Happy New Year!

It’s still New Years Eve, but I wanted to give a quick update as to my novel progress. My novel is currently going through the “reader” phase, which may possibly result in a 4th edit. I’m pretty nervous honestly, but I know I’m going to get some good, constructive feedback that will really help me with my writing.

Wishing everyone a safe and happy New Year this coming 2018!

I’ll do my best to post more. December was a busy month for me due to exams and just…school related everything. Then suddenly it was Christmas and once I finished my editing stuff I went straight to playing with all my new gifts (Thanks Santa).

–R.

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Exams, Illustrations, Teaching and Reading

My exams and my placement are almost finished. I’m definitely going to miss my students over the winter break. I’m trying to think of something nice I can do for them on Friday but because I’m still studying for my final exam I haven’t had much time to do that.

My students discovered that I draw, and so I’ve got a bunch of commissions to finish by Friday. Right now I’m drawing a cat. Maybe I’ll post it when I’m done.

My favourite thing about my placement is that the moment I arrive they’re all excited to see me. That honestly makes my day. I hope in the future when I’m teaching on my own I’ll get that same reaction from my students.

I’ve also been getting a lot of great advice from the teacher I’m working with. The age group I’m with is actually a little older than what I applied to teach but it’s great because I’m learning a lot about myself, and certain things that I need to work on.

As for my exams…well I’m still studying. I’ve gotten a bit of help on some of the stuff I don’t know. I’m not nervous or anything so that’s good. My plan is to just review as much as I can today and tomorrow morning, and just do the best that I can. As long as I do my best, then I have no reason to be nervous. I’ve studied the material, and I tried my best. That’s what matters.

Now, book updates: due to having also having exams, my illustrator for the children’s book is currently on break. We were hoping all the illustrations would be officially finished before December but then got swamped with assignments. So, as of the 18th of December we will get back to work on the illustrations. I’ll also have the rest of my beta readers go through my novel, since I’ll have more hard copies printed off by then. Some people don’t mind it when you send a PDF but eh…there are people like me who like to make notes on the page when reading over people’s work. I’m hoping for some really helpful feedback. I’m hoping to decide on what I’m doing with the cover this week…I think I found a designer who can do what I want. If all goes well the book will be released during the winter time, which would be awesome.

Anyway I’d better get back to reading my textbook here.

Stay golden,

–R.

Novel Update: 4th Anniversary

Today the 4th Anniversary of my novel. It’s hard to believe that I began writing this book back when I was still a high school student.

I’ve come along way since I started the first page of my draft back in 2013. I’ve had experiences which helped me add more to the story that I couldn’t back when I was in high school. I completed the hardcopy version, and edited it. I’ve begun looking more into my publishing options. I’ve also been apply to Graduate school…which is weird. On top of that I’ve started the draft of the second book in the series (yep there’s more than one book).

I’m honestly can’t wait to have lots of people read it.

Not only that but my children’s book is finally becoming a reality. The illustrations are fantastic.

Despite all of the ups and downs I’ve had recently and all that occurred during these past four years, I’m glad to say that my book will definitely be published. I defeated my writers block, and jumped over the hurdles thrown in my path.

Seeing my words printed on paper is a wonderful feeling. I’ll have to print off another draft soon, and send copies to my other beta readers…who I am seriously thankful for.

I’m excited for this. I’m really excited. I haven’t had a lot to look forward to recently…well that’s not true, I’ve just been extremely busy and haven’t had any time to myself.

I’m also very…very short on money right now.  I only make a little money and apparently it costs around $100 every time you apply to a schools graduate program. So if I apply to four schools that’s $400…$400 that come out of my groceries, and bill payments. I have to pay my bills this week. I’m pretty sure it was a set fee back when I was in high school. You paid $100 for a total of three university applications. Why do they think that suddenly these same students are making millions of dollars four years later? I think I had more money when I was in high school. I didn’t spend money on anything but books. I didn’t have to pay rent, and pay for my heat and hydro. I didn’t buy my own groceries either. It wasn’t like I had to budget $100 every month for food and such. I also didn’t have to clean up after my roommates…who continue to do things that they agreed they wouldn’t do before I selected them as roommates.

I’m definitely considering living on my own next year. I don’t have to worry about anyone else’s mess. I can shower without pulling back the curtain and finding God knows what. My kitchen won’t smell like rotting meat, and since I’m the only person who lives here who knows how to take out the trash…and to use a trash can…then I won’t need to worry about people not pulling their weight. Too bad rent is expensive and it’s easier to divide it up between four people. Seriously…this is a pain in the butt.

