As I said last week, Fridays will be my check-in days. Here’s what I’ve been up to in the last week.
Books I finished this past week:
– Terry Pratchett’s The Color of Magic
– Marie Bilodeau’s Princess of Light
– Irina Ratushinskaya’s Grey Is the Color of Hope
– Sara Shepard’s Pretty Little Liars
– Tanya Huff’s The Enchantment Emporium
Books I’m currently reading (making this list, I realized I need to read way less books at once…):
– The Host
– Death Masks
– Dead as a Doornail
– The Big Over Easy
– The Wtchling
Possibly others, don’t have my list with me at the moment…
Writing goals from last week:
– Finish chapter 12 of Darkness Awakens (didn’t quite finish, but got a good chunk of writing done and am very close to finishing it)
– critique Julia’s piece for the Underground Writers (done!)
– Blog M-W-F (also done!)
Goals for the next week:
– Finish chapter 12
– start Steph’s novel critique
– outline the new YA novel idea I got from the writing prompt at tonight’s meeting
– figure out what I’m going to do with the short story I had critiqued at tonight’s meeting
– Blog M-W-F
That’s it for now! Have a nice weekend!!!
Posted in Writing
Tagged blogging, books, critique, Darkness Awakens, goals, Irina Ratushinskaya, Marie Bilodeau, outlining, reading, Sara Shepard, short story, Tanya Huff, Terry Pratchett, Underground Writers, update, work-in-progress, Writing
I was supposed to have posted yesterday, but I got caught up in other stuff that was going on and it completely slipped my mind.
We have an Underground Writers’ meeting tonight, and it’s a critique session. I’m looking forward to it – I’ve submitted something for critique again (that’s two sessions in a row). It’s another horror short story, and I’ve had it written for a long time, I just never did anything with it. So I cleaned it up last week (I had to chance the pacing a little, and add some more suspense) and sent it to the group.
I hope to start sending stuff off soon. As in submitting, to paying markets. I’m slightly terrified, I’m not going to lie. As much as I like my stuff, and I think I’m a good writer, it’s sometimes hard to have the confidence to be like “yeah, it’s good, someone wants to publish this” and send it off. Lucky for me, Andy (from the group) has been submitting stuff for a while, so he’s full of good advice. I’ll be picking his brain for market ideas tonight, I think. I really need to start submitting. I’ve never, ever done it, and if I want to be an author (which clearly I do) then I need to get over that and get going.
Regular posting schedule resumes tomorrow (I’ll be posting an update about goals and what I’ve been reading).
I’ve decided that Fridays will be my “check-in” posts.
There was an Underground Writers’ meeting last night, so we discussed how we did on our goals from last week, and what our new goals were.
Goals from last week:
- blog M-W-F (did it!)
- finish editing Hide-and-Seek (did it!)
- finish editing Guilty Conscience and submit it for critique (did it!)
- finish current chapter of Darkness Awakens (didn’t finish it, but I did work on it a little…)
Goals for the upcoming week:
- blog M-W-F
- critique Julia from the UW’s piece
- finish chapter 12 of Darkness Awakens
- look up markets for short story submissions
What I’ve been reading:
- Terry Pratchett’s The Color of Magic (about halfway through)
- Stephenie Meyers’ The Host (just started it – again)
- Tanya Huff’s The Enchantment Emporium (about halfway through)
- Lesley Livingston’s Wondrous Strange (done – it was lovely, can’t wait to read Darklight, the next book in the series)
- Evolve, a vampire anthology edited by Nancy Kirpatrick (done – very much enjoyed seeing all the different takes on vampires)
- Randolph Lalonde’s Fracture (done – can’t wait for Fragments to come out next month)
Well, as the title suggests, I’ve been getting some outdoor writing done. It’s just too nice out not to enjoy the weather. Actually, it’s getting a little gloomy and windy now, but earlier today it was lovely out. So I took advantage of that by working on my WIP out on the deck. Here is a picture of my “office” for today…
It was great, and I got a lot of writing done (close to 1000 words).
