Today is the last day of 2013. How weird is that? I decided to do something special on here in celebration of 2014. I spent most of the morning going through all my blog posts from 2013. I had a good few laughs at the things that happened and there were also a lot of things that I couldn’t remember that happened. Oh, and I wish I counted all the typos I have made in my blog posts…sorry about that!
Anyway, I thought it would be cool to recap on everything that happened in 2013. I know WordPress sends something about views, stats, posts, pictures, comments, followers, etc. But my report is going to be about everything that actually happened in real life. And I know I don’t post every day or post about everything little thing that happens in my life, we can still get a pretty good idea on what’s been going on.
–I was in the middle of writing The Blank Page.
–Dick passed away. Dick was an old man from my church. He did a lot for the church and the people apart of it. He passed away from a long hard-fought battle of lung cancer. It’s really hard to believe that it’s already been about a year since his death.
–We switched from Verizon to Comcast. My laptop still has internet issues because of this. It’s been almost a year of me fighting with my internet connection, too!
–My flash drive died and I lost everything. All the novels I was currently working on and already completed. All my lesson plans for Sunday school, everything for work, all my homework, among other things. I literally lost everything.
Feburary: –About a week after my flash drive died, I finally got back into writing. I started writing Take Over (as The Blank Page was lost and I was too discouraged to re-write it). I worked on Take Over for the entire month.
–I got my driver’s license.
–I prepared myself to write Saving Each Other for Camp NaNoWriMo in April.
–I continued writing Take Over.
–I sent my picture book Asking Bobby to a publisher.
–I came up with the idea of starting a vlog.
April: –Wrote Saving Each Other for Camp NaNo and finished it. Began the second part, Seeing Things. I also finished Take Over and began writing The Blank Page again.
–I wrote one haiku a day for the NaPoWriMo, but finished after April.
–I finished my first vlog, but decided not to post it
–I began writing Far Away in a notebook
–I was interviewed by Briana Vedsted
–Did a Booky Questions and Blog Hopper survey
–I made a goal to finish The Blank Page in May, which never went through.
May: –Attempted to write The Blank Page and the three novels that are written in that novel. None of them got finished.
–Made a writing and editing schedule which stuck for a little while.
–I was nominated for the Sunshine and Super Sweet Blogger awards.
–I began editing Diary of a Lover while my mom began to edit Take Over.
–Finished the fourth draft of Diary of a Lover. I tried to print it out to let Kris edit it, but the printer broke.
–I began to edit Hunter because I didn’t want to start a new project before the next session of Camp NaNo in July.
–My sister Lisa moved out with her boyfriend, my two cousins moved in with my grandparents, and I graduated with my Associate’s degree in Early Childhood Education.
–Began to write a Pokemon FanFiction that is still not finished.
–I decided to write Cybertra for Camp NaNo, but ended up not finishing it in the end. I ended up not being into the story anymore. Needless to say, I lost that NaNo session.
–Kris and I tried out a new writing schedule, but after going on vacation for a whole week, the schedule died.
–Decided to do contests and post stories into books such as Chicken Soup for the Soul.
–Sam, a boy I babysit for, wanted me to write The Babysitting Adventures of Rachel which is about the two of us. I never wrote it, although I had plans to.
–I thought a lot about my future. School, work, writing, etc. Wondered where I was going to be in a few years and how I was going to get there.
–Comet, my uncle’s dog, was put down due to cancer.
–I had a tough time writing so I wrote a silly prompt and it ended up sparking a few new ideas.
–We began to remodel Lisa’s bedroom so Kris and I could have an office. It is now complete and we call it the “Blue Room.” Don’t ask why, we planned on calling it our office.
–I finally got a new flash drive.
–I continued editing and outlining Hunter and began to write and outline Hunted, the sequel.
–My co-worker was laid off due to low enrollment leaving me with a promotion, but it was only me and one other teacher with all the kids.
–Work started as me being a teacher and school started which was my first semester at a new school for my bachelor’s.
–Gloria, a member of my church, passed away.
–I asked for information about Smashwords and got a lot of nice feedback along with others. I still have to finish researching Smashwords, PubIt!, CreateSpace, and Kindle Direct Publishing.
October: –I prepared for NaNo in November. I planned out the novel using sticky notes, index cards, and a big poster board with Kris.
–I hit 50,000 words on Detective Florence for NaNo 17 days into the month. I am still currently working on the novel. I have a little over 70,000 words so far.
–I won NaNo and I talked about focusing more on my writing
–I lost my teaching job. The preschool closed due to low enrollment and no money. I am still jobless.
–I survived my first semester for my bachelor degree.