Anyway, I have class soon so I’d better finish up my breakfast.

I hope everyone is surviving this weird weather.

Till next time,

–R.

Novel Update

I’ve got about four chapters left to edit. Yeah! I honestly would’ve finished last night if I didn’t look up at the clock and go, “Oh…it’s 1am.”

It’s going well. I’m very pleased with the results. I noticed most of the spelling errors occur in the last few chapters haha, probably because I got excited about being near the end and finished transferring them all in the same day. Still, despite that I’m really enjoying the story.

My next step after this is to make all the corrections on my laptop, and let others read it. Honestly, I’m having a lot of fun with this novel.

I also spent almost all of yesterday working on another project of mine. It’s a group project, and it’s great. I’m so happy with how it’s turning out.

Well, I’d like to get some stuff done before I go make myself some breakfast.

Till next time,

–R.

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.

Novel Update

I’m nearly finished. I’m so happy. When I reached a certain passage in my novel I was like, “Whoa…it’s at the end. It’s happening.” I’m kind of hoping I can push myself a little to stay up and just breeze through those last two or three chapters. I’m ready to print this baby off and do my full read through.

My goal is to have it read in a single day, that way I can edit and make notes…see if everything adds up properly and I don’t have any loose ends. I did my best when typing it up to fill in any gaps, and tried to keep the writing style consistent throughout.

I can definitely say that there are areas where the writing is a lot stronger…some points where I experimented a little bit stylistically and it either was fantastic or I had to rewrite the entire paragraph. Overall I’m pleased with how things are going. I’m just pushed myself to sit down and type this morning because I know that I’m going to be a little busier now. Yah…I know I’ve got a bit of a cold or whatever and I haven’t been feeling so great…but I’m gonna stay up and write. I don’t have any classes tomorrow or any sort of serious things that I have to do so I can sacrifice a few hours of sleep. I’d be up reading anyways. I mean…I read myself to sleep every night.

Well I’d better get started.

Till next time,

–R.

The End: Novel Update

November 29th, 2013 I began writing this novel. At the time I had been taking a break from writing, as I’d been going through serious writers block. Then I came up with an entirely new story, that was begging to be written. Today, November 29th, 2016 I completed this novel…and after working on it for the last three years I don’t know what to do with myself.

I mean, it is broken up into three books, so I can begin working on part two but…whoa. Three years of my life. I wonder how much my writing style has changed between the first and last paragraphs. I wrote two-hundred and forty pages. Well then. That’s neat.

I don’t know how to react right now. I randomly started tearing up, and now I feel like running around and shouting to the heavens, “I did it! I finished!”

To think I’d had serious writers block before starting this novel. It was at the beginning of the 9th grade, and I’d written six books in a series. I was trying to edit them all…and I’d realized that there were too many loose ends and a lot of things that needed work. While I was editing them, I kept trying to start other novels and I’d write a couple of chapters and then give up. It was horrible. Then I fell in love with the idea of this novel, simply because of an image from a dream I had. The novel haunted me. I tried to push it out of my head but it needed to be written. Now it is finally finished…whoa. This is so weird.

I have such mixed feelings right now. I managed to reach my goal. I just thought it would be cool to finish on the same day that I’d started, I guess determination is really…important. Now I feel like I can accomplish anything. I’m going to begin editing this as soon as all of my essays are done. This is so awesome.

 

Whoa…I feel like I’m all over the place right now. I just read a bit of the first page and I was like “Wow…my writing has gotten a lot better. Thank you creative writing courses.” This is just too much for me to take in right now.

Especially since I was having such a hard time earlier this year and over the summer. I’d felt as though I’d barely had any time to write this year but I still managed to reach my goal.

For those of you still working away at your novels, keep going. Even if it takes you three or four years to complete a work, the feeling when you’ve finished…I can’t explain it but it is wonderful. I haven’t felt like this since the day I finished writing my first book.

This is just awesome. Okay…goodbye for now.

–R.

Listed on the Syllabus

Essays, reports, labs, presentations…all of them piling up right before the final exams (or in some cases midterms…if you’re lucky). All of these things popping up outta no where!

“They’re listed right here on the syllabus.”

“Where?”

“Page two. Here, where it says, ‘November such-and-such, Assignment Due.'”

“Aw…yah…I see it now. Yah…it’s there. It didn’t just magically appear outta thin air. But I didn’t get the outline for the assignment till last week. I barely had any time.”