That’s it for me, for now. See you next week! 🙂
Posted in Writing
Tagged blogging, check-in, critique, Darkness Awakens, editing, Evolve, goals, Lesley Livingston, novel, Randolph Lalonde, short story, Stephenie Meyers, submission, Terry Pratchett, Underground Writers, work-in-progress, Writing
This is just a quick post to update you guys on where I am with my writing goals so far for the week. I have just finished edits and rewrites on Guilty Conscience, and have sent that out to the Underground Writers. I’ve crossed it off my checklist, and it felt pretty awesome.
I’ve also started edits on Hide and Seek, taking the critiques I received last time from the group and integrating their suggestions. I plan on finishing that tomorrow (well, technically today – Wednesday).
I’m thinking of setting up at Bell Park again for an afternoon of writing outside. It was awesome last week, even though I wasn’t at all productive. If I can get those edits done quickly enough, I want to get cracking on finishing the novel chapter. If I could actually reach all of my writing goals for the week, it’ll be a miracle. I honestly don’t remember the last time that happened.
Anyways, off to bed with me! (It’s one a.m. and I need some sleep!)
The following are my writing goals for this week (before Thursday, actually – for the Underground Writers’ meeting).
– edit Hide and Seek, which is the short story I submitted for critique last week
– finish and send out Guilty Conscience to the UW group (another horror short story I wrote a while back)
– finish the current chapter of Darkness Awakens (which I started writing in November :P)
– follow the new blog posting schedule (so far, so good)
So yeah, those are my goals this week. From now on, my Friday posts will include my writing goals for the next week.
I was thinking of making a regular “What I’ve been reading” feature on Fridays as well. Any thoughts on that?
First of all, I’ve obviously been slacking in the posting department, but that’s mostly because posting every single day was getting to be a little too much.
In order to fix these issues, I’ve decided to change my blog posting schedule – I will now be updating the blog every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday, at midnight my time. That way I’ll be able to (hopefully) keep a more regular schedule, instead of blogging whenever I feel like it/think about it. Knowing that I have three posts to write every week will help me get posts ready in advance too, which will make it easier for me.
I’m trying to make a lot of things more regular about my writing habits – namely when I write. I’m trying to establish a better defined routine so that I can be more productive again. I’ve been doing good lately, finishing a short story I’d been stuck on for months, outlining the novel, getting some new words down in the current chapter… Though this is awesome, I’d like to up my productivity even more.
I’ll let you guys know how that works out… 🙂
I don’t know if anyone else has this issue, but here’s my dilemma:
I love writing longhand. I feel as though my stories flow better that way, as though I put maybe just a little more thought into how I phrase things. But then, I have to type everything up, essentially giving myself twice the work. This then becomes a problem of time management.
And I also tend to edit as I’m typing, which is both good and bad. If it’s a short story and it’s already completed by the time I’m typing, then it’s good. If it’s a novel and I’m editing as I go, that’s bad because then I get stuck on the little details instead of moving forward with my work.
So usually, I just choose to do my writing on the computer, because it’s easier – and faster. I write pretty fast in longhand, but not nearly as quickly as I can type. Although I like doing both, if I were famous and could afford, say, a secretary, then I would write longhand and get someone else to type it. That would be awesome… lol.
Does anyone else struggle with this kind of thing?
Well, I guess you could say it’s an old short story, because I started it last summer… Regardless, I finished it last night! It came in at just short of 5000 words, most of which were written in the past two days. Now I’m trying to figure out which of my two possible titles is more effective, and whether the story would be stronger with or without my last paragraph. These are some of the reasons I’m so thankful to have the Underground Writers – I can run it by them, and I know they’ll give me honest feedback.