–I got the new Pokemon games and a Kindle for Christmas!
So there you have it. A breakdown of everything that happened to me in 2013. But as I looked through my old blog posts I realized probably about 90% of everything I started was never finished. I know I say this all the time, but for 2014 I’m really going to buckle down and get something published. Or get something ready for publication. No more goofing off.
My resolution for 2013 was to read 50 pages a day and write 1,000 words a day. I stopped keeping track long ago, but I know I did not make the reading goal. I most likely didn’t make the writing goal, either. I doubt I wrote 365,000 words this past year. While there were some days I wrote 10k, there were so many other days that I didn’t bother to write at all.
My resolution this year is…
–Finish editing a novel or two
–Freelance: Enter writing contests, send stories into magazines, etc.
–Finish what I start
That last one is for everything, not just my writing.
I hope everyone had a wonderful 2013 and I wish everyone the best in 2014! 🙂
1. My sister Kris and I decided to come up with some sort of schedule. It was actually her idea, but I thought of the idea a while ago (er, years ago). Of course, that was all mine was–an idea. I never even tried it for one day. But yesterday she came up to me and told me to help her stick with something. She showed me a “to do” list of hers. On that she stated she wanted to set a daily goal (words, pages, time, etc.) and do it every day. Monday through Saturday would be spent working on originals and Sunday would be FanFiction days. When I came up with this, I decided I was going to do FanFiction on Saturday and Sunday and originals would be Monday through Friday. I mentioned that to her and I don’t know if she’s going to do her way or my way, but either way we’re going to do it together. Since she asked me to help her make sure she completes this to do list, I decided that I’m going to do it, as well.
Yesterday, which was Sunday, we went to Barnes and Noble for our weekly writing session. I ended up working on my FanFiction because, well it was Sunday, a weekend day. For writing in a notebook, I got a whole lot done. Today is Monday (and the first day of Camp NaNoWriMo) so I worked on original. But since Camp started, I started something new instead of editing Hunter or Diary of a Lover or anything like that. I’m writing Cybertra. I’ll post the summary on here by the end of the month.
Anyway, I decided that I was going to write for at least one hour every day. The morning is really the only reliable time I have just to myself. So I decided that every day (all seven days of the week) I’m going to write from 7 a.m. to 8 a.m. That started today. And man do I wish that I started something like this a long time ago! I had the most productive day! I woke up at 6:30, took a shower, made an iced coffee, and wrote while I had Raph getting her daily exercise and I got my morning caffeine dose. My timer went off on my iPod after an hour, I took Chip for a walk, then I got myself ready to go out. I had to babysit toady from 9 to 3. It was great. Not to mention that by 8, I was wide awake, felt refreshed, and ready to take on the day! If this was any other normal day, I would have woken up around seven, realized I needed to take a shower, but say “eh, I’ll do it tonight,” then count down until I had to leave the house all while moping around in my bed watching TV…I’m really not that lazy, but sometimes….
2. As stated, today was the first day of Camp NaNo. I’m going away this week (leaving Wednesday afternoon and coming back Friday afternoon). So I can write on Wednesday and Friday, but I’ll miss Thursday. One day isn’t bad. But I am going away again the last week of July. The 20th to the 27th. I’m going to bring a couple of notebooks with me and work on FanFiction that week. Yes, I will be breaking my schedule, but I can’t bring my laptop. So I decided that I want to try to finish Camp before I leave. That gives me 20 days instead of 31. Of course, I’ll still have a couple days when I get back, but still.
This means I should write 2,500 words a day instead of the usual 1,613. I wrote 1,616 today. At least I met the standard quota. If I didn’t have to babysit today, I probably would have written a lot more. I have to babysit again tomorrow (double time…9-3 with one family and then 4-7 with another family). Wednesday I’m babysitting, then leaving. Thursday I’ll be gone. Friday I can write when I get home. All next week I’m babysitting 9-1. It’ll be tough, but I think I can make it work. I can at least be able to make it to 50k by the end of the month, if not by the time I go on vacation. I will do it!
3. My novel is weird. Seriously. I had a completely different vision in my mind for Cybertra and it…well, it took an unexpected turn. Don’t get me wrong, I love where it ended up going, but I was shocked…and was laughing. A lot. I can’t post the summary yet, so you’re going to get lost when I tell you this, but…in the novel, the father builds robots to help people in need. Elderly people, police force, etc. He makes 100 robots at a time and when they all get shipped to a big company that sells them places, he makes a new batch of 100 robots. But, in the prologue, his daughter is six and wants to keep one. All the robots look exactly the same on the outside. The only way to tell them apart is by their personalities. And…well, one of them, the one they end up keeping, has a very different personality. He wasn’t supposed to be this animated. He was supposed to act more…robot-like, I guess you could say. So I can’t give you a summary, but here’s a small excerpt from the prologue:
“No, no, no! You must hold your pinky up. Haven’t your mother taught you any manners?” a small little girl wearing a pink, frilly dress with a sparkling tiara on top of her head, held up a small plastic tea cup. Her pinky was in the air and she tried to speak in a grown-up, mature tone.
