“If there’s a book you really want to read but it hasn’t been written yet, then you must write it.” - Toni Morrison

Saturday, November 8, 2014

My Latest Writing Mood

What happens when a heartbreak song becomes your inspiration? What if there is a different world for each decision you could have made - and you have once chance to go back and choose one of them? The boy at school is a Hunter and you become entangled in his world? We're fighting for a better world by taking them down one by one. We dance to the sound of heartbreak, and we're getting better from it. Cinderella wasn't forced to be a slave to her stepmother and stepsisters - she chose that life.

These are the ideas that have been running through my head recently, especially now that it is NaNoWriMo season. I've decided that I'm not going to join this year - mostly because in previous years I haven't even reached a halfway mark, but also because I'm super busy with school. HOWEVER, I'm going to use this time to develop ideas, write in my journal, and maybe start a story or work on a previous one.

Yes, I'm back. Don't expect too many posts because midterm season is over... because now it's essay season up until finals. But do expect some posts.



























Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Quotes about Writing

"The novel is easily first among book that people read willingly and it is rightfully first. It has known how to keep the charm of the story, and to add to it the attraction of almost every interest. ...Scarcely any predicament, moral or psychological, has escaped its study, and it has so refined and perfected its methods that antiseptic surgery itself has hardly made a more beneficent advance. It began with the merest fable, excluding from the reader's interest all but the fortunes of princes and other dignified personages for whose entertainment it existed, until now it includes all sorts and conditions of those men, who turn to it for instruction, inspiration, consolation. It has broadened and deepened down and out till it compasses the whole of human nature; and no cause important to the race has been unfriended of it. Sometimes I have been vexed at its vicious pandering to passion, but I cannot think, after all, of any great modern novel which has not been distinctly moral in effect. I am not sorry to have had it go into the dark places of the soul, the filthy and squalid places of society, high and low, and shed there its great light. Let us know with its help what we are, and where we are. Let all the hidden things be brought into the sun, and let every day be the day of judgement. If the sermon cannot any longer serve this end, let the novel do it."
- William Dean Howells, from "Novel-Writing and Novel-Reading: an Impersonal Explanation"

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

have a slice of cake, ms. writer

I AM AAAAAAALMOST DONE FRENCH!!!!!!!!!!!

I can hardly believe it! I just wrote my final French written exam (it went okay, if anyone was wondering), and then I just my oral exam tomorrow evening. Then regular school starts, but at least I'll have time to write for a few weeks before the essays and exams and blogging hiatuses begin again. And, honestly, I'll probably have more time for blogging/writing during regular exam time than the "free time" I had while studying for this French exam. I don't think I've ever had to study this hard for an exam.

That being said, it's time to answer a poll about writing from Anne-girl's new blog, Half Baked.


1. What is your favorite kind of cake? 
Rich chocolate cake with lots of rich chocolate-y frosting. But angel food cake would be next because it's so light and fluffy.

2. How long have you been writing? 
I started writing when I was almost eight years old.

3. Do you read books and blogs about writing? If so what are some of your favorites?
Oh definitely! I love to read other's work and writing tips are great, too! I love The Notebook Sisters (does that count since they write a lot more about books than writing?), Anne-girl's blog Scribblings of My Pen & Tappings of My Keyboard (and I'm sure I'll love her new blog), Scribblings of a Janeite (okay, maybe part of the reason is her beautiful WIP collages), and To Write Something Worth Reading.

4. Do you believe it's important to study writing as an art form? Why or why not?
I'm one of those people who read more for plot than style. However, I'm not going to enjoy something that is has errors in form. So, yes, I agree that studying writing as an art form is important.

5. Who's writing has influenced yours the most?
Tolkien's, of course.

6. Do you consider writing more important than food? Why or why not?
Well, that is a very difficult question, my friend. Especially since eating is one of my greater weaknesses. But to answer more seriously, food is essential for body. Writing creates literature which improves the mind. But I think to be able to enjoy literature, you have to be more than just alive - so I say food first, writing later.

7. Tell us the thing you are most excited about with your writing.
I love it when I am puzzling over in my mind how to get over a plot hole and I am doing something else (such as drying the dishes) and BAM! I have it! I can't stop grinning idiotically to myself from the excitement.

