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Showing posts from 2013

Good News, Bad News, and Lots of Words

The good news: Contracted just passed 100k words.  That means that I finally reached my NaNoWriMo goal, which was to add 50k to this wip. It also makes me look back and laugh at when I thought it would be a quick and simple short story. That also means that Contracted is the most words I've written on one project in the least amount of time.  The other good news: My rewrites for Part I of the The Book just ended at 32,431 words. I think I may have added more to this section instead of cutting -- but whatever the wordcount difference, I managed to resolve some serious plot and character problems. I now have a solid foundation on which to build the rest of the book. The rest of The Book which was originally 100k to begin with. Now for the bad news: Contracted just passed 100k words and still has more to go. Part I rewrites on The Book are nearly at 33k.   The bad news is that I CAN'T WRITE ANYTHING SHORT. I am the person that people roll their eyes at when they ta

College Writer Blog Tag!

I was nominated for the College Writer Tag by Patrice of Whimsically Yours , whose blog you should totally read. There are owls all over it, if that makes you more inclined to do so. (I like owls.) Oddly, I don't seem to know as many college bloggers as I knew high school bloggers. Several of the blogs I used to follow in my age group dropped off the map during college. Luckily, this hasn't been the case for everyone! The Questions: What year are you? I'm a senior. Ack. It's senior project and senior recital year. It's also "finishing up all the gen eds I didn't take before" year. I should have done the gen eds back in freshman or sophomore year, when I still thought that every class was a life or death matter. I recently got my grades in, and they were a lot better than I had expected. I really want to go on to grad school. I want to focus my studies in the area that I know I am interested in and good at. Unfortunately, I still ha

Last Wednesday Before Break

I like the new What's Up Wednesday banner -- winter wonderland edition. What's Up Wednesday is a weekly blog hop hosted by Jaime Morrow. What I'm reading I'm wrapping up Proxy and Bess of Hardwick: Empire Builder. The first is for fun, the second was for class. I'm also frantically reading my history textbook as I study for my exam in...let's hour. Gulp. What I'm writing Even after NaNoWriMo is over, it's hard to get out of the NaNo mood. I wrote a post about dealing with NaNo burnout. I wrote a review of MILA 2.0. Other reviews are in the works, but have been put on hold while I handle finals. I had to write a manifesto proposing a new aesthetic movement in theatre for one of those finals. Ack. And that was just one part of a three-part final. I have also been trying to get back to writing normally as I work on Contracted. I have to keep reminding myself that I'm not "done" with it just because NaNo is over...and that I

Dealing With NaNo Burnout

As happy as I am with my word count for NaNo 2013, there's still a "but." The same thing happened last year -- I'm suffering from NaNo burnout. It's not as bad this year because I'm not sick as a dog like I was last year. Still, I'm definitely feeling the burnout factor. I opened up Contracted the other day, noodled a few plot notes, wrote a beginning of a scene and tried halfheartedly to continue it, but stopped. I could have pushed through and written more -- like I had to do for NaNo -- but, just, ugh.  Part of the issue is that the motivation offered by NaNo is gone. I now have to self-motivate. I'm still very much invested in this wip, but I have no tangible goal to work towards. Perhaps this is why so many people quit writing -- with no reward in sight, they aren't as motivated to continue. Perhaps this is why NaNo is so helpful: it stresses finishing, and it gives you a reward when you do.  (I'm glad that NaNo doesn't offer

Cheerfully Losing NaNoWriMo

My final word count for NaNoWriMo 2013 was 38,644. Well, technically it was 39,948, but I didn't get the chance to add in my last few words written before the site closed. It's 11,356 words shy of the 50,000-word goal, but I don't mind. November is not really the ideal month to write a novel in, particularly with my schedule. I am extremely pleased with what I've accomplished during that time. Especially compared to last year, my first NaNo attempt. Last year, I began Mask , a YA contemporary novel about the captain of a high school girls' fencing team. There was much drama, but it would all have worked out OK in the end -- if I'd gotten to the end. Alas, I stopped at about 17k. This first NaNo taught me a lot, and I'm sure I have the beginnings of a good story somewhere in there.  But I was never really meant to finish Mask , and I didn't expect to. It was a bad, stressful time. For one, I was sick a lot and tired all the time. I also hadn't

What's Up Wednesday: NaNoWriMo Catch-up

What's Up Wednesday is a weekly writerly blog hop hosted by Jaime Morrow. What I'm reading I'm loving Nick and Tesla's High Voltage Danger Lab. Middle Grade has been my favorite thing under the sun lately -- since the summer, really. I left behind some of my favorite YA reads over break, including Proxy, which I am just getting into and which was verrrry painful to leave because it is SO GOOD. But. I knew that if I took it, all I'd do was read it. I am definitely looking forward to finishing it once I come home for break. What I'm writing (aka NaNo update) At the risk of boring you all to death with yet another NaNoWriMo post, I'm a few thousand words behind the projected word count. Oh well. I am almost to 30k (words written since Nov. 1, not words total). That puts me a good 13k above what I had for last year's NaNo, which makes me happy. I will return to Mask some day...but right now, Contracted is my baby.  When I'm not writing it, I li

It's Wednesday. What's Up?

