Wednesday, January 28, 2015

What's Up Wednesday

What's Up Wednesday is a weekly meme geared toward readers and writers, allowing us to touch base with blog friends and let them know what's up, put on by Jamie Morrow and Erin Funk. If you'd like to join click on the links above!

What I'm Reading:
Please Remain Calm by Courtney Summers. I loved This Is Not A Test and have been anxiously awaiting for the release of this short story. I loved it, and it did not disappoint. The ending may have crushed a little piece of my soul, but it was beautiful story.

What I'm Writing:
I've revised almost a hundred pages and I'm hoping to get another fifty done this week. We'll see how it goes.

What Works For Me:
Cleaning. If my house is a disaster I can't concentrate on my writing. Clutter is not my friend, neither are dirty dishes and laundry. The burden of having a dirty home weighs heavily on me. It's unavoidable, but I can't tell you how much cleaning actually helps me when I'm stuck. Usually I have Pandora going on in the background so it helps activate my creativity.

What Else I've Been Up To:
My life is so incredibly mundane, so I won't bore you with the details. I have been critiquing some other writers' stuff and it's such a great experience. There are some seriously talented people out there.

Monday, January 26, 2015

Snip Snip

Cutting words, paragraphs, pages is a given in the writing world. That doesn't make it any easier. When I first started writing I tricked myself into thinking that I would be one of those writers that would never have to get rid of a character or a scene or sentence (HAHAHAHAHA). You know what I discovered? Those writers don't EXIST. Editing and revising are absolutes when it comes to our craft. You can't skip on either if you want to make your manuscript the best it can be. And as a writer that's all I want. To give justice to my characters and the story they're telling ME.

I also discovered that I'm an OVER-writer. What is that? Someone who likes to use one too many adjectives to describe the color of the sky while the sun is setting when just one is plenty. Words have impact and smushing a bunch of them together to make a sentence prettier isn't going to help you make a point any clearer. I don't want to make my readers wade through them in order to understand what the heck it is I'm saying.

What else do I suck at? Using the same words over and over again. Okay, we all have characters who like to shrug or roll their eyes or mumble and murmur, whatever it may be, but having them do it like a hundred times in so many pages is a bit excessive. Also, you don't want those wonderful characters to injure themselves with all that unnecessary movement. (Did you know if you rolls your eyes too much itwill cause people to permanently cut you out of their lives because they're sick of your passive-aggressive show of annoyance?)

Getting rid of words can be painful. Writers tend to get attached to their work and saying good-bye to something that helped shape an entire book can be hard. That's why you have other people read your stuff and tell you what isn't working, because we can't see the hot mess that is a missing or pointless plot point.

At the end of the day we all have to get our fingers ready to press that delete button so that we can make something truly amazing happen in 70,000 words or less. That's not asking for a whole heck of a lot now is it?

Wednesday, January 14, 2015

What's Up Wednesday

Wow it feels like forever since I took part in one of these. I've missed everyone!

What I'm Reading:
I recently finished Swimming to Tokyo by Brenda St. John and really loved it. I thought it was a unique premise and I loved the location. And the romance was sizzling. I'm currently working on Reclaimed by Sarah Guillory which is definitely interesting thus far. Also I downloaded The Gateway Through Which They Came by Heather Marie and I'm super excited about it.

What I'm Writing:
I got in 1k so far this week. Not much, but I'm in the middle of revising Fading again. I got some requests which ultimately turned into Rs after querying and decided I needed to go over my manuscript one more time. I got some great feedback from some fabulous readers and am working on those. My goal is to revise the first fifty pages this week.

What Works For Me:
Stepping back after receiving critiques. I give myself a day to wrap my head around everything before jumping right into them. Maybe even more than a day. And I also ask myself if I agree with them, because if I don't then I'm unwilling to go and do the work to fix up whatever it is that needs to be fixed.

What Else I've Been Up To:
We spent Christmas in LA with my dad and though it was fun, I'm so glad to be home. But I now need a vacation from my children. Two weeks straight in a tiny apartment with all four of them just about drove me to madness. Also, I'm finding myself fall more in love with the writing community. It's so nice to be around such supportive, awesome, lovely people.

What's Up With You?

Monday, January 5, 2015


I rang in the new year with the flu this year. If that's any indication as to how this year is going to go, then no thank you to 2015.

Everyone has already done the 'goal' post this year and I'd like to add to the masses. Mine are simple. Finish the first draft of Keepsake by some time in February, revise the hell out of it and then jump into the query trenches again. Maybe by the end of the summer. I'd also like to finish a first draft to another project.. Not sure which one yet.

Other than that I'd like to eat less sugar (yeah right), keep up my exercise schedule, play with my kids before they grow up and start thinking it's lame, and just try and live in the moment. Oh, and read 50 books. I got over 100 in 2014, so I think that's doable.

Last year was the most I've ever focused on my writing, and I'd like to keep up the trend. I feel like as a writer I'm getting closer to where I want to be, so I don't want to skimp on the writing any and get lazy.

I hope it's a wonderful year for everyone and that we accomplish some of those goals we set at the beginning of every year. It's only five days in to 2015, so we have 360 days left to make things happen, so let's do it!