8. What are you dreading most in your writing?
Figuring out how to fix my loopholes, as well as copying another writer's work in my own and having to fix that.

9. Would you rather have people love your book now or be considered a genius after you are dead?
On first thought, I would say the former. But I think in the long run, the latter.


I will be talking to you all again soon, my lovely followers! :)

Monday, August 18, 2014

A Great New Blog about Writing

Some of you, my lovely followers, may know about the amazing Anne-girl (see her blog here). Well, the thing is - Anne is starting a new blog that is dedicated just to the writing process. I know I am pretty excited because I'm sure Anne will have lots of very helpful tips on this new blog. Here is what Anne has to say about her new blog:




Half Baked is a blog dedicated to the art of writing and exploring what goes into a solid story. The blog operates on the principal that most stories are like cake, delicious and scrumptious and all the other cake words that are out there. But just like cake, a story can come out gooey and shaky in the middle, half baked. This blog is meant to help turn awesome ideas into solid, fully baked novels. Stop by ahalfbakedplot.blogspot.com on September first to join in the release party. There will be contests and a giveaway and of course virtual cake. 

Thank you all so much! 



So make sure you check out Anne's new blog!

Friday, August 15, 2014

good mood = writing

It's weird how the strangest things suddenly put me in a mood that says, "Hey, let's write!"

This morning, I was browsing the Internet, pretty much just wasting time. Then I thought, "I really want to listen to 'Counting Stars'. Just because." (Ever get that song craving?) The good-mood song was coupled with the fact that I was eating green grapes, which I love.

WHAM.

"Now I want to write."


What makes you WANT to write?



Tuesday, August 12, 2014

it came from a line

Sometimes I wonder why I ever spent so much time dreaming about a project not writing it down.

Sometimes I wonder if the story even means anything to me anymore.

And it still does...

All it  means that I've got to keep following where the muse takes me.

And I find my writing mood takes new directions whenever I've watched something new.



I've been thinking about the movie The Hunger Games and Haymitch's line "They aren't very happy with you". And the scene that follows is so powerful, I was just blown away. It looks simple to the eye - the man that leads the killing under President Snow's command, Seneca, is called to an audience with the President. He has just done something that the President didn't like. Seneca looks around the room, until he spots... a wine glass full of poison berries. To some, the image might not mean anything. But in a dictatorship/police state like Panem where no one is really safe no matter how high up in power you are, the message is clear.

I've always intrigued by apocalyptic and dystopian stories... because I see the world that we live in. A lot of people may not realize it, but there's already police-state elements underneath the surface in the world we live in today. The world we live in is slowly moving towards the like of Panem. It isn't so much the story of The Hunger Games, but the little elements here and there that blew me away - the crowds cheering madly like a bunch of immature children, thirsting for the bloodshed shown on TV (just like in the times of the gladiator) ... the rich people dressed in gaudy clothing and ridiculous makeup, who (as I've seen in a clip on YouTube from this movie's sequel) throw up on purpose to make more room for other delicacies (which reminds me very much of one of the greatest books I've ever read, Quo Vadis).

This was what directed my thoughts towards my story idea entitled (at the moment) "To Kill a President". The idea has changed its course a lot since I first posted it on this blog. But I feel it's ripening and maturing even more now.

Which is just great because I have so many things on my hands now, especially with college starting up again in a few weeks. I thought I was going to work on Innocent... but I suppose I should let those ideas simmer a little now that I just did an outline for a full re-write of everything I've ever done on this project. Then there's two contests I have a mind to enter... one is the The Beauty and the Beast retelling contest that I mentioned on here earlier. The other is an opportunity to be a writer of one of my favourite series - John Paul High II. While I doubt I'd win and I doubt I'd have time, I think I'll try, anyway. And if I did win, then I'd be willing to use all my free time to work on that - because it is a chance of a lifetime.

But, as I said before, I'll follow the muse.


