Saturday, December 8, 2012

I'm Actually Getting Good at This Stuff

  Well... Nanowrimo's over... and I'm still a failure. 

   I didn't reach my original 50,000 word goal, but you know what, life just gets in the way sometimes and I can't help that. The good news is, unlike last year, I've actually got a story developing that I like... a lot... and it's realistic fiction, which is very very very unlike me. I usually hate writing anything other than fantasy/ dystopia/ science fiction/ anything that basically could happen in real life, though I do enjoy reading some realistic stuff, I just don't like writing it myself. Except for this one book.

   To make a long story short, I was so excited about this story I was telling the basic plot line about it to my friends at school. Not spoiling too much, at one point in my story, Piper, the main character is very conflicted and needs to go to someone for help. Instead of going to Rylin (the person who she's been leaning on for everything through the entire novel) she goes to a guy named Shaft who drinks and smokes and the only reason she likes him is because he gives "good" advice. She ends up accepting drugs from him and basically just screws herself up.

  While I was explaining this to my friends I frustratedly groaned and said, "But she just had to go to Shaft, when Rylin was right there!"

   One of my friends started laughing, but I didn't get the joke. I was explaining the annoying lives of my characters. This was not a laughing matter! He just shook his head and said, "Giselle, I find it funny that your the one writing the book, yet your the one who gets angry at your characters."

   And then I had a realization. Some very respected authors will tell you they are not the creators of their world, but their characters are. For instance, in Stephanie Meyer's book, The Host, *spoiler alert* she said she never intended Ian to develop a relationship with Wanda, but Jared wouldn't stop being a jerk and Ian wouldn't shut up. 

  I think that kind of mindset is what all writers want, not to be frustrated with your characters, but to know them so well you know what kind of mistakes they'll make, and that's when they become real.

  The thought made me chuckle because I hadn't though about that before my friend brought it up, and I realized that hey, I'm actually getting good at this stuff.

Saturday, November 3, 2012

NANO WriMo, Not only do rivers whir, they whir and rush!

  I think we all know what time of year it is....


  This is my first year trying to be fully dedicated to finishing it, because I attempted last year and... well, I died would be an understatement. I can still hear the pathetic 40 words I wrote, not even worth putting up in the about my writing section, screaming for my attention. Sadly they won't get any.

  But that is besides the point!

  We all know the goal of NANO is to write 50,000 words by the end of the month. I refuse to believe it is just by accident that the NANO eve is Halloween because there is no way I could have gotten my head start on the thing, (5,00 words by the opposed to the normal 1,667) without my Halloween candy keeping me up.

  But 50,000 words is a lot for just a month, at least for me it is. I find myself when describing things, using more words than are necessary to boost up my word count by just that much.

  In fact, did you  know rivers whirred and rushed! Did you know food wasn't just delicious, but scrumptious?! Did you know flowers are pretty but beautiful as well?!

  These are the kinds of these that I can get by with... I know pathetic.

  Anyways, what kinds of strategies do you use to boost your word count, or just fufill the Nanoing goal of writing a book in a month?

Wednesday, October 10, 2012


  You know what I'm excited for?


Reached (Matched, #3)  Cassia faces the ultimate choices in the long-anticipated conclusion to the "New York Times" bestselling Matched Trilogy
After leaving Society and desperately searching for the Rising--and each other--Cassia and Ky have found what they were looking for, but at the cost of losing each other yet again: Cassia has been assigned to work for the Rising from within Society, while Ky has been stationed outside its borders. But nothing is as predicted, and all too soon the veil lifts and things shift once again.
In this gripping conclusion to the #1 "New York Times" bestselling Matched Trilogy, Cassia will reconcile the difficulties of challenging a life too confining, seeking a freedom she never dreamed possible, and honoring a love she cannot live without.

  For any of you who don't know, this is the third book in the Matched trilogy, a dystopian story by Ally Condie. I believe it to be, pretty much awesome. 

   Well, you know I'm excited! Though there's no trailer for Reached, there is one for Matched! So any of you who haven't read it, go on down to this trailer and behold it's glory!

Saturday, September 29, 2012

Some Back Story...

   Geez... I haven't blogged in forever. I will allow you all to cut off my hands now.Well, I was only joking. Let's not mutilate me please. I will be a good little blogger.

  So, I guess to make up for not blogging in a few weeks I'll be giving you guys a special treat. Today isn't really about advice to writing. It's about the evolution of writing in my own personal experience.

  That sounds too sciency.

  You'll find out what I mean soon enough.

  I remember when I was younger, I loved playing House with my sisters. That was the basic name we used for the game most everyone does as a child which is, play pretend. One of us was always a mom, two of us were sisters, and we would create a story from there. I loved playing it. I still, to this day, remember a story we made up once that made an impression on my mind.

  We were all laying on the couch, pretending the couch was a boat and we were stranded in the ocean. The mother (who was my older sister) had turned evil and was trying to throw me and my younger sister off board. So me and my younger sister were fighting to stay on while our older was tickling us, demanding us, doing anything she could to get us off. But we wouldn't get off.

  It isn't until now that I realize we were creating a story. Two sisters bonding against the tyranny of a mother. It was times like those as a child that I knew I loved making up stories.

  I went through life, never really thinking, oh, I know I want to be a writer when I grow up! I just knew I liked making stories.