“You had time to go and grab poutine.”

“Yah but–”

“And you had time to see Doctor Strange.”

“Yah but–”

“And you had time to order a pizza and play video games until midnight.”

“Yah but I–”

“You have no excuse. You just procrastinated. You put it off too long. And now, you’re stressed out.”

“Wish we could turn back tiiiiiiime…to the good old daaaaays…”

“Shut up! No singing! Sit you butt down and do your work!”

“But I’m hungry.”

“Yah…me too. Let’s go get food.”

“But…I have to do my assignment.”

“Eh…you’ve got till Thursday. There’s plenty of time!”

“It’s Tuesday….”

“Just…pull an all-nighter.”

“Last time I did that…I didn’t do so well on my assignment.”

“Do you sit around and complain all day? Jeez, I’m leaving.”

“Okay bye….”


The line, “Wish we could turn back time to the good old days,” is from Stressed Out by Twenty One Pilots.

Anyway, this dialogue just sort of happened all on its own. Hope it made you chuckle a little. I have a habit of inserting song lyrics into actual conversations I have with my siblings…and myself. Since this dialogue is me talking to myself. Happens a lot…yet, why question my sanity?

The Fall

the-fall

The Fall, O. Ryder. Sept 26th, 2016.

The Fall

By O. Ryder

I realized that I didn’t own a hairdryer when my sister’s wet towel brushed against my skin last night. It was cold. It soothed the pain in my bear arms but I moved it away, onto her lap. Whenever someone wore a towel on their head I imagined the Virgin Mary.

“It’s cold.”

She looked at me, big eyes glaring. “I just washed my hair.” Always glaring.

In that moment I felt stupid. Glaring eyes often made me feel as though I’d done something stupid.

Always glaring. Always stupid.

I felt uneasy as she pressed her back into my pillow. The olive green towel reminded me of my sweater: how it hung on her and how her gold strands clung to it as she rested against me.

I wasn’t attracted to blondes, I told myself. She was pretty but plain. I liked dark hair. I liked dark hair and warm eyes. No glaring. Never glaring.

My sister elbowed me. Woke me from my trance. Told me Dad wanted to talk.

My eyes left the green and my hands found the phone. I wondered why I had been in such a daze. Wet hair was soft, I thought. I haven’t worn that sweater in a long time.

I talked. He talked. He hung up.

Whenever we spoke lately he felt as though he was keeping me away from something. I just had trouble finding things to talk about. I wanted to hear warmth in his voice.

Everything died in the Fall. The plants, the insects, Granddad. Even some of the Angels died in the Fall.

Love blossomed in the Fall, but made me feel dead.

I was not fond of the weather. It was deceiving. Deceiving Canadian Fall.

The weather was as schizophrenic as our identity. Some said they felt it was bipolar…perhaps…perhaps.

Always glaring. Always falling. Always stupid. Always dead.

I wondered how anyone could rest their head in such a messy room. It smelt of burnt popcorn, wet towels and cologne.

And those golden strands had smelt like summer.

She was the Summer. I the Fall.

For once I had fallen, she had fled. As the warmth does when death comes.

She was Life. I Death.

Despite wishing, I represented the end.

“I love this sweater.” she said.

I said nothing.

She wrapped her fingers in mine. It felt uncomfortable.

“Wanna cuddle?”

I remembered the wet green towel. My sister was asking for the phone back. I placed it in her hand. I watched the television. You could get lost in the television. No thoughts. Always glaring. Always stupid. Always wishing.

My Favourite Insomniac

I’m currently feeling exhausted…which makes me want to write about my favourite insomniac, who has so far received 30 pages of sleepless nights, pizza and Lacrimosa on repeat. However this is a rewrite/expansion of a short story I began back in high school. Actually I entered it into a local competition. Obviously I didn’t win, or else I would have shared that story here on my blog. I hadn’t mastered the short story then to be honest. I’ve managed to get the hang of it though, thanks to years and years of practice.

Maybe I’ll sleep. Maybe I won’t. I mean…I just got back to my place, but I’ve been tired since yesterday. It is weird how every time I feel sleepy I feel like working on this novel. Its sort of something I’ve been writing on the side, so I don’t necessarily know when it will be complete, but I actually really like the characters. Ha…I end up loving all my characters, even the jerks. Eh…I think I will take a nap. I don’t have anything else to do right now. Not going out anywhere.

— R.