Best Author Vlog…IMHO

I stumbled onto a vlog while trying to search out something related to writing to listen to during my work day.  Her name is Jenna Moreci and the link will take you to her YouTube Channel.  She’s absolutely hilarious and I’ve had a blast enjoying her writing tips and her personality.

In fact, I’ve enjoyed her so much, I purchased her book:  Eve, The Awakening.  A genre I’ve never even tried in the past, but she’s such a great speaker…I had to support her!

Here is her novel synopsis, straight from her:

Eve is an outcast. A chimera.

After years of abuse and rejection, Evelyn Kingston is ready for a fresh start in a new city. The esteemed Billington University seems like the perfect place to reinvent herself—to live the life of an ordinary human.

But Billington is harboring a secret of its own. Interlopers have infiltrated the university, and their sinister plans are targeted at chimeras—like Eve.

Instantly, Eve’s new life takes a drastic turn. In a time filled with chaos, is the world focusing on the wrong enemy? And when the situation at Billington shifts from hostile to dangerous, will Eve remain in the shadows, or rise up and fight?

Again, I’m more of a romance lover, but I *had* to buy her book after listening so long to her channel on YouTube.

If you’re not interested in this type of novel, you should still give her Vlog a try.  She’s got some fantastic writing tips, mixed with her own personal brand of humor.  It has inspired me to push through writers block and get back to writing!

Check out her website and the first 3 chapters of Eve, The Awakening!!

 

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I want to, but I can’t…

My writing process over the past few years can be best described as an out of control roller coaster.  I can sit for an entire month and hash out a first draft without blinking.  Maybe a little blinking.  But then I hit a low point.

Unfortunately, I seem to be at that low point right now.  I finished a first draft, set it aside, tried to go back…set it aside.  Then I thought, maybe starting something new will refresh me and I’ll enjoy going back to write a 2nd draft on the last one.

I fleshed out about half of the next story, I even jumped in with both feet and I’m in the second chapter now.

Hit the wall.

Now I can’t make myself open the rough draft of my finished story or my 2 chapter current draft.  I open it, look at it and shut it again.  This has got to be the most frustrating time in my “process”.  I’m struggling to make myself sit down and focus on writing, I’m irritated with myself because I’m not writing and I’m listen to just about every vlog, pod cast and writing lectures I can.

My current favorite is a vlog by Jenna Moreci.  She’s hilarious.  If you want to listen to writing advice, while laughing?  Check her out here:  Jenna Moreci YouTube Channel

I’ve already listened to her entire set of video’s twice and I’m on the third time.  She has her novel out and you can find that here:  Eve, The Awakening.

I’m trying to keep my head “in the game” with listening to her and also, my all time favorite writing podcast:  The Dead Robots Society.  These guys keep me completely submerged in the writing atmosphere, even if I’m not writing.  Check them out!

All in all, I love writing and have a fantastic time living in “my worlds”, but struggling during this “down” time is rough.  Do I go back to one of the two drafts that are waiting for me?  Do I set them both in a drawer and try something else?  Am I getting bored with the type of writing I’m doing and do I try something completely different?

I’m not sure what the answer is, but hopefully it’ll come to me soon.  I hate waiting 😦

girl waiting

 

 

Painful Scrutinizing

November is NaNoWriMo month and this year, I signed up in the hopes that it would help me stay on track with my current manuscript.  I didn’t necessarily expect to write 50,000 words this month, but to at least get myself more in the right mindset.  Roughly, I’ve written about 800 words, give or take, each day, over the last few days.  That alone, has me pretty pleased with myself.  But I keep coming face to face with my worst enemy.

Myself.

One of my biggest problems is over analyzing, which leads to rigorous over editing while I write.  Since I know this is an issue, I’m working hard this month to get beyond it.  I’ve decided if nothing else, during this “writing” month, if I can remind myself when I see it happening – that I don’t NEED to rewrite right now – I may just get my goal accomplished.  Oh, not 50,000 words this month, but rather well on my road to finishing this story.  True, it might not be November 30th that I type “The End” and I may not have the most beautifully polished story.  But I’ll be that much closer to having a completed story.  I’ll have the start of my “favorite” job – over analyzing.  Rewriting.  Editing the hell out of my first draft.

The important thing is that I’ll have the skeleton of the story completed.  If I keep this in the back of my mind, I think that will push me beyond the limits I keep placing on myself.

There are tons of articles, tips, “secrets” revealed on getting to that magical END point and sometimes I find myself trolling around the net for them.  But someone very special to me told me recently – writers write.  It’s what they do.  You can research, study and take classes, but a writer simply sits down and writes if that’s what they really want to do.

She’s exactly right.  Sometimes I still research, read an article or two, but it always comes back down to the blank piece of paper in front of me.  Another fact I need to remember when I start getting caught up in other “areas” of writing.

It’s been said, over and over to the point that sometimes I roll my eyes when I read it, but I love the adorable Little Nemo phrase “Just keep swimming, just keep swimming“.  I need to “Just keep writing, just keep writing“.

New Novel Word Count: 18,069

Life Gets in the Way

I absolutely love writing.  I love the act of it, the character banter in my mind constantly and the finished words I can enjoy reading back.  But boy, does life tend to get in the way.  And it’s not even that I’m so horribly busy I can’t write, it’s that I don’t make my writing a priority very often.

I like to *tell* myself it’s because I have so many things to do.  Working, taking care of my beautiful twins…working some more.  But the real answer is that I *let* my writing fall to the side.  Actually, I tend to go through stages.  A big boost of “writing energy” goes through me at random times during the month and I wonder how I ever lived without writing 1000 words a day.  Then it tapers off and I realize I haven’t written in weeks.