“I have not had time to learn manners. My apologizes,”
The man poked his head through a door in the crack of where the young girl and her guest played on the floor of her bedroom. He opened the door a little more to see her smiling and laughing.
“Well, it’s a good thing you came here, then.” She giggled.
“Hannah?” he opened the door all the way.
She froze. Her eyes grew wide as she shifted them back and forth between both of the gentlemen in her room. Finally, she leaned forward and whispered something.
“Hannah,” the man sighed. He knew exactly what she was saying to her robot friend.
“Oh, right! The inspection!” the android jumped off of the floor. “Excuse me, Mr. Noel! I must go see Mr. Noel! I am late…I am very late!” he brushed right by the gentleman and disappeared down the hallway going to the basement.
Mr. Noel shook his head. He lifted his clipboard and muttered to himself. “Fix attention span on number four…”
Leo is what Hannah names him. He wasn’t really supposed to have a name, either. Oh, well.
It’s a little after twelve in the afternoon and I have to say that’s it been a very good day. My class at school today was 8-9:15, but I left a little before nine o’clock because we weren’t doing anything. She was helping some people sign up for classes next semester, but I graduate at the end of this semester, so it was pointless for me to be there. I came straight home and started to get some more writing done.
I wrote 5,023 words between 9:30 and 12:00. It was a good morning. I wanted to make it to 30,000 words in my story and now I have a total of 30,041 words. Not only am I over the hump for Camp NaNo because I’m more than halfway done, but I am also over the hump of my story.
I explained in my last post that Saving Each Other is just the first part of five in one novel. I’m at the very top of the climax for this part and I think it’s just about done. I have a couple more parts to write for it and I should be good. I don’t know how many words it’s going to take…I like to think it’ll take about 20,000 more words to make it to 50,000, but it might be more or it might be less. We’ll see.
Also, I heard that it’s NaPoWriMo this month, as well? That’s where you’re supposed to write one poem every day during the month of April. Well, why not? I have a lot on my plate already, so let’s go for it. I’m not really good at writing poetry, but I’ve always wanted to get better at it. Of course, because I do have a lot on my plate right now, I decided that I’m going to write a Haiku a day. It’s easier and quicker and since I was a few days behind, I needed something easy to make sure I was able to catch up.
I have eight haikus so far (because it’s been eight days) and I posted them on my website Spilled Ink. The only thing is, you need to be a member to view the Journal section on Spilled Ink (don’t want any guests stealing ideas from the members). So if you want to view them, you need to register. It’s a free Proboards writing website and we would love to have new members because we just re-opened. Of course, if you don’t want to join that’s perfectly fine. For that reason, I also posted the Haikus on my FictionPress account. Check that if you want, but I would really appreciate it if some of you looked at Spilled Ink and considered joining…yes, I am degrading myself and am advertising on my own blog…
Anyway, tomorrow is another day and I hope to make it to 35,000 words! But Tuesdays are really busy, so I’ll settle for the normal 1,667 words.
2013: 111,820/365,000 Words Written
2013: 1,749/18,250 Pages Read
Picture: This was the look on my face as I was writing today. Yep.
Needless to say I did not write too much today. I wrote a little at school and then I wrote a tiny bit when I got home, but my grand total for the day is 1,138 words. It’s not even enough for one whole day because we’re supposed to be writing 1,667 words a day. However, I’m not too concerned because my total for the whole story is 14,557 words.
Why was I making this face? Well, I realized that I was getting to drawn into the characters for Saving Each Other. Let me tell you a little bit about them:
Sierra: A petite 18-year-old who has no money, has no job, has no place to stay, and has no parents. Her grandfather, who lives very far away, sends her money so that she can put herself through college. She is currently an undecided major and she gets bullied a lot mainly because one of her eyes is blue and the other is a milky white. No, she is not blind although people tend to assume that. Don’t let her fool you; you mess with her in any way, she will kick you to the curb and never look back.