  In recess at school everybody would go out to the field and I play kickball. I hate kickball. Always have, always will. Plus, I was always last to get picked. But my teachers usually wouldn't let us sit out. We had to do something. Nobody else wanted to do something besides play kickball, so I ended up being the loner child who walked around the field the entire recess. It was so boring just walking around and around and around. So to entertain myself, when I walked I made up stories in my head. At the end of recess I would be reluctant to leave because then I would have to leave my story. I didn't realize until about third grade that I didn't have to leave them. I could write them down.

  I was in the third grade  when I actually started writing, as in, grabbing a pencil and writing down the stories that floated around in my head. But I didn't write them in story form, I wrote them in script form.

  I still have some of those scripts stuffed up in an old drawer somewhere. I wrote one about a mermaid and her friend getting captured. I wrote one about a band of bugs that grew in friendship. I wrote one about Santa adopting a daughter (misspelling "dauter" the entire time.)

  I was so in to it! I tried to get my teachers have our class perform my "masterpieces." I even had my own editor. A friend of mine who being nine at the time, typed up my plays after I had written them. Did writing life get better than that?

  Yes, yes it does.

  I was in the fourth grade when there was a required writing test everyone had to take. You know, like those standardized tests at the end of the year, except in writer form. They gave you this fancy lined paper and everything. They told you to write about a topic they gave you, and then shoot off a story. My story was about a girl who gets a diamond encrusted wristwatch from her friend that turns out to be a time traveling watch. The diamonds were magic or something, I can't remember.

  I do remember getting excited about the story idea though, and writing it down happily. When I was finished I looked back at it and frowned, thinking, this needs a re-write. My inner editor was screaming at me even at the age of nine. Oh joy...

  This was a timed test, about four hours long, and when everyone else was sitting at their desks doodling on leftover notebook sheets I was still writing away, erasing over things, narrowing stuff down, making alternate endings. I felt like a dummy. You know that feeling when everybody else in a room is finished with a test except for you, and you feel like everybody is watching you, waiting for you to finish. Yeah, that's what I felt like.

  Eventually the test had to be turned in and my teacher came over. The story was in what I now realize as maybe third draft stage, when I had to turn it in, thinking, this is terrible! I'm going to be the only one who gets a horrible score because I didn't have enough time. The scores were based off of numbers, as all standardized tests usually are. 1, being the lowest which means you utterly sucked, just in nicer terms. 2, not very good, better than 1, but you still failed. 3 ranged from anywhere from satisfactory to good.Give yourself a pat on the back. 4 up to 4.5 was that was amazing!

  I was thinking I would get maybe a 2, if I was lucky, with the monster I had created.

  I got a 4.5.

  The day my teacher told us we were having circle time or something like that and said she had gotten an email from the school board about all of our tests scores, and one of us had gotten a perfect score. There were some snickers of students guessing who it was, some smart kids in the class, pointing fingers. I was only thinking, definitely not me. And then the teacher pointed in my direction. 

  I swear I could feel my heart drop in my stomach.

  I was the only kid in the school who had gotten a perfect score, and like one of five kids in the state. To me, that was the craziest thing in the entire world. How could little old me be given a perfect writing score? Perfect! That nasty old story was anything but perfect. Magic time traveling diamonds...

  I got a plaque at the end of the year that had my name on it and everything. It was all too surreal. Teachers suddenly decided that I was destined to become a little author, and sent me off to yearly young writer's conferences.

  And I loved every minute of those conferences.

  I think it was then that I realized that I loved writing. I still wasn't thinking about writing for a career, I just knew what I liked doing, and that's what took up every minute I wasn't doing something in my hectic fourth grade schedule...

  Time went on and I kept on writing little plays, I wrote some short stories as well. It wasn't until the sixth grade that I actually got struck with an idea, but realized, this idea is too big for my little stories. I had the premise for a book working out for me, but I never really entertained the idea that I could actually write a novel until I read the book Airborn by Kenneth Oppel.
  This book will always hold a special place in my heart because it's what got me actually "writing-writing." If that's the term for writing books. I was so enthralled by it, from it's explosive beginning to the cliff hanger ending (seriously, I would consider this book an amazing read for whoever wants to read it.) I finished it in one sittting and then sat there thinking it needed a sequel (it does have one by the way, but I didn't know that at the time.)

  I had one of those my-lfe-can-never-be-the-same-because-this-book-is-over moments. Kind of like the end of Harry Potter, or the Hunger Games. I didn't have anything else to read though, and it would be a long time before I got another book (I was on winter vacation or something like that.)

  And then I had the epiphany where the clouds opened up and angels sang from above.

  I could write my own adventure, but in the way I want to. Not just in a little skit form, and not in just a two paged short story. I wrote the first chapter to my book A Room For Lost Souls that night.

  Little did I know what I was getting myself in to, but I liked writing, loved it actually. I wrote in a very naive blissful kind of way, but isn't that what the first blooming of writers supposed to look like?

  And that's how my writing life started, kind of like a domino effect, one after the other.

  Years would pass and more novels would pop out. Secrets about the writing world became known to me and those secrets shaped me in to a better writer.

 I am still waiting for the day when I get to say: And then I wrote my debut novel. That day will come sooner or later, but for now I am a fifteen year old girl who just likes writing stories that I want to read, and in some ways I still feel like the seven year old fighting off  my sister to stay on board the couch.

Monday, September 3, 2012

School's Starting Again...