List of works that have inspired this flicker of a flame so far: my own thoughts about the world today and how it could be in the future, The Hunger Games, Quo Vadis1984 (which I still have yet to read)


And I'm going to figure out how to work in the element of heightening the theme of instability and a dictatorship/police-state into my idea... and the way that the government hides from its citizens that they are really in a prison, but they don't realize it.




You could see the fear in the children's eyes.





You told me to run once, now it's my turn to tell you. Run. 
Just run. You have to get out, Lona.





But how could I possibly bring him back?

Be strong, my daughter. Be strong.

Sunday, August 10, 2014

Okay, Wow

So after saying that I would write 50 pages of Innocent during July and then that turned to outlining and then that turned to extending the deadline to also including August and then I didn't write anything for a long time... I started writing again. I got massive ideas (including during church - I'm sorry, but sermons can be very inspiring!). I got up to 24 pages and I even started dating events in my book (until I got bored of that and did some outlining using the amazing book 45 Master Characters).

And it's been decided. I'm scrapping everything I've done over the last four years (besides the major plot ideas) and I'm starting completely over again. I'm making the first chapters more believable and not the ridiculous close-to-garbage I was proud to show off a few years ago (this is why I'm taking longer on your ebook, Jessy - plus that I was on another unexpected vacation - but I will get it done at some point, I promise!). I'm giving other characters more things to do. And mainly, I'm very very very VERY excited. And so will all of you be. Because...

GUESS WHAT I DECIDED.

I feel like I could use some alpha and beta readers. (The following descriptions are mostly in the words of Anne-girl.

Alpha readers are people who read a book while you write it. This will be only for Innocent at the moment. I will send them out to my Alpha readers as I write the sections. What I'm looking for in a reader is for someone to write comments in red{or blue or whatever} beside the story. I want to know what made you squeal or squirm or bored. I'll send you the story in the body of an email which you are free to past into a word document if you like. Please do not steal my work or print it out or anything like that {but we all know you wouldn't right?}.

Beta readers read the first draft once it it finished. These readers are asked to read the whole thing strait through comments are encouraged but you don't have to if you don't want to. When you are done I'll send you a list of questions about the book to answer and ask you to tell me your favourite thing about the book and the thing that irked you the most.


Why won't I be posting excerpts on the blog (except in some cases where interview questions like "Actually Doing Something in July" asks me to... or I feel like doing doing so)? Because my dad, who is an editor (and so he knows these things) told me that once you post something on the Internet (including a blog) it's considered already published. Therefore, if you want to get your book published, don't post anything more than small snippets on the Internet.


So.

Yeah.

That's about it.

Not a big deal, is it?

Byyyyyyyyeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee.

Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Answering Questions About Miranda


Virtual cheesecake. Om nom nom. (In reality, I'm going to a place today where I'm going to eat real cheesecake. Be jealous.)

So it's Beautiful People time!

Miranda is one of those characters who is more of a major character...but not as major as Marianne and Rhona.




1. What does your character regret the most in her life?
At the beginning of the story? That her parents wouldn't let her do anything and kept her extremely sheltered. At the end of the story? That she didn't listen to what she was taught by her parents.

2. What is your character's happiest memory? Most sorrowful memory?
Her happiest memory is when Sam professed his love for her. Her most sorrowful memory is when her parents forbid her from seeing her best friend again when the latter's father professed a belief that Miranda's parents deemed as unorthodox.

3. What majorly gets on her nerves?
When other people tell her what to do but don't give her any reason for it, just expect her to obey without question.

4. Do they act differently when they're around other people as opposed to being alone? If so, how?
When around people, her barriers are up and she forces herself to act strong and uncaring. But when she's alone, that's when her heart is on her sleeve, her defences are down, and she's like a little girl who needs comfort.

5. What are their beliefs and superstitions?
Miranda came from a super strict Catholic family. She wasn't allowed to question anything, and the very environment reeked of tension. But when Miranda's older sister does something unspeakable (in her parent's eyes), Miranda starts to wonder if her parents were really right.

6. What are their catchphrases, or things they say frequently?
"That's so cool!"

7. Would they be more prone to facing fears or running from them?
Running from them. Definitely.

8. Do they have a good self image?
Heck no.

9. Do they turn to people when they're upset, or do they isolate themselves?
Miranda wants to be able to turn to others, but she decides that she can't let herself go that far.