Blake: A bum 20-year-old who lives in a small apartment with his girlfriend, Jenna. Jenna goes to school in the early morning as well as online for an accounting degree. She works at a bank in the afternoon. What does Blake do all day? He watches TV and eats. However, Jenna has had enough of his laziness and forced him to get a job. She can no longer pay for the bills and rent on her one lousy paycheck. Blake is now working part-time at a preschool with no education and experience to back him up. However, his inner child allows him to get along great with the kids.
Luke: An independent 23-year-old who has no idea where he is going in life. He has a master’s degree in business, yet he is working at a preschool. He, unfortunately for him, accidentally got Blake that extra shift at the preschool. Luke’s father was a wealthy business man who owned a lot of big companies. Luke worked for him and hoped to be just like him one day. When his father passed away, his will stated that the company should go to Luke’s eldest brother. His brother ran it into the ground, thus Luke was laid-off. Luke dreams of opening his own business, but he had no money due to the mortgage on his house among other bills. Luke knows that the preschool isn’t going to be enough for him to start his own business, but it was the only thing that was available at the time.
Do you see how thought-out those background stories are? I’m 26 pages into the novel and the reader already knows absolutely everything there needs to know about the three main characters. Oh, but I left something out, didn’t I…? Oh, yeah! They all (except Sierra) have some sort of power.
That’s what that face is saying: “How did I forget about that part? It’s the whole point of the story!”
Anyway, I introduced the powers and had Luke and Blake discover that they’re messed up and then I stopped in the middle of it because…I don’t really know why.
And that was all she wrote.
2013: 96,336/365,000 Words Written
2013: 1,749/18,250 Pages Read
I have no idea where to start! I have a lot to say and I don’t know if I’m going to remember it all. I had Starbucks today and I am extremely wired! Seriously, ask my sister…and my mother…I was bothering them both. Singing, dancing, making weird noises, walking funny, yelling, laughing, falling on the floor, being loud…true story.
ANYWAY, I have three things to talk about…at least that’s all I can remember that I had to talk about…
First, Spilled Ink is back up for business. About two years ago, my sister and I started a writing website. Life got in the way and we kind of let it die. However, we wanted to get back into it so we made a new website for it. We came up with some new ideas for it, kept some old ideas and scrapped the rest of the old ideas. We hope the website grows a lot and is very successful.
Let me tell you a little about it: There are prompts, tips, writing races, co-authoring, and a role-playing section. There’s a place where members can review and discuss books they have read. Also, each member has their own board where they can post their own stories and other people can review the stories. You know, give feedback and critique. The link is on the Come Find Me page of this blog, but here it is again: Spilled Ink. Please go check it out and if you like, go ahead and join. We’d love to have you. 🙂
Next, I was thinking of adding more to this blog. My sister gave me this idea a while ago and I have been thinking of doing it ever since. I just never got the chance to actually do it. I was thinking about it more today and I think I’m going to really do it. However, I want to get your opinions anyway. So, if you don’t mind, please comment on whether you would enjoy this and want me to do this: once a month, I was thinking of doing a volg (video blog, for those of you who don’t know). So, once a month instead of posting words, you’d get to hear it straight from my loud mouth. Wouldn’t that be awesome? I don’t know when I would actually start doing this, but I thought I would throw it out there and see if you guys would like that or not. Of course, if the majority of you say no I may do it anyway. 😀
Third, I guess I should update about my actual writing, huh? I have been writing bit by bit each day since my last post. Since my last post I have written 7,659 words on Take Over. I plan on writing a little more tonight, but I probably won’t get the chance to update this later tonight and tell you all how wonderful I have been doing with my writing! I’ve been a good girl lately. 😀
I guess I do have more to talk about…fourth, my sister and I went to Barnes and Noble today (hence the Starbucks). We were looking at writing books when we were supposed to be writing. I have been thinking a lot about my future lately and I decided that it’s time that I really start looking for publishers. I have two children’s books written and ready to leave the nest. So I found one of those books that lists publishing companies, agencies, magazines, etc. I wrote down a few publishing companies that represent picture books. So, while I finish Take Over, edit Hunter and Diary of a Lover, and write Saving Each Other for Camp NaNoWriMo, I’ll be sending my two picture books off to publishers.
Also, Writer’s Digest sent me a thing in the mail about their annual writing contest. I’ve done it before (and lost, obviously), but that was two or three years ago. I think I’m going to try to do it again this year. I think I’m going to send in a poem. I don’t write poems often, although I would like to. I wasn’t going to bother with the contest again this year, but the other day, in math class of all places, I thought of a poem idea. I think that was my inner muse saying, “Do the Writer’s Digest contest!” Because seriously, when do I come up with poemideas?