  So... school.... *insert synchronized sigh here.*

  It's started back up again, and you know what that means. Homework, homework, a little bit of play practice, homework, maybe some sleep, homework, more homework, homework, oh and did I mention homework?

  It doesn't really help that I'm taking AP World this year which is supposedly the hardest class you will ever take in the history of your high school life (not sure if I believe that yet.)  And with school means more plays, since it's required to do at least two plays a year at my school.

  Oh, and none of us can ever forget seminary, can we?
  (For those of you wondering, seminary is this thing we Mormons do where we get up in the morning at five and go to church. Fun, right?)


  With all of this stuff going on, it's hard fitting writing time anywhere here. So, how does one master the art of time management?

  As writers, that's something we all should learn. Something that helps me manage time is keeping a schedule. It's just a basic set up for what I do every day and where writing slots fit. I have one, but it's not like a follow it to the very last minute type of schedule. Just an outline.

  5-Get up and go to seminary
  7-8:30- Writing Time before school
  9-4- School
  4-4:45- Chores around the house and the occasional snack
  4:45- 6 or 7ish or 8 (Depending on the homework load)- Homework
  6 or 7ish or 8- 9- Writing Time
  9-10- Whatever I want time (Most days this transforms in to writing time)
  10- Go to bed

  And then I get up and start the pattern all over again! Yay for monotony!!!! With this I can basically see where I can squeeze writing time in. Of course, eating finds it way in there and some bathroom breaks (unless, you know, you want to become a starved person with a bladder infection.)

  I know extracurricular things come along. With the plays I'm in the rehearsal usually go from 4:30 to 7, taking up much of my homework time. I have church activities as well and later in the season basketball. These can all get tangled and mess with a perfect little schedule you have mapped out in your head. That's why it's best to get ahead of your writing if you can. Instead of writing 2,000 words, maybe add an extra 100. Those words will pile up and make up for lost time.

  Through all of this it's always important to keep your writing time holy. Don't just waste it by re-reading old writing, or staring at the computer screen wondering what to say next, or being persuaded by the evil internet icon and having hour long journeys on Facebook. Not that that's ever happened to me before though... *coughs nervously.*

  So, as a writer time management is something you need to master. Which in the end will benefit you and your writing.

Sunday, August 19, 2012

Origin Giveaway!

  Hey guys!

  Brand new author, Jessica Khoury is having an awesome giveaway over there on her blog, Go check it out! It includes tons of fantastical prizes you'll be sure to love.
Origin, the new YA novel by Jessica Khoury, is about to come about! Super excited for this one! To find out more about check out this website

  And look at this awesome trailer!

  Be excited. I know I am.

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Dear Diary Blogfest

  I am back from camp, and it was awesome!

  So Katie over in Fiction Diaries is doing a blog fest. Basically you are supposed to list 100 random things about yourself... Well (cracks knuckles) Here I go!

