Novel Update

I finished. I finished the first round of editing, and transferred my novel from paper and pencil, to the lovely Times New Roman font on my laptop. It took a long time to type that up…from December 23rd, 2016 until October 13th, 2017.

My goal now is to do a complete read through of the hardcopy, which I printed off and stuffed into a binder I hijacked from my sister. I want to finish reading it all today. If I can do that, then that’s awesome. If not, that sucks but I’ll get it done. I’m in the last leg of the race here, I don’t want to start slacking off.

I was motivated to finish it, and I did. It felt so good watching it come out of the printer. Fresh ink. I ran out of paper twice. I didn’t care. I’m really pleased with myself. It’s been such a long time since I’ve actually completed one of my projects. I feel like I’ll have finally broken the pattern that began back in high school, with this novel. I’m going to finish the things I start from now on. There’s no reason for me to put things off.

Well…I’d better start reading. I haven’t eaten anything yet today and I barely slept last night but I don’t care. I’m so pumped. I did jumping jacks while this baby was printing. I’d kiss it but I don’t wanna be creepy.

My folks already find it weird that I carried the rough draft around with me and clutched onto it…and yelled at people for tossing my bag around whenever it was in there…and all the barking and hissing I did whenever anyone went into my room and moved my stuff….

Anyway, I’m going to get to work…and I’ll have a snack or something too. Ha…that’s probably a good idea.

Till next time,

–R.

(The following didn’t post for some reason…I apologize).


I’ve now edited several chapters…I believe 11. So I’m getting there. Since schools gotten really busy for me, I’ve set my goal to have the entire thing edited by the end of next week. I have no classes next week, so I’ll have lots of time to read and edit.

–R.

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Novel Update

Editing has been going well lately. I’m nearly finished my first round of edits! I’d like to do at least three.

The amount of notes I’ve left myself over the last couple of weeks regarding work, school and…whatever else continues to grow, but I’m still at a point where I can manage. At least the work I’m doing is something that I enjoy. As my Dad said, “If you enjoy it, it isn’t really work.” Hopefully soon I can turn the things I enjoy into something profitable. Gotta pay off those student loans at some point.

I’ve got a couple of things that I’d like to get done today…a few assignments that I need to get started on, some cleaning. I seem to clean up around here every weekend. This place gets messy pretty fast. Students are always too busy for “tedious” things like cleaning…apparently. I’m a bit squeamish so I try to clean up after myself. Other peoples messes are not my problem…even if they bug me. As long as my space is clean I have somewhere I can escape to when the kitchen looks like thirty people live in our apartment. I swear…something…something in that sink smells.

Whenever I write for characters around my age I start laughing because sometimes my own thoughts bleed into the narration. I have characters who are in their early 20s, living with roommates and trying to cope with the many responsibilities of adulthood. So when I write about them stepping on weird squishy rotting fruit in the kitchen…it’s because this stuff actually happens on a day-to-day basis. I usually end up laughing my head off when I write those kind of scenarios. I usually try not to base characters off of people I know, however you gotta draw inspiration from somewhere. Even if it is your…dirty kitchen that smells like rotting milk. I can’t figure out where that smell is coming from!? If people would just wash their dishes we wouldn’t have this problem. Like, bruh there is a dishwasher! How do you have three weeks worth of dishes in the sink?

I hope my roommates never find this blog post. They’re great guys honestly, but I just…the smell is so bad! I don’t know how to describe it exactly…rotting milk with like a mixture of…I don’t know…moldy…fruit? Like when the fruit gets all fluffy and stuff. That kinda moldy.

It’s sad…when you live at home your parents tell you when stuff needs to be thrown out. When you live alone you kind of just open your fridge and go, “Hey, I forgot I made stir fry…when did I make this again? Oh…oh God…oh that’s…nope…nope uh…Lord help me….trash…sink…I think it’s moving!”

Anyway, I’d better go. Places to go. Things to do.

Enjoy your weekend.

–R.

Insanity by Lucas King

Occasionally I play this song when doing sketches of a character of mine, whom you’ll meet someday soon. I haven’t had the chance to write his story recently. Usually I write it when I’m having trouble sleeping. I promise you he isn’t crazy…at least…not yet.

Ha…I’m just teasing. I’m sure he doesn’t mind that I haven’t finished his story yet. It’s getting sad. I do think about him when I hear songs like this one. I feel as if I’ve doomed the boy…and he isn’t even real. Well, he’s real enough to me. I created him.

It’s a strange thing, being an author. You create these people…and with one swift movement their lives are altered in ways that they can’t even imagine. They have no control over what is going to happen next…and sometimes it feels as though the author has lost control as well. Sometimes the story’s end up writing themselves.

Part of me hopes that this young mans story won’t be tragic. I wonder if I’m avoiding it, because I know what is to come. He has some notion of what will happen next, that’s for sure. Still…it’s hard to say how it will end.

