Okay, so I’m trying this “social experiment” so to speak and I’m seeing a pattern. Do people really care about other author’s on sites like Twitter and Facebook? I recently started following people on Twitter to see their responses. It’s funny how many return with thank you for the follow and can’t wait for great conversation. Then you have a ton that send you links to their books and services. So how real is social media?
So far, blogging has been the closest to author and human interaction I could find on social media. It almost feels like facebook and Twitter are now just a giant internet billboard where people just drive by. Occasionally that one person goes oh wow, I’m going to check this out. Then, you have the ones calling the billboard trying to press their ads on people. Has greed of attention overcome us? Even as I write this post, am I like those attention seeking people begging for likes and comments? What perspective do you guys have of this cause it seems all pointless, right?
As you read this, I’m using my phone to post this so I may have some errors. Sorry in advance.
I had no clue what to title this post, but my journey seemed appropriate since I felt the need to write about my start as a writer/reader. I’m going to start with kindergarten because this is where I started with reading and coloring my own books.
I remember in kindergarten I was classified as a child with learning disabilities. The classes were called special ed. Some may know about these classes. I was put in there because I couldn’t touch my nose and hop on one foot at the same time. At the time, I didn’t know the difference and didn’t care because everyone around me I got along with very well.
Anyways, I read a lot of Clifford books in that class. The one with the big red dog. I enjoyed the books so much I drew my own silly little characters in story form and enjoyed it completely. I know for a while I stopped because I was doing a lot of different sports and scouts. I guess I lost interest in it. Then, in fifth grade, I started doing s comic book with my friend. We made one each week, have it to our teacher just to see what he thought. Apparently, he really enjoyed them until I took it into my own hands.
I did one book about Star Wars Bloopers and it ended up being a bit gory because of jedis’ limbs being chopped off. Plus, I had to make it graphic so a lot of blood. So guess, who didn’t find it amusing and had me sit in with a counselor for a few weeks? Yeah, I pushed my boundaries a but too much, but did I really?
After that, I started writing a lot of camp fire stories that weren’t that good because I didn’t know how to write well. I just loved to draw. So I write a story, entered it into a contest at school and… I lost. I felt like I had just lost the final boss of Super Mario Bros. It kinda stung.
Anyways, I stopped writing till I was in tenth grade. I started writing lyrics for songs in my band. I was actually really good at it and enjoyed it. Not just because girls liked singers at that age. Although that was a perk. I enjoyed it because I put my emotions into it and I got to spend time with friends. It was fun!!!! Then, you hit 18-19 and your band wants to pursue real careers and ditch music for a bit. Well, not completely for some of the guys.
I think I started writing my first novel Mirror’s Veil. Problem was, it was terrible. I tried every way to fix it even gave it to an editor and it was just boring. So I put it down and started Horizon. Now, although Horizon was a lot better, I wasn’t as pleased with it cause I was trying to piece chapters together in chronological order. Also, everyone seems to think they are a great editor when actually, that’s not the case.
I know my love for stories came from video games and movies. My inspiration to write originally came from these two things. I loved playing games with battles and saving damsels. I also enjoyed the ones with a badass hero who destroyed everything for their own purpose. Movies I’d say stem from Lord of the Rings, Star Wars, and Goosebumps.
Oh, I almost forgot one memory that really destroyed my esteem. My literature teacher said she would read a book I wrote while I was in high school and I was so excited that she was interested in it. I have it to her but at the end of the day when I was going to ask her about my grade, guess who’s manuscript wad saddling over her garbage can? Yup, mine. Very discouraging indeed.
I want to tell you that yes my few earlier works were bad, but I have improved immensely only because I had a family member really help me with my editing and teach me how to use better phrasing and words. It was my aunt that helped me and a bad ass I wanted to cower away and never write again. I went back to fix my errors and learn my genre better.
My writing journey has been bumpy in the past, but I wouldn’t say it is bad. I’ve learned, grown, and achieved. I’ve even talked to authors who have beat the odds and write full time now. I wish I could but it requires a lot of dedication and I’m turning that leaf now. This month so far 32,000 words. I’m thirsty to publish something better now.
Here is a breakdown of my current work of YA, epic fantasy, fiction.
Alexandria Roe has been abandoned in Saldon Forest by her estranged mother. She is attacked by a pack of wolves and is saved by a man, Thomas Eires, who adopts her into his family.
Nine years later, she develops unnatural changes in her body and discovers she has inherited two different genes, one of a sorceress and one of a wolf.
She learns the origins of her new family, but a dark sorcerer has come to Eliptica to find the final piece to the Temperament Scepter. An amethyst that was passed down to Alexandria by her mother.