1. I love Sesame Chicken.
2.I am Mormon, and I love being it!
3.I am the second oldest in a family of six kids, ranging from seventeen to ten months.
4. I have braces.
5. I never change the color of my braces. They will stay blue!
6. I go to an arts school for Drama.
7. I love acting (if it wasn't obvious from the drama program I'm in)
8. I am writing a series.
9. I have been writing since I was twelve.
10. I just started writing a new book about human plant-hybrids... and I couldn't be more excited.
11. I have misophonia, which basically means I want to punch anybody who chews loudly.
12. I am part Hispanic.
13. I am part white.
14. I have waist length curly hair.
15. The longest I've ever stayed up writing was until five in the morning.
16. During the summer I am a bum.
17. I am addicted to the show Avatar The Last Airbender!
18. I have created four Cosplay costumes for the character Katara, all were hand sewn.
19. And yes, when I was ten I cut pieces of blue fabric, tied them to my wrists, slashed my siblings back and told everyone I was a waterbender.
20. I recently spent three days in the woods, dressed as pioneer, pulling a hand cart, with no showers.
21. I have also recently spent a week in the woods, not dressed as a pioneer but having an awesome time at camp. 
22. I am afraid of manatees. 
23. I love lemon doughnuts.
24. I used to write plays.
25. I discovered writing plays isn't as fun as novel writing because you only get the dialogue.
26. I have tons of cousins.
27. I am typing right now on this laptop.
28. I am now discovering writing 100 things about yourself is harder than it looks.
29. Oooh! 100 years ago the Titanic sank, and I love that movie. 
30. I have not seen Avengers, though I want to badly.
31. My favorite song right now is "Set Fire to the Third Bar" by snow patrol.
32. I am fifteen years old (can't believe I didn't think of that one earlier.)
33. Hunger Games is my favorite series.
34. It is also my favorite book.
35. I share a room with six year old little brother and four year old little sister. 
36. Due to this my room never stays clean for long.
37. I speak Spanish.
38. I also speak English.
39. You are now realizing that, that was obvious.
40. My mother also grew up in a family of six.
41. I feel like a criminal reading the books at Barnes and Noble because I haven't payed for them. 
42. Reading the books at Barnes and Noble is oh, so tempting though.
43. Did I mention I love sesame chicken? Well I also love any Chinese food.
44. I have discovered editing is a crap load of work.
45. So is writing.
46. I wouldn't be writing if I cared about the work load.
47. I'm almost half way to the half way mark!
48. I once watched the LOTR trilogy on the way to Nauvoo.
49. I fell asleep and missed most of the second movie.
50. I've reached the half point line!
51. On that same trip to Nauvoo I rode there in a care with no air conditioning.
52. Because of this we had the windows down half the time
53. Remember what I said about my hair being waist length? That came as a problem when my hair started whipping people's faces. 
54. I eventually decided to stuff my face under a pillowcase to cover my hair and I looked like this...
55. And no, Nauvoo is not a planet from Star Wars. 
56. That trip was particularly big because it involved all our family, cousins included.
57. I am now moving off of the topic of Nauvoo.
58. I hate make up.
59. I never carry around a purse.
60. In short, I am not a girly girl.
61. I recently read the ending book of the Maximum Ride series. 
62. The ending was horrendous.
63. I still haven't gotten my school summer reading book.
64. I love gummy bears.
65. I love gummy worms just as much.
66. I eat them even if I do have braces.
67. I eat a lot of things I'm not supposed to eat while on braces.
68. My dream role is probably Carlotta fro POTO.
69. I would want to play her because she has an amazing vocal range and her character is so funny.
70. "They lov-ed me! Love-ed me, lov-ed me!'- Favorite quote from Carlotta.
71. I recently watched Love Never Dies, which is the sequel to POTO.
72. It was amazing!
73. I am realizing for the second time how hard coming up with 100 things about yourself is.
74. If I could pick a cartoon character to marry it would be Sokka.
73. I would pick him because he is so funny.
74. "This drink, I like it. ANOTHER! *smashes cup on ground*"- Thor. Favorite movie line right now.
75. I like wearing flip flops.
76. It's a pain in the butt finding socks.
77. I almost always wear mismatched socks when I do where socks.
78. I also wear knee length mismatched socks that I roll down to my ankles.
79. I think fluffy pillows are amazing when you are tired.
80. I love the Gallagher Girls series.
81. I love the book Matched and Crossed.
82. I love Divergent and Insurgent.
83. Now I am just naming books I like. 
84. I have an obsession with plums. 
85. I also have an obsession with grapes. 
86. I have too many inside jokes with too many friends to count.
87. I love the musical Wicked. 
88. I love eating s'mores year round.
89. If you didn't know, s'mores are a year round snack.
90. I know almost every line from Nacho Libre.
91. I love love love orange juice, I could drink that stuff by the gallon.
92. I could eat breakfast items for lunch and dinner. They are the best!
93. I hate ice in my drinks.
94. Right now I am in fuzzy pajamas. 
95. I have discovered my brother's laugh is the cutest thing in the world.
96. I have always wanted to have a Hunger Games themed camp where everyone wore flags, and if your flag was pulled you had been killed. I have this game plotted out in my head.
97. It bugs me when people say, oh your writing a book. Are you going to publish it? Well... I want to, but that may take years...
98. I only have two more things to say about myself left!
99. I try to keep up a journal, but I always fail. Though right now I've been pretty consistent. 
100. I love running around the woods pretending I am Katniss.

*Whew* Imagine me wiping my brow and then collapsing on the floor from utter exhaustion.
Well that's it! Don't worry I haven't actually died. Head on over to fiction diaries if you want to see what other people are participating.

Thursday, July 26, 2012

I'm Off to Camp!

  I'm going to camp, guys!
   It's a camp I've been going to yearly since I was twelve and love it dearly. I'm super excited to go, packed up already and could leave in a second's notice. I'll be leaving tomorrow morning!

  However, that also means I will have vanished from the blogging world for a while. I will be back soon, I promise! Also with new writerly advice! I'll come back with a fresh view of the outside world, considering I haven't done much outside of my little corner where I write. The mountain air of Hanging Rock should do the trick.

  Hope you guys have a great time in your writing endeavors, I for one will be enjoying time spent trying not die while white water rafting.

Saturday, July 21, 2012

Letter to my Novel

  Writing a letter to your novel is a fun thing to do! Even if it is a dear John. It's a book I started writing when I was twelve and now I can't stand to look at it. So here it is, you guys ought to try it sometime.

Dear A Room For Lost Souls,                                                          
  Life is tough with you. 
  I remember you started off as a dream, literally. I woke up and wrote down the idea that started you on a random old bill sitting in the house and eye liner (for lack of a better writing utensil.) I was too excited to get started, I was immature, and I didn't know any better. I started off with you, and I didn't see any flaws, you were my first novel after all. I wrote and wrote and wrote, we had such good times.
  I remember that flush of excitement I would get when a new idea for you sparked, every time I was with you, you were what seemed like my soul mate (see title above, hint play on words ;) )
  I began to grow too attached to you, still too young to see your flaws. But, my ideas seemed to grow longer and longer and because they grew I began to grow as well. When I reached thirteen I was slowly starting to realize that I was sorely inexperienced. And when I took a better look at you, began to see what was wrong. I worked through it though, told myself we would come out of this rough patch. 
  We never did. 
  I began to see every one of your flaws, from the sloppy inexperienced writing towards the beginning, and the odd ending beginning to start. Not to mention when we started this whole ordeal your font was 18 (don't know what I was thinking), and when I tried to change you you were suddenly 200 pages less, leaving me with a measly 100 pages.
  Many months passed, I told myself I just needed time alone, time to think about you. I dabbled in some short stories, but never returned to you. I tried to give you one last shot and pulled up the dusty file you were under in my flash drive. When I saw you again after so long I'd thought I'd be happier to see you, but you had grown even more odd. I could have fixed you. But that would have been a long lengthy process that I just wasn't ready for.
   And then I met Manipulated. He came along in the June of 2011, a bright day, I was trying to get over you, his new shiny idea was too much to overlook. I'm sorry A Room For Lost Souls, but it's time to say goodbye. I won't dispose of you, I may even return to you one day, but don't get your hopes up. Manipulated is just so much more attractive. He's flexible, compatible, something you weren't.
  And so you lay in that dusty old file, unfinished, unedited, unreliable. 
  I am sorry for this harsh Dear John letter but it is true. Don't lose self confidence though, you have a good premise working out for you. I might rewrite you, if I ever feel like it. Remember the good times we had together, and don't think about what we could have been, it will only make the separation harder. Goodbye! 