This story is a far cry from the fantasy stuff I usually write. It’s a dark comedy about a serial killer. And the thing is, I think it might be the best short piece I’ve ever written. I’m excited about it, and I can’t wait to hand it over to the writing group to see what they think. I’m hoping to actually *gasp* submit this one! 🙂
I have yet to submit anything, and that’s something I’m definitely hoping to change in the very near future. I have other pieces that are probably ready for submission as well, I just need to get my butt in gear. Within the next month or so, I want to have submitted at least one piece to a market. There it is in black and white, folks, now I have to do it.
I realize how dorky my title sounds, and that’s ok. 🙂
When I’m trying to make up character names (which is absolutely necessary when I’m writing a fantasy novel), I like to use letter magnets. That way, I can play around with the letters until I find a combination that I like, that sounds cool.
Weeeeell, when I tried to find myself some alphabet magnets, I had a hard time finding some. I don’t get it, you would think it would be an easy thing to find, but apparently not. Anyways, considering that I scrapbook and have a crazy amount of stickers and cardboard and stuff, I decided to make my own. So I went to Staples, bought a bunch of magnets, and got to work. Here’s the final product:
My kickass magnets 🙂
I know magnets aren’t exactly an exciting thing to read about, but I like them, and they’re a very helpful writing tool for me. 🙂
In addition to the Underground Writers, I sometimes participate in the Monday Night group too. This is a group of random people who get together to write. This is an open group, unlike the UW, so participation is more… sporadic. Well, mine is, anyway. I haven’t been going for a while, this week I did. I finished outlining another chapter of Darkness Awakens. Although that’s not a lot, it’s better than nothing.
I’ve been dealing with a lot of personal stuff so far this year, and things are just getting back to normal now. Hopefully that will translate into more writing soon. I haven’t been as productive this year as last year so far, but I’m hoping to change that soon.
One of the changes I want to make in order to up my productivity is going to the Monday night group more often. Like every week. I’ll keep you guys posted.
I have updated my writing playlist.
This is the music I listen to while I’m writing, and it changes, depending on what type of story I’m working on. (Obviously, Horror and Fantasy would require completely different mood music! :))
The new updated list can be found under the “Writing Playlist” tab at the top of this page! 😀
A blogger I follow, whose name is Matt, recently posted about what it is that inspires us, as writers, to write. Not just to communicate, but to tell stories. His original post can be found here:
This was my response to his question (what influences my writing):
I don’t ever remember not writing. It’s something that I’ve always loved to do, so I can’t say that I remember what it is that influenced me in the first place.
However, I must say that what influences my writing now, what helps me to grow as a writer and improve my craft is my writing group. In such a small city, I’ve been lucky to find such a great group of writers to work with. We meet weekly, and do critiques once a month. I’ve been more productive in the last year and a half (since we’ve formed our group) than all the other years combined.
Also, I read – a lot. This influences me all the time. “I wish I could write like this,” or “I want to write a story about something similar!” are things that I often find myself thinking. I also took a creative writing class during my undergrad. That was really cool because it gave me the opportunity to explore different genres and writing forms.
In February, I got my second tattoo – a small Chinese symbol (I believe it’s in cantonese) meaning “book” which represents my passion for writing. It’s on the inside of my right wrist. Here’s a picture:
Have you ever tried taking a picture of your own wrist?! It’s harder than it looks!!! 😛 (Especially considering that the button on my camera is much more easily pressed with the right hand…)
Posted in Writing
Tagged tattoo, Writing
With the Underground Writers, we set weekly writing goals, and I’ve realized that this would be a good place to post them, seeing as this blog is all about my writing habits.
So here they are:
– continue outlining Darkness Awakens (the novel in progress)
– get started on this new short story that I have bouncing around in my head
– blog another few times – I want to blog more regularly
I was listening to music with my friend the other day, when suddenly I had this ultra vivid image in my head of a short story I have to write. That’s right, I HAVE to write it. That happens to me sometimes, where I’m doing something and I get a scene or idea in my head that just won’t go away. I’m very much looking forward to working on it, and I’m thinking that I might put my outlining for the novel aside and just write this story. We’ll see. I’ll keep you posted. 😉
I have been spending the majority of my “writing time” outlining my current novel. It’s fun because these surprising things keep happening. A new character that I thought would be insignificant will have a severe impact on my main character, making her question everything she believed to be true. I can’t wait until I’m done the whole outline for the rest of the book, so that I can write these scenes. Outlining, something I did not do for any of the other novels I’ve tried to write, is something that I couldn’t go without anymore. It is absolutely essential to my writing now, as I don’t get writer’s block nearly as often as I used to. Knowing exactly where I’m going, having a clearly defined path to get there, makes all the difference in the world. At least to me it does. I look forward to the next step in the process, even though I’m having fun with this, too.