What's Up Wednesday is a weekly blog hop hosted by Jaime Morrow.   What I'm reading A biography for class, called Bess of Hardwick, Empire Builder by Mary Lovell. It's very good nonfiction -- engagingly written, informative, and about a very interesting person during a very interesting time in history. I'm also reading Nick and Tesla's High-Voltage Danger Lab and The Last Unicorn. I really need to read for fun and reviews more, but as I'll explain, I've been quite busy. What I'm writing (aka NaNo update) Contracted passed 70k last night/this morning. I'm technically behind on the NaNo stats chart, but only by a little under 2,000 words. I've been hanging out on the word wars, prompts, and sprints forum late at night when I should be doing homework, playing catch-up instead. I recently finished a major section, so huzzah!  One thing I've noticed is that while I get a lot of words out during NaNo, the speed does cramp my writing and

Tag, I'm It! 10 Questions from Alyssa

Alyssa, fellow college blogger of I Am Writer - Hear Me Roar! tagged me in a blog-hop interview. You can read her list of questions and answers here. She asked me: 1. What in your opinion do you think YA (or fiction in general) needs more of? A lot of answers to this question vary depending on what is trending at the time. If something is trending, people generally say "YA/fiction should have more of [whatever is opposite or different from the current trend]." I'll try to answer this more generally. I think YA needs more scary stuff. As much as I love paranormal, I have consistently disliked how it has been softened down for YA. I would like to see either paranormal that doesn't lose the horror elements, or just more pure YA horror. Which leads me to... 2. What is something you would absolutely love to see a book about? (Be specific if possible!) I want more horror retellings of fairy tales. I've had the genre on the brain lately thanks to my NaNo nov

What's Up Wednesday: Pentatonix Edition

What's Up Wednesday is a weekly writerly meme hosted by Jaime Morrow and Erin Funk. What I'm reading I got a copy of Nick and Tesla's High Voltage Danger Lab to review! This book looks like fun. I've been reading more Middle Grade lately, and I like it a lot. I also read and reviewed Asylum . I didn't like it, and only finished it so that I could write a fair review. Various aspects didn't really sit well with me, and the writing fell flat. Others might like it, but for me it was "meh." I am also feeling the urge to re-read some of my favorites: The Fellowship of the Ring, The Lies of Locke Lamora, All The World's A Grave, and even A Game of Thrones. There's a reason I put all these books waaaay up high on the shelf. I have no business re-reading right now when I have so much material to get through... What I'm writing Contracted is pushing 60k. My progress on this WIP continues to surprise me. I can't believe I started th

This Was a Weird Wednesday

It's Wednesday again. What's up with you? What I'm Reading I just finished MILA 2.0. It's a great book! I would probably give it four stars, because five stars for me is me jumping up and down and pestering all my friends to read it. I wasn't quite that crazy over it, but it's still good. And I cried at the end. MILA 2.0 also gets major points for one of the best mom-daughter dynamics I've read in a long time. What I'm Writing Contracted , as usual. Big oops. I kind of...accidentally reached 50,000 words. :P Before November. Bad me! Oh well; I was going to NaNoRebel this one anyway. Now my NaNo goal will be to finish the story, I guess. I have no idea how many words that will take. What Else I'm Up To Making ravioli. And, weirdly, crying a lot for no known reason. I did just get new contacts, so it's probably a reaction from the rest of my body to my eyes feeling watery and irritated a lot. I also just finished a stag

Subgenre Party!

Since signing up for NaNoWriMo, I've been spending a lot of time on the forums. They're a great resource.  Because Contracted is fantasy, I've been hanging out on the Fantasy forum a lot. In the process, I've found out some things about the WIP that I didn't know myself. It fits into sub-genres I didn't initially realize, including some that I didn't even know existed. Such as: High Fantasy: fantasy that takes place in a non-Earth dimension, alternate world, or universe. (Contrast with Low Fantasy, which takes place on Earth.) Lumped in with Epic Fantasy, and the terms are interchangeable (although I prefer to differentiate between the two because High refers to the setting while Epic refers to the nature of the story).   Epic Fantasy: lumped in with High Fantasy. Fantasy that features a quest, journey, multiple locales, a sense of sweeping scope and scale, or characters with epic stature, such as monarchs and heroes. More likely to have an episod

What's Up Wednesday: Government Shutdown Edition

What I'm reading  MILA 2.0 has been sitting over in the sidebar since summer, and sitting sadly on my Nook for PC since I downloaded it. I want to get back into it -- I left off right when things started to pick up -- but I feel really guilty whenever I read anything that isn't related to class. I also ordered The Weir and Other Plays and 'night Mother to read as possibles for my senior thesis. It's getting down to the wire and I can't really afford to read for fun right now. "Senior year," they said. "It will be fun," they said... What I'm writing The action is picking up in Contracted. The characters are also developing in ways I didn't originally plan, and that I'm not sure I like. It's interesting, but at the same time I'm thinking, "Why did I write this scene?? She's not supposed to have feelings!!"  Feelings are hard. I don't like them. :(    Also, I don't buy the "My characters

What if Iago was a Woman?