Aaah... the imaginary world we writers live in where we send break up letters to our novels. It's a pleasant place isn't it?

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Nobody's story is your story

  I keep scrolling through writing blogs, looking at random advice from professional authors. I can't tell you how many hours I've spent reading the archives of my favorite author's blogs.

  I've seen a pattern though.

  I like reading about authors stories, how they got published, where they got the idea for a certain book I liked of theirs, and I realized, no author has the exact story.

  Some of the authors spent years writing books they've never published. Others had only written one book, and that was the one that got published. Rick Riordan had gotten an adult's novel published before Percy Jackson came in to view. Christopher Paolini, J.K Rowling, and Stephanie Meyer all had only written one book before they were published, the one they published, and look at what wild successes those stories were.

  Then you see many authors, like Ally Carter, Suzanne Collins, Ally Condie. They had other books out before they really had a huge hit with specific ones.

  But then there are the other authors who've written a plethora of books before they were published. 

  I sometimes look at how an author's life has turned out and try to match that up with mine. I find myself thinking, so, if they had written three books that were never published, but then got a bestseller on the first one that was, then that means the one I'm writing right now will never get published, and I have to write more. Or, they tried to get published in high school, but didn't and were eventually published when they were in their twenties. That means, I won't get published until I'm at least twenty-six or something... 

  But then I snap myself out of it. 

  Because their life isn't my life. 

  It never will be.

  I don't know where I'll end up in the publishing industry down the road. I could strike up luck with the series I'm writing now, or maybe I won't. 

  I could be a bestselling author by the time I'm twenty-one, or I could try my whole life and never get anything published. 

  There's a world of possibilities out there. 

  So just because one author did one certain thing, and another author did another, doesn't mean that's how every author's story is going to turn out. 

  My dream is the same as theirs and countless others. 

  I just have to be patient, write my best, and find out where it leads me.

Saturday, July 14, 2012

The Things We Writers do for Our Writing

  I had a wow, this is really strange moment the other day when I typed in to the google word search, "can you eat raw fish?" 

  I'm not very informed on the whole raw vs cooked thing and pathogens and what not. 

  And then I realized, how many times had I looked up very strange random questions like that on Google? The answer is many, many times. I've asked Google questions like how far is the trip by boat from Hawaii to California? Can a person be stabbed by a knife in the stomach and survive? What happens when someone gets blood poisoning? 

  Not the average every day search people put in. 

  We writers do strange things for our writing. I think I've mentioned on here before how I walked barefoot around the forest because I wanted to know what it felt like. I needed better descriptions. As it turns out it is very painful.

  It's also happened that we were having a nice family dinner when someone brought something or another up, and I just got this glassy stare in my eyes, pumped my fist in the air and shouted "Inspiritation!" 

  I've heard stories about people who've taken trips to places like the alps and the jungle to get a better view of the scenery that takes place in their books. 

  It really is crazy.

  What kind of crazy things have you ever done for your writing?

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

How Much Crying is too Much Crying?

  My main character is a cry baby.

  I just realized that.

  She cries too much, but she has reason to when she does. She's sees people die, people she knew, people she cared about. But sometimes I worry she cries too much. I can't have a good epic climactic crying fest because I feel like every other chapter she has one.

  I tried to build her up strong, and she mostly is, but she just cries a lot.

  Like a girl on her period. I don't care how strong of a girl you are. You can be Wonder Woman for all I care, but when you are one your period you cry at least twice a day. I am slowly starting to wonder if my MC is on it 24/7, and because there is not chocolate in the world she lives in, she is succumbing to the dark abyss.

  She just cries too much!

  And most of the crying occurs inside of my lead character guy's chest.

  I mean he never cries, but then my main character is just like *boo-hoo* I need a shoulder to cry on, oh here's this hunky guy, let me just soak his t-shirt, I haven't done that in a few hours. 


  So, how can I, when my characters won't stop their wailing, tell you how much crying is too much?

  Simple, I cannot.

  But at the same time I can!

  Crying is different for all of us. You may have never seen your Mother cry, while some people see her cry every day. You may cry when you got a C on your math test, but some people smile and say, at least I'm not failing. (Don't have that kind of attitude by the way.)

  I can tell you I'll cry at appropriate times, weddings, funerals, the end of the Harry Potter series...

  But do you? Do weddings really make you tear up a little? Does the end of the most epic series that ever walked the planet make you feel like you are slowly spiraling in to a bottomless pit of nothingness??!!

  It comes the time to ask yourself. Does your main character really need to cry here? Based on their personalities would they cry their guts out and hack up their lungs in the process, or would they shed a little tear and shred on through? So, now that you understand what crying is really about, ask yourself. Is your character cold and hateful? Then why is she bawling to the movie The Notebook?