10. If they were standing next to you would it make you laugh or cry?
Perhaps laugh. But if Miranda thought she were alone (therefore not seeing you), the sight might evoke tears.

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Failures & Decisions

I've decided to drop out of Actually Finishing Something in July...and my goal. I've been so incredibly busy with Vacation Bible School, and other things have popped up that have sent me to the other side of the city...which means taking transit...which means at least an hour and a half each way.

I'm going to extend the goal to the end of August. I'll have to see how that goes because I'm going to be away for a week in August, so that's time already off. But maybe I can bring my laptop...

Saturday, July 12, 2014

Week 2: The Miserable Fail



The first week of of Actually Finishing Something in July has finished, and I failed miserably.

1. Were you able to finish your weekly goal?
No. It's sort of inexcusable, actually. Yes, French and working on skits for Vacation Bible School are excuses, but making a music video and reading are not really. But I will try better next week! And I did get a few pages of outlining done....on the first day.

2. Is this challenge encouraging you to write more often?
Yes. But as you've seen, I've let other things be more important the last week. *cough*

3. At what time of day did you accomplish most of your writing?
Morning.

4. Which musical tracks did you listen to most while writing?
I actually can't remember whether I was listening to music or not while writing. But if I was, then I was listening to Doctor Who soundtrack music. *grin*

5. Share a descriptive snippet or two of your writing.
Heh. I'll pass on this one for the moment. But I promise to share a snippet or two within the upcoming week!

6. Share three dialogue-based snippets from your week one writing.
The same as above.

7. How are you going to move forward in this challenge? Are you changing your word-count goal or other plans?
I'm actually going to move forward. ;0 I'm staying with my page-count goal. I am going to try!!!

Friday, July 11, 2014

Thursday, July 10, 2014

Chatterbox: The Indian Village

Rachel has chosen the theme for this month's Chatterbox to be foreign relations: how do your characters interact with those of another culture or nationality? *LIGHT BULB* I have the perfect scene from Innocent that I haven't written yet. Perfection. *rubs hands together*

~       ~       ~       ~       ~       ~       ~      ~       ~       ~

The morning after their encounter with the Fairae was cool and damp, as if it had rained in the forest, but not in the fairae circle. As they walked along, Marianne couldn't help remembering how wistfully Talis had looked at the teepee frame, how he had viewed it as more like a work of art than an abandoned house. She was surprised that Elianna had been so quick to slam down Talis' moment of inner peace and joy. At that one moment, Talis had almost seemed to grow an inch taller, and he looked more mature.

"Halt!"

Marianne stopped in surprise at the harsh voice that certainly didn't belong to Father. A tall, muscular man with red skin stood in front of their company. He had glossy black hair and searching black eyes. A beautiful blue feather was tucked behind one ear. Marianne wouldn't have found anything strange about the man at all, his red skin looked so... so human... except for the fact that he was completely naked except for a brown skirt that looked like it was made from the skin of some animal.

When Marianne quickly glanced around her, she saw that there were other men like him between the trees, hiding but not quite hidden, their arrows in bows, ready to shoot if their leader (so she guessed - and rightly - who the man in front of them was) so desired. However, each man's feather was different colour, ranging from white to bright red.

Indians.

A shiver of delight went down her spine. She had read about such people in books before, but she had never seen one in real life before. Even now, she was finding it hard to make herself believe that the real people were standing before her, and not wax statues in a museum exhibit.

In front of her, Father gave a deep, respectful bow before the Indian leader and then stuck out his hand to shake after coming up from his bow. The Indian stared at him a moment, and then nodded, as if pleased by the priest's greeting. He took the hand offered him and gave it a hearty shake. After doing so, he raised his arm in the air and cried a few words in a language that sounded almost like that of a bird's. The men surrounding them lowered their bows and strolled up to the small party.

"My name, in your language, is Running Bird," the Indian leader spoke aloud in English. "You are welcome here."

He gave a smaller bow towards the group. Marianne heard Sam snickering beside her. Even though she still didn't know him well, she couldn't resist giving him a hard nudge. Sam quickly shut up.