Anyway, that’s that. Send my picture books to publishers, polish off my young adult novels, prepare for Camp NaNo, finish Take Over, do the contest…I have a lot on my plate right now. But I like it. I have wanted to be an author since I was ten and I finally want to get started on it. Meanwhile, I’m going to promote myself as much as possible. So follow me on here, on Twitter (the link is also on the Come Find Me page), and on my other Spilled Ink website. Then sit back and watch me succeed. Because I’m going to make it no matter what. 🙂
2013: 72,855/365,000 Words Written
2013: 1,749/18,250 Pages Read
Show of hands–who is participating in Camp NaNo this year? I know that I am and I have to say that I am certainly not prepared for it…
First, I’m a little disappointed that Script Frenzy is no more. I loved that website and I loved participating. Can you do a script for NaNo? Of course, but it’s not really the same. I think they took down Script Frenzy because not a lot of people were joining it…as far as I’m concerned, there were a good amount of people on there. Most of the people on NaNo were on Script Frenzy.
Second, they changed the dates again. The first year I discovered Camp NaNo was 2011 and it was during the months of June and July. For 2012 it was July and August. Now, for 2013, it’s April and July. I’m glad we can all agree on at least July. I’m sure they changed it to April because that’s when Script Frenzy used to be.
Third, my OCD is kicking it. There are 12 months in a year and three sessions of NaNoWriMo. 12 divided by three is four. Each session should be four months a part. November, March, July. End of story. Of course, that would mean I would have to write 50,000 this month, but…whatever. The way they have it now is obnoxious. November to April is five months, April to July is three months, and July to November is three months. Make it even, please!
This poses as an issue. April is less than one month away and I have no idea what to do for it. Not to mention that I am already in the middle of a novel. I know some people are “rebels” and they just add 50,000 words onto whatever novel they are currently writing, but I don’t like to do that. I like to start fresh. So this means that I have to finish Take Over by April because if I start writing something new, I know for a fact that I will never go back to Take Over. And I really need to start finishing things that I start.
So I am going to try to work extra hard for the rest of this month and try to get Take Over finished up. Then I can start planning for April and…I have no idea what novel I am going to write for that. But I guess I can’t really worry about that right now because I have to focus on finishing Take Over. This is a lot to handle; especially since I’m trying to get school organized and such.
By the way, I finished reading Beautiful Creatures. It was a good book–everyone should read it. But while the movie was great, it really didn’t do the book justice. So if you’re one of those people who gets angry when the movie is completely different from the book, I say watch the movie before you read the actual book. That way, you can enjoy the movie for just a little bit. Anyway, that’s 563 pages added to my pages read count!
As you know because I haven’t posted in a couple of days, I have no written in a couple of days. I have been busy and I have been exhausted. I am, however, going to try my absolute best to finish Take Over by April. That gives me a little over three more weeks and I’m already doing pretty well on the story. I think I should be able to do it.
I just have to cut off all ties with life.
2013: 41,268/365,000 Words Written
2013: 1,495/18,250 Pages Read
I haven’t updated this in a while with very good reasons…
1. Everyone knows that we switched from Verizon to Comcast, correct? Well, the internet still refuses to work. It’s getting pretty annoying. I can’t use my laptop at all. I can’t use it to work on my websites, I can’t use it to update this, and I can’t use it for school. My dad is bringing my laptop to a guy to completely clean it out because it had a virus on it a year or so ago. All the other laptops work (sometimes), so we’re wondering if my laptop still has some bits of the virus on it and that’s why it refuses to work. So I’m going to be out of a laptop for a little while…well, I already have been out of a laptop.
I’m using the school computer right now so–I hate to say this–it’s a good thing that I go to school five days a week. I need to get absolutely everything done at school. It’s such a pain, though. The only thing I can use my own laptop for it for writing on Word. Which brings me to the worst part of this post as well as the other reason as to why I haven’t updated in so long…
2. My flash drive broke. My sister tried to fix it and the computer guy my dad knows tried to fix it. It’s completely dead. The guy said he could fix it, but the software would cost 800 dollars. He said he could ship it to Brazil so it would be cheaper, but…I said no. That’s too much. My uncle is going to try to fix it, but I really have my doubts that it will work. We’ll have to see, but I’m pretty sure it’s gone.
It really upset and discouraged me. All of my novels were on there. I didn’t have any other back-ups to the novels because my computer had gotten the virus. Along with school work, Sunday school stuff, and website stuff, this is everything I lost:
Hunter — I printed it out to edit it, so worse comes to worst, I’ll just have to type it up again.
Hunted — The sequel to Hunter…I was half way through it and now it’s gone.