For all that I'm a theatre major, I hardly ever talk about acting on this blog. But this project is so cool and fantastic and awesome and wicked that I just have to take a minute and tell you about it. What if Iago was a woman? For those of you who don't know, Iago is a villain in Shakespeare's tragedy Othello. He is considered one of the worst, most evil antagonists in all of Shakespeare.  Plot summary: Othello is a Moor, which in those days referred to someone from Africa. He, a black man, marries Desdemona, a white woman. Society flips its shit, but they can't exactly do anything because he's the General of the Venetian navy and there's a war on. Desdemona, unable to stay with her angry father, goes with Othello to Cyprus, which is in rebellion. A storm sinks the enemy navy and our good guys arrive safely. Iago, though, is not happy. Because Othello passed him over for promotion (and assorted other reasons that all amount to "I just want to fuck sh

I'm a Mess: College, Recipes, Bewilderment

I am determined to keep up this blog in college. Right now, I just don't have much to say because I'm a total mess. My stuff has yet to be unpacked. I promise I'm not lazy. I can explain. The saga of the dorm room: I'm in a triple with my two roommates from freshman and sophomore year. Yay! :) Our room is not huge and there are three of us, so we've had to get creative with making space. Problem was, my bed was bunked on top of another bed. When I say "bunked," I mean someone thought it would be a good idea to just stack one bed on top of another. They weren't secured. There was no rail on the top bed or rungs to climb the bunk. The whole affair shook if you touched the top bed. No way in hell was I climbing up there to sleep. So we pulled my mattress off and put it on the floor in the closet. This Tuesday, someone came in to un-bunk the beds. Yay! Now I can unpack the rest of my stuff! Except that my two big boxes are too tall to go under the

What's Up Wednesday: I'm Not a Morning Person

My brother really needs to get his driver's license so that I don't have to drive him to college. That requires me to get up at 6:45 AM. I've never functioned well at that time. My morning classes even in elementary school were horrible because I was so tired and had so much trouble focusing my attention. I blame that for why I hate math. Nope, getting up early results in days like today, where I was completely burned out and frustrated by 6 PM. If I hadn't pre-written this post, I wouldn't WUW this week. I took a nap. I wish I could retake all those naps I wanted to skip as a kid. Me this evening. Anyway, writing! I finished my Ready Set Write! side goal for the week: complete a scene from Contracted and start the next one. However, I'm worried that my voice/style will change as I get further into the story. I'm editing another WIP with drastically different characters, voice, and style. This is the first time I've been worried that working on t

Orange is the New Black: An Honest Review

I've heard a lot about this show. I've heard it praised to the roof. I've also heard the SPLAT of virtual tomatoes. And you know me -- always willing to weigh in with an opinion.  I have a friend who always tries to tell me this or that about Game of Thrones -- how it's fantasy porn or how too many people die or how it's not literary or what the author's evil goals are -- when he hasn't seen the show or read the books. I can tolerate the hipsters who don't want to watch something because it's popular. I don't like the hipsters who refuse to watch something and pass judgment on it anyway. So to avoid being that person, I sat down and watched Orange is the New Black. 8 episodes of it. [SPOILERS AHEAD] It's very easy to binge-watch. It's kind of like a train wreck -- I can't look away. My favorite character is Piper's roommate, Miss Claudette. I also like Susanne/Crazy Eyes, because she peed on Piper's floor, and Piper i

What's Up Wednesday: Why My WIP Is So Long

I'm sort-of-nearly to the end of my critiquing adventure. My Ready. Set. Write! goals have all been oriented on editing this WIP, my first WIP, which I started when I was a 14-year-old high school freshman and finished when I was an upcoming senior in college. "Finished." Haha. I know, I amuse even myself sometimes.  What I'm Reading MILA 2.0 is going swimmingly. Apart from some weird wordage that occasionally throws me, it's great. I also like that it has an introverted protagonist.  I'm also working on Throne of Glass. The captain of the guard seems like an interesting guy. The prince is a typical spoiled pretty-boy who probably will fall in love with Celaena and then think he's entitled to her love because he gets everything he wants all the time, and an affair with an assassin is something cool and dangerous outside the propriety of princely life. He's not quite Joffrey, but I will be REALLY MAD if Celaena chooses him. There was a similar