  Now on the other hand if you have a ditsy blonde, let her cry to whatever chick flick she feels like! 

  Like the first world problems lady, would your character really cry because the remote was on the other side of the room? 

  I know my character is the strong type, but she's the strong type that ends up strong through their trials. She tries to take on things that eventually break her, but as Kelly Clarkson would say while pumping her fist in the air; What doesn't kill you makes you stronger!!

  So she has a reason to cry so much. She really can't handle what is happening to her. At least not yet, and she lets it out the only way she knows how to. Crying. And that's just how it'll be because she's who she is. And I can't change that. (Well, technically I can, but in the world of books let's pretend I can't.)

  Now if you came up to me and told me my main character was crying her guts out because someone ate the last brownie, then that would be odd.

  That kind of crying belongs to the world of characters in the their toddler years.

  But, please, listen to me when I say this. Even if your character does cry a lot, don't write unnecessary long descriptions about how much their chest ached and their breathing was rapid and the tears fell like waterfalls.

  We get it, your crying really hard. Now shut up so we can get along with the story!

  So, to cry or not to cry?

  That is the question.

  I guess you and your character will just have to figure that out yourselves.

Monday, July 9, 2012

Moving the Story Along- or for Short, Pacing

  All right, as you can see from the title up there today's topic is about keeping a fast pace, or moving the story along.

  So, how does one do this kind of thing? First off, you need a good and steady plot. The plot is the thing that drives the story, it's the very essence of what your book is about. It's the thing that brings conflict and the thing that makes your reader hungering for more. Without a good plot your basic story would look like this:
  Once upon a time there lived a little girl. The end.
  Ok... what did that have to do with anything?

  Absolutely nothing. 

  There was no story, no conflict, no hero saves the day, no meaning. Nada. 

  Now, if you want an example of a story with an amazing plot take  The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins. I know you've probably all read it, so bear with me when I explain this.

  She has the perfect set up, immediately describing what life is like in District 12 and she doesn't waste time by delving right in to the story by having Katniss volunteer as tribute in the first chapter. The story continues with fast pace and there's no lagging. There's a perfect amount of conflict that evens itself out as the story continues, and then leaves you hungering for more when the story's over. 

  Make sure your plot is tight and you know what's going to happen next. Writing is all about looking ahead. To move the story along you must have some plan for how things are going to work out. That's why plot plays such a big part in the pacing.

  Once you know your plot, roll with it! Here's where the major part of pacing comes along. You have to make sure your explaining the plot evenly with no lagging. That means no side stories! The events in a book should all help move the story along. If it doesn't, then cut it.
  Oh, but, Johny and Susan are my favorite couple in my book! I should write another love scene between them and add it somewhere. 

  No, you don't. If you already have it set up that Johny and Susan are together don't add unnecessary love scenes. The same goes for everything else. Don't just write little day to day things the character does. Don't write a whole chapter about how Susan did her laundry. That's boring. Now if Susan was doing her laundry when BOOM, the phone rings and it's Johny calling about he wants to break up with her, then yes, add that, it moves the story along. Even if it is heart breaking. 

  Also, don't add unnecessary long descriptions. That's how you lose readers and it keeps the pace of the story down.
  But the trees looked so beautiful that day. Their leaves seemed to shimmer under the bright summer sun. They danced with the wind and shimmied through the air. Green blurs filled the sky as the leaves fluttered down and.... 

  No! You start to lose people. I bet I lost half of you in that little description of the trees leaves.

  I know some of you will protest when I bring up the next thing that helps the pacing. 

  Having an outline. 

  If you have an outline of the story you'll know what you need to write, and you won't write yourself in to corners, where you don't know what happens next. That also leaves people uninterested. I've done that before... and that's where disasters come in to play. 

  Trust me, outlines are very useful and they keep you one your toes. I could go on and on about them, but I'll save them for another blog post.

  So, that's the insiders edition to pacing. I hope it'll help you move your story along without all those sappy Johny Susan moments.

Saturday, July 7, 2012

What I listen to as I Write

  Howdy all!

  I've mentioned on here before how music influences our writing. So, I'd thought I'd share with you guys my basic playlist for the book I am currently editing Manipulated. They each pertain to my book in a certain way, whether it's the meaning, or I just thought the tune fit.

1.   Snow Patrol- "Set Fire To The Third Bar"
 I find the map and draw a straight line
Over rivers, farms, and state lines
The distance from 'A' to where you'd be
It's only finger-lengths that I see
I touch the place where I'd find your face
My finger in creases of distant dark places

2.   Superchick- "Stand In The Rain"
She never slows down.
She doesn't know why but she knows that when she's all alone, feels like its all coming down
She won't turn around
The shadows are long and she fears if she cries that first tear, the tears will not stop raining down

3.   Athlete- "Rubik's Cube"
The world is too heavy,
Too big for my shoulders,
Come take the weight off me, now.
Thousands of answers,
To one simple question,
Come take the weight off me, now.

4.   Florence and the Machine- "Breath of Life"  
 I was looking for a breath of life
For a little touch of heavenly light
But all the choirs in my head say, no oh oh

5.   Florence and the Machine- "Cosmic Love"
A falling star fell from you heart and landed in my eyes
I screamed aloud, as it tore though them and now it's left me blind
The stars, the moon, they have all been blown out
You left me in the dark
No dawn, no day, I'm always in this twilight
In the shadow of your heart

6.   Marianas Trench- "Beside You"
When your tears are spent on your last pretense 
And your tired eyes refuse to close and sleep in you defense.
When it's in your spine like you've walked for miles 
And the only thing you want it just to be still for a while.