Diary of a Lover — I printed this out to edit it, too, so again I can just type it up again.
Saving Each Other — My 2012 NaNo that I finished last December…100% gone. I had no back-ups and none of it was printed out…I have to start from scratch all over again.
The Blank Page — It wasn’t finished, but as you all know, I have been working hard on this one a lot. Now I have to start completely over again.
Asking Bobby & Ashley’s Day at the Aquarium — Both of these are printed out, so they’re safe.
Fast Friends — Didn’t get too far in this one, but at least it was better than nothing…now it is nothing.
Echo — I was almost done with this one…gone.
Last Friday — I wrote this in a notebook and I had one more chapter left. Typing it up took me a really long time and now I’m going to have to do it again…at least it’s not completely gone.
The Others — My very first NaNo and the only one I every won. I never finished the novel, but I only had one or two more chapters left…another one gone.
Far Away — A love story I started, re-started, and re-started again…I got pretty far with it and now that’s gone, too.
Diary of a Killer — Didn’t get too far, but I really liked where it was going.
A Job to get Done — I loved this one. I was over 50 pages into it…gone.
Pyro — The origin story of my muse…the one and only character who speaks to me while I write. He popped into my head long before I even decided to make him a character in a story. I have no idea where he came from, but now I have to write his story all over again.
The Battle of Cooper’s Place — A script I wrote for Script Frenzy…it was my first one and I won. It sucked, but now it’s gone.
Halfway to Heaven — Another script I wrote. I loved this script. I was going to turn it into a novel, too…now I have to re-write that whole thing.
Four Fathers — A TV show I based off of a Ninja Turtles FanFiction I wrote. It was coming along pretty well.
All of my FanFiction stories…which was somewhere in the 100s, so I can’t even list them all to you.
And there you have it. 18 stories lost…there were more, but they were only a page or so in so they weren’t really important because they were small prompts and such.
I cried. I’ll admit that. I was thinking of everything that I lost, all that time and imagination I spent on those stories…and they’re all gone. I have to say that it was a real eye-opener for me, though. That saying is really true…”you never know what you have until it’s gone.”
So I decided that not only am I going to keep up with writing more, I’m going to focus more on finishing everything that I start. Looking at that list, I had a ton of ideas and characters roaming around in my head. So I think it’s time to jot down small ideas instead of switching completely over to a new novel. I have a new novel in the works at the moment and since I’m in the mood to write it, I think I’m going to start off with that one. I still have a lot of planning to do for it, but that’s alright. In the meantime, I can start editing some novels…well, just Hunter and Diary of a Lover since those are the only novels I have left at the moment.
But now I think about it, I have a ton of novels that are started in notebooks…I should really go through my notebooks, huh?
Anyway, let this be a lesson learned for all of you! I have no idea how my flash drive broke, but I had two (well, now one). I should have put everything on both. I’ll keep that in mind for next time. So I’ll try to writing again as soon as possible, but I kind of need to wait until I get my laptop back. I think my dad is going to call Comcast, too…even though everyone else’s work, they still go on the fritz sometimes. Hopefully this will be the end.
Adair’s A Freak, Justin Lives Under A Rock, And Dominic Is Actually Normal…
Can we talk about my characters for a minute? I wrote half of chapter four today and I quickly realized how…interesting (for lack of a better word) my characters are.
In chapter four, Adair bothers the two boys to read a little of their stories to each other so they can see what each other has so far. I have quickly realized that all of chapter four they’re just going to be talking about Adair’s novel. Each chapter is their next meeting, which is only an hour and a half long. With the conversation they’re having about Adair’s novel, there is no way they’re going to be able to talk about all three novels in an hour and a half. Especially since when they started talking about her novel, they already only had an hour left.
In my last post I mentioned that I might plan our their novels a little bit. Well, I forgot to do that and I remembered when I was crawling into bed. So needless to say, I never planned out their books. As I wrote chapter four, I made everything up as I went along. I had Adair read her opening sentence and ask the boys what they thought about it. Well, I can tell you what I thought about it…it was crap. I read it over and over and over again and I said to myself, “Adair is completely weird.” I wondered what goes on in her mind and then I realized…Adair is me. I’m the one who wrote that sentence for her.
Justin rewrote the sentence for her, which came out a lot better, but Adair was pissed because her sentence was 41 words long and Justin’s re-write was 24 words. Then Justin was appalled because he can’t believe her biggest concern is the word count. And Dominic is just sitting there, along for the ride because he doesn’t want to get involved because he’s smart and normal.