In case anyone is interested, I have a new Twitter account. Follow me @ ever_light. Will post more about Twitter at a later time.
Posted in Writing
So I’m still deciding whether or not I want to participate in Script Frenzy (and by that I mean if I’ll be writing an actual script). I’m thinking of writing a script for the novel I worked on for NaNoWriMo, because apparently when I’m going for a lot of words, I write “she told him this, and he told her that” instead of actual dialogue. This means I could just go through the whole thing and write the dialogue that SHOULD have been written in the first place, and insert it later. The problem with this is that I would actually have to go through my NaNo novel and check where I was missing conversations – any of you who have done NaNo probably understand why going through that mess is scary… lol.
Darkness Awakens is a project that I really look forward to picking up again as soon as I can, so it makes sense to me to start working on the missing dialogue now (and by “now” I mean “after exams”). Yes, I think that’s what I’ll do. Apparently I’ve made up my mind as I was writing this post. I’m funny like that.
Yup, plans are good. 🙂
Also, I’ve been getting some mental plotting done. I haven’t written any of it down, but I have been working things out in my mind and thinking about the story in general. Definitely looking forward to getting started on this again! 😀
I’m still having a hard time finding a balance between school and writing. I know that it’s understandable because I’m doing my Master’s, but I still wish that I could find more time to write without being worried that I won’t get my school stuff done on time. I can’t wait until next year when I’m done with school (finally!) and I’ll be able to struggle to find a balance between writing and work instead. 😛 Somehow I think that will be easier, though I’m sure that the other members of my writing group, who aren’t in school anymore, will disagree with that statement. Maybe I just need to tweak my routine more, find something else that works for me. That is my next endeavour… you know, once I’m done exams.
Posted in Writing
Tagged school, Writing
So the work-in-progress, previously known as Mist, then Ayana’s Gift for lack of a better title, now has a “real” title!!! Darkness Awakens is my NaNoWriMo novel from last November, which I am still working on. I’ve gotten further into writing this novel that I have on any of my other projects so far, and I will finish this one. That is my goal for 2010 – finish the first draft of Darkness Awakens. Wish me luck!
I’ll update on my progress once I start writing again (a.k.a. when school is done…)
Steph and I are now gearing up for Ad Astra, which is taking place next weekend. I’ve been buried in school work this past semester (as is the bane of Master’s students, I suppose) but I have decided that it’s time for me to do something about my lack of writing time lately.
I’ve been really annoyed that I don’t really have the chance to write as much as I would like to, and I can’t wait until two weeks from now when exams and everything are done so that I can FINALLY spend some time writing. I’ve been running a lot of scenes through my head, and I look forward to finally seeing them on paper. Soon, my lovelies.
Also, I have decided that I would post a preview of the current work in progress, Darkness Awakens on the blog. The second column of the blog is now entirely devoted to that preview. Please feel free to check it out and leave any feedback you might have. I’d appreciate it.
Another noteworthy fact: It’s SCRIPTFRENZY TIME! That’s right, April comes along, and a bunch of crazy people think it’s a good idea to write a 100 page script. (I have decided to do an abridged NaNo instead, writing 30000 words this month. I want to continue working on the current project, and if I’m going to dedicate that much time to a piece of writing, I want it to be something I’m passionate about. I love the novel so far, and want to make sure that I actually finish this draft…)
That’s all for me, for now. I will endeavor to blog again sometime in the next month… 😉