the Ryan Corn EP)
Track 06 - Give Love - Third Day (from the album Revelation)
Track 07 - We Fall Apart - We as Human (from the album We as Human)
Track 08 - Losing My Mind - Daughtry (from the album Break the Spell)
Track 09 - The Edge of Water - Jars of Clay (from the album The Eleventh Hour)
Track 10 - American Noise - Skillet (from the album Rise)

Well, there actually isn't a third (scared you, though, didn't I?).
I guess it just seemed appropriate to share this with you as I get ready to put fingers to keyboard and officially head into the last one-third or so of this first draft.
Hope you're ready for it - I know I am.