But then Dominic and Justin both grilled her about this novel because it is the strangest thing ever. This is what we found out about the novel: Cerridwen is the main female, Zindel is the main male, the novel is in Zindel’s POV, they live in a forest, the plot of the novel is that the forest is in trouble and Cerridwen and Zindel need to save it, Victor is the bad guy, Cerridwen has the power of earth because she apparently is not human and evolved from a plant…which is why she has vines attached to her hair, and Zindel has a power, but we don’t know what it is, yet. Completely strange/ridiculous/I don’t even know what to call it, right? So Dominic and Justin are trying to make sense of this whole novel and are hoping that she changes it drastically. I’m just sad because my mind was capable of coming up with something like this.
Then throughout the whole chapter, Justin is freaking out about the names. I had Adair use obscure names because that’s just something she would do. But Dominic keeps pronouncing them wrong and Justin is just angry because Adair has names like that when she made fun of him for naming his main character John. Plus, Justin is wondering why the bad guy, Victor, has a normal name. On a random note: Justin lives under a rock. So far throughout the novel, Adair has mentioned Mario and Princess Peach, Link and Zelda, and The Sims games. He had no idea what she was talking about for all of them. He is a 27-years-old man and has never played video games…there is something wrong with that picture.
And the chapter isn’t even over, yet…
So, like I said…interesting characters, right? There certainly is never a dull moment with these guys. I have to give them some credit though because they really are fun to write.
I have been trying to get my writing done. I really have. The fact is that school just keeps getting in the way. My anxiety at school has been coming back, which is making things a little bit difficult, I think I’m coming down with a cold, and I just have school, then work, then homework, and then on the weekends I have Sunday school and such. It’s too much. I’m getting stressed out, but I’m handling it. I have good grades in all my classes so far and I have been going to school despite my anxiety trying to kill me. However, when it comes to writing…that’s a whole other story.
I just decided all of this this morning. I made a huge list of all my homework that I need to get done. My Health class never has homework, so that’s not a big deal, but I made a list of all the math homework, science homework, and discover teaching homework I have for the rest of the semester. I didn’t list my multicultural communications homework only because my professor gives us the homework week by week and not for the whole semester. Anyway, I’m going to get a good chunk of it done because it honestly isn’t that much to tell the truth…it just looks like a lot. I am going to go home today (because I don’t have work today) and between today and Monday (October 8) I am going to try to get as much homework done as I possibly can. Hopefully I can get all my homework done for at least October, but we’ll see.
This way, with homework out of the way, I’ll be able to focus on writing instead of homework. It’ll be the same amount of stuff I have to worry about, except I’m replacing homework with writing. I think it should work out. The other thing that I thought of doing was going through my novel list and writing summaries and/or outlines for each novel. I was looking at the list earlier and realized that there are a couple of stories that I had no idea what the plot was supposed to be. So if I outline each novel then not only will I remember what it’s about when I start writing it, but I will also have an idea about what each chapter is supposed to be about and it’ll be easier and faster to write the novel.
Does this all sound good? Does it all make sense? Probably not because I know that I said I was going to work on a book full of short stories and such to be self-published and now I’m changing my mind…again. But I guess that’s fine because I have to coordinate everything with life. Unfortunately, life is a little important. Anyway, so when I get home today I’ll start working on all my homework…I can’t start now because I only have my books for the classes I have today…which of course has no homework.
This will also be good because if I get all the October homework done early, I can try to get my November homework done really soon. If that happens then I will be able to focus more on NaNoWriMo! Yay! I can write my NaNo novel while in school and after work and such things like that instead of doing homework. When I start outlining my novels, I’ll outline the novel I’m going to do for NaNo…whatever that may be, I don’t know yet.
Anyway, I’ll update about NaNo sooner rather than later since it’s already October and November will probably be here before we know it. I’ll also update about my homework and we’ll see how that goes. I have about 100 stories to outline…this is going to be interesting!
This is a short story that I had to write for my English class a few semesters ago. This short story is 100% true. I love to write and I wanted to show my professor that because she knew that I have been planning on getting published soon…hopefully. So I went nuts trying to figure out what to write. In the end, I decided to write about my experiences of trying to figure out what to write. In other words, I wrote about everything I did before I started the actual assignment. So, here it is and I hope you enjoy.
Why Blank Pages Stay Blank
There is a scent of freshly brewed coffee in the air. I can hear the scolding hot liquid pouring out of the machine and into the cup. I can see the steam from the cup rising high up into the air only to vanish within seconds. My head still, I follow the steam with my eyes as it keeps going up and up and then gone. Out of the corner of my eye, I can see the light dimming. It’s my computer screen going on the screen saver. I tap the mouse and the computer comes back to life with a blank Word document staring back at me. I stare back for a moment, but the coffee maker begins to spit as it tries to squeeze the last of the coffee grounds out. Finally it stops and the room is silent.
