5th Blogiversary

My blog is officially 5 years old!

I keep forgetting that it shares a birthday with my sister (well her’s is tomorrow).

I started this blog in 12th grade before I graduated high school…now I’ve graduated again this year. How bizarre is that.

I haven’t been blogging recently which has been bugging me, but every time I’ve had to log onto my computer recently, its to do work. Work. Work. Work. And not my fun work…like…just writing papers and filling out forms kind of work.

I’ve been writing a lot through: creating characters, writing scripts, working on my novel, editing.

I’ve also spent a lot of my free time day dreaming. I spend a lot of time up in my head.

I’d like to get back into the habit of blogging once a week, but like I mentioned in one of my previous posts, I like to give updates when I’ve actually gotten a lot of progress done.

Recently I’ve begun writing the second book in my novel series. I’m a little bummed because I had to set it aside for about…two weeks now because I had work. Getting up at 4 am everyday for work is gonna take me some getting used to.

I’m suddenly hungry…and I just ate…sigh.

Anyway, the progress I’ve made so far I’m pretty happy with. I actually made myself laugh out loud while writing, which is good because one of my creative writing professors pointed out that I tend to write really depressing, cold sounding pieces. I’m not a depressing person, I promise.

Yesterday I wrote a song about a chicken…who know one wanted to dance with at the club because he had nasty flow…and…actually it was a pretty depressing song. Thankfully, I’ve never been rejected a dance. Although…I haven’t been to a club since I was 19 (Canada eh) and…it wasn’t much fun. Everyone had to leave because this guy threw up everywhere…plus I’m not much of a drinker…or much of a nightlife person.

Back on topic. Yah, I made myself laugh, and now that I’m older I actually understand new emotions, and I can actually convey things that I wanted to express when I started my novel five years ago.

I’d really, really like to hire an editor but it’s just not in the funds right now. Like…I have $60 to my name. Everything else goes straight to paying for courses right now. School is expensive. I know I’m not going to get a loan from my parents for that…they already feed me. I’m trying to work out some sort of plan for that. I just think it would be easier. Not all of my beta readers are the editing type. Most are just folks who love to read. What is great about them is that they are about to point out plot holes or any inconsistencies within the novel! Thankfully with this final draft of my novel I haven’t heard anything of the sort from them. In my earliest draft…ha…well…I mean…it was five years ago. The feedback I got then really helped me shape my novel into what it is today. If I were to get free editing…it would be from two of my relatives who are big readers, and one who has actually published before. The only thing is that I’m a bit weary of having my work reviewed and edited by my family right now because I don’t want biased feedback. I only know one person in my family who will always be brutally honest with me about my work, and that is my sister. My sister doesn’t kiss butt. My sister doesn’t blindly throw compliments around. My sister gives praise when someone truly earns it, and isn’t shy about giving constructive criticism. That’s why I’ll usually ask her for some quick feedback for a scene or something.

I’ll figure it out…maybe if I put away a portion of my pay every week I’ll be able to afford an editor. I’ve actually been looking around. If I do that, it means I’ll be behind in my publishing schedule though…but at the same time, it allows for me to keep working on my second book in the series so that my readers won’t have to wait too long for the next installment. I know how frustrated I used to get waiting for a new book to be released in a series…and how disappointed I was when authors rushed the writing of them. It’s obvious. Honestly, take it from a reader/writer, DO NOT rush your books. I get that we all need to make money to eat and whatever, but I cannot stress this enough. Your readers know when you’re cutting corners. They know your potential. If they follow you, don’t disappoint them.

Yikes…it’s cold in here.

Well, I’d better get to work…oh joy…it’s alright this work is actually fun. It’s actually character creating work. I’m just a little sleepy is all. I have to spend all evening working on boring stuff…seeing as how I procrastinated that as usual and left it till the last-minute.

Part of me really, really wants to go buy a frozen lemonade from Tim Horton’s despite the weather being all dreary and what not.

I seriously don’t feel well. I don’t know what’s going on with me lately. I keep blaming it on the change in my sleep schedule or not drinking enough water…but I’m praying I feel better soon.  I don’t like to feel under the weather when I’ve got so much on my plate.

Happy blogging everyone,

–R.

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Reactions to My Old Writing

I always feel really happy when people react to my poems. Especially my much older ones from when I was around 16. I still get responses from people telling me what they think and its great.

I haven’t posted anything on that website in a long time, mainly because I started this blog and didn’t want my work to be under two different names. It was mainly in case someone claimed I was stealing somebody else’s work, when in actuality I’d just been writing under a different name. That could have become problematic. I have some friends on that website who would rip someone apart on my behalf simply because they know I try hard not to get involved in any sort of drama. They’d do it behind my back too without saying a word because they know I’d protest. At least I know they have my back.

freakingout

Yah, I like that even three, four years later people are still finding my poems and responding to them. It makes me happy and also makes me realize that what I consider to be my “bad” writing has had an effect on people. Like…I’m sitting there going “I rhymed a word with the same word…why? WHY!?” but they’re like “Wow this really touched me. Thank you for sharing.”