~       ~       ~       ~       ~       ~       ~      ~       ~       ~

My earlier reason that Talis liked the teepee so much was that he loves to build and design things. However, I think there's an even stronger reason behind this. ;) ;) ;)

And I believe THIS is Talis. And I also believe that I am going to be giving him a bigger role in my story, instead of waiting until the sequel - if there is one.



Monday, July 7, 2014

Beautiful People: Rhona




Since I did Marianne last week, this month, I'm going to do my second major character, Rhona Ranling.






1) What’s their favourite food? (Bonus: favourite flavour of chocolate!)
Nunta, a "bread-of-the-road" (for royal servants...but more like a festive bread for peasants) with berries. Favourite flavour of chocolate? Milk chocolate. (She first has it at the royal palace.)

2) What do they absolutely hate?
Being looked down upon as someone lesser than the person in question. Or anyone, for that matter.

3) What do they enjoy learning about?
Rhona loves to learn anything outdoors-y, like horseback riding and gardening.

4) Who is the most influential person in their life?
Her foster mother, who taught her everything (important) that she needed to know about life.

5) What is their childhood fear?
That she would be just another peasant child, the same as all the other children in her village. This led her to being shunned by the other children (which she didn't care about)...except for the young boys who had crushes on her (and there were a lot of them).

6) What is something they have always secretly dreamed of doing, but thought impossible?
Rhona has always had this impossible dream of walking up to the royal castle, and that they would accept her as one of them, just like that.

7) What is something she is impractically afraid of?
Hahaha...not much. Spider? Flick. Heights? No biggie. Hmm...I'll have to think about this one, obviously.

8) Are they a night owl or morning person?
If I had to choose one, night owl. But that's more because of her background and having to stay up late to finish washing the dishes and so forth. In fact, she's more of an early-to-bed-early-to-rise person.

9) Do they say everything that pops into their head, or leave a lot unsaid?
It really depends. She usually leaves a lot unsaid (not because she's shy, but because she doesn't believe it necessary). But when she's angry, she says quite a lot...and more.

10) What are their nervous habits?
She plays with the ring on her finger, the one that belonged to her real mother, a royal (which she doesn't know until much later in life).


On a not-completely-unrelated note...I just had a heart attack. I found that I LOST THE ONE GOOD CHARACTER PICTURE I HAD OF RHONA. I am heartbroken. :( But, wait! What light shines from that other window? I can go look on Pinterest! Yes! Yes, my precious! I must go on a picture spree through my special Pinterest board to find another others that work.



Ohhhhhh.... I love this. I really, really love this. Maybe even more than the picture I lost!



And THIS... This gives me a super-awesome idea for the prequel I already started planning a few years ago.


And so all ends well. But here's a lesson for all you: never never NEVER leave your pictures unsaved. Save them twice or thrice, if possible. ANYTHING to keep from losing them. You don't know what agony that is.

Friday, July 4, 2014

how you can tell I'm in a good writing mood

NEWS HOT OFF THE PRESS: Whilst plotting, Anna decides on a spur of the moment to completely switch up two characters' places. Taken from my outlining notes...

[Character B] finds [Character A] grievously injured on the point of death. (HAHA changed that one up!) DUN DUN DUN.

So, in other words, outlining is going wonderfully. I'm going to rewrite some beginning scenes. And I'm considering whether to kill a character off or not.



Yep, I think I'm learning from Steven Moffat.

Who wants a let's-get-to-know-the-characters post?

Thursday, July 3, 2014

Further Update on My Writing Plans

I just came across this most beautiful idea/challenge, and I have decided to answer the questions for Week 1 of it.




1. What is your writing goal?
Already mentioned in my last post.


2. Give us a short synopsis of your project.
Turns out, I was planning to post some outlining from Innocent that I wrote yesterday, using the Snowflake Method (to see it, go here and scroll down until you find it). Here are summaries from my two main characters POVs:

A. One-sentence summary of your novel.
In a land far from earth, yet touched by it, the destiny of all its people lies in a necklace that holds a stone with a valuable liquid.