–R.

Book Update

The illustrations are coming along nicely. We’re aiming to have them all complete by the end of the month.

In the meantime we’re thinking about our marketing strategies. Creating a business plan can be a lot of work, but it’s definitely worth it. It’s better to know what you’re going to spend, and how much you plan on making on your return. Everything needs to be taken into consideration. I was lucky enough to come across someone who could provide me with a template to work off of. I’m also lucky as my Dad has a copy of the business plan he made up years ago. It made it a lot easier when trying to format everything and work out the numbers.

I know that it may seem like a pain in the butt to do, but it’s something that you should be doing. Writing is a business, where one can be their own boss. The reason why some people fail when they’re self-employed is because they skipped the planning process and decided to jump into something without calculating the risks.

Anyway, enough business talk. I’m going to try to prepare some breakfast…although I’m a little unsure as to what I want to eat today.

Till next time,

R.

Revisiting Old Books

I did a little bit of cringing today, while looking at my old writing. My sister told me it really wasn’t that bad…and I do agree, for the time it was good. The stories I told were engaging, it was merely the old idea I had, where I thought I had to use sophisticated words in my writing. I didn’t use the words incorrectly (thank God), however it gets pretty annoying after a while…like…people don’t actually talk like that.

Oh well…I’d better go. I have some editing I need to do.

Books, Editing, Books.

So last night I wrote my final exam of the school year. Thank God. I was ready to be done with my courses back in March. It felt like the year just kept dragging on.

Now that that’s over with I now have time to edit my novel and work on my own projects. My goal is to complete this first edit by next week. I’ve already finished a good chunk, and I figure if I create a schedule I’ll be able to finish by then.

Setting deadlines for myself is extremely helpful, because when I first began writing I couldn’t stop. It was as if no matter what I had to write. Ever since I put my first novel on hold, I’ve been writing in a more…staggered pattern. Usually bouncing between projects, or suddenly choosing to do work out of the blue. It may also have to do with the fact that I’m an English major and I’m being forced to read and write versus doing it because I find it enjoyable.

I’ve recently been asked if I’ve been compiling a list of beta readers and editors. At this time I have a very rough idea of people, however it isn’t set in stone. I decided early on that I wouldn’t ask until I was satisfied with my own edits. Once that’s done I’ll let other people review it.

My Mom attempted to peak at my writing during Easter. I don’t believe I have ever shown her my writing. I’m not sure if it is her taste, and also she tends to prefer reading non-fiction. I think I’ll let her read this novel…since honestly it is a hundred times better than the six book series I’d been working on back in the day…yikes.

Anyway, at this point in time I feel like I’m in the very early stages of editing. I’m trying to tweak the first half of the novel which was written in 2013 to fit my current writing. It can be a little tricky at times, because there are sentences I really like and then there are sentences that I completely tear apart and rearrange. I think when I had started the novel I was trying to work on being more descriptive. This was before I realized that I really enjoy writing dialogue, and began using that to push the story along versus dragging out scenes where I described the colour of the wall. Don’t get my wrong, I don’t dislike lengthy descriptions but unless describing the scene is significant to that particular passage I don’t see a point in making my readers go through “Charles Dickens–like” descriptions.

I’m not bashing Charles Dickens, I just scored one of his novels the other day for only a buck. I have a little collection of his work. Oliver Twist is still my favourite so far, but it might just be because I used to rent Oliver and Company from the library every Friday with my Mom when I was in kindergarten. Those were the good old days. How did my parents not see this coming? I mean, I preferred reading Curious George and Cat in The Hat over going to my swimming lessons. I’ve had a journal since the first grade. I started writing stories when I was like five years old…very interesting ones. Mostly about animals…and occasionally “zoom-bies” but hey, we all start somewhere.

Not to mention my Nana is a book lover, and so are my aunt and uncle on my Dad’s side. I’ve been exposed to people who love to read, and my Dad shares the same name as a well known author (yes he’s been asked to sigh books before).

Yah…how did they not see this? Then again it was my neighbour who told them to put me into music. I Guess the only thing they really noticed was my love for drawing. My Nana actually made a scrap book of drawings I made as a little kid. They’re not terrible.

Well…I have a few things I’d like to do this morning. They’re not exactly work related but I just wrote an exam last night I want to relax for a bit, before I decide to suddenly jump into editing. I’ll probably do a few chapters this afternoon. I also want to do a bit of sketching this weekend.

Well bye for now,

–R.

 

You Feel Me?: Conveying Emotion in My Work

At the moment, I am currently working on an essay.

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“Where did all this homework come from!” (Image from Golden Time).

 

Fun right? Well, the information I’m gathering is kind of interesting. I also think my topic and thesis are cool…so that’s a start.