Try not to think that because your writing is older that it isn’t any good, or worth looking at. It can help you grow. It shows the techniques you’d been using before, and you can compare it with how you are writing currently. For example, I used to try and use a lot of description, now I like to use a lot of dialogue. When I read my older work, I’m actually impressed with the way I described things but also annoyed at how detailed it is. I wrote something like,

“The bricks of the wall were a mustard yellow colour. The charcoal pavement looked strange up against the yellow bricks.”

I’d look a lot like this:

zonedout

Yah…a thirteen year olds writing versus a twenty year olds. Same person…very different writer. I’ve never actually disliked my writing style. I’ve always been good with dialogue…but like man those descriptions were just sad. They were sad. I don’t know how else to describe them. They did nothing for the passages. They had no purpose. I just always felt like I wasn’t writing enough. Now I’m like “Okay end of chapter. Onto the next!” without questioning myself.

I would encourage everyone to go and look at their older work. Even comparing what genres you used to write is hilarious. I used to pretty much write the same two stories over and over again when I was little until around the 7th grade. Scenario, there is a kid (or group of kids) and they save an animal…or multiple. That’s the story. Some times it was talking animals saving other animals. I was one of those little kids that really liked animals. Yep…now I write about people. And I don’t use the same names over and over again. Like Jordan and Karen and Mac and Emily.

Mac and Emily are very, very famous characters of mine. They have three books and two were bound by my teacher in gr. 4. There are even pictures. And yes…they save the animals from bad guys who are trying to ship the animals off to another country to sell them.

Karen and Jordan also saved the animals from a ship that was trying to sell them to another country.

I wrote them in the same grade. Don’t judge. I wish I had them here with me, because I’d scan a page to show you what I mean.

And there was that story about the baby owl that lost its family and was raised by a human. I wrote that for my brothers birthday when I was maybe in first grade? I used to steal a needle and thread from my moms sewing kit and sew the pages together.

…I wrote so many stories as a kid how did my parents suddenly think I was a weirdo when I wrote six novels at 13? Guess its because I carried my notebooks everywhere and fell asleep with them in bed aha…yah. Good times. Don’t recommend sleeping on a binder. It’s cold and uncomfortable. Also you risk ripping pages.

This is longer than I expected it to be.

I have work to do including chores so I’d better go.

— R.

Using Multiple First Person P.O.V’s

Books that have more than one first person P.O.V (point of view) are a bit uncommon, especially when it comes to Young Adult fiction genres. The reasoning for this is because a lot of authors find it difficult to write for more than one leading character using a first person narrator. If you have ever thought of writing a book that uses more than one first person P.O.V here are some tips that might help you to get started.

            BONUS: writing exercise at the bottom.

  1. Don’t use too many characters to tell the story:  Too many characters are too hard to follow, not only for the reader but for the writer. Sometimes it can make the story more complicated than it needs to be. The highest amount of characters when writing in first person P.O.V should be four. Going over four characters can make the reader either lose interest or make the story challenging to understand.
  2. Make sure each character has purpose: To do this try asking yourself questions like: what makes this character important? Are they helping the flow of the story?
  3. Don’t change characters within a chapter: This is something that really bothered me when I was younger…actually it still bugs me today. Changing characters within a chapter is extremely irritating for readers. This is because they aren’t able to automatically indicate which character is speaking. This causes a lot of confusion for the reader, and sometimes will cause them to lose interest in the story itself.
  4. Each character should have a distinct voice: To help tell characters apart in each chapter, give them their own specific characteristics, especially in their speech. Make sure that they appear different to the reader.

 

Writing Exercise: Everyone reacts differently, even in the same situation. For this exercise we will be using two characters: a young girl (friend or sister), and a middle aged man (father or teacher). The story should be at least two pages long (typed 2 pages, written one page front and back). Here is the situation: A seven year old boy, named Julian, is hospitalized after being hit by a car on his way home from school.

After you are done writing the reaction for both characters look and see that your stories have the following:

  1. The two character have a distinctly different voice.
  2. The characters reactions are different.
  3. The characters personality suits their age.
  4. The language used in the text fit the age of the character.
  5. The story is an appropriate length.
  6. There is an atmosphere and tone.

If you would like to share your pieces (one or both), feel free to leave a link in the comment section below. Also, don’t be afraid to share your own tips on writing for multiple first person P.O.V’s.

I hope that this blog was helpful, and got you doing a little bit of writing. Before I conclude, I’ve got a question for you. Which point of you do you prefer to write in: First person, second person, or third person? Why?

 

Till next time,

 

Orion.