I stand up from my chair, causing it to make a high-pitched squeak. I pick up my green, oval-shaped coffee mug—my favorite mug. I hold it with both hands wrapped around its body smiling at the warmth it surges through my fingers. Dipping my nose towards the mug, I take a deep breath and let it all out in a sigh. I love the smell of coffee. I slightly blow on the surface of the coffee to cool it a little before I take a sip.
Staggering back over to my noisy chair, I place the coffee on the edge of my desk and take a seat. I run my fingers over the black, thin keys of my laptop. I look at the screen and stare at the blank page staring back at me. It says nothing to me so I say nothing to it. I look back to my coffee, which is still steaming. It amuses me, watching the steam. The screen goes dark. I tap the mouse a second time and I swear—blank or not—it was glaring at me. I frown, knowing that it wants to be fed with words. It needs to be fed.
I stare at the keys as though they will start to type on their own. “Well, what are you waiting for?” I say to the keys irritably. I don’t get a response, which is typical. I tap my fingers on the keys without actually pressing down hard on them. I bob my head up and down. I love the sound the keys make when they are hard at work. If only I could make them work for real. Then I could listen to that beautiful sound. It’s almost like music to me. That makes me wonder…what’s on the radio?
Getting out of my seat once more, I walk over to the radio sitting upon the counter next to the coffee maker. I push the button to turn it on and I hear one of my favorite songs. I smile and bob my head more than I did when I was playing with the keyboard. I notice the screen goes dark. I rush back to my computer and tap the mouse once more. My laptop wakes up right away and continues to wait patiently for me to get to work. I sit down and position my fingers on the keys. I prepare myself physically and mentally before I begin to write. I close my eyes and take a deep breath. I smell coffee. I forgot about that. I take a big gulp of my preferred drink and turn my attention back to the blank page in front of me. Before I can type just one letter, I notice a small icon blinking at the bottom of the screen.
I have new e-mail. I love receiving e-mails. It makes me feel important. I click the e-mail icon and look at what I have in my inbox. Spam…spam…spam…oh, look—a coupon to my favorite store. I certainly want to use this coupon, but when does it expire? I look up the deadline and then I remember. I have a deadline. I exit out of my e-mail and get back to the blank page that has been pouting for about an hour now. Taking one more sip of my coffee for courage, I begin to type on my tolerant laptop.
I smile at the screen proud that I have written my name. This makes me feel a little productive. I began to start something. But then I begin to get a little hungry. I get back up and enter the kitchen. I rummage through the refrigerator and all the cabinets, yet I can’t seem to settle on anything that I want. I notice the computer screen goes dark once more. I walk calmly back over to my laptop, tap the mouse, and glare at the screen. I know that it goes dark only to get my attention. It wants to annoy me. It’s taunting me.
I stare at my name and the blinking cursor. I pout, knowing that I should have had a lot more work done by now. I sit down and position my fingers once more. I look over to my coffee and take a deep breath. The room is still scented with coffee. I look over to the radio. The music is still playing. I look back to the screen. The Word document is still up. The cursor is still blinking. The page is still blank.
I enter twice and tell myself that there will be no more distractions. I have my coffee. I have music playing. My e-mail has already been checked. I click the underline button for the title and then I pause. What is my title? What am I even writing about? My shoulders go limp as I realize that I was farther behind than I thought. I rapidly tap my fingers on the keyboard lightly in anticipation. I close my eyes waiting for my brain to think of something.
Giving up all too quickly, I put three question marks in the spot where the title should be. I enter twice more and indent once. Then I am back at square one. I hold my head in my hands as my elbows rest upon the desk. I shake my head. I have no title, I have no story, and I have no muse.
The screen goes dark. I slowly lift my head, glaring at my computer, and move the mouse slightly. The blank page looks sad now. It has no words, it has no ideas, and it just has nothing. I glance at the question marks and then I stare at the cursor as it blinks. Even though there isn’t anything there and there isn’t anything to do, the cursor is still at work blinking away. It’s as though the cursor can’t seem to stop blinking. It needs to work. It has to work. It loves to work. It will stop at nothing. The more I stare at the blinking cursor, the more I start to think about this writing project. And then it finally hits me!
I will write about a personal experience. I will write about the truth. I will write about something that most writers have trouble with. I back space a few times and delete the three question marks. I type in, “Why Blank Pages Stay Blank.” And then—after so long—I begin to write.