Will man be able to overcome the greed of riches, or will they help Alexandria on her quest? A life of struggles, lose, and lies wait beyond Eliptica’s borders, where Alexandria will discover the secret of the amethyst and herself…
I’ve played with the idea of going to traditional publishing for awhile. My book Horizon was self published and for me, I felt like I took the easy way. Inside me, I feel incomplete like I did not meet this harrowing feat of completing a novel. It’s that moment
I asked myself did write for the love of writing, or did my pockets get the better of me?
I use to write stories for fun but thinking of the authors that have reached millions of sales and have become famous for their work, poisoned my thoughts. It craved for that same life where I could help people with wealth, and never live with financial insecurities again. I was very naive to think anyone could do it.
Last year, I learned a lot of lessons and one is querying to agents/publishers. I never sent anything to a publisher but I did try to give it to five different agents. All the same responses with the lovely rejections that they try so hard to keep civil. I understand they need to represent an author with great skills with story telling and words, but it is hard to realize sometimes that my book was not what they were looking for.
What’s even harder to realize is when I turned to self publishing and at the beginning my sales were booming, but six months down the road I am scraping by with two part time jobs that do not complete me. Don’t get me wrong I am extremely happy and blessed right now. I’m just not complete.
So for this next story I’m going to shoot for traditional see how it goes. Maybe I can reach a medium with my writing and my pocket. This last week, I have put my wallet aside and produced 30,000 words of an epic fantasy that I truly enjoy. I could feel myself standing at the peaks of Argonia, smell the aroma of chicken roasting on the fire pit, and hear the clatter of dishes across the floor of the local pub. Hell the hymn my character sings rings in my head quite often now. Without the thoughts of money has brought me back to what I love and enjoy. So this time it will be different. This time I’m shooting for traditional, hoping for the best, and thank all my readers that remain loyal to my work for reaching out to me and being by my side. You guys are the true winners in all of this.
In my last post, showed you guys my outlining process for my new novel “The Rise of Sargon.” Still a working title I should point out. People tend to wonder where a writer’s inspiration comes from to create words like Middle-Earth and the multiple exotic worlds in Star Wars. Everyone has their own unique way of creating and showing through words/film of these places. Here are my inspirations and what I do to create characters and my world of Eliptica.
1. Read, Watch, and Play
I find that reading books that relate to my story help me learn how to write my descriptions in the manner intended for the genre. It is hard to see a face that is not in front of me though or see images of places around the world that closely relate to locations in the book. What helps me though? I google photos of people, places, and clothes that give me an idea of the time and place my world is set in. Portraits of people definitely helps to envision my characters deeper with the skin textures, hair styles, and eye colors.
I will watch movies like Lord of the Rings, Star Wars, 300, Troy, etc. All of the movies I watch I am learning about morals and principles that each group believes. If I really like a moral, I’ll use it and twist it in my own way. Sometimes I’ll just watch these movies to have a basic idea of what an alien or human would look like long ago. I also enjoy watching these movies but research will always fall into my brain waiting to be cracked open later on.
I will play video games just because they are amazing and what better way to learn what your characters will feel when they win the battle, or I beat the game. There have been so many great ideas for story lines and battle sequences used in games that not many people get to experience. Plus, the feelings that rise when puzzles are solved and daunting journeys are taken to discover a new portion of a map. It all helps in my writing process. Some games I’ll play are The Elder Scrolls, Destiny, and Super Mario Brothers.
Music has done wonders for my stories. Epic battle music with just brass and strings are my favorite pieces of music to listen to when I have to create a fight. Two Steps to Hell has most of my favorite pieces that I’ll listen to. I also listen to Five Finger Death Punch and Skillet if I need to pump up the action or just to get my creative juices flowing. I actually will pop in Avril Lavigne and Puddle of Mudd to put my mind in a place for heart break scenes. It all just depends on where I want my head at when I’m writing.
A few bands I love and enjoy, but avoid listening to while writing. Korn, Disturbed, Slip Knot, and any metal band that really distracts me. I avoid these bands because the fast paced singing/ intricate guitar leads make it hard to concentrate. I have written scenes where I lose my train of thought and start writing pieces of these guy’s lyrics cause I’m singing them in my head. Like I said I love them but they’re for another day.
3. Personal Experiences
I put a lot of my life experiences into my novels. I recently fell into a dark part of my life and struggled to find a way out. These times really help me discover a place that I want my main character to feel. I’ll have joy in my life as well that I’ll use too. Like meeting my fiance or traveling to beautiful places like Europe or the Bahamas. Many locations I’ll keep in my head so later I can write about the smells and the beauty that I had experienced.
I remember writing Horizon while I was intoxicated. My finance enjoyed it but it took me too long to finish because I kept having to back track to remember what I wrote. My suggestion is do not write while intoxicated. Just write notes and read them later.