7.   Lights- "Pretend"
Once in awhile I act like a child to feel like a kid again
It gets like a prison in the body I'm living in
Cause everyone's watching and quick to start talking, I'm losing my innocence
Wish I were a little girl without the weight of the world

8.   Aqualung and Lucy Schwartz- "Cold"
God and His priests and His kings
All were waiting
All will wait
As they go over

9.   Paramore- "We Are Broken"
I am outside
And I've been waiting for the sun
And with my wide eyes
I've seen worlds that don't belong
My mouth is dry with words I cannot verbalize
Tell me why we live like this

10. Paramore- "Ignorance"
You treat me just like
Another stranger
Well it's nice to meet you sir
I guess I'll go
I best be on my way out

11. Fireflight- "Unbreakable"
Where are the people that accused me?
The ones who beat me down and bruised me
They hide just out of sight
Can't face me in the light
They'll return but I'll be stronger

12. Plumb- "I Can't Do This" 
I'm standing still
I'm oh, so peaceful
I cant pretend, that I'm fine
I get so ill, crazy, agitated
When I've not really died

13. Taylor Swift - "Haunted"
You and I walk a fragile line
I have known it all this time
But, I never thought I'd live to see it break

14. The Civil Wars- "Falling"
Haven't you seen me sleepwalking 'cause I've been holding your hand
Haven't you noticed me drifting
Oh, let me tell you I am

15. Once-"Falling Slowly"
Take this sinking boat and point it home
We've still got time
Raise your hopeful voice you have a choice
You've made it now

  *Whew* These are all great songs, I love them to death. Well, that would be my playlist for the book I'm writing right now. Any specific songs you guys love to listen to while writing?

Thursday, July 5, 2012

Reasoning for the New Layout and Ttile

  Hey guys!

  Well, as you can tell the blog has taken a new format. It's always kind of changing but now there is a reason for this new design, and I intend to keep it that way.

  I was scrolling through some of the photos that blogger has to offer and found this lovely photo of a city. *Gestures hands towards background.* It is more than lovely actually, it is mesmerizing. This photo is a tapestry of shaded green lights, glistening jeweled water, things that catch the eye, that all glow under a beautiful  sky decorated in a green haze. And that, is exactly what I try to capture when I write. Mesmerizing details and descriptions, beautiful scenery that leaves you feeling like you've just been there. Truly mesmerizing books. That's what I want.

  I always try to hint in little details about my writerly life when I blog. Where I am at the moment, and how everything is going. Editing is where I am at this exact moment, and through editing I've come to realize that goal that I want. Mesmerizing writing.

  And so, I properly changed the title of this blog, to demonstrate what it really is about, what the goal is. Along with this change I will trying to update more often, at least a couple of times a week.

  So, followers, perusers of blogs, any one interested in writing. I hope that this blog can shape that goal in your minds and make you want to mesmerize your readers, just as much as I want to.

  Besides, what is life without those truly mesmerizing moments?

Friday, June 29, 2012


 Hmmm, well I was going to write some extremely mind provoking post about writing that leaves you tantalized with thoughts about your new work in progress... 

  But then I got lazy. 

  Sooo, this post is about being lazy. 

  I've mentioned the disease author-itise here before, and now I'm going to mention it again. As I have said I have an extreme case. No, I mean like extreme. All I do is sit on my butt all day, write, get writer's block (the kind where you have no motivation for anything), attempt to get up and do something productive, then settle for having an all out Avatar the Last Airbender marathon with some Korra on the side.

  If you did not know this about me, I am an absolute Avaterd. The obsessive geeky kind who makes cosplay costumes.

  But, back on track! 

  This is an unhealthy cycle, (taken frome experience) and because of this, in the time I could have writen 2,000 words, I've only written 1,000. 


  That is the perfect word to describe my writing rut. 


  Great, now my vocabulary has turned to the inferior means of communication that was once utilized by prehistoric men. 


  Some things that have helped me escape the writing trap are little tricks. 

  First and foremost!!!

  Always, and I mean always have a tab open for your current WIP. That little space at the bottom of your browser will appear in your mind and send you on a guilt trip if you do not have it open. 


 Turn off your internet, if possible. If you can turn your internet off, do it now! (Well, not right now, because your reading this blog post, but I mean when you need to write.) No internet, no hours wasted! 


  Get your own motivation. Sometimes the motivation we need won't just come to us, we need to force ourselves to write, and even if we write crap, that's all right (this is what editing is for.) Don't peruse the internet in hopes of finding some random motivation in all those facebook news feeds. If worse comes to worse and you simply cannot write, get up, do stuff! 

  In my world, having an Avatar marathon is considered stuff, so I am safe from this post...... (smiles weakly) 

 I'm joking. But, I have taken this advice seriously before and it does help. As soon as this blog post is done I will be on my book, forcing myself to edit. Just keep at it, the laziness will subside soon enough when your story keeps growing. 

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Summer and Portals to Other Worlds

  Summer! My favorite time of the year. Where days can be wasted away spent on writing and books galore await for your amusement. 

