Pep Talk Week #4: Do Something Brave For JuNoWriMo!

When was the last time you did something brave? Something that terrified you and made you wonder who the bleep you thought you were, doing a thing like that as though you have every right to do this brave thing you’re doing?

Make no mistake – if you’re reading this and doing JuNoWriMo, you are doing something brave this month. That’s true whether this is your first time or you’re a veteran JuNoer.

As a writer, you’ve done a lot of brave things. Even just claiming the “writer” label is an act of bravery. You may not have shared it with anyone else, and kept it your own secret, but it’s still brave. Every word you write is an act of bravery, even if you pretended it wasn’t terrifying while you were doing it.

I’m willing to bet that at some point this month, you looked your Imposter Syndrome in the green eyes, and told it to step back and let you do this thing it was trying to tell you you aren’t good enough for or have no business doing.

Have you taken the time to congratulate yourself on that?

If not, please stop reading and do that right now, because you deserve recognition! Yes, you – whether you’re already done for the month, or so far behind you know you aren’t going to get anywhere near 50,000 words for the month.


Because you showed up and did something brave. Because you wrote words, and each and every one was an act of bravery and a tiny step closer to your writing dreams. 

And, by trying, you gave yourself information on what worked and what didn’t. You can use that going forward.

Did you celebrate? Really stop, and look at where you started and where you are right now, and take credit for every single word you have now that you didn’t have on May 31?

If so, go you! You just honored your own bravery!

And if not – why not? Are you letting the Imposter Syndrome get the best of you and tell you nothing less than a 50,000 word month “counts?”

If your JuNoWriMo so far hasn’t been a rousing success, that silly Imposter Syndrome is probably right back in your face now, squealing, “I told you so!” and doing a ridiculous little dance.

But don’t believe it for a second, because it’s wrong.

The real challenge was looking it in the eye in the first place. And since you did that once, you can do it again. Just give that monster a level stare and inform it, “I hear and see you. You can go now – I have better things to do.”

It’s important to let that monster know it doesn’t have power over you.

So, please, if you haven’t celebrated, take five minutes and do that now. Step outside and breathe deeply for a minute or two. Listen to the sounds around you. Get a cup of coffee or tea or some treat. Look at what you’ve already accomplished. 

And then…. Take the next tiny step, and the one after that. One word at a time. Let’s see how many words you can end up with. Let’s count each one as a tiny step toward your writing dreams and celebrate them all!

Shan Jeniah Burton is a content creation expert by day; a writer of fiction, poetry, and essays by night; and a mom, Trekkie, and pit bull’s Emotional Support Human always!

Signed Up, Bought the T-Shirt… Now What?

Hm, now what…

junowrimo facebook picThat’s a good question.  Since this is a writing challenge, based mostly on the classic NaNoWriMo, you probably can guess the first thing to do would be write… and you’d be correct.  But we have so much more to offer our members beyond a dramatically increased word count and super-cool t-shirts.

JuNo volunteers offer sprints all through the month to get you inspired.  We’ll mostly be sprinting via Twitter @JuNoWriMo, but we have a dynamic Facebook group too for ideas, prompts, and even the occasional coffee clutch discussions we all need between bouts of word-frenzy.  If you want, there is a word count tracker here and here (older format for people without the latest Office).

We are a community that shares successes and failures and keeps going.

And we write.

So now that you’re here, what do you say?  Think it’s time?  Then…

Just write button

#JuNoWriMo Featured Author: Jessica Dragon Cheramie @JessicaCheramie

Meet some of your fellow JuNo WriMos in our Featured Author series each Monday and Wednesday starting June 4. ~


unnamedJessica Dragon Cheramie is the author of Secrets of the Truth, Book 1 of the Meridienne Drake Series. From keeping journals to writing competitions, writing has always been a part of her life. But she filed a writing career away for a few years. When she turned down a career on Broadway…Um, no, never happened. She was, however, a high school English teacher, and that helped her realize her true dream was to share her stories with the world.

While the second book of the Meridienne Drake Series is in the publishing phase, she is tackling a fast writing challenge to get this nagging idea out of her head. It’s a young adult novel and will be her first time writing a multiple POV novel, although her main character will be a seventeen-year-old girl named Lettie.
Lettie lives in the French Quarter of New Orleans, Louisiana. The thing about Lettie is she suffers from debilitating migraines. After one particular attack, a Voodoo Priestess offers her a cure, but it comes with a price. This price ties her together with her good-for-nothing-drug-addict brother and an entitled private school boy to face an ancient evil, plaguing the city.
Most people go to New Orleans for the ghost stories and vampire history, only knowing vaguely about voodoo. Voodoo is a culture in New Orleans that is almost as old as the city. Even for non-believers, things like ju-ju, gris-gris, and the Rougarou are a part of their lives as well. It has been misrepresented with Voodoo dolls, and although there will have some evil Voodoo practitioners in the book and some exaggerated magic, she’ll also shed light on the truth of it. Of course, this isn’t a major role in the story, just an added perk. This book is only natural to write what Jessica knows, since she grew up there and loves the city. She feels like Voodoo is one of the few topics not as well known.

Find Jessica:

You can find Jessica on Twitter @JessicaCheramie, on Facebook, on Goodreads, or at She loves making new frriends, so stop by and say, “Hi!” or tell her to stop playing and write.

Be a #JuNoWriMo 2014 Featured Author

JunoFeatJuNoWriMo is going to be an amazing experience, and each year, we like to highlight a few of our authors to help everyone get to know one another.

You don’t have to be published or even have a finished work to become a JuNoWriMo featured author. Just share a little about yourself and the project you’ll be working on in June!

This year we have only eight spots available, and it’s first-come, first-served.

How to Submit

Write up a simple post about your book and send it to me (Skye). Here’s some things your post could include:

  • Some background info on yourself as a writer
  • Name, genre, and any other basic info on your JuNo novel (ie: related books, etc.)
  • Synopsis
  • Back story—your inspiration for the story, how you came up with the idea, or why the topic interests you.
  • Your Twitter name, Facebook profile, blog URL, or Goodreads author page (if applicable)
  • Whether or not you’ve started working on your book yet and if you have, your progress. Also, the progress you hope to make on it during JuNoWriMo. (Obviously 50K words, but are you going to finish it, get it to the halfway point, etc.)
  • Photo (if you have an image that goes with the book or if you’d like us to include a headshot, or both)

Don’t get caught up on the details, just think of it as a casual introduction about yourself as a writer and the project you plan on working on this June. If you don’t have a name for your book yet, that’s fine. If you’re a pantser and don’t actually know the synopsis until you start writing–no worries! Just talk about what sparked the idea and where you think you’ll begin.

The post doesn’t have to be long. 500 words is a good length, but your post could be shorter or longer depending on what you have to say. You don’t have to include any links, but we’d love to link to you via the social media outlets and your blog so that others will know where to find you.

One note, we are reserving feature author spots for writers who have not previously been featured on JuNoWriMo.

We want to feature you, so please either leave a comment or send me an email at and let me know you’re interested. I’ll even help you edit/proofread your blog post—how much easier can it get? Email me your post ASAP to reserve your spot.