B. Longer summaries from the point of view of my major characters
Marianne Roberts’ world turns upside down when a precious stone is found in her deceased uncle’s treasure collection. Suddenly her day-to-day life entails running for her life, training in self-defense, and travelling across the known world in order to give the stone back to its rightful owner before it falls into the wrong hands.


Rhona Ranling, peasant girl, has always wished for a better life. But when she finds that she is really a royal princess, she gets more than she bargained for. Her uncle, the king, is gravely ill, and a dangerous enemy in hiding is right under her nose.


3. How long have you been working on this project?
Lazily, since I was 14.


4. How often do you intend to write in order to reach this goal before August 1st?
Every day, hopefully. But I may not be able to on the days my family goes on day trips.


5. Introduce us to three of your favourite characters in this project.
Marianne. She lived the last few years of her life in a wrong way. The danger that the necklace brings into her life snaps her "out of it", as some might say. But she still struggles with her past. She's the type that fights for what she believes is right.

Rhona. She's a feisty redhead who spent her childhood trying to prove that she was better than all the other peasant children. Then, as she enters adulthood, she finds that she is indeed above the children she scorned. But instead of blowing up her pride even more, she starts to realize that she was wrong.

Joseph. He's a kind, sweet, and gentle boy. But underneath hides the scars of a little boy who was beaten by his father while his other brother went to birthday parties and play dates.


6. Go to p. 16 (or 6, 26, or 66) of your writing project. Share your favourite line or snippet from this page.

“I was just trying to put you in good spirits so you wouldn’t feel too bad when Guus arrived!” Ghanry protested.

Rhona rolled her eyes and turned away. “The only thing that can help me get ready for Guus’ visit is if certain people would just let me get my work done so I can go to the market.”

“How are you going to get to the market before Guus arrives?” Ghanry asked, innocently. “He’s at my house right now.”

Rhona’s blood froze. Slowly turning, she asked, in a slow, cold tone, “What…did…you…say?”

Ghanry, who had realized his mistake, stuttered something so low that Rhona couldn’t hear.

“Speak up!"

“I…I said…meaning no harm to anyone…I didn’t know that you didn’t know…”

“Just say it!” Rhona hissed, her brain already having registered what Ghanry meant.

Ghanry’s face crumpled into the most mournful face that Rhona had ever seen. So mournful, in fact, that if she hadn’t been boiling mad at the moment, she might have felt sorry for him at the sight of it.

“Guus is at my house. Right now,” he whimpered.

And Ghanry’s house is the next farm over.


7. Tea or Coffee?
Coffee. I love tea, too, but coffee is my staple. (Along with peanut butter sandwiches.)

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

July Writing Plans

There are three reasons why I don't write (aside from the reason of being impossibly busy most of the year).

- Writer's Blank: I can't think of anything to write.
- Writer's Blahs: I don't feel like writing anything.
- Writer's Bleakness: I hate everything I've ever written. This sound so stupid - why did I ever write that?

At the moment, I'm in the third stage. A few weeks back, I finally went back to Innocent. And I read over it. And despaired over it. I've already re-written a good portion of it and I've barely started my "first draft". But I've decided that I'm not going to let myself look backward, but only forward...until that first draft is finally done. (Not-So-Fun Fact: With the amount of time I've had in addition to Writer's Blahs and Bleakness, I've written about 23 pages since I started it. When I was fourteen.)

So I've made a plan for myself.

1. Get the things I need to do (such as the torture called French grammar that I have to take over the summer) in the morning so that I have a couple of hours in the afternoon free.

2. Spend much less time on things like Facebook and Pinterest. (Because honestly, most of my time spent on Facebook is reloading the page, hoping that someone posted something because I am absolutely bored).

3. I'm going to set myself an ambitious goal of 10 pages per week. (For some of you, that may be laughable, but this is HUGE for me, especially with my schedule.) I'll just stick with just July (and the last few days of June - because there are two more days left in June as I write this) for now, so that makes 50 pages. I doubt I'm going to make this goal, but I find that I work better with a goal. 

4. Outlining does count for the 50 pages.

5. And absolutely NO looking back. (Unless I need to check a name or event or something. But no editing. And no panicking.)