Sometimes, I sit down to write and my brain is racing around so quickly, I can’t focus on anything long enough to get it down on paper.  Well, coherently anyway.  A therapist has suggested ADD – but my explanation wanders a little more down the “Caffeine” route.  More precisely, too much of it.

So how does this help me finish a novel?  No clue.

Patience, I guess.  Maybe understanding…of myself, so that I don’t beat myself into a bloody heap trying to *force* that story out of my head.  Taking it one day at a time helps, but I have to make sure the frustration doesn’t overtake me.

It’s NaNo month, too.  I signed up the night of the 1st.  I was able to write a few 1,000 words in a few days, but it’s not really the type of accountability I seem to need.  I’ve also tried having someone else HOLD me accountable, but I think being creative…the whole concept of being creative, is letting it happen.  Not forcing it, not doing it for anyone else.  So I’ve come to realize, I need to hold myself accountable, IF I enjoy it and it’s something I want to do.  I have to just make myself find the time and just do it.  (Thank you Nike).

It bothers me that I can sit here and write a blog post, and not channel that energy into writing.  But again, I don’t believe it’s a cop-0ut – it’s writing.  It may not be moving my manuscript further along, but at least it gets me thinking.  🙂

New Novel Word Count: 16,244

Writer’s Block

I’ve been writing for years and heard everything from, it doesn’t really exist to a million and one ways to work through Writer’s Block.  After extensive “research” of my own and trying to get a manuscript written, I realize that it’s a partially accurate description of the wall that you can hit during your writing.  I don’t believe it’s “complete” blockage.  Since recently, I’ve started blogging and writing other bits and pieces of scenes, it seems that if I hit a “wall” or suddenly feel a block in what I’m doing – I have the option to move away from the writing I’m working on and focus my creative energy in another outlet.

Throughout my writing experiences over the years, I’d say that I’ve grown a lot and I tend to get further into each new novel when I’m really passionate about the characters.  For example, in my new novel, the hero and heroine are spunky and completely opposite goals for their lives.  But it’s easy to see, at heart, they are a lot more alike then they realize.  Because I enjoy their story, I’ve written nearly 14,000 before hitting the infamous block.

So I decided to try and figure out exactly what the problem was, perhaps this could help me work through my mental barricade and move forward.  I’m into chapter 4 and the first thing I notice is that my “rough outline” I had chicken scratched on a piece of paper – well, the story had deviated slightly from my notes.  I think my first mistake was trying to force my characters back to the original idea.  Any writer knows, this is not really the best way to write.  What I *should* have done, was let them digress, follow an unbeaten path and see what they wanted.  If I’ve created them to be true dimensional characters, they probably know better than I do how they’d respond to obstacles I throw in front of them!  I’m not stupid enough to assume they’d tell the story correctly.  Ha!  My hero would have total control of everything in his life – boring.  My heroine would live out a peaceful, uneventful story on her own personal lake – horribly boring.  I might throw up thinking how dry the story would be if I let them have full reign.

However, letting them test the limits of my storyline instead of forcing them back between the lines, has slowed the creative process.

The next thing I realized is that I have written a LOT of dialogue between the two, nearly the entire chapter.  While dialogue isn’t the worst thing (if written properly), the category romance I’m attempting to make this novel, needs much more internal dialogue.  This is an area I tend to struggle sometimes.  I’m not sure if it’s because the “Show, Don’t Tell” has been pounded into my head over the years, so I put way too much into outer referencing instead of inner thoughts.  Or perhaps I’m keeping too tightly in my “God” narrative and not enough getting to know these characters that I so adamantly say I’ve developed.

Either way, those are two vital mistakes I know I’ve made and has led me to this “block”.

So.  The next question is what do I do about it?  If you couldn’t tell, my first thought, write a blog post about it.  🙂  But as long as other outlets don’t stand as a crutch, I think this actually could be helpful.  Get something “on paper”.  Anything to get the wheels to turn, my brain to wake up and think about what I’m typing.  Whether it’s a blog post, notes, updating the now out-of-date outline, work on an entirely different story or scene…any of these options, will at least get me writing.  I have to go back and reiterate though, I need to make SURE it isn’t a cop-out.  Staying focused will help me persevere to the next level of my writing.

While I sit here, staring out my window at the morning sunlight brightening my front yard, I think of another thing that’s blocking me.  I feel…disconnected with my story right now.  It’s that time when I’m trying to stay true to each character, not “change” them too quickly.  And by change, I don’t mean change them to something they’re not.  I mean change, as in, see what they want, what they truly want and adjust their thinking to get it.  This is the muddy, grey area of the story where they need to stand strong and not see eye to eye.  An area that I always muck up too easily because I just want to throw the two of them together and move onto the sex 😉  Okay, not exactly, but I like the falling in love part.

It’s one of my biggest problems.  The anticipation and build up is the ultimate best part of a relationship, because we all know that once you cross that line, it’s ….satisfying… but you’ll never have that build up feeling again.

Big problem for me.

In reality, my “happily ever after” would be renewing that anticipation every day.  Sometimes I think maybe the “perfect” relationship for me would be a two story “house” that’s quite simply a full home/apt on both levels.  You and your significant other could have separate living quarters, enjoy space and let that slight bit of time being apart, help you reconnect.  Each day you spend together, would be a ‘starting over’ day.

I digress…and could ramble for hours about a fantasy life.

The point is, I always hit this wall when my characters hurdle into emotions I *know* they can’t be feeling yet.  I need to back up, edit if necessary, and remind myself of the people they are without each other.  Only then, can they move forward, stronger and more diligent about reaching their original goals.  It should take another chapter at least before they start to feel that pull, that unexplained need to spend more time together.

Well, I think I’ve put enough time into something other than fixing my story!  Thanks for letting my mind wander for a bit!

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New Novel Word Count: 13,887