  Yesterday was my birthday, and I am happy to say I racked up (is that how you spell it?) when it comes to books! Five new ones!! (And I got an ipod!!!) 

   Anyways, back on track. 

  One of my favorite things to do is go to Barnes and Noble to write. I don't know, Barnes and Noble just gets you in the mood. The library doesn't, but something about that bookstore tickles the inner author in me. Maybe it's the millions of books stuffed through out the store, or when you go to the YA section you pick out a spot for where your book is going to be placed when it gets published (mine was in between The Hunger Games and Divergent) A girl can dream! 

  One of my birthday presents was an all day trip to Barnes and Noble where I wrote... and wrote.... and wrote.............and wrote. And boy, was it a blast!

  There's something motivating about sitting at a Cafe drinking hot chocolate and writing, rather than lying in your bed with a cup of water, writing.

  This is what I like to call the book portal! (Another made up term of mine) The book portal is the part of your mind that shifts you in to another world that the book is setting up, either a book you are writing or reading. The book portal is thicker when things distract you i.e internet, homework, and it's also thicker when your environment isn't very relaxing i.e my room. 

  The book portal, however, is extremely thin at Barnes and Noble. I can get transported instantly to my book. I rarely get there that quickly and then I don't usually stay there very long, but today was a special occasion.

  Ok... well my book portal metaphor is a kind of flawed, but I think you get my point. 

  Environment impacts writing a lot. Anytime I go to somewhere like Barnes and Noble I get sucked in and I want to write. Then there are days when I map out my writing and tell myself I will write, but then I just... don't.

Good areas in the world for me where the portal is thin are:
  -Barnes and Noble (or any good bookstore) 
  -Near water, like a lake or shore. 
  -In Nature 
  Where are some places you like to write?

Monday, May 14, 2012

Donut Pirates and Repetive Words

  At this very moment I am procrastinating editing Manipulated. The reason I stopped was this... 

  Repetitive words and actions. 

  How many freaking times do I have to say that Kya gulped, or that her eyes are blue green, or that she shakes her head a lot, or that she sighed.

  Blah, just BLAH!

  These are the very things that get on my nerves in books, and I am a hypocrite because I do the same thing. But seriously, what am I thinking when I type out the words, My blue green eyes peered around the corner

  Sheesh! I already know that your eyes are blue green, Kya! Don't tell me again! 

  See! This is what happens when I get frustrated, I yell at the characters in my head, even though it's not their faults I make them think those words, I was the one who wrote them down.

  So, as you can tell this blog post is about refraining from using repetitive descriptions/ words.

  We must face the truth. First drafts are messy, they always will be (unless you edited while crazy when you were writing, which I don't suggest because that is another story for another day.) In those first drafts there will be crap, and then you write the second draft which I dedicate to plot and character structure, (which I just finished by the way) And, maybe by then you can start doing the third draft which I call the magical-turn-crap-writing-into-beautiful-sparkly-like-Edward, draft.

  But alas, the third draft is usually working on things like the above, repetitive words and descriptions. In some parts of the book my MC is tired, or sad, or happy. But, I don't have to write about the physical reactions she has every single moment because she's feeling those emotions. 

  "I gulped and let out a sigh, seating myself on the bed. My blue green eyes traced the side of of Jet's hands, cold and unmoving." - Excerpt from first draft. 

   I hope you can all see that this line is not going to make the cut. Do I care that she sighed, do I care that she gulped, do I give a crap that her eyes are blue green (I cannot stress that enough, I don't care!) 

  One of the things that is extremely important it to make sure the reader will care about what the sentence has to say. As an example I am going to post a Julian Smith video (and if you don't know who Julian Smith is, shame on you!) It's mostly just an excuse to post a hilarious video, but it does help. A lot of the video doesn't really have anything to do with writing, but feel free to laugh anyways, I'll explain the significance when your done watching.  
  Oh so hilarious! Anyways...

  Near the end of the video the little boy screams out "I do-nut care!" (yes he said donut.) Readers will feel like this, when we write repetitive words and phrases down. Nobody cares that your MC has raven hair if you've already made it clear, nobody cares that she sighs every single time they sit down, nobody cares how hot the summer sun was if you've already mentioned it fifty-bagillion times. And just like Jeffrey, you will be dumped in to the sea and eaten by the sarks (yes sarks) if you don't learn to stop it!

  How do we resist these types of words/ phrases, though?

  In the first draft... we don't. At least I don't. Usually in my first draft I just let myself write what I write, whatever comes out. It's the editing that this comes in to play. 

  Take a look at your writing. Make sure everything you've written the reader will care about, or needs to know. Take the example from above. I can edit that to say "I seated myself on the bed while my eyes traced the side of Jet's hands, cold and unmoving. " In that sentence, we only know what we need to know. That Kya is eyeing Jet's hand and that she's sitting on the bed. 

  That doesn't mean though that you can't mention if your character did something that may seem useless. If your character is sad, it's all right to mention that she/he sighed, or if their aggravated they rolled their eyes. Just don't mention it repeatedly, once you've already set up something there's no need to say it over and over again. Use things like that in moderation. Like desserts!

  So, even if you feel the need to mention how your character ran his/her fingers through their hair ten million times in a single chapter, resist the urge! Because then your readers will not care, and for lack of anything better to do, they will gorge on donuts made by pirates on a house boat, and the pirates will then turn on them and throw them in to the sea to be eaten by sharks. And it's all your fault that all of your readers died a horrible and tragic death!