If I complete this goal, I'll treat myself. To what, I have no idea. Any ideas?







Monday, June 30, 2014

Five Tips on How To Write a Great Character

As I come with more and more story ideas, I've started running into problems with my characters - a lot of them are a slight variation on each other. For example, I seem to have only two types of female characters - the quiet, nerdy type or the sarcastic, opinionated type. This is obviously a problem.

In my research, I've come up with a few good hints for writing good characters.


1. Give each character one of your own personality characteristics. But also give that character a characteristic that is completely opposite to your own personality.

2. No one's perfect, and no one's completely evil, either. Give your characters both virtues and flaws. And give them reasons why they're that way (see #3 below). Not everything comes from an unhappy childhood, Mr. Freud.

3. Motivation. What motivates your character? Did Bob kill his mother because he hated her or wanted to protect her? Did Fred steal the cookies because he was starving or just because he likes them?

4. Fears. Just like everyone has flaws, everyone's afraid of something. What is your character afraid of? Drowning? Sinning? Disappointing his parents?

5. Don't use stereotypes - use archetypes. I recently found a great book called 45 Master Characters: Mythic Models for Creating Original Characters by Victoria Lynn Schmidt. It is very helpful for creating an original character, and everything I said above is in this book...and more. And remember, flat characters are very boring - make your characters, multi-dimensional.


I hope these tips were helpful. And remember, I take requests for writing tips. :)

Cheers!

Saturday, June 28, 2014

UNVEILED: Innocent's Prologue

I have posted the prologue to my beloved WIP Innocent before...but not on this new blog. Therefore, I thought it would be high time to repost it, especially since if you want to get to know my work,  Innocent is the one thing you need to know. Enjoy -- and please let me know what you think. ;) Do you like it? Do you want to hear more?


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My name is Marianne Roberts. When I was five years old, my parents died in a plane accident. I was sent to live with my uncle George and my aunt Katrina. Uncle George was some sort of secret agent, so I didn’t see him much. Aunt Katrina was as nice as any aunt could be, but I preferred Uncle George. When I was little and he came home from missions, he would swing me up into his arms and toss me into the air as I giggled happily and cried, “Uncie Georgie! Uncie Georgie!” When I was older, we talked about our favourite subject – The Lord of the Rings.

Aunt Katrina was okay with the books and the movies, but didn’t especially like them, either. Not so with Uncle George and I – we loved them with a passion. Sometimes, when Uncle George came back from missions on a summer evening (he seemed to usually come home around midnight for some reason), he would wake me up and we’d spend the rest of the night watching The Fellowship of the Ring, The Two Towers, and The Return of the King: laughing at Pippin and Merry’s pranks, watching in horrified silence at Sauron and orcs, crying when Sam held Frodo at Mount Doom.
                  
Auntie would complain when we slept during the day, exhausted from being up all night, but we knew she didn’t really mean it. She knew how much we loved The Lord of the Rings and how few moments we had together to spare time for it.
                  
Then, disaster struck when I was twenty-one. A letter came in the mail, telling Auntie and I that Uncle George was missing. Auntie had a heart attack when she heard the news. The next day, I was alone in my uncle’s house; the house now belonged to me.

                  
To cover up the aching sorrow in my heart, I dove more than ever into Tolkien’s classic story. And perhaps, I dove too deep.  



Liebster Tag



I was tagged by snatched this tag from Kiri Liz.

The Rules
- Thank and link back the person who nominated you.
- List 11 facts about yourself.
- Answer the 11 questions from the person who nominated you.
- Nominate 9 blogs who have fewer than 200 followers.
- Ask them 11 questions.
- Let them know about the nomination.


One down, six to go.

11 Facts About Me My Stories
1. I am the world's worst person at finishing projects. I love to start them, but I never finish. For example, I have never gotten even near at finishing the first draft of my story Innocent, but I have come up with plenty of new story ideas.

2. I started Innocent/FOTN when I was fourteen. The idea came from one of my obsessions at the time. It is my dearest WIP and it is the one thing that I am going to force myself to finish...one day.