I did update my novel the other day with a really humorous chapter. I don’t think I’ve ever actually laughed that much while writing. I don’t know if it was because it was late at night and I was tired, or because it was actually funny. I’d like to think it was actually funny. I’ll find out when I edit later.

Whenever I actually feel what I’m putting down, I know that I’ll be satisfied with the final product. That’s why I don’t like to write about things I don’t know about…it isn’t that I refuse to do so, but I feel like it isn’t genuine and I don’t like to force emotion into my writing. I want the emotion to be real. If I’m not feeling anything, then I don’t think it is worth keeping. It took me a lot of trial and error when writing romance between characters when I first started.

3dgirls

(Quote from 2D-Kun. Golden Time).

 

I know that there are some twelve and thirteen year olds out there who are in relationships, and claim to know everything there is to know about love. I wasn’t one of those kids. I’m not afraid to admit to it. I had people I liked, but I’d never dated anyone. My first experience with heartbreak was when I was sixteen…and it wasn’t because I was dumped.

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“Boo hoo! My heart hath been broken!” (Found on Google).

 

I wasn’t in a relationship at all.

its-not-u-its-me

“Stop. Get some help.” (Image From Golden Time).

It was that experience that opened my eyes to this flaw in my writing. I stopped trying to write about those types of intimate relationships, because I finally had some understanding of how they actually worked. Instead I wrote what I knew. I knew about liking someone, but not wanting to ruin my friendship with them. I knew what heartbreak felt like, and realized that I am capable of jealousy…an emotion I hadn’t truly felt before to that degree. When I started to write the things I knew, I was actually feeling the emotion in my words.

unnamed - Copy

I didn’t have to pull a rabbit out of a hat to write about these things because I understood the feelings I wanted to convey. As I’ve gotten older, I’ve been able to write about different aspects of relationships. Either things I’ve experienced, or that people close to me have gone through. Sometimes, I’ll admit, using another persons experience is difficult but it is still better than trying to conjure up some plastic emotion that you have no clue what to do with.

zonedout

Boo from Monsters Inc.

 

Just because you write fiction doesn’t mean that you can’t be honest.

 

Anyway, I’d better get going. I still have a few more articles to look at.

Till next time,

–R.

Why Stress Out When You Can Write?

I’m in the mood to do some writing right now, and although I have to prepare a rough thesis for this week I find that stressing over what to write goes away when I write something else first. So a little novel-writing tonight, and hopefully after some more brainstorming I’ll have a good idea as to what I want to do for my thesis.

I’d like to see what my characters are up to. They’ve been begging me to give them attention lately, but priorities…homework comes first (or at least…I try to put it first).

Until next time,

–R.

Rejection Letter

So I received the dreaded rejection letter, which included no feedback from the editing board. I know right? Annoying.

My Dad seemed pretty concerned that I would forever be discouraged from writing, and so he had Mom call me. Last time he did that was when he thought I was upset over a breakup. I told him I wasn’t angry at least three times before my Mom called me the next day to ask about the rejection.

“I’m not mad. A little disappointed, but otherwise I don’t care. At least I tried.” I told her, while standing in the basement of the library.

“Good. You don’t wanna let things like that get to you.”

And that was that.

I understand why my Dad worries about me, but when it comes to the things that I love there is nothing that can discourage me enough to stop. I couldn’t possibly stop…my work is an extension of who I am. I’m a writer. I write.

There are people who get hundreds of rejections on a single work before it gets published. It isn’t the end of the world.

“Don’t let your dreams be dreams.”  — Shia LaBeouf.

–R.


Yes, I used to watch shows about Pharaoh’s playing children’s card games….

Writing Tip: Getting Feedback

I’ve been making good progress so far while editing my novel. Since I began it three years…or now four years ago (Happy New Year!), I’ve noticed some mistakes I made later on. Thankfully they’ve been easy to fix, since they’ve been very minor details.

It is weird how my style of writing has evolved though. I’m thankful that I spent high school editing essays for friends of mine. Once I’ve completed transferring/editing my draft onto my laptop I’m going to have some people read it for feedback. I’m still debating on the who…since I want to be careful who I hand over my manuscript to. I’ve had bad experiences in the past with certain people. I’m able to take criticism with my work, but there are just certain people you don’t share your ideas with because they have nothing good to say. I don’t share my work with those who only know how to spit venom. I suggest doing this as well, if you are looking for someone to give you feedback.

It is important to find someone who you know will be honest with you about your work. You don’t want someone who is going to tell you everything is perfect because they want to avoid hurting your feelings, and you don’t want someone who is going to tell you everything is horrible because they’re just being a jerk. If you can find somebody who will be honest with you about your work, and will be professional about it (meaning they will give you balanced feedback with pros and cons), that is fantastic!

Well, that’s all for now. Perhaps I’ll post some of my doodles later.

–R.