I’ve laid out all of my inspirations and techniques to bring my mind to the world of Eliptica in this post. I hope this helps everyone look for new destinations to use as you crack away at your novel. I’d like to know what you guys do as well. So if you have any thing to add, questions, or want to know more about me, just throw it in the comments below. Thank you all for reading my posts and good luck with all of your writings.
Check out Sara Roethle’s outlining tips. I had a tough time posting it in my last entry but here’s where you guys can find it.
Originally posted on Sara C Roethle:
Quote picture thingy! Okay, that’s not what this post is about, but I’m including one anyway. As some of you know, I currently have an Epic Fantasy book in the works, and let me tell you, it is a bear. I’m not an organized person, and I don’t do much planning before I write. Usually I think of things as I go along, then have to go and change all of the stuff I wrote in the beginning to make everything match up. This method does not work well for Epic Fantasy. I’ve learned A LOT about what not to do, so I’m going to share my list to save all of you other writers out there a load of agony and frustration.
1) Timeline. This is something I learned quite recently: make a gosh darn timeline. I am currently going back over a 75K book because I made a…
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Today is my last day of work before I get to sit down for five days and work on my epic fantasy. I wanted to use this post as a way to share some neat outlining tricks I’ve recently started trying out. Some of these have made me write constantly for eight to ten hours each day because I have a goal and a determination to meet them. I hope these will help you guys and just remember there is no true way to write a story. I’m just sharing what I’ve found is easier for me.
1. The Timeline
My timeline has all the chapters and events in them. Right now, I have twenty chapters outlined on the novel, but I have added in back story chapters for a few characters. This has helped me to know and love my characters. Also, don’t be afraid to change your timeline; sometimes spending those first four to five hours outlining you may miss a few key chapters that help the readers understand the journey.
As you all know, characters are what drive your story. You have protagonists, antagonists, comedic reliefs, etc. All of these characters have a story, so tell it! Put your main characters as your priority, but some sub characters can create a reason for your main characters to continue their quest. I use a black board to draw out my main family trees, while my wall serves as family trees/ characters that are not as important but remain needed in their own way. Keep these close to you cause characters change and you will need this to follow who they are later on.
Draw a simple map of your world. It doesn’t need to be fancy. I use this to keep track of the journey. It seems unnecessary but believe me maps really do give you the upper hand when you’re trying to plan an epic battle that is taking place in an ocean. Yes, it has occurred to me that names get lost in writing and we create lands over water by accident. Thank you, Sara C. Roethle for reminding of this in your post.
4. Possibly feuds/ Challenges
Right now only one sheet of paper. I’m writing my feuds as I go because some can span across a whole novel. There are eventually more challenges but just note them as you go. Start with the linear feuds then work your way into smaller ones that occur later on.
5. Schedule/ Goals
Here is my last suggestion, schedule your writing over the weeks and keep tabs on your work. Like any business, keeping track with time is essential to knowing what progress you’ve made. Yes, writers hate schedules but the reason I make one is because a schedule leads to a goal. Finishing the project!! How great would it feel if you stuck to your writing schedule like you would any full time job. Then finished your novel hopefully in weeks and had it published after editing. It would be amazing, right? As you can see, I’ve blocked my days with atleast two chapters written or 10,000 words. Which ever comes first. Plus, I have my tracker that says what I’ve written for the day and how long it took me to write that much. This has helped me figure out what times I’m more productive whether it be early in the morning, midday, or over night. Keep track of when you write the most and try to write at those times.
There is no true way to write a novel, but if you feel you are spending countless hours reeling back trying to remember if Carl had brown or blond hair, an outline will eliminate that wasted time. I hope this helps with all of your future works. I will eventually post up how I have developed this world I’m working on in the next post.
Hey friends, I have been away for a while and thought it was time to pop in to stir up conversation, or peak your interest in my weeks of solitude. My last post was about a job I didn’t feel too keen to and I did not go back. I actually go a call about a better job that same day I didn’t go into my new job haha. Anyways, I’m starting to feel at peace with myself and my little world now.
I’m sure you can understand dark times occur in life. I spent almost seven months whining, complaining, and dwelling things that do not matter. I still worry and wonder how to improve myself as a person and find my place in this world.
So I’m here to say thank you to all that have remained loyal and stuck by me. The ones who have discussed and cooled me down. Especially the ones who went the extra mile to dig deep into my brain. You are my heroes.
Now, I’d like to say I have been working on a book that I hope to have available soon for you guys. It’s called, “Rise of Sargon.” If you like dangerous adventures across a world of dark enchantments and tarnished kings, Sargon’s reign will have your eyes reeling for more.
A nation conquered by five kings, and spoiled by councilmen. A world with icy plains, treacherous mountains, death defying seas, and castles that reach high in the sky. The fate of Eliptica rests within a single gem that a child inherited by her sorceress mother. Will she favor Sargon, or save a world that has turned its back on her many times?