3. This is actually my third try at a writing blog. So far, it is the most successful one.

4. Some of my story ideas not on this blog include a girl who finds herself taking part in the events of Macbeth and a girl who is transported to the end of the world during halftime in a baseball game.

5. One of the greatest struggles in my life involves the question "Read...or write?"

6. I wrote my very first story when I was about eight years old. My story featured a girl named Molly who went to her friend's house for the sleepover I had always dreamed of. Over the next few years, my writing developed with more stories about Molly. My last Molly story was written when I was around twelve.

7. After the Molly stories, I wrote a story about three friends who went to a café whose visitors were characters like Christopher Robin, Gollum, and the Big Bad Wolf. I wrote two more stories in the series, but none were as amazing as that first one.

8. One of my favourite stories I wrote as a child was a story about two Chinese boys who escaped from their master, a shopkeeper. The shopkeeper ran after the boys, cursing and screaming. He eventually found his charges and sent them back to work.

9. My favourite book ever since I was nine has been The Lord of the Rings.

10. I absolutely love notebooks. So much so that I love buying them all the time. And then I never use them. Because after one page has been used...they're spoiled for other things. ;)


Answering 11 Questions
1. If you could go back in time, what would you visit and why? There are so many periods in time that I love - 19th century (pioneer) North America, medieval times, the French Revolution, and World War/Great Depression periods. For obvious reasons, I'm not sure I would want to visit the latter two, at least not for very long. But I'd love to go back in time and meet Tolkien. That would be amazing. :)

2. What was the longest book you ever read? Les Miserables...probably? I don't know how it relates to The Lord of the Rings. Les Mis is my second favourite book of all time.

3. Describe yourself in one sentence. I'm a Roman Catholic Canadian eighteen-year-old girl who loves her Faith and family, to read and write, and is a huge fan of The Lord of the Rings and Doctor Who.

4. What is one of the books you read (or had read to you) when you were little? Well, I can't remember as far back as when I couldn't read yet (What?! I could read as soon as I came out of my mother's womb!). But when I could read myself, my favourite authors were Enid Blyton and Kit Pearson. No question about it.

5. What book are you current reading? Ah, you means books. *cough* I have a bad habit of starting many books and reading snippets of them at different times. So, at the moment I am rereading one of my favourite books (written by a friend), I Thirst, a book that my mom loves and forced asked me to read, Angels in the Dust, and an amazing TV guide / historical book, The World of Downton Abbey. I. HAVE. NEVER. READ. SUCH. A. BRILLIANT. GUIDE. IT. IS. MOSTLY. HISTORY/CULTURE. OF. THE. TIME. PERIOD. AND. I. LOVE. IT.

6. What genre do you like to write? Fantasy, mostly. But I've been widening my boarders to a little science fiction, dystopian, historical fiction, and what I like to call real-life books (I've never learned the name for this genre, okay?). But it's hard for me not to add fantasy to anything I write.

7. Why do you write? I've always loved thinking up my own stories, and it just makes sense to put them down to paper so that I can remember them. I also love to share my stories with other people. :)

8. Besides writing, what do you do in your free time? I read. I watch TV shows like Doctor Who, Once Upon a Time, Merlin, and Downton Abbey. I surf Pinterest. I update my blogs (I've got three more besides this one - my main blog, my reviews blog, and a fandoms blog I share with my sister - but I honestly do most of the work on it). When I have extra free time (which isn't often), I make music videos, make jewelry, or teach myself to knit and play the piano. And whenever I'm super bored, I reload Facebook half a dozen times in hopes that something new will have popped up since last time I checked.

9. What's the best writing advice you ever heard? PLOT PLOT PLOT. The book First Draft in 30 Days changed my life. Literally. Buy that book. Or at least borrow it from your library. It will change your life, too.

10. What is your favourite section of the bookstore? Christian adult, if there is one. And the one that has guides for movies and TV shows so that I can look through them all and wish I was rich so that I could buy them all.

11. What is the best writing prompt you've ever used? I've pinned dozens of writing prompts to my Pinterest board for writing inspiration, but I've never used them. Except for the one that inspired this idea.


Nominate nine followers and ask them eleven questions


In other words, I'm too lazy. Take the tag if you want and use the